2017-18 Public library funding
The 2017-18 state government budget allocated $42.5 million in recurrent funding for public libraries. In addition, $22.4 million has been committed over four years to two library programs:
- $18 million over four years for the Living Libraries Infrastructure Program (until 2019-20)
- $4.4 million over four years for the Premiers' Reading Challenge Book Fund (until 2019-20).
The Living Libraries Infrastructure Program assists councils to meet the needs of their communities through the funding of public library infrastructure projects.
The Premiers' Reading Challenge Book Fund provides funding to public libraries for the purchase of books and other materials to support children and young people undertaking the annual Premiers' Reading Challenge.
Analysis of Funding of Public Libraries by State & Territory Governments in Australia
A report commissioned by Local Government Victoria, Analysis of Funding of Public Libraries by State and Territory Governments in Australia has recently been completed.
In summary, on a per capita basis, Victorian state government support for public libraries is higher in Victoria ($7.94) than in either of the other jurisdictions to which Victoria is most frequently compared: New South Wales ($3.76) or Queensland ($6.07).
Independent review of public library funding
Action 13 of the Ministerial Statement on Local Government (August 2015) outlined the Local Government Minister’s intention to undertake a "critical review to establish optimum future funding arrangements" for public libraries – specifically examining options for shared services delivery.
An independent review of public library funding in Victoria was conducted by global accounting firm KPMG. The review was completed in March 2016.
The report notes there are significant efficiencies and library service quality improvements available to councils through the implementation of shared service initiatives. These will provide Victoria with accessible modern libraries that meet their needs now and into the future.
Alongside the release of the report, this government is also releasing a number of documents that have informed the report, including the Tomorrow’s Library stage 1 and 2 reports.
If you have questions or need further information on library funding, please contact:
Julia Keeble, Senior Project Manager
03 9948 8538