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Saving Public Library Funding In The State Budget
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March 5, 2012
 
 
 
TO:                  CLA MEMBERS /SYSTEMS/ NETWORK CONTACTS
 
FROM:           Mike Dillon, CLA Lobbyist
                        Christina DiCaro, CLA Lobbyist
 
RE:                 News From the Capitol
 
 
SAVING PUBLIC LIBRARY FUNDING IN THE STATE BUDGET –
HEARING DATES ANNOUNCED
 
 
The Senate and Assembly Budget Committees have each held a general overview hearing of the Governor’s January Budget, and in the coming weeks they will be breaking up into Budget Subcommittees, in order to examine particular Budget subject matters more thoroughly. For example, issues pertaining to the State Library and public library funding will be reviewed by the Senate Budget Subcommittee Number One on Education Finance and the Assembly Budget Subcommittee Number Two on Education Finance. 
 
Subcommittee hearings regarding the library funding issues have now been officially set in each house and CLA members are being asked to begin the process of writing or calling 8 very important legislators to request their support. In fact, without the support of the eight legislators listed at the end of this report, it is very unlikely that we will have any success in restoring library funding in this year’s Budget. Thus, your early participation in this grass roots advocacy effort is critical! 
 
Please send letters, requesting the subcommittees restore $15.2 million in combined funding for the California Library Services Act, the state literacy program, and the Public Library Foundation. The Budget “trigger” that went into effect in January 2012, has completely eliminated all state-sponsored funding for public libraries.
 
As is the typical process, each house’s subcommittee will make recommendations to the full Budget Committees in each house. Where there is a difference between the actions of the two houses, the powerful Budget Conference Committee will attempt to reconcile the differences when they convene in early June. As you can see, the first step – the subcommittee level – is the most critical. All but one of the eight legislators sat on the subcommittees last year and are very familiar with this issue (Senator Ted Gaines is the only new addition to the subcommittee), but they all need to hear from you in order to elevate this issue once again. The Senate will hear our library issues on April 19 and the Assembly will follow with a hearing on May 2.
 
In your letters, please note issues such as the following :
 
1)     California would be one of the largest states that would receive no state-sponsored funding.
2)    Approximately $16 million in federal funds will be in jeopardy if California does not show a financial commitment to its public libraries.
3)    The collaborative loaning and lending program that exists between regions throughout California would likely cease to exist in many areas.
4)    Some libraries are already charging upwards of $80 to $100 for non-resident library cards and a lack of state funding will likely add to that unfortunate trend.
5)    20,000 literacy learners annually receive services from public libraries. These adult learners would go without critical services, and as of this writing, 3,000 more adults are on a “waiting list.”
6)    Library attendance and usage is at an all-time high. Libraries are providing invaluable resources for those who are looking for work, going to school, learning a new skill, or encouraging reading of youth.
7)    As always, your personal, local anecdotes are best and most compelling.
 
 
These two Budget subcommittees have jurisdiction over library funding issues at the State Capitol. You may contact these members via mail or fax.
 
Senate Budget Subcommittee Number 1 on Education Finance
Hearing date: Thursday, April 19 – 9:30 a.m. or upon adjournment of Senate Floor, Room 3191
 
Senator Carol Liu, Chair
Senate Budget Subcommittee Number 1 on Education Finance
State Capitol, Room 5061
Sacramento, CA. 95814
Fax: (916) 324-7543
 
Senator Ted Gaines (*) 
Member, Senate Budget Subcommittee Number 1 on Education Finance
State Capitol, Room 3060
Sacramento, CA. 95814
Fax: (916) 324-2680
 
Senator Rod Wright
Member, Senate Budget Subcommittee Number 1 on Education Finance
State Capitol, Room 5064
Sacramento, CA. 95814
Fax: (916) 445-3712
 
(*) – New member, replaces Senate Republican Leader, Bob Huff
 
Assembly Budget Subcommittee Number 2 on Education Finance
Hearing date: Wednesday, May 2 – 4 p.m. in Room 126
 
Assemblywoman Susan Bonilla, Chair
Assembly Budget Subcommittee Number 2 on Education Finance
State Capitol, Room 2188
Sacramento, CA. 95814
Fax: (916) 319-2111
 
Assemblyman Bill Berryhill
Member, Assembly Budget Subcommittee Number 2 on Education Finance
State Capitol, Room 3141
Sacramento, CA. 95814
Fax: (916) 319-2126
 
                                                                                                                                                                       
Assemblywoman Julia Brownley
Member, Assembly Budget Subcommittee Number 2 on Education Finance
State Capitol, Room 2163
Sacramento, CA. 95814
Fax: (916) 319-2141                                                                                              
 
Assemblyman Brian Nestande
Member, Assembly Budget Subcommittee Number 2 on Education Finance
State Capitol, Room 4139
Sacramento, CA. 95814
Fax: (916) 319-2164
 
Assemblyman Sandre Swanson
Member, Assembly Budget Subcommittee Number 2 on Education Finance
State Capitol, Room 6012
Sacramento, CA. 95814

Fax: (916) 319-2116