Although no members of the public attended a scheduled Monday night forum, employees and board members of the Grandview Heights Public Library are still optimistic that there is widespread support for a May 4 levy that will help the library avoid further reductions in services.

Although no members of the public attended a scheduled Monday night forum, employees and board members of the Grandview Heights Public Library are still optimistic that there is widespread support for a May 4 levy that will help the library avoid further reductions in services.

The meeting's organizers intended to share information about Issue 5, a 2.2-mill replacement of a continuing levy previously approved in 1986. If passed, the levy will help avoid further cuts in staff, repairs, purchases and hours.

"The feedback has all been very positive," said Mary Ludlum, the library's director. 'The community has been very supportive and understanding about the reductions."

Ludlum noted that because of a drastic reduction in state funding, the library has shortened its hours by 90 minutes a day, Monday through Thursday. Library officials say that although the levy will not provide any additional services, it will allow the library to maintain its current operations.

"From a user perspective, it's very noticeable that the library is not open until 10 o'clock in the morning," said Susan Studebaker, a member of the library's levy committee. "I get done with something in the community at 9 and would love to come by the library at that time but can't, so I have to go out again later in the day."

If passed, the levy will raise $633,582 a year for the library, which is $368,000 more than the current levy provides. The owner of a $100,000 home would pay approximately $4 more per month in taxes. The owner of a $200,000 home would pay about $8 per month more.

Ludlum pointed to a homestead exemption that provides property tax relief to senior citizens and permanently disabled residents. The exemption offers eligible homeowners a chance to shield up to $25,000 of their property from taxation. For example, a $100,000 home would be taxed as if it were valued at $75,000.

Residents browsing through the library's DVD selections on Monday night said they wouldn't mind paying a few dollars more each month to show their support.

"I think anything that provides educational resources should get more money," said Travis Smith, a student at Ohio State University, who was working on his laptop in one of the library's study areas. "I can work and it's quiet. I can get my things done and look at books if I need them."

Joe Lowe and his wife Alissa Soto said they visit the library regularly to check out books, movies and music.

"I think the library a really good resource for Grandview," said Lowe. "It's worth a few dollars a month to keep something like this going."

Michael Allardyce, a co-chair of the levy committee, said staff and committee members had hoped to answer any questions the public had about the levy. Despite the lack of attendance, Allardyce believes the residents know what is at stake.

"This community loves the library so we're looking forward to a good result," he said.

"We're going back to a 1990 level of state funding. I think folks out there understand that and don't like it."