May 16, 2022

President’s FY 2023 Budget Request Includes $276.8 Million for the Institute of Museum and Library Services

From IMLS:

President Biden has requested an increase in funding to $276,800,000 for the Institute of Museum and Library Services in his FY 2023 Budget Request to Congress, seeking greater investment in these essential services.

The agency’s Congressional Justification, available on IMLS’s website, details how the FY 2023 Budget would strengthen the ability of museums and libraries to carry out their public service roles of supporting healthy communities; expanding access to digital access, resources, and services; engaging underserved audiences; developing information and critical literacy skills; stimulating civic engagement; and sustaining our nation’s cultural, scientific, historic, and natural heritage.

IMLS advances, supports, and empowers America’s museums, libraries, and related organizations through grantmaking, research, and policy development. The agency’s programs reach all types of libraries, including public, academic, school, tribal, and research; and all types of museums, including botanic gardens, aquariums, and zoos, as well as art, history, science, children’s, and Tribal museums.

The President’s FY 2023 request recognizes and builds upon the agency’s core programs that have worked to sustain museums, libraries, and American communities before, during, and after the COVID-19 pandemic. The budget justification emphasizes equity with respect to library, museum, and information services for the nation, and includes support for museum services in the areas of African American and American Latino history and culture.

IMLS has so far met the challenges imposed by the pandemic through efficient and timely delivery of museum and library support, leveraging $250 million in supplemental appropriations in the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) and American Rescue Plan (ARP) Acts, as well as annual appropriations. Through the agency’s programs, initiatives, research, and position as the primary Federal voice for access to museum, library, and information services, IMLS continues to activate the lessons learned from the recent national experience and build upon a solid infrastructure of support for museums, libraries, and the communities they serve.

“As we come out of the pandemic, the nation’s cultural institutions are more than reestablishing their traditional place in the heart of our country; they are showing the importance of bringing us out and together in worlds of delight and enlightenment that have been missing in our lives,” said IMLS Director Crosby Kemper. “The administration’s budget request recognizes their vital role in educating, building community resilience, and connecting people.”

Highlights from the budget request include:

  • $201,050,000 for library grant programs authorized by the Library Services and Technology Act:
    • Grants to State Library Administrative Agencies
    • Native American and Native Hawaiian Library Services
    • Laura Bush 21st Century Librarian Program
    • National Leadership Grants for Libraries
  • $40,450,000 for museum grants authorized by the Museum Services Act:
    • Museums for America
    • Museums Empowered
    • Inspire! Museum Grants for Small Museums
    • Native American/Native Hawaiian Museum Services
    • National Leadership Grants for Museums
  • $6,000,000 for the grant program authorized by the African American History and Culture Act;
  • $6,000,000 for the grant program authorized by the National Museum of the American Latino Act; and
  • $5,650,000 to support and conduct policy research, data collection, analysis and modeling, evaluation, and dissemination of information to extend and improve the nation’s museum, library, and information services.

COVID-19 has amplified the importance of the nation’s museums and libraries as trusted institutions that provide vital services to the communities they serve. IMLS has expanded its research and education activities to support museums and libraries during the pandemic through its REALM (REopening Archives, Libraries, and Museums) initiative and partnership with the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention), and cooperating partner ASTC (Association of Science and Technology Centers), in Communities for Immunity.

IMLS’s research and evaluation investments are expanding understanding of the impact of libraries and museums on social wellbeing. The most recent convening, Empowering Readers, Empowering Citizens, brought library leadership and researchers together to talk about the importance of putting resources in the right places to help those most in need.

For more information about the FY 2023 budget request, please visit the IMLS website.

About Gary Price

Gary Price (gprice@mediasourceinc.com) 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 Ask.com, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.

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