Executive Director's Report
With the FY14-15 New York State Budget behind us, and Governor Cuomo’s proposed cut to Library Aid averted, library advocates can take a moment for a collective pat on the back. Without the e-mails, phone calls and office visits of thousands of library supporters, the modest $1M improvement in Library Aid this year could have easily been a reduction. (Read Mike Neppl’s complete report on this year NYS Budget, click here.)
That being said, the time to celebrate is small. Advocacy is a marathon, not a sprint – and a never ending marathon at that. Just as soon as the ink was dry on the budget, our attention as moved on to active policy matters that impact the library community for the remainder of this Legislative Session. NYLA’s Legislative Agenda includes items from, extending the current matching provisions in the Library Construction Aid program that are set to expire in 2015, to reintroducing a bill to require a school librarian in every school. Watch your inbox for “Advocacy Alerts” as your voices will continue to be integral in advancing our agenda. To review the, regularly-updated, complete Legislative Agenda, click here.
The work of a library advocate is never done. Just as the calendar continues to churn forward, so too must we soldier on. Each year brings a new fight for funding, or a new bill to address. This could seem like an overwhelming uphill climb, if not for the comfort of knowing the virtue for which we fight. Libraries represent an ideal of civilization, and a hope for a better tomorrow. They support the functioning of Democracy and serve as an economic equalizer. Libraries are a bold statement of optimism, and together we strive for that brighter future. Thank you for your support of library advocacy, through this session, next session, and beyond.
NYLA caught the attention of the media, and some members of the legislative machine in Albany during February with a bit of guerilla marketing. With help from Communication Services, NYLA produced bar coasters with a pro-library aid funding messaging. Director of Government Relations and Advocacy Mike Neppl got them into circulation in all of the most frequented downtown Albany bars. The effort was noticed by State of Politics blogger Liz Benjamin; to read her comments, click here.
If you’d like to have some of these coasters for use on your bar, you can order them from the NYLA website, click here.
Developing from Within
NYLA is pleased to announce that the Library Assistants Training Program curriculum has been updated and format revised. This certificate bearing, non-credit program, is sponsored by NYLA in cooperation with public library systems around the state. It is open to individuals already working or newly hired in libraries, or people interested in working in libraries. The program is designed to accelerate the professional development of library assistants and support staff.
The course is offered on the same day over the course of three weeks (e.g. three consecutive Tuesdays), and each class is six hours long. The sessions include: Introduction, Reference Services, Public Services, and Technical Services.
The next scheduled offering will take place in September, hosted by the Ramapo Catskill Library System.
For details on the program, click here.
To inquire about bring the program to a library system near you, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
As always, please don’t hesitate to contact me.