Posts Tagged 'advocacy'

Advocacy Update: FY19 LSTA & IAL Dear Appropriator Letters

Many thanks to everyone who contacted Congress to ask for signatures on the Dear Appropriator letters in support of FY19 funding for LSTA and IAL! Both Senators signed on to both letters, as did Representatives Delaney, Raskin and Sarbanes. Representatives Brown, Cummings and Ruppersberger signed on to the LSTA letter. Please take a moment to use Engage to reach out to the Senators and your Representative and thank them for their support!

 

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Advocacy Alert! New! Ask Senators to sign Dear Appropriator letters for FY19 LSTA & IAL, #FundLibraries

April 9th Update: Senator Cardin has still not signed on. The deadline for signatures is Wednesday, April 11th. Maryland stands to lose $2.9 million in LSTA Grants to States. Please call or email Senator Cardin today!

April 5th Update: Senator Van Hollen has signed on! Please take a moment to thank him. Senator Cardin still has not signed on, but did sign both letters last year.

 

Original post:

This is a new request for action on the FY19 budget. There are now Dear Appropriator letters circulating in the Senate that ask Senators to preserve at least $210 million in federal funding for libraries, including the Library Services & Technology Act (LSTA) and Innovative Approaches to Literacy (IAL). Although the President’s budget proposal recommends the elimination of most federal funding for libraries, Congress has the ability to restore funding and they are currently working out the details of the FY19 budget. Getting enough signatures is key because it demonstrates the importance of and support for preserving library funding.

Neither of Maryland’s Senators have signed on yet. Because Senator Van Hollen serves on the Appropriations Committee, he may not sign a letter to himself. However, it is still important to contact both Senators to ask for their support. Last year, both Senators signed onto both letters. Information about how LSTA and IAL funds are used in Maryland, including updated 2017 information about LSTA funds, is available on the Engage site. Visit the letter tracker for up-to-date information about who has signed on; click on the name to see complete information.

See the ALA Action Center for more details and a links to send email or tweet the Senators. Thanks in advance for your advocacy!

Advocacy Alert! New! Ask Your Rep to sign Dear Appropriator letters for LSTA & IAL, #FundLibraries

March 15th Update: We’re almost there! Here are the results so far:

  • Signed neither letter: Harris, Hoyer
  • Signed LSTA letter only, not IAL: Brown, Cummings, Ruppersberger
  • Signed both LSTA and IAL letters: Delaney, Raskin, Sarbanes – Please use Engage to thank them!

Original post:

This is a new request for action on the FY19 budget. Although the President’s budget proposal recommends the elimination of most federal funding for libraries, Congress has the ability to restore funding and they are currently working out the details of the FY19 budget. There are now Dear Appropriator letters circulating in the House that ask Representatives to preserve at least $210 million in federal funding for libraries, including the Library Services & Technology Act (LSTA) and Innovative Approaches to Literacy (IAL). Getting enough signatures is key because it demonstrates the importance of and support for preserving library funding.

None of Maryland’s Representatives have signed on yet. Because Representatives Harris and Ruppersberger both serve on the Appropriations Committee, it is unlikely that they will sign a letter to themselves. However, it is still important to contact them to ask for their support because they can choose to include LSTA and IAL in their list of funding priorities. As the Minority Whip, Representative Hoyer also typically does not sign onto letters, but it is just as important to let him know about our funding needs. Visit the letter tracker for up-to-date information about who has signed on; click on the name to see complete information.

The deadline to sign on is March 19th. Last year, Brown, Cummings, Delaney, Raskin and Sarbanes signed onto both the LSTA and IAL letters. Ruppersberger included LSTA and IAL on his list of funding priorities. Only Harris and Hoyer did not sign on.

See the ALA Action Center for more details and a links to send email or tweet your Representative. Thanks in advance for your advocacy!

 

Advocacy Alert! Federal Library Funding Cut in FY 2019 Proposal

The FY19 federal budget proposal includes no funding for libraries. The American Library Association Washington Office (ALA-WO) is planning multiple advocacy approaches. See below for more information and the first step that you can take to advocate for funding. A status update on the FY18 budget is also provided.

What Happened

This week, the White House released its budget proposal for FY2019. As we anticipated, the budget proposed a significant cut to federal library funding. The administration’s budget proposal eliminates the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS), which provides approximately $183 million in direct funding to libraries through the Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA). The budget proposal also eliminates the $27 million Innovative Approaches to Literacy program administered by the Department of Education.

