Statement before the Glenn A. Walsh
Asset District: Telephone: 412-561-7876
ACLA Formula Electronic Mail: < email@example.com >
For Distribution Internet Web Site: < http://www.andrewcarnegie.cc >
Of RAD Funds 2006 October 23
Good evening. I am Glenn A.
Last week, the Board of Directors of the Allegheny County Library Association decided to forward two funding formula options for the membership’s consideration on October 30. They are forwarding the proposed new formula along with this year’s formula. They continue to recommend the proposed new formula.
The ACLA Executive Director also recommended that both formulas include a “hold-harmless” clause, as she indicated that some RAD Board members asked for such a clause. The purpose of such a “hold-harmless” clause would be to ensure that no library receives less RAD funds next year than they did this year, Technically, that may be true; in reality, there may well still be libraries which receive fewer taxpayer dollars next year than they did this year.
This is due to the fact that, for the first time, State and RAD funds will be combined in the same formula. Hence, technically, each library will receive next year, at least, the same amount of State dollars as they received this year—satisfying the new State law. And, technically, each library will receive next year, at least, the same amount of RAD dollars as they received this year—satisfying the wishes of some RAD Board members. However, some of this money is counted twice! Hence, there is no guarantee that each library will truly receive the same amount of State and RAD dollars as this year.
One ACLA Board member did ask whether this was really just “playing a game” with the money. Another ACLA Board member asked if the State and RAD funds should each be considered separately for the “hold-harmless” provisions; this latter suggestion was rejected by the ACLA Board.
The ACLA Board is, indeed, playing games with public funds, to maintain their preferred formula that benefits certain favored libraries. The RAD Board needs to tell the ACLA Board that RAD funds and State funds must each be computed separately, when implementing a “hold-harmless” clause for each pot of money.