A request to raise the mill levy for the Pine River Library District has fallen 10 votes short, according to the final unofficial results released early Wednesday morning.
No votes made up 50.11 percent of the 4,728 votes cast, while the yes votes were 49.89 percent of the vote, for a total of 2,359 yes votes and 2,369 no votes.
On Wednesday morning, Library Director Shelley Walchak said she will meet with her board to discuss the options of requesting a recount, as well as looking at when and if the district can request another mill-levy increase in the future.
In a letter to the editor in this week's edition of the Times, Walchak thanked everyone who supported the measure and asked those who did not support it to stop by the library, as well.
"If you don't know about the vast amount of services the library offers, please take the time to stop by," she wrote. "Let us know if we fall short at any time so we can always be the best."
The full text of the letter is on the Times' opinion page.
The results of the election became tighter with each round of results that were announced on Tuesday night and Wednesday morning.
In the first round of results released Tuesday evening, 52 percent of the voters said no and 48 percent voted yes.
As of 9:30 p.m., of 3,969 votes cast, 1,970 were in favor of the spending hike, while 1,999 were against. That equated to 49.63 percent voting no, and 50.37 voting yes.
With declining property tax revenues, the Pine River Library District trustees this summer decided to ask voters for an increase in the district's mill levy from 2.5 mills to 4.5 mills.
That would almost double the property tax revenue for the district, from $541,000 annually to $973,000 annually.
For a $300,000 home, the proposed tax increase would have cost a property owner $54 a year, or $3.58 a month.
The district is projecting an ending fund balance of $1.04 million in 2018, down from $1.5 million in 2015.
The district hadn't asked for a mill levy increase since 1999. The board has used the district's reserve fund to keep the budget balanced for the past three years but can't continue that indefinitely, Walchak explained.
Without the property tax increase, the district will have to make cuts in staffing, Walchak said previously.
The library district has about 9,500 residents in its boundaries, which are the same as the Bayfield School District, and includes Forest Lakes and Vallecito as well as Bayfield.
A volunteer campaign committee raised $4,300 for yard signs and advertising urging a "yes" vote on 6A.