Winter 2011

The Trustee communicates issues affecting libraries and library services. Once a library and systems join LTA, all their trustees automatically receive this quarterly publication published by LTA. To learn more about membership in LTA, Click Here.

Update from Assemblymember John Bing

Winter 2011 issue of Trustee

I am proud to have served as the Chair of the Assembly Libraries and Education Technology Committee since March 2010.  My appointment to this position was based on a history of supporting this community, including my authorship of legislation adopted in the 2005-2006 budget which updated the state library funding formula to be based on the most recent census.  This change resulted in an additional $2.6 million in statewide library aid. 

In the coming year, I will be re-introducing legislation aimed at improving New York State libraries. One measure (A. 9527 of 2010) would supplement library aid based on cost-of-living increases.  This bill will allow libraries and library systems to keep pace with inflation in order to maintain and extend services for their member libraries. I also will be re-introducing legislation (A. 10412 of 2010) which would add public library systems to the definition of entities that are eligible to apply for local government efficiency grants in order to correct a loophole from the original 2008 law.  In an attempt to increase access to libraries, I will be re-introducing a bill (A. 11036 of 2010) that will make it easier for students to apply and receive a library card.  Finally, I plan to re- introduce legislation (A. 10884 of 2010) that will modernize the coordinated collection development aid (CCDA) formula in order to maintain the goals of quality and accessible scholarship among academic and research libraries and the public.

In addition to legislation, I will be working to ensure that libraries are not overburdened by budget cuts and service reductions. During times like these, when people are feeling the pain of economic recession, it is particularly important to keep our libraries open.  Libraries across the country are currently seeing double digit increases in usage, as people rely on them for career training, job opportunities, literacy programs, and computer skills development.  In 2009, there were 40 million visits to New York libraries — the largest number of visits in twelve years. While we are facing a large budget gap, it is important that we do not make disproportionate cuts to much-needed services. 

Undoubtedly, 2011 will bring a present a number of legislative and budget challenges.  I look forward to working with the Library Trustee Association to realize our shared goal of improving access to New York State libraries.

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