Archive for April, 2016

National Library Legislative Day 2016 – Updated

It’s that time of year again! National Library Legislative Day!
  • When: Monday, May 2 and Tuesday May 3, 2016
  • Where: Liaison Hotel, Capitol Hill, Washington DC
National Library Legislative Day (NLLD) is an annual, two-day advocacy event organized by the American Library Association. The event brings Library advocates, Library supporters, Librarians, Trustees, and Friends from across the United States together in Washington DC to meet with members of Congress and their aides to advocate and encourage support for libraries.
Briefing Day – Monday, May 2nd is a briefing day. You may register for this session through April 22nd on the NLLD webpage. Walk-in registrations will also be accepted at the door.
Virtual Briefing Day – New! – Briefing Day will be streaming live starting at 9am on Monday.
Issue Briefs – The 2016 issue briefs are now available. This year, all of the briefs are in this one document.
Reception – The reception will be from 5-7pm in Room 902, Hart Senate Office Building. Members of Congress and their staff have been invited by the American Library Association (ALA) and library supporters are welcome.
Legislator Visits – Tuesday, May 3rd is when most of the visits to Congress occur. If you are interested in joining a delegation for a visit, please contact Natalie Edington at nedington@bcpl.net by Monday, April 25th.
Virtual NLLD – Can’t make it to Washington DC? You can still participate virtually through Friday, May 6th. Visit the American Library Association’s advocacy page for more information on Virtual NLLD, including how to email, call or tweet your elected officials. There will be an opportunity to participate in Virtual NLLD via phone, email and tweets. Register at this site to receive talking points and other resources. Encourage others to register, too!
For more information, please visit http://www.ala.org/nlld and check back on this Legislative Panel blog.
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Success on IAL & LSTA support, but funding still at risk

IAL and LSTA “Dear Appropriator” letters: Update

Many thanks to everyone who responded to the Advocacy Alert! and contacted members of Congress to request signatures on “Dear Appropriator” letters in support of funding for Innovative Approaches to Literacy (IAL) and the Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA). The American Library Association (ALA) reported that we gathered as many signatures in Congress as we did last year. ALA has posted a “Champions” chart to show who signed onto which letters. We had some success with our Maryland members of Congress:

  • IAL: Senator Cardin and Representatives Cummings, Delaney and Sarbanes
  • LSTA: Senator Cardin and Representative Van Hollen
  • Note: As Chair of the Appropriations Committee, Senator Mikulski often does not sign onto letters, but still appreciates being contacted.

If you have not yet already done so, please contact these members of Congress to thank them for their support of IAL and LSTA! Engage is an easy tool to use to make this contact.

IMLS, IAL and LSTA funding still at risk

Despite this success, for the second year in a row the House Budget Committee released a resolution that suggests that all federal library funding, including money for the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS), be eliminated in order to achieve the House majority’s goals for cutting the budget. Although the resolution is a non-binding document, it is a concern because it conveys the majority’s philosophy. This also means that IAL and LSTA funding is still at risk.

For more information, please see the District Dispatch blog post.

Please stay tuned for more calls to action in support of IMLS, IAL and LSTA funding.

 

House and Senate pass FOIA Reform; move to reconcile differences

The Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) has made the news. Earlier this year, the House passed HR 653, FOIA Act, by voice vote. More recently, the Senate passed S 337, the FOIA Improvement Act, by unanimous consent. Please feel free to contact your representatives to thank them for their support!

Now the House and Senate must reconcile the differences between the two bills. The Congressional Research service outlined the differences in this summary and side-by-side comparison. It is hoped that reconciliation will be finalized before the end of the legislative session.

For more information, see the District Dispatch blog post.

 



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