The Daily Mash-Up

Saturday, September 05, 2015 This Week's Paper

At its December meeting, Pierce County Library System’s Board of Trustees adopted the library’s 2013 operating budget of $25,423,927 and $1,632,000 for capital improvements. The budget addresses a $3 million budget shortfall, approximately 11 percent of the Library’s 2012 budget.

“We made difficult decisions again this year, keeping in mind accountability to taxpayers and maintenance of core services,” said Linda Ishem, chair of the Library’s Board of Trustees. “Our libraries continue to be very busy—with an all-time high number of card holders. We made reductions in areas we anticipate will have the least detrimental impact on the hundreds of thousands of children and adults who rely on Pierce County Library.”

2013 marks the fourth year that the economic downturn is showing an impact on the budget, due mainly from reduced revenue from property taxes, which is nearly 97 percent of the Library’s funding source. From 2010-2013, the library’s budget has been reduced by a total of $6.4 million.

The primary steps to address the 2013 shortfall include: • Reduced books and materials budget. • Eliminated bookmobile service. • Transferred less money from operating budget to capital budget. • Adjusted payments for health care and retirement costs. • Used money from cash reserves/savings.

In mid-November the Library stopped running its 65-year-old bookmobile service, which was aging and costly. In 2013, the library system will continue to serve children in schools in low-income areas that most recently checked out books and movies from the bookmobile. Also, for 2013 staff further sharpened its books and materials buying decisions, which means offering fewer items for people to checkout. To help address the budget shortfall, the Library decreased its books and materials budget by $1 million, which is a 25 percent reduction from 2012.

The Tacoma Pierce County DUI and Traffic Safety Task Force, in partnership with the Pierce County Tower’s Association and Aloha Cab Company, is kicking off its holiday Home Safe Bar Program to keep would-be impaired drivers off the road.

Beginning Saturday night, Dec. 15, through New Year’s Eve, 13 tow companies throughout the county will offer free five-mile tows home for drinking drivers and their vehicles.

Aloha Cab Company, you know the one with karaoke, will provide 35 free taxi rides home on Dec. 15 and Dec. 22. This offer is for groups of three or more people in a five-mile radius in Tacoma.

Drivers who think they shouldn’t drive and have not pre-arranged a safe ride home should ask their bartender to call one of the participating towers through New Year’s Eve. You can not make reservations, so don't ask.

This year’s seasonal tow and taxi programs will operate alongside the task force’s Night of a 1,000 Stars DUI patrol, which will be hosted by the Fife Police Department. Twenty-five local officers, deputies and troopers funded by the Washington Traffic Safety Commission will unite with law enforcement across the state to arrest drunk and drugged drivers.

About a day has passed since Sir Paul McCartney shared a stage with the surviving members of Nirvana at the big 12-12-12 benefit concert at Madison Square Garden. We asked Tacoma Weekly readers how they felt about the performance and here’s how you voted.

I approve: 58 percent

I disapprove: 16 percent

I don’t really care: 13 percent

What? Paul McCartney played with “Nirvana?”: 13 percent

And now that that’s out of the way, you should check out Rolling Stone’s report on how the performance is tied to a documentary that Dave Grohl has been working on.

Apparently, we need to pay close attention to the beginning of that massive Hurricane Sandy benefit concert that's set to start at 4:30 p.m. today at Madison Square Garden. British tabloid, the Sun, has reportedthat Paul McCartney will perform a new song with Nirvana's Krist Novoselic and Dave Grohl.

The benefit lineup also includes Seattle big shot Eddie Vedder, Bruce Springsteen, the Rolling Stones, the Who, Eric Clapton, Roger Waters, Alicia Keys, Kanye West, Bon Jovi, Billy Joel and more. The concert will be streamed live on television, in movie theaters and on the various web sites for those who can't make it to Madison Square Garden in the next hour. Spinner.com's link is here.

Big Wheel Stunt Show isn't the only band that's getting its holiday spirt on. The Joshua Cain Band recently recorded this version of “O Holy Night,” which was mixed and produced by Jason Ott down on Pacific Avenue at Grit City Studios. If you like, you can purchase a copy of the song through Bandcamp.com, and proceeds from the song will be donated to the charity Toys for Kids.

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