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Top tags: budget  federal funding  Keystone Grant 

New 2013-14 State Budget Adds Funding for POWER Library, State Library

Posted By Christi Buker, Thursday, June 13, 2013
Updated: Friday, August 16, 2013

Boosts Reverse a Six-Year Trend of Funding Reductions

A state budget for 2013-14 has passed on-time and, for the first time in six years, some library funding increases—albeit modest ones—are included.

The new state budget will:

  • level-fund the Public Library Subsidy at $53,507,000;
  • level-fund Library Services for the Visually Impaired & Disabled at $2,567,000;
  • increase funding for the State Library by $11,000 up to $1,957,000, (+ 0.5%); and
  • increase funding for Library Access/POWER Library by $250,000 up to $3,071,000 (+8.9%.)

The increase for the Library Access line item is particularly good news since PaLA has been pushing hard for several years to recharge POWER Library after the damage done by budget cuts. This increase will not solve the problem overnight but will help to rebuild a vital online resource for Pennsylvania library users, especially students.

PaLA recognizes that much work remains in the years ahead to improve and modernize library services that the public lost during the Great Recession. This budget outcome represents a bit of progress and, at the very least, successfully bends the funding curve back in a growth direction, even in the face of a slower-than-expected economic recovery.

The outstanding efforts of library advocates helped to secure this increased funding—the first increases of any kind since 2007. Thank you!

Tags:  budget 

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House-Passed Budget Adds Library Funds—Action Needed in State Senate

Posted By Glenn Miller, Thursday, June 13, 2013
Updated: Friday, August 16, 2013

Capwiz Action Alert

PA House Passes Budget Plan; Sent to State Senate
Plan Adds Funds for POWER Library & State Library

Click to learn how to take action!

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State House Budget Plan Adds $ for POWER Library; State Library—Action Needed

Posted By Glenn Miller, Friday, May 31, 2013
Updated: Friday, August 16, 2013

Capwiz Action Alert

State House Budget Proposal Adds Funds for POWER Library & State Library - First Proposed Library Increases Since 2007-08.

Click to learn how to take action!

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Lagging State Revenues Pose New Danger

Posted By Janis Stubbs, Monday, May 13, 2013
Updated: Friday, August 16, 2013

PaLA's executive director, Glenn Miller, and our lobbying team from Greenlee Partners continue to meet with decision-makers in the administration and legislature. They have visited with cabinet secretaries and legislative leaders and key members of the Appropriations Committees as well as rank and file legislators.


But our Harrisburg efforts will only succeed if legislators also hear from their constituents. This means me—and you—and all of us. We must turn up the heat to stave off the threat of more budget cuts.


You may remember that in his 2013-14 budget proposal, Governor Corbett recommended level-funding for library programs, the first budget in six years without proposed cuts. But revenue collections are falling short of projections. This could result in a budget shortfall between $300 and $500 million, perhaps more. This is not good news and could result in more budget cuts. Any program which is not mandated by law is in danger of the budget-cutting ax, including libraries.


In this environment, the fact that library funding has already been cut more than 34% over the last four years works to our advantage. When we remind legislators that libraries have already paid their dues when it comes to budget cuts, they know it's true and agree.


Without our strong voices back home, PaLA's lobbying efforts in Harrisburg could fall short. Legislators listen to their constituents. The good news is, there is still time. Much of the serious work on the state budget lies ahead. But we need your help today. We urge you to Take Action, today and we ask that you share this message with your board, friends, volunteers, personal friends—any and everyone who believes in libraries and who will take a minute or two to send an email message. In fact, it is especially critical that legislators hear from non-librarian constituents, especially patrons whose lives have been positively impacted by our libraries.


Please don't put it off. Now is the time to Take Action. Thanks!

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Libraries Provide Vital Tax Time Services--Tell Harrisburg

Posted By Linda Beck, Thursday, April 11, 2013
Updated: Friday, August 16, 2013

Greetings, PaLA Members.


Tax Time? Think – libraries! It's almost April 15th and thousands of low-income residents and senior-citizens need help getting taxes completed – and receiving the earned-income-tax credit they deserve. They've turned to Pennsylvania's public libraries for help.


In my library—the Indian Valley Public Library in Telford—just this season alone, six to eight volunteers each day from the AARP and United Way-Vita programs assist taxpayers. 335 people came in for appointments in February when tax season had just begun. Imagine the numbers when all are counted after April 15!


Assisting taxpayers at Tax Time is one of the little-recognized but highly valued services that Pennsylvania's libraries provide for our citizens every year. Whether it is providing copies of federal or state tax forms, downloading and copying instruction booklets, enabling online tax filing for those without home Internet access, or furnishing free space (including evenings and weekends) where well-trained tax volunteers can work accurately and confidentially with area residents, public libraries serve as key resources for tens of thousands of taxpayers every year.


Assistance at Tax Time is one more good reason to contact Governor Corbett and your legislators. Tell them how your library assists the taxpayers in your community and ask for their help by, at the very least, maintaining current state funding levels into next year's budget.


It's easy to send an email message. You can use the one PaLA provides or create your own. Either way, we urge you to please Take Action. Thanks for your help,

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