The Carson City Library is joining libraries around the state in petitioning the Legislature for a buffer against proposed federal cuts, which would cost Nevada libraries $3.5 million over the biennium.
“Every year it’s important to raise awareness about the services the public library provides to the community,” said Sena Loyd, director of the Carson City Library. “This year it is especially important to show the impact the president’s proposed cuts could have to library and museum budgets.”
Representatives from libraries across the state will meet with lawmakers as part of Library Day at the Legislature on Wednesday.
The Nevada Library Association will host a lunch from noon-2 p.m. to share program information with legislators, staff and lobbyists.
Library Day at the Legislature coincides with National Library Week on April 9-15.
“National Library Week is a time to celebrate the contributions of our nation’s libraries and library workers and to promote library use and support,” according to the American Library Association. “From free access to books and online resources for families to library business centers that help support entrepreneurship and retraining, libraries offer opportunity to all.”
Loyd said as the state has recovered from the recession over the last couple of years, libraries have received some state funding. However, she said, libraries — especially in rural areas — still rely heavily on federal grants.
“Carson City Library would lose the ability to apply for competitive grants through the Library Services Technology Act,” Loyd said. “Libraries across the state would lose services, including Bookmobiles.”
She said the Carson City Library would lose its programming for workforce development, technology as well as the annual summer learning programs.
“Database access alone is $50,000,” Loyd said. “That’s money we don’t have otherwise, and the city doesn’t have.”
President Trump’s plan calls for the elimination of the $230 million budget for the Institute of Museum and Library Services along with three other cultural agencies — the National Endowment for the Arts, the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.
Nevada would lose $3.5 million over the next two years.
“It would be devastating to the libraries in this state,” Loyd said.
The Nevada Library Association is asking the Legislature to urge Congress for continued monetary support of libraries through the Institute of Museum and Library Services, Library Services Technology Act funding. Library representatives will spend the day with lawmakers in the Assembly and Senate then meet with their individual representatives in the afternoon.
Editor’s note: This is the first in a series of articles to run in honor of National Library Week to draw attention to the services provided by libraries across the state. The articles highlight programs in danger of being eliminated under proposed federal cuts.