Administrative Read Reference

Public Libraries and the Law

Annual Report of Receipts and Disbursements (District Libraries)

Annually, Public Library Districts are required to prepare a statement that must be subscribed and sworn to by the officer preparing the statement (typically the Treasurer) and filed with the County Clerk of the county in which the officer resides, within six (6) months after the expiration of the fiscal year (typically December 31st, since the library district’s fiscal year ends June 30th). This statement, required by 30 ILCS 15/1 et seq., is commonly called the Annual Report of Receipts and Disbursements. While the statute does not provide a specific form that must be used, an example of a useable form follows.

Essentially the statute sets forth the precise parameters that must be included in the statement, and for our purposes are broken into three categories:

  1. A statement of all revenues received during the fiscal year and from what sources.
    • Typically, the revenues received are arranged in the common categories a library experiences, such as property taxes, gifts and donations, state grants, fines and fees, interest on deposits and perhaps personal property replacement taxes. Although a library district might have some other source of revenues, these are almost always the only types involved.
  1. The second category contains employee compensation or salaries.
    • Actually the statement in this category permits one of two alternatives: (a) The first would be to list the individual names and the precise total amounts paid to each individual, or (b) the other alternative, rather than listing the precise amounts, is to use the statutory categories of under $25,000 total; $25,000 to $49,999; $50,000 to 74,999 and so on and to group within the appropriate category the name of each employee included. The latter is the more commonly selected method, but either is permitted.
  1. The third category is a list of all other expenditures paid out by the library during the fiscal year.
    • For this section of the statement, however, there are two rules or parts that must be complied with. First, for any individual paid during the fiscal year an amount exceeding $2,500.00 in the aggregate for the year, the report must list the name of the individual or firm and the total amount of all payments. Regardless of the number of payments made during the year, if the total in the aggregate exceeds $2,500.00 the report needs to include the name and total. For instance, if ten legal bills were paid averaging $260.00 each, then the report would have to include the name of the attorney and the total actually paid during the year (e.g., $2,600.00.).
    • Secondly, all other expenditures (besides those totaling more than $2,500.00 to specific firms or individuals) must be grouped into sensible categories of types of expenditures. For instance, a library may have a "library supplies" category in which individual expenditures range from $10 to $50 but collectively during the year amounted to $3,600.00. The library would therefore use a category of expenditures described as "library supplies" to report those miscellaneous smaller expenses, regardless of how much they accumulated to be. Similarly, a library might make furniture expenditures during the year, though each to a specific vendor may have been less than $2,500.00 (and thus not listed in the second group above). The library would then report the collected expenditures for the purpose of furniture, listing the total of all of those amounts.

Following the preparation of a report meeting these requirements, the document should be certified to by an officer whose signature is notarized, and then filed with the County Clerk and published one time in the newspaper used by the library for its legal notices, unless the library has had an audit done by a Certified Public Accountant and the audit itself was filed with the county and published in the newspaper. The cost of the publication is covered by the library’s funds.

This statute [30 ILCS 15/1 et seq.] is a very important one to comply with. The penalty for anyone who fails to comply with any duty imposed by this Act is a Class A misdemeanor.

Sample Annual Report of Receipts and Disbursements

The sample Annual Report of Receipts and Disbursements provided below is available in PDF (Portable Document Format), which may be viewed or printed using your browser and Adobe Reader. Macintosh and Windows versions of Adobe Reader may be downloaded free from Adobe. Get Adobe Reader.