Print Page   |   Sign In   |   Register
Governor Signs 2015-16 Budget
Share |

June 25, 2015



FROM:           Mike Dillon, CLA Lobbyist
                        Christina DiCaro, CLA Lobbyist

RE:                 News From the Capitol



Yesterday afternoon, Governor Brown signed the 2015-16 State Budget in a low key event at the State Capitol, alongside Assembly Speaker Toni Atkins and Senate President pro Tem Kevin De Leon.  The Budget bill, AB 93, and a corresponding Budget “trailer bill”, SB 97 (dubbed “Budget bill Junior”), contain the provisions of interest to CLA members, as they both provide specific funding for local library programs.

Thanks to the recognition of the important role of libraries by several key individuals involved in this year’s Budget, AB 93 and SB 97 provide almost $8 million in new funding for several critical areas for California’s libraries – broadband services and literacy.

We are specifically grateful to Governor Brown for his leadership in providing broadband connectivity funding for libraries, as well as his encouragement of the role of public libraries as necessary participants in literacy efforts with the adult education programs and the “AB 86 consortia.”  The Budget Conference Committee members (Senators Mark Leno, Jim Nielsen, Ricardo Lara and Assemblymembers Dr. Shirley Weber, Melissa Melendez, and Richard Bloom) and the Democrat leaders, Speaker Atkins and Senator De Leon, were instrumental in making sure that library funding was protected during the Budget negotiations.  In a recent “News From the Capitol,” we reported on their numerous, positive comments during their final pivotal hearing.

The Senate Budget Subcommittee on Education Finance, consisting of Senators Marty Block, Ben Allen, and John Moorlach voted to send CLA’s “Budget ask” to the Budget Conference Committee, so these three legislators are to be commended for being the first key group to help to advance the library funding in the Budget.  And lastly, we would like to thank Assemblyman Mike Gatto, who championed this library funding effort last year and again this year.  He and his excellent staff, and CLA were able to get 28 legislators to sign on to a bi-partisan, joint-house, letter encouraging the Budget subcommittee chairs to provide library funding in the Budget. 

Finally, thank you to those of you who took the time to visit with your legislators during “Day in the District” this year.  Your meetings helped to educate legislators about the need for additional funding in the Budget for libraries.  Most importantly, several new “library champions” have emerged at the Capitol as a result of your efforts.


The Library Funding In Total - $14,175,000

Here is a breakdown of all of the funding that is now available for public library programs, based on the appropriations in this year’s 2015-16 Budget, as well as what is currently in the baseline, carried forward from past years.

  • Statewide Library Broadband Services  - Total:  $6,475,000
  1. $2.25 million – membership fee to join the broadband “backbone”  (ongoing appropriation)
  2. $225,000 – administration funding for the broadband project (ongoing appropriation)
  3. $4 million – connection grants to bring public libraries on to a high-speed Internet “backbone” operated by the Corporation for Education Network Initiatives in California (or “CENIC)  (one-time money/to be spent or encumbered in 2015-16 only)
  • California Library Literacy Program – Total:  $4,820,000
    This program had $2.8 million in it at the start of the year for the purpose of providing literacy services to adult learners.  The 2015-16 Budget adds another $2 million to the program for a total of $4.82 million.  (ongoing appropriation).

  • Career Online High School Pilot Program – Total: $1,000,000
    This is a pilot program to help adult learners obtain their high school diploma.  (one-time appropriation).

  • California Library Services ActTotal:  $1,880,000
    This is funding to support the collaborative efforts between the eight regional systems that participate as part of CLSA.  No new money was provided this year.  (ongoing appropriation).

TOTAL FUNDING:  $14,175,000