[PAMAILALL] Governor's Proposed Budget Trims Library Programs for 2010-11

Tuesday, February 9, 2010 5:05 PM

From: "Glenn Miller" <glenn@PALIBRARIES.ORG>

To: PAMAILALL@hslc.org


Good snowy afternoon, library supporters.


Today Governor Rendell announced his proposed budget for Fiscal Year 2010-11 which begins on July 1.  Here is a chart that lists the appropriations related to library services and how the Governor’s proposed budget compares to this current year’s budget:




FY 09-10


(as passed in  Oct. 2009)

FY 09-10 ADJUSTED (Funds placed in reserve (Jan. 2010) after 09-10 state budget finalized, Oct. 09)


(09-10 FINAL   vs.                       10-11 PROPOSED)


(09-10 FINAL vs.              10-11 PROPOSED


 (09-10 FINAL vs.              10-11 PROPOSED)

Office of Commonwealth Libraries (includes State Library operations)


$ 2,396,000


$ 2,372,000




   $ 24,000


-     1.0 %

Library Services/Visually Impaired & Disabled

$ 2,926,000

$ 2,926,000


   $ 29,000

-      1.0 %

Library Access (POWER Library, statewide card, interlibrary delivery)


$ 3,000,000


$ 2,970,000


$ 2,970,000


    $ 30,000


-     1.0 %

Electronic Library Catalog (Ask Here PA, Access PA database)

($ 0 - programs merged into Library Access)


See line above


See line above





Public Library Subsidy

$ 60,000,000

$ 60,000,000



-    2.0 %




Total – All Programs

$ 68,322,000

$ 68,268,000

$ 67,039,000


-    1.9%


Some of the initial reactions that I’ve heard range from relief (that the cuts aren’t deeper) to anger and frustration that libraries will face cuts even as the Administration touts a commitment to education and provides a $354 million increase for the Basic Education (K-12) Subsidy. 


For now, I just wanted to share the numbers in Governor Rendell’s proposal and emphasize that they represent a proposal and not the final word.  The numbers might go down or they could go up if we work hard together and get a bit of luck, too. 


The PaLA Legislative Committee was scheduled to meet on Thursday but yet another major storm is now underway across the state and we’ve decided to postpone that meeting.  Please know that the Legislative Committee will be working on PaLA’s strategy and message and we will sharing more as soon as we have specifics.  In the meantime, I think it is fair to assume the following:

1.       The growing demand for library services during this recession more than justifies an increase not a cut in state support for libraries.

2.       Despite the seeming disconnect here in Harrisburg between “education” and “libraries”, Pennsylvanians do consider libraries a key element of education which deserves increased funding not further cuts.

3.       The loss of POWER Library and other shared resources runs counterproductive to our state’s efforts to improve education.

4.       The most powerful voices on our behalf are the people who depend on and believe in the value of good public library services.  Please do everything you can to encourage their advocacy.


We will be back in touch more information about PaLA’s next steps.  Thank you in advance for your dogged support of good library service for all Pennsylvanians.





Glenn R. Miller

Executive Director

Pennsylvania Library Association

220 Cumberland Parkway, Suite 10

Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania  17055

phone:  717-766-7663

fax:  717-766-5440

e-mail:  glenn@palibraries.org