The American Library Association has released the final version of its Public Library Funding & Technology Access Study 2011-12. Here's a summary of selected findings:
* For FY2011-12, the average total operating expenditures funding
for U.S. public libraries dropped by 2.4%, the third year in a row where
available funding declined. Survey respondents anticipate that
funding in FY2012-13 will drop by another 5.3%.
* Collections expenditures dropped an average of 1.64% in FY
2011-12, and libraries expect them to drop another 4.61% in
FY2012-13. However, the numbers vary considerably by library
location: Urban libraries' collection expenditures rose
3.2% in FY2011-12, and suburban libraries' collection expenditures also increased by 12.6%. By comparison, rural libraries' collection
expenditures declined 37%.
* 76.3% of public libraries now offer eBooks to their patrons in their facilities, and 76.1% offer eBooks to patrons remotely (for
example, over the Web.)
* 39.1% of public libraries make eReaders such as Kindles or Nooks
available to their patrons for reading eBooks.
* 14.2% of public libraries have optimized their websites for use on
* 7.2% of public libraries have developed smartphone apps for access
to library services and content.