Check out the original blog post: http://savenyclibraries.org/2011/02/28/advocate-for-libraries-this-tuesday-march-1st-in-albany/
Tomorrow is the first of March. Thankfully, this signifies that winter is almost over. But, it is also Library Advocacy Day (the day formerly known as Lobby or Albany Day.) The New York Library Association (NYLA) needs support for this event to be successful. Here are two main reasons to support and participate in Library Advocacy Day on March 1st in Albany, NY.
Looking at the library aid cuts over the last couple years, library aid has been already reduced five times since 2008 from $102 million to $84 million in 2010. The proposed 10% cut would reduce library aid to $76 million, which is below 1994 levels, according to NYLA. For more information on library aid cuts and advocacy points, please check out this informative PDF from NYLA.
With these cuts, library aid makes up for less than 1% of the state budget, yet libraries serve 57% of the state’s population (10.6 million library card holders), or 75% of households in New York. Libraries need to be able to continue to provide access to information, from job assistance to education programs, even helping families save money by borrowing materials and attending cultural and literacy programs. Libraries need support to continue these quality services.
For those reasons above, if possible, making a trip to Albany on March 1st, will help strengthen the message that libraries need more funding. We need to speak with legislators and have them understand the value of libraries in our communities. If you aren’t able to make the trip to Albany, there are still ways to advocate for libraries. Call/write your legislators and reinforce this message. NYLA has several advocacy tools to help with this process: NYLA Advocacy Tools
NEWARK — With millions of dollars in budget cuts slated for the Newark Public Library, one of the city’s most revered cultural institutions will face major reductions in staff and services, according to library officials. Report from NJ.com via Nancy Dowd.
Days after the city’s May elections, library leaders were informed they would lose at least $2.45 million in city funding, or nearly 18 percent of the library’s budget. The city typically funds about 90 percent of the library, with the rest coming from grants, donations and state aid. In response to the cuts, the library put together a spending plan that calls for 31 layoffs, salary freezes, branch closures, and two furlough days a week until the end of 2010.
“These were tremendously difficult decisions for the trustees,” library director Wilma Grey said in a statement. “We can no longer maintain all of our facilities and services.”