May 18, 2022

Maryland: State Library Source Questions Frederick County Library Funding Policy Change

From The Gazette:

Despite concern from a Maryland library group, county officials don’t think a change in how [Frederick] County library funds are distributed could open the door to political control of purchases.

Under the new spending plan, presented by county Library Director Darrell Batson and approved by the Frederick County Board of Commissioners at a July 26 meeting, the funds for the county’s library system will be released in quarterly installments.

Commissioners also will receive reports on what purchases the library system makes before they release the next quarter’s funds.


Batson said he told the library’s seven-member board of trustees about the plan, and no one raised any objections.

He said the new arrangement is an acceptable way for the library and the commissioners to work together to provide library services to county residents.

“This is what they feel they need to do to have accountability, and that is fine,” Batson said.

But if the library has to submit a report of what was purchased in the previous quarter before they get the next chunk of money, it raises concerns over possible censorship, said Gordon Krabbe, director of administrative services for the State Library Resource Center and the Enoch Pratt Free Library.

“I would think that most libraries would not like to do that,” Krabbe said.

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About Gary Price

Gary Price ( is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.