The White House recently released its budget proposal for FY2020. Once again, the administration has proposed to eliminate the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS), which provides approximately $189.3 million in direct funding to libraries through the Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA). The proposal also cuts the Innovative Approaches to Literacy (IAL) program administered by the Department of Education.
This year’s “Dear Appropriator” letters have started to circulate in the House, asking representatives to preserve more than $210 million in federal funding for libraries. Now is the time to let your representative know how important libraries are to their constituents.
Many representatives will only sign a “Dear Appropriator” letter if their constituents ask them. Use ALA’s Action Center to send an email and urge your representative to contact Rep. Raul Grijavla (D-AZ) to sign on to the LSTA letter and Rep. Eddie Bernice Johson (D-TX) to sign on to the IAL letter. The more signatures we have, the better our chances will be to protect funding for libraries across the country.
The House deadline is March 28. Send your emails now, as letters will close a few days before the 28th. Stay tuned for a similar call to action for the Senate in the coming days.