Report to/ Rapport au :

Council / Conseil

October 26, 2011 / le 26 octobre 2011


Submitted by/ Soumis par: Jan Harder, Chair, Ottawa Public Library Board


Contact Person/Personne ressource:

Barbara Clubb, City Librarian and CEO/Bibliothécaire municipale et Directrice générale

Ottawa Public Library/Bibliothèque publique d’Ottawa

(613) 580-2424 x 32180,


City Wide/à l'échelle de la Ville

Ref N°: -













That City Council receive and table the Draft 2012 Ottawa Public Library Board Operating and Capital Budget Estimates for subsequent consideration by Council in Committee of the Whole.




Que le Conseil reçoive et dépose les prévisions budgétaires de fonctionnement et des immobilisations de 2012 de la Bibliothèque publique d’Ottawa aux fins d’examen ultérieur par le Conseil qui siégera à titre de Comité plénier.





On June 7, 2011 the Finance and Economic Development Committee approved a City staff report regarding the Long-Range Financial Plan IV (Part 1).  This report set forth a framework for the budget and included budget envelopes for all city departments, Boards and Commissions, including OPL.


The report recommended that “as part of the annual budget process, the budget allocation for all local boards and commissions be based on their individual pro-rated share of a 2.5% tax increase and an estimated 2% increase in tax resulting from growth in assessment, and that Council request that these Boards and Commissions develop their draft budgets within their annual allocation”. The report also included the following motion passed by Council on December 18, 2010 concerning the Long-Range Financial Plan: “BE IT FUTHER RESOLVED that the Long Range Financial Plan be developed with a maximum tax increase of 2.5.% for the years 2012 to 2014”.


The Council directives and motions, referenced above, have provided the framework upon which OPL has developed its budget.  OPL prepared the draft operating and capital budget estimates in consultation with City staff and within the guidelines provided through the City.   Moreover, the Library Board’s Finance and Budget committee has reviewed staff’s recommended budget documents to ensure that they aligned with the Library’s approved strategic directions. 


The Library Board received and tabled the draft 2012 Operating and Capital Budgets at a special meeting on October 25, 2011. The Board now forwards the draft budgets for tabling at the Special Meeting of Council on October 26, 2011.  


In summary, the 2012 OPL budget request aligns with the City’s approved budget strategy, the Board’s strategic initiatives and does not include any requests for new positions.




The Ottawa Public Library Board is responsible for the preparation and recommendation of a draft budget to be presented to Council.  Council is responsible for the review and approval of the Ottawa Public Library Board’s draft budget estimates.


The Ottawa Public Library is an agency of the City of Ottawa established by municipal bylaw under the authority of the Ontario Public Libraries Act. It is governed by a Council-appointed board of 14 trustees including six elected councillors and eight citizens. The term of the Board is four years, concurrent with the term of Council or until a new board is appointed by the new council. 


The goal of the OPL is to provide efficient, effective and equitable library and information service to the citizens of Ottawa through 33 facilities, 2 bookmobiles, 3 mobile units, outreach and digital services including an extensive website and an online catalogue. The OPL is the largest bilingual (French/English) public library on the continent and the second-largest public library in Ontario. The OPL works with many local, provincial and national partners to extend and improve service, in support of its mission to build a strong Ottawa community by supporting life-long learning and 21st century literacies, fostering inspiration and enjoyment and connecting people to each other and the world.


The OPL Board has an approved strategic plan, Strategic Directions and Priorities 2008-2011, and is currently updating this plan for 2012-2015.  The proposed 2012-2015 strategic framework focuses on: Relevant and Vital Services and Spaces and Innovation, Engagement and Excellence. The pillars that underpin those strategies include: services that are relevant, accessible, and customer-centric; spaces that are welcome, vital community hubs; technology-driven continuous improvement; engaging key stakeholders; and ensuring excellence in governance, effective accountability and financial sustainability. Information on OPL’s strategic plan is available in full at:


The Ottawa Public Library’s recent successes include:  


 Key 2010 service statistics:

O  33.6 million uses

O  More than 10.5 million items borrowed

O  More than 5 million in-person visits

 Ranked as the top City service in terms of client satisfaction in 2010

 Award winning leadership and personnel

 Effective and efficient (2009 OMBI results)

O  Low cost per use, below provincial mean and median @ $1.64 per capita

O  High annual circulation @ 11.7 items per capita



The 2012 Operating Budget request represents an increase of $1.745 million, over the 2011 net requirement, which is a 4.4% increase to OPL’s net operating budget. This amount provides for the following priority requirements:   contractual obligations for OPL employees; inflationary costs for fleet and public works; licenses and maintenance contract requirements; and monies required to fund the inflationary increase to OPLs PAYG (Pay As You Go) capital envelope.  OPL has also allocated funds to support RFID (Radio Frequency Identification), a key strategic initiative for the Library, and funds to correct a revenue shortfall.  


The 2012 Capital Budget total program request is $4.430 million (including growth and lifecycle requirements) and is balanced to the Library’s PAYG allocation. 




There are no specific rural implications associated with this report. The OPL offers equitable service to all residents of the City of Ottawa. 




The public consultation on the City’s draft operating and capital estimates, a process in which the OPL participates each year, will be conducted through multi-ward bilingual budget consultation meetings taking place November 01 to 04. Additional consultation will be available via the regularly scheduled monthly Ottawa Public Library Board meeting on November 14, 2011, where the budget will be reviewed and approved by the Library Board, and through the Library’s regular print and electronic feedback channels. 




There are no legal/risk management impediments to implementing the recommendations in this report.




Financial implications are identified within the report.  




Document 1 – Ottawa Public Library 2012 Draft Budget Briefing Note

Document 2 – Ottawa Public Library 2012 Draft Operating Budget Book

Document 3 – Ottawa Public Library 2012 Draft Capital Budget Book




Draft budget estimates for the Ottawa Public Library are forwarded to City Council for tabling on October 26, 2011 and further consideration as part of the budget process.