2019 Library Advocacy Agenda | Equitable Access for All NYers

Legislative Agenda

Equal Access to School Libraries & Librarians
Current law denies primary students their fundamental right to instruction in information sciences. Secondary students often lack competent instruction due to easily circumvented SED regulations. Inadequate education in information sciences diminishes college-readiness, restricts career opportunities in the modern economy, and dissuades meaningful participation in civic life.

Impact
This legislation provides a long-overdue guarantee that all students have access to a quality school library staffed by a certified NYS School Library Media Specialist.
Transparent Contrcacting with Educational Institutions
Aggressive confidentiality clauses and strict nondisclosure provisions force taxpayer-funded educational institutions into adhesion contracts with corporate vendors. These contracts may include exorbitant pricing structures, even when the accessed content is wholly funded with taxpayer dollars.

Impact
This legislation requires open, transparent contracting between educational institutions and corporate vendors of educational resources. With the goal that education will become more affordable, and information more accessible.
Universal Access to the Library Construction Aid Program
Small and rural public libraries are in dire need of capital improvements are disproportionately disadvantaged by the Public Library Construction Aid Program’s requirements. Providing public library systems with greater discretion to award capital grants will broaden opportunities to address our state’s aging public libraries.

Impact
This legislation maintains robust state oversight of the Public Library Construction Aid Program while adding a 90/10 matching provision for qualifying capital projects.