Call now and support library funding
Call your senators now to support library funding!
Please call your U.S. senators in Washington, D.C., today and ask them to sign onto a "Dear Appropriator" letter that is circulating around the Senate. This letter will be sent to the Senate Appropriations Committee and will be asking the committee to support the Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) and the Improving Literacy Through School Libraries (ILTSL) program in its FY2011 budget.
BACKGROUND ON THE PROGRAMS AND WHAT WE ARE ASKING FOR
Congress is currently drafting the federal budget for fiscal year 2011. It has never been more important than now that Congress fully funds the LSTA, the only annual source for federal funding to libraries. As Congress writes next year's budget they need to understand that dollars from the state and local levels are at an all-time low, and libraries can not continue to do their important work without this funding.
In this "Dear Appropriator" letter that is circulating around in the Senate, the signatures are urging the Appropriations Committee to include $300 million in funding through LSTA in the FY2011 budget. Please contact your two senators' offices and tell them about the work your library does in the state and community. It is always a good idea to stress what programs and resources your library provides to help build the local economy, help kids with their homework, and so much more. After you have explained how libraries are an incredibly valuable investment, please ask your senator to sign onto the "Dear Appropriator" letter supporting LSTA and Improving Literacy Through School Libraries (ILTSL).
In his FY2011 budget request, President Obama consolidated Improving Literacy Through School Libraries with five other literacy programs. This would mean that school libraries will have to directly compete with other dissimilar programs to receive federal dollars under the President's plan. However, Congress is drafting their own budget for FY2011 right now, and there is no word yet if they will go along with President Obama's recommendation of consolidation. Congress needs to hear from you NOW about the important role that school libraries play in today's schools.
Right now there is a letter circulating around the Senate urging the Appropriations Committee to specifically appropriate $100 million for the ILTSL program. This amount would make money available to every state, rather than the current competitive grant program. Please contact your two senators' offices explaining to them how important having a school library can be in a child's education. Please ask them to sign on to the ILTSL and LSTA "Dear Appropriator" by customizing the letter below.
The deadline for the "Dear Appropriator" letter is April 14, so please contact your senators today and urge them to sign on! Also, please ask your friends and library supporters to contact their senators as well - we need to keep the pressure on our elected officials so these programs receive the funding they need.
To take action, please take the following steps:
1. Please go to http://capwiz.com/ala/.
2. Customize the sample letter as you see fit - remember, a personal story on how your library benefits your community matters the most!
3. Enter your contact information.
4. Press Send.
5. If you would prefer to call your representative, feel free to dial the Capitol switchboard at 202.224.3121 and ask for your representative. The switchboard will transfer you to their office. If you need to locate your members of Congress, please go to http://capwiz.com/ala/.
6. Please ask your friends and supporters to call. We need as many signatures as possible on these letters and your grassroots efforts could make the difference.
If your senator is on this list, please thank them. They have signed onto the "Dear Appropriator" letter:
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