Why It Matters

These proposed cuts would impact many libraries across the country. While public and school libraries would see the largest effects, academic libraries with state-funded databases are also implicated. Since each state is required to match one-third of their federal LSTA grants, any cut to LSTA in the FY2019 budget is likely to lead to a cut on the state level. In addition, the cuts to IAL specifically target school library funding, which will make it harder for vulnerable schools to acquire the books, resources, and training needed to provide high-quality literacy programs for their students.

Wait, What Happened to the FY 2018 Budget?

Last week, Congress passed and the president signed an FY2018 budget deal that will likely include at least level funding for federal library programs at FY 2017 levels. While this budget agreement is a positive step towards resolving the FY 2018 budget, Congress will still be working on the final spending bill for a few more weeks. The ALA Washington Office will continue to monitor progress on the bill.

What You Can Do Now

Congress will have the final say on budget allocations for these programs in the FY2019 budget. Now is the time to let them know how important federal library funding is to their constituents. Use the ALA Action Center to send your Representatives an email  and ask for their public support of library funding throughout the FY2019 appropriations cycle.

This will be a many-step process and we will need your help at key times along the way. Stay tuned for updates.

Thank you in advance for your advocacy efforts!

 

Advocacy Update: Net Neutrality has support of 50 Senators

Good news! Senators Cardin and Van Hollen have both given support to net neutrality and signed on as co-sponsors of the Congressional Review Act (CRA) resolution! This bill, which has bipartisan support, would block the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) repeal of the net neutrality rules. Please take the time to thank Senators Cardin and Van Hollen for their support. You can call their office, or use Engage to send an email. Simply delete the pre-written message and enter your show of appreciation.

The advocacy work is not done. At least one more Republican co-sponsor is needed in the Senate, there must be a bill in the House and the Congressional action would require the President’s approval. You can use Engage to contact your Representative in the House to let them know what they can do to support net neutrality. More details are available on the District Dispatch.

Thanks in advance for your advocacy efforts!

 

Advocacy Alert! Make LSTA and IAL a funding priority!

Many thanks for all of the calls, emails and tweets! Congressman Brown, Cummings, Delaney, Raskin and Sarbanes signed onto the Library Services & Technology Act (LSTA) and Innovative Approaches to Literacy (IAL) letters! Please take a moment to thank them for their support.

Our next step focuses on Congressman Ruppersberger. As a member of the Appropriations Committee, he can put LSTA and IAL on his funding priorities list. Please call (202-225-3061) or fax (202-225-3094) his office, especially if you live in his district. If you do not, you can still make the contact because he represents Maryland on the Committee. Check out the map of his district, or enter your address on Engage to identify your elected officials.

Thanks in advance for your help!

Advocacy Alert! Save IMLS, LSTA and IAL!

As you have probably heard, President Trump’s FY18 federal budget proposal eliminates all funding for the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS). This would include the elimination of all federal funding to libraries and the impact on Maryland libraries would be significant. A few statements and articles:

The American Library Association (ALA), both as a whole and its many parts, have been working to prevent the elimination of IMLS. Your advocacy is also very much needed. Here are a couple of ways that you can help now:

1. Ask Representatives to sign onto Dear Appropriator Letters asking for full funding of the Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) and Innovative Approaches to Literacy (IAL): This is a very tangible way to show support for IMLS, who receives and distributes these funds to states. You can use Engage to call, email or tweet your Representative. The email engagement does include a pre-written letter that you can personalize to increase the impact. Representatives must sign on by April 3rd. For more information, including a link to the letters, see the District Dispatch article.

In Maryland: Check this database from the ALA Washington Office to see who has signed on to each letter for this year (FY18) and who signed on last year (FY17). Filter by state to see Maryland’s elected officials. As members of the Committee on Appropriations, Representatives Harris and Ruppersberger cannot sign the Dear Appropriator letters, but can include LSTA and IAL in their list of priorities. Last year, Representatives Cummings, Delaney and Sarbanes signed onto the IAL letter, but no Representatives signed onto the LSTA letter. It is critical to have everyone who can sign on this year.

2. Tweet with the hashtag #SAVEIMLS: Share your IMLS story about how funding supports your local community. Search the database of grants at to learn about grants awarded. See more information on how the tweets are being tracked.

Thanks in advance for any advocacy you can provide! More opportunities to advocate will be shared as they become available.

 


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