Millage Renewal FAQ

A graphic with Library usage statistics from 2016-2021 including: 249,166 Library visits, 525 programs offered with 9,414 people in attendance, 8,420 patrons have library cards that is 79% of all Coloma Households, 434,001 materials were borrowed, 38,019 ebooks were downloaded, 68,128 public computer sessions, 68,458 website visits, 44,848 wifi sessions, 19,134 reference questions answered, 11,810 open hours, 9,243 interlibrary loan items borrowed

In 2002, Coloma voters approved separate millage proposals for the Coloma Public Library including:

  1. Building Bond for a new Library facility
  2. Operating Millage

The building bond will be paid off in May 2022.
The operating millage expired in 2021.
The Library's renewal request for an operating millage will appear near the end of the August 2, 2022 primary ballot. The ballot will say:

Coloma Public Library Millage Renewal

Shall the Coloma Public Library, County of Berrien, State of Michigan, be authorized to levy annually an amount not to exceed 1.0 mill ($1.00 on each $1,000 of taxable value), of which .8842 mill is a renewal of the previously authorized millage rate that expired in 2021 and .1158 mill is new additional millage to restore the millage rate lost as a result of the Headlee Amendment millage reductions, against all taxable property within the Coloma Public Library district for a period of ten (10) years, 2022 to 2031 inclusive, for the purpose of providing funds for all district library purposes authorized by law? The estimate of the revenue the Coloma Public Library will collect in the first year of levy (2022) if the millage is approved and levied by the Library is approximately $266,000.


The Coloma Public Library needs operating funds to be able to continue to provide all manner of library services. Operating funds pay for books, programs, services, technology, insurance, internet access, utility bills, building maintenance, staff salaries, and more.

The average yearly tax receipts since 2002 have been $198,809.08 plus penal fine receipts from the State of Michigan. In 2021, the Library received $219,412.26 plus $78,624.69 in penal fines.

The operating millage requested is 1 mill, or 1 dollar for every thousand dollars of taxable value. Property taxes are computed by multiplying the taxable value of the property by the number of mills levied.

For a homeowner whose house has a market value of $100,000 and a taxable value of $50,000, the cost would be $50.00 per year or just under 96ยข a week.

Estimate your property taxes here.

Click here for an online calculator to determine the dollar value of services provided by the Library.

The Library's 20/21 budget was $335,541.51.
Biggest expense categories were:

  • Books & materials $24,018
  • Computer and technology upkeep $9,795
  • Facilities & Grounds maintenance $47,098
  • Personnel, employer taxes $221,743
  • Utilities $32,027

No-In fact, tax amounts will decrease because the 2002 Building Bond will be paid off as of May 2022!

For the operating millage, the Library is seeking to restore funds previously approved by voters, but lost due to the Headlee Amendment. In 2002, registered voters approved a 1mill tax to finance the Library. Over time, the operating millage was reduced to .8842. This millage seeks to return the Library to original approved figures, a total of 1mill.

Though operating funding has been reduced since initial approval, the cost of providing library service continues to rise. Books, public computers, supplies, and building upkeep costs have increased. Coloma has a beautiful facility that is beginning to require more extensive repair. Despite careful maintenance throughout the past 20 years, HVAC, lighting, carpet, and the roof are getting older and will not last indefinitely.

In 1978, Michigan voters approved the "Headlee" tax limitation amendments to the Michigan Constitution. It established overall limitation on total state spending each year limiting tax revenues. Taxpayers whose assessments grew faster than inflation limited property tax increases. Headlee requires a local unit of government to reduce its millage when annual growth on existing property is greater than inflation. As a result, the local unit's millage rate is "rolled back" so resulting growth in property tax, community-wide, is not more than inflation rates. A "Headlee override" is a vote to return the millage to the amount originally authorized the vote of the people, and is necessary to counteract the effects of the "Headlee Rollback". (From Michigan Library Association)

If approved by voters in the August 2, 2022 election, the new millage will first be collected with the Winter 2022 Tax bills. This would be a ten-year millage, collected from 2021 through 2031.

The Library serves residents, schools, and students in our service area including Coloma Charter Township, the City of Coloma, Bainbridge Township, and Hagar Township. Free Library cards are also provided to active members serving in the United States Military.

The Primary election will take place on Tuesday, August 2, 2022.

Registered voters residing in Coloma Charter Township or the City of Coloma will be able to vote on the Library's millage renewal ballot question.

Voter registrations can be completed in person with the Coloma City/Township Clerk's offices until 8:00 P.M. on August 2, 2002.

To register to vote online, click here. A valid Michigan driver's license or state ID is required to register via the online portal.

The polling location for voters in the City of Coloma is in the Community Room of the Coloma Public Library. The polling location for voters in Coloma Charter Township is the Coloma Township Hall. Click here to determine your voting location online or stop by the front desk of the Library for assistance.

Visit www.michigan.gov/vote for additional information about voting.

Apply for an absentee ballot online here. Please note that the Library's ballot question will appear near the bottom of the ballot.

Section 57 of the Michigan Campaign Finance Act limits how the Library can employ publicly funded resources to campaign for ballot questions.

Generally speaking, the Library can use public resources to communicate factual information regarding the ballot question, and the effect of its approval or disapproval. The Library cannot use public resources to advocate a vote for or against the ballot question.

In other words, we can't say "Vote yes" or "Vote no". Download this Fact Sheet from the Michigan Municipal League to learn more.

  • Access to over 71,000 titles in our collection.
  • Literacy and STEAM programs for kids. (Science/Technology/Engineering/Arts/Math)
  • Teen section including college prep materials.
  • Assistance for job seekers.
  • WiFi & public access computers.
  • Digital books and eAudio formats through OverDrive's Libby app.
  • Low cost copy, print, fax services available.
  • Free Mobile HotSpots for checkout.
  • Digital editions of the Tri-City Record from 1880-present.
  • Research genealogy with Ancestry's Library Edition.
  • Access full editions of Coloma Highschool Yearbooks in our new online database.
  • Borrow materials from libraries across the State of Michigan.
  • Access to hundreds of research databases.

The Coloma Library offers a welcoming space for our community to explore, learn, enjoy, and connect.

A table with two columns one stating With Millage Support the other saying Without Millage Support. Under the With Millage Support Column it says the following: Budget of approximately $219,000; Library open 6 days a week; 4 full time and 4 part-time staff; Weekly Programs; New Materials added weekly; Access to 10 public computer stations and wifi; Daily building maintenance. Under the Without Millage Support Column it says the following: Budget of approximately $50,000; Library open 1-2 days a week; Staffing reduced; Programming discontinued until funding recovered; New materials purchasing discontinued funding recovered; Access to public computer station and wifi greatly reduced until funding recovered; Emergency Maintenance only.

Yes! The Coloma Public Library is open for public services 50 hours each week. In 2021, library staff served 34,718 patrons; answering over 7,100 reference questions.

79% of all Coloma households currently hold a Coloma Public Library card.