THE STATE EDUCATION DEPARTMENT / THE UNIVERSITY OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK / ALBANY, NY 12234

 

TO:

Cultural Education Committee

 

FROM:

Carole F. Huxley

SUBJECT:

New Century Libraries legislative initiative

 

DATE:

 

December 21, 2005

 

STRATEGIC GOAL:

 

4

 

AUTHORIZATION(S):

 

Executive Summary

 

Issue for Discussion

 

Research results from numerous reliable studies indicate that good libraries substantially increase academic performance at all levels. Use of libraries continues to grow. Over one million youngsters participated in the Summer Reading Program last year. Despite the fundamental role that libraries play in support of learning, State funding for libraries has not increased since 1998. How will the Regents work with the library community and library supporters to significantly improve library funding in 2006?

 

Proposed Handling

 

State Librarian and Assistant Commissioner for Libraries Janet M. Welch will provide an overview of the current library funding situation, the budget and legislative priorities for 2006 and plans for promotion of the New Century Libraries proposal.  Following her brief presentation, the Committee will have the opportunity to question Mrs. Welch and to discuss strategies for improving library funding in 2006.

 

Procedural History

 

Each year the Committee revisits Regents priorities and strategies for increasing library funding.

 

Background Information

 

New Century Libraries is a comprehensive plan for libraries, based on the Regents Commission on Library Services 2000 report, Meeting the Needs of All New Yorkers Library Service in the New Century. It has been a Regents Priority since its introduction.

 

Recommendation

 

The Regents should identify strategies for increasing library funding in 2006.

 

Timetable for Implementation

 

Implementation of strategies should begin immediately and continue throughout the 2006 legislative session.