Information about CLA's Legislative Committee

The Legislative Committee works with legislators and librarians, as well as the CLA lobbyist, to develop and implement a legislative agenda and platform each year.  The Committee also develops advocacy tools and training for Connecticut libraries.

Ceremonial Signing of HB 5614

Governor Malloy signs e-book legislation

Report from Committee, June 5, 2013

Legislative Roundup
from Kendall Wiggin, State Librarian

Take Action (Contact Your Legislators!)

Current Advocacy Issues

Get Involved

Upcoming Events


 

Legislative Committee Officers

Carl Antonucci, Jr.  Jay Johnston
Legislative Committee Co-Chair
Central Connecticut State University
1615 Stanley Street
New Britain, CT 06050
Phone: 860 832-2097
e-mail: Antonucci@ccsu.edu

Legislative Committee Co-Chair / ALA Chapter Councilor
Farmington Libraries
6 Monteith Drive
Farmington, CT 06032
Phone: 860 673-6791
e-mail: johnston@farmingtonlibraries.org

 


Current Advocacy Issues

The proposed state budget for FY2012-2013 has been put forth. While funding for operations at the State Library has been spared for the most part, there are proposed cuts in the State Library budget that would drastically hurt libraries across the state. The Legislative Committee is currently focused on advocacy for the two programs threatened by the proposed cuts: Connecticard and Connecticar. To achieve cuts of less than one million dollars, the proposed budget halves funding for Connecticard program and eliminates state funding completely for Connecticar.

The Connecticard program allows state residents to borrow books from any and every public library in the state by providing reimbursements to libraries for those open lending practices. Connecticar is the library delivery system that brings materials to and from all of the state's libraries. It allows patrons to access materials for research, business and pleasure, from any library in the state just by visiting their home libraries!

The key points to this issue are:

  • Cuts in the budget must be made, and we recognize that. However, these two programs are too important to under-fund. We ask that the State Library be given the opportunity to find cuts elsewhere - cuts that work for everyone, the legislators, the libraries and their patrons.
  • Connecticard allows people to visit any library in the state of Connecticut, and check out materials. They simply show their home library card and get entered into the library's system. The library they visit will be reimbursed a small amount of money for providing these loan services.
  • Connecticar is a delivery service program that moves materials from one library to another. It picks up and delivers materials that were checked out at one library and returned at another, as well as materials that were requested from a different library.
  • Together, these two programs make the Connecticut libraries collaborate and operate on a regional level, sharing materials as they all belonged to the same system without the costly overhead that comes from managing true regionalization.

Connecticar statistics

compiled by the State Library

Connecticard statistics

compiled by the State Library

Read CLA President Betty Anne Reiter's testimony submitted for the February '12 Appropriations hearing.

 

What can you do? Get involved. Find your legislators and then write to, call or email them and encourage your coworkers and patrons to do the same. Tell them what these programs mean to you, and what you lose if they were gone. Have social-savvy patrons? They can post their stories to your Facebook pages, and send those comments to your legislators. See Get Involved below to find your legislators and get tips for writing advocacy letters/emails.


Get Involved

There are many ways to get involved in advocy for your library. By contacting your own legislators, you can make your voice heard. You can also encourage friends, family, coworkers and patrons to get involved, as well. Learn about the issues facing libraries and their patrons, then get in touch with your legislators and let them know what is important to you. Then inform others and encourage them to take action, too.

Find your legislators here

Tips for writing legislators

Learn how a bill becomes a law in CT

 


Upcoming Events

There are no events currently scheduled.

Library Links Program

CLA LEGISLATIVE COMMITTEE NEEDS COMMUNICATORS!

The CLA Legislative Committee is gearing up for the 2012 Legislative Session that begins in February.  The Governor’s announced focus on early childhood education and the October passage of the Jobs Act provide us with a prime opportunity to deliver the message that libraries play a vital role in both of these areas and deserve to be part of the planning for both, including the development of grant programs, collaborative efforts, and any other strategy chosen to advance our State’s standing.

The CLA Legislative program will deliver the message that Libraries should be at the table when these topics are discussed…we’re already part of the picture!  Who better to express the work that libraries do to support early childhood education and business/job-seekers than librarians and the citizens they serve?  We need you to be involved in delivering the message!

We’re asking you to help:

  • Please sign up to be a Library Link: a librarian who accepts the assignment to identify yourself to your legislator (or two) as the person who will give them pertinent information about the CLA Legislative initiatives and who will find the answers to any questions they have about the program.  The idea of Library Links is that you develop a personal relationship with your Legislator(s) so s/he knows you’re a close, reliable source of information about libraries.
  • Plan to attend a training session for Library Links on January 31st so we can be sure we’re presenting a consistent message.
  • As a Link, issue invitations to Library events to your Legislators, follow up to encourage them to attend, and then attend with them. This applies to events at your own library as well as CLA events.
  • Whether or not you can be a Link, please attend events sponsored by the Legislative Committee so your support is evident. 

Please join us!  Make sure our story is told!  To sign up as a Link, please identify the legislators-- Senators and Representatives-- for whom you would like to serve as a Link.  Don’t worry about duplication if your legislator serves more than one city or town; we’ll let you know if more than one librarian has volunteered.  Please send your name, library, and the names of legislators you’ll contact (including District #) to: metter@libraryconnection.info.