MLA News | Michigan Library Association

MLA Advocacy - November 30, 2017

Interior image of the Michigan State Capitol Dome

Net Neutrality Rules Impact Us All

Net neutrality is the principle that internet service providers (ISPs) must enable access to all legal content and applications regardless of the source and without favoring or blocking specific services or websites. Strong, enforceable rules are critical to the functioning of modern libraries because we rely on the internet to collect, create and disseminate essential online information and services to the public. Libraries and our patrons cannot afford to be relegated to "slow lanes" on the internet. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Pai publicly shared his plan to dismantle network neutrality protections approved by the FCC in 2015 and affirmed by the federal appeals court in 2016.

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MLA Advocacy - October 26, 2017

Interior image of the Michigan State Capitol Dome

NIS Insurance Start Date Pushed Back to February 2018 Due to Executive Order

President Trump's recent executive order targeting the Affordable Care Act has prompted some adjustments in the product offerings by the National Insurance Services (NIS) partnership with MLA. The group will now develop a Multiple Employer Welfare Arrangement (MEWA) as part of their program. This change will ensure that any libraries who wish to join the program after the initial startup will be able to do so without requiring that the entire group and its rates be re-evaluated. We sincerely regret the delay in getting the program underway. This response to the President's order is necessary to ensure a reliable and useful insurance product for our members. If renewal with your current carrier is due prior to February 1, 2018, it is recommended that you renew and NIS will follow up with you to help determine the best time to transfer to NIS.

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MLA Advocacy - September 28, 2017

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Libraries See Reduction in Penal Fines

Many libraries are reporting a significant reduction in their penal fines. MLA has initiated a survey to help gather data on the trend. Information obtained from the Michigan State Police indicates that the decrease in the library fine revenue is a product of fewer citations being written. Apparently the MSP has been looking into the situation. They report a reduction in the total number of police officers, so departments with the ability to dedicate officers to traffic enforcement is reduced. Additionally, MSP attributes the decline to their working heavily in the Secure Cities Partnership, which is mostly disadvantaged communities. They indicate they are there for a larger purpose of reducing violent crime, and increasing community engagement so they don't emphasize writing citations in these areas.

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MLA Advocacy - August 24, 2017

Interior image of the Michigan State Capitol Dome

Who needs advocacy?

An even more compelling question: Whose responsibility is advocacy? The simple answer to both questions is everyone. It gets a little more complicated when we try to sift down to our day to day lives, embrace the fact that we need to practice advocacy every day in our libraries, in our communities and in our personal lives and then try to determine how best to achieve it.

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MLA Advocacy - July 27, 2017

Interior image of the Michigan State Capitol Dome

State Aid to Libraries up for FY 2018

The FY 2018 State of Michigan budget went to the governor's desk with a $1,191,700.13 boost in funding for libraries in the state aid to libraries line item. This is great news as we work to gradually rebuild this funding source. Our Senators Goeff Hansen (R-Hart) and Jim Stamas (R- Midland) worked hard to keep that additional funding in the budget.

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MLA Advocacy - June 22, 2017

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State Aid to Libraries is slated to see a $1.2 million increase for fiscal year 2018

MLA credits our library champions in the Senate, Senator Jim Stamas (R-Midland) and Senator Goeff Hansen (R-Hