New York State Will Increase Funding for Libraries by More Than $1 Million
From the Watertown Daily Times:
The state budget includes significant support for local libraries, rejecting Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo’s proposed $4 million cut while increasing funding for libraries across the state by $1 million over last year’s budget.
“Our Legislature did a great job reversing Cuomo’s cuts,” said Stephen B. Bolton, director of the North Country Library System. “The $1 million increase represents a 1.2 percent increase in overall funding. It will help keep our technology systems intact and will likely keep us from deficits.”
The soon enacted state budget represents a vast improvement over Governor Cuomo’s proposed Executive Budget, but also a failure on the part of our elected leaders to adequately address several inequitable realities faced by the library community. The budget will include a hard-won $5 million increase in library system aid. This far outpaces proposed library funding form both the Governor and Assembly, and not only restores the Governor’s $4 million cut, but continues to move state library aid along the path to full funding under the law. Also included is $14 million for the state library construction aid program, and $1.3 million offset for library systems subject to the metropolitan commuter transportation mobility tax.
Library aid for FY 2014-15 will be $86.627 million after the $5 million legislative appropriation restored the Governor’s $4 million funding cut. The $5 million dollar appropriation is the largest since 2007, and the second largest in well over a decade. Unfortunately, this still leaves state library system aid more than 15% less than what is required by law and close to 1997 levels.
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About Gary Price
Gary Price (firstname.lastname@example.org) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. He earned his MLIS degree from Wayne State University in Detroit. Price has won several awards including the SLA Innovations in Technology Award and Alumnus of the Year from the Wayne St. University Library and Information Science Program. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com.