We have gathered and analyzed a great deal of data to provide members with a report on the value of MLS services.  We analyzed quantities of services used and determined the price a library would pay for them if the services had to be purchased individually.

MLS provided value of just over $15 for each dollar of state appropriations.  This is based on the calculation that MLS members could take advantage of services valued at $104 million provided through our $6.9 million budget,

The way we calculated these amounts included the following “individual” prices to libraries:

  • Library delivery service $2.60 per item
  • Cooperative purchasing was based on a 34 percent discount for library materials and 40 percent for library supplies
  • Online content (databases) ranged from about $1,000-$17,000 depending on the library type and size for content supported by MLS (some content was purchased by MBLC).
  • Mediated Interlibrary Loans at $25 per request
  • Continuing education attendance at $150 for a half-day and $250 for full day events.
  • Advisory services were based on $125 per hour for professional consulting services
  • Summer reading program is based on $200 per library for materials and shipping
  • MassCat is based on an average subsidy of $1,235 per MassCat member library

The chart below indicates the value per library type (and public libraries by size) and shows that the average value per library was $58,324.

Please contact Catherine Utt (Catherine@masslibsystem.org) if you have any questions.

Type/Size Library

TOTAL Service Value to Libraries

Number of Members (by type)

Average Value per Member Library

Public Libraries Total

$63,158,932

372

$169,782

Public Libraries by Community Size

0-1,999

$4,571,767

69

$66,257

2,000-4,999

$5,014,415

52

$96,431

5,000-9,999

$9,911,456

71

$139,598

10,000-14,999

$8,669,906

54

$160,554

15,000-24,999

$11,615,586

54

$215,103

25,000-49,999

$13,249,523

47

$281,905

50,000-99,999

$7,326,652

20

$366,333

100,000+

$2,799,626

5

$559,925

School Libraries Total

$18,092,595

1,046

$17,297

Academic Libraries Total

$8,737,814

126

$69,348

Special Libraries Total

$14,059,913

240

$58,583

Grand Total

$104,049,253

1,784

$58,324