Archive for March, 2010

Below is an e-mail I received from a friend and former student who is the library director for Palisades Park Public Library in New Jersey. Many of the services that will cease to New Jersey residents are similar to those we receive in Texas. Thus far the Texas State Legislature has only requested a 5% budget reduction from state agencies, including the Texas State Library and Archives Commission, but there is no guarantee that this will be the last of the budget cuts to libraries. Read below for an example of what will happen if states are no longer able to fund the statewide institution that enables large and small public libraries to pool resources and enjoy economies of scale.


NJ Gov. Christie’s budget calls for a 74% decrease in funding for statewide library services. 

This cut includes the elimination of ALL statewide library programs and services.  This will affect all types of libraries in New Jersey. Once state funding is eliminated, NJ will lose $4.5 million in federal funding.  Once state and federal funding are lost the impact will be felt by all residents.

Have you ever requested a library item that was sent to your library from another library?  Delivery of materials is severely threatened in Governor Christie’s proposed budget.

  • NJ resident’s access to electronic databases such as RefUSA and EBSCO will cease
  • Statewide interlibrary loan and delivery of library materials will cease.
  • Libraries will lose 50% of state aid at a time when demand for services is increasing dramatically.
  • More than half of public libraries will lose access to the Internet.
  • Many libraries will lose email service.
  • Many libraries will lose their websites or access to them.
  • The Talking Book and Braille Center (known as the Library for the Blind and
  • Physically Handicapped) will close.
  • Group contracts which bring down the cost of other electronic resources purchased by libraries will cease.

At the same time the state is eliminating funding for library programs. Assemblyman John DiMaio has introduced A2555 which eliminates the minimum local funding requirement for municipal public libraries.

The library programs eliminated from the Governor’s budget represent little more than $1 per capita in state funds.  Library programs have been flat funded by the state for 20 years so it is hard to believe these programs have caused the state’s current fiscal crisis.  Fatally weakening these programs will not solve the failures of legislative and executive decision-making of more than 30 years.

If you have not already become a Library Champion for the library and automatically a BCCLS champion, please consider doing so. Click on this address for the registration form. http://www.bccls.org/champions/

For lobbying at the state level go to http://capwiz.com/ala/nj/home/ This will plug you directly into your elected officials at the state level

Help the statewide lobbying effort specifically by using the Facebook Save NJ Libraries Group.

Thanks again for all your past support and continuing use of one of democracy’s greatest inventions: the public library.

Your help is crucial for keeping New Jersey’s libraries funded.


Palisades Park Public Library
257 Second Street
Palisades Park, NJ 07650
…encouraging a lifetime love of learning

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