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>Subject: NEWS:  Possible Increase in Federal Funding for Libraries
>Date: Tue, 29 Apr 2003 09:57:49 -0700
>Congress considers $100 million increase in library funding
>By Corey Murray, Assistant Editor, eSchool News
>April 25, 2003
>The American Library Association (ALA) is leading the charge to reauthorize
>a bill that could pump millions of dollars of additional funding into
>library programs nationwide.

I really, really hope that the recipients (if the money DOES come through)
don't use the New Zealand paradigm .... see the first story at

(Apologies if you have already received this information via another source)

Amanda Credaro
Teacher Librarian
Project Officer (Temporary)
Professional Development and Curriculum Directorate
Phone: 9266 8261

>From: Linda DeVore <linda.devore@CGELEM.K12.AZ.US>
>Reply-To: Linda DeVore <linda.devore@CGELEM.K12.AZ.US>
>Subject: NEWS:  Possible Increase in Federal Funding for Libraries
>Date: Tue, 29 Apr 2003 09:57:49 -0700
>I just found this in this week's eSN School Technology Alert:
>Congress considers $100 million increase in library funding
>By Corey Murray, Assistant Editor, eSchool News
>April 25, 2003
>The American Library Association (ALA) is leading the charge to reauthorize
>a bill that could pump millions of dollars of additional funding into
>library programs nationwide. Schools would be able to use the funds to
>upgrade sophisticated technology systems, connect to statewide electronic
>databases, and preserve documents digitally, among other things.
>The Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) of 1996-part of the larger
>Museum and Library Services Act-was intended to improve access to learning
>and information resources by boosting communication between libraries and
>making resources more readily available to underserved populations.
>Its pending reauthorization stands to increase the amount of federal money
>available to school and public libraries by as much as $100 million. Given
>the recent spate of education-related budget cuts and the sheer expense of
>high-end data storage and information-sharing technologies, library
>advocates and policy makers agree that current funding levels fall short of
>rapidly evolving needs.
>"School libraries have been neglected for a long time. A lot of collections
>have been neglected," said Mary Costabile, ALA's associate director. "I
>at [the reauthorization] as a big step along the way to helping libraries
>Library systems, she said, have had a hard time keeping pace with
>upgrades, including the computerization of archaic card catalogs; access to
>internet resources, trade journals, and online encyclopedias; and the
>ability to locate resources using a complex web of computer networks and
>searchable, statewide databases.
>In light of nationwide budget cuts, Costabile said increased funding for
>school libraries is critical. "It's so very important," she said. "The
>that could be done is to not pay attention to this."
>The Senate version of the bill (S. 888)-referred to the Senate Health,
>Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee on April 11-would increase
>funding for school and public library programs from $150 million to $250
>million a year, while museum funding would jump from $28.7 million to $41.5
>Sen. Jack Reed, D-R.I., who co-sponsored the bill along with Sen. Judd
>Gregg, R-N.H., said additional funding for library services would garner
>national enthusiasm for learning.
>"Museums and libraries are rich centers of learning, woven into the fabric
>of our communities, big and small, urban and rural," Reed said in a
>statement promoting the legislation. "Today's library is not simply a place
>where books are read and borrowed. It is a place where a love for reading
>born and renewed again and again, and where information is sought and
>The House passed its own version of the bill (H.R. 13) on March 6 by an
>overwhelming margin of 416-2. Sponsored by Rep. Pete Hoekstra, R-Mich.,
>13 authorizes $215 million for libraries and $35 million for
>if the Senate bill passes as expected, lawmakers from both chambers of
>Congress will have to work out a compromise on funding.
>Still, barring any unforeseen circumstances, school and public libraries
>stand to benefit from at least $65 million in additional funding.
>"We'd like to get it finished as quick as we can," Costabile said. "I mean,
>there's really nothing to fight about here."
>At the district level, some educators predict the reauthorization would
>herald a new era of library-resource management in schools.
>"In the current reauthorization bill, there is certain new language which
>could open the door to providing more money for multi-use collaboration
>between school and public libraries," said Trish Mulkey, assistant director
>for learning media services at the Plano Independent School District in
>Texas. "Using funding to maintain records and locations of print resources,
>as well as linking users to primary source materials, seems like a very
>equitable and efficient use of federal money."
>Under the new law, the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS)
>hold on to 9 percent of the federal allocation for libraries. A portion of
>these funds would support the IMLS's competitive national grant program for
>research, training, and the digital preservation of library resources,
>the rest would be tagged for Native American Library resources and
>administrative costs.
>The remainder of the allocation would be divvied out to states based on a
>two-step formula. Initially, each state would receive a block grant. The
>pending reauthorization would double funding for this minimum base
>allocation, from $340,000 to $680,000 per state. The rest of the money then
>would be distributed to each state library association based on the state's
>overall population.
>According to Mamie Bittner, director of public and legislative affairs at
>IMLS, state library associations would be able to use the appropriations to
>support statewide initiatives and services. They also could dole out the
>funds to public, academic, research, school, and special libraries in their
>state by way of a competitive grants process or through cooperative
>Bittner said each state maintains a five-year plan outlining its library
>programs. These programs must support the LSTA's goals, which are to:
>*       Establish or enhance electronic linkages among or between
>*       Link libraries electronically with educational, social, or
>information services;
>*       Help libraries access information through electronic networks;
>*       Encourage libraries in different areas and different types of
>libraries to establish consortia and share resources;
>*       Pay costs for libraries to acquire or share computer systems and
>telecommunications technologies; and
>*       Target library and information services to persons who have
>difficulty using a library and to underserved urban and rural communities.
>Now that more libraries are beginning to use technology as a means of
>sharing resources and cataloging data, "a whole new world has opened up,"
>ALA's Costabile said. "You wouldn't think of living without your computer."
>Library funding also would provide schools with technology to preserve
>historical texts and other valuable documents digitally, so they are easily
>accessible and withstand the passage of time. "History is full of dead
>machines that no one knows how to work anymore," Costabile said. "Keeping
>the information and storing it is one thing, accessing it is another."
>Sen. Gregg, who chairs the HELP Committee, said the impending
>reauthorization and its potential increase in funding would position
>America's museums and libraries for the future.
>"Libraries and museums serve as important cultural institutions in
>communities all around our nation," he said. "I benefited from the local
>library in my community growing up, and by reauthorizing this funding we
>will continue to ensure the preservation of our libraries and museums for
>generations to come."
>He continued: "I am also pleased that this bill will coordinate its action
>with the school library provisions of the No Child Left Behind Act. I
>to move this legislation through the HELP Committee soon and look forward
>its speedy passage."
>Linda De Vore
>Media Center Director
>Casa Grande Middle School
>Casa Grande, AZ 85222

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