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Library Use & Return on Investment Value Calculator
What is your library worth to you?

Who we are:
  *Our Member Libraries
  *Our Mission Statement
  *Funding & Governance
  *Staff
  *Trustees

How we support libraries:
  *Electronic Resources
  *Public Relations
  *Publications
  *Online Catalog
  *Continuing Education
  *Winnefox Automated Library Services
  *Winnefox Cooperative Technical Services

How You Can Support Your Library

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Search the Winnefox online catalog for books, DVDs & more!


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How did we come up with the numbers on this calculator? We averaged the retail costs of books and services. For books and other materials, we did not include the processing, storage or other value-added services that libraries offer.

Item Estimated Retail Value Values Explained
Hardcover Books Borrowed
$26.00
Average cost of hardcover book for adults
Paperback Books Borrowed
$9.00
Average cost of paperback book for adults
Children's Books Borrowed
$18.00
Average cost of new hardcover children's book
Magazines Borrowed
$5.00
Average cost to purchase a magazine
Videos Borrowed
$20.00
Average cost to purchase a DVD or video
Music CD Borrowed
$13.00
Average cost of a new CD
Book on CD or tape Borrowed
$20.00
Average cost to rent an audiobook from Recorded Books, Inc.
Item that was sent from another library for you through the Interlibrary Loan system
$26.00
Average cost of hardcover book for adults
Use of library's computers (Internet, Microsoft Word, etc.) for one hour
$8.00
Average hourly rate at Internet cafés
Use of library's wireless Internet access for one hour
$4.95
Average hourly rate at Internet cafés
Information or reference questions answered
$12.00
Minimum cost at JustAnswer.com
(The average cost is $15)
Use of the library's meeting room for one hour
$35.00
Estimated rate to rent a meeting room
Overdrive ebooks downloaded
$13.00
Average Amazon Price
Overdrive audiobooks downloaded
$21.00
Average of iTunes & Nook

To calculate the value you personally received for each $1.00 in tax support we collected information on your community's 2010 population and library support  from Wisconsin's Public Library Statistics, compiled by the State Division for Libraries, and Technology (DLT).

The return on investment is calculated by first dividing your community's annual library appropriation by the community's population to calculate the annual "per-capita" expenditure - the amount spent per person for library support. Your monthly value received is multiplied by 12 to calculate the annual value you received from your library. Your annual value received is then divided by your community’s per-capita expenditure to get your annual value received per dollar of tax support.

This calculator is an adaptation of projects by the Maine State Library and Library Research Service, a unit of the Colorado State Library and the Colorado Department of Education that is operated in partnership with the Library and Information Science (LIS) Program, Morgridge College of Education, University of Denver.

Updated September 20, 2018  
Contact baker@winnefox.org