The social return on investment from Minnesota public libraries is greater than simply the measureable return on investment. Other benefits of significant value include the collection of materials itself, and the many services of the library; the educational programs, as well as the educational benefits of the library's mission including literacy of the citizenry; technology for use in the library; the expertise of the library staff; the library facility as a community gathering place; the "halo" spending by library users at establishments close to the library; and the value of a library's enhancement to neighborhood real estate and community partnerships.
The public libraries of MN on the state economyCapital Expenditures: The impact of payroll associated with public library capital expenditures delivers an impact of more than $35.5 million dollars to the State. Operations: The impact of payroll associated with public library operations delivers an impact of more than $260.8 million dollars to the State.Capital Expenditures: The impact of sales associated with public library capital expenditures delivers an impact of more than $65.3 million dollars to the State. Operations: The impact of sales [services] associated with public library operations delivers an impact of more than $366.4 million dollars to the State.
The average household would be willing and able to donate [to public libraries] between $31.7 and $38.3 US dollars annually, resulting in a total donation for Minnesota’s approximately 2,061,882 households of $65.4 to $79.0 million annually.
Reported household usage of the public library varies by the respondent’s age group. Eighty-eight percent of 18–34 year olds (born 1976 to 1992) reported that they and/or someone in their household used a public library in 2010, prior to their interview. Among those 35–54 (born 1956 to 1975) 84% of households report public library usage. A lower percentage of households (70%) used the public library among those aged 55 or older (born before 1956).
There appears to be no statistically significant difference between these education groups in their feeling of the importance of having a public library in every community. All groups feel this is important.
Ninety-five percent of users and 83% of non-users feel having a library in every community is either somewhat or very importantOverall 80% of non-users and 93% of users felt that public library support should remain the same or be increased.
Seventy-eight percent of respondents reported that they or someone in their household used a public library in person or online in the year prior to the October/November survey (2010).Sixty-nine percent of respondents felt it was “very important” to have a public library in every community and almost 93% felt it was “somewhat important" or "very important”. Only 7% felt that having a public library in every community was "not very" or" not at all important."