UELMA is asking for your help today!  Protect your library budget!  Help save the School Library Books and Digital Resources line item!

Legislators are cutting budgets and the line item, “School Library Books and Electronic (Digital) Resources” could be eliminated. The Public Education Appropriations Subcommittee reduced the funding by 10%, from $850,000 to $765,000, but they did not eliminate it. We appreciate the retention of this line item by the Subcommittee.

Now the budget cutting will move to the Executive Appropriations Committee, whose members will most likely deal with final budget cuts next week. Although the line item has been saved temporarily, there are no guarantees that this funding will continue at all.

The funding level, $765,000, is not a great deal of money when you consider that Utah has over 1,000 schools. For some schools, it is all the funding they get to add new books, print and ebooks, and online database subscriptions. Both books and database subscriptions are needed for students to use along with internet sources. Unlike information on the internet, these purchased materials are of high quality in accuracy, currency, relevancy, and literary style; designed for the interest and reading levels of young people; and selected with Utah’s curriculum in mind.  School library resources, both print and digital, are important for students who do not have them provided in their homes.  In addition, digital resources are extremely important as we have seen our students compelled to participate in online and distance learning due to the Covid 19 Pandemic.”  
In the past, this line item funding has been reduced and later increased. But if the line item is eliminated, it will be nearly impossible to re-establish.

Your help is needed now. Please email members of the Executive Appropriations Committee, telling them that the line item, “School Library Books and Electronic (Digital) Resources” is indispensable to Utah students and their success in school, in particular in learning to read and to read in depth and learning to analyze and apply information. This makes a difference in K-12, higher education, and the work place.
Your help will make a difference.

  1. Be sure to use your home computer, not a school computer, to contact legislators.
  2. Cut and paste these email addresses into the BBC address line, or, if you know any of these Legislators personally, contact them more directly, for example, by text, phone or in person.
  3. Write “Save Funding for School Library Collections” in the subject line. 

Executive Appropriations Committee Members:
Sen. Jerry W. Stevenson, Senate Chair
Rep. Bradley G. Last, House Chair
Sen. Don L. Ipson, Senate Vice-Chair
Rep. Jefferson Moss, House Vice-Chair
Senators: Sen. J. Stuart Adams; Sen. Luz Escamilla; Sen. Daniel Hemmert; Sen. Jani Iwamoto; Sen. Derek L. Kitchen; Sen. Karen Mayne; Sen. Ann Millner; Sen. Evan J. Vickers
Representatives: Rep. Francis D. Gibson; Rep. Brian S. King; Rep. Karen Kwan; Rep. Carol Spackman Moss; Rep. Val L. Peterson; Rep. Angela Romero; Rep. Mike Schultz; Rep. Brad R. Wilson

Thank you to School Library PALS for putting this possible cut on our radar!

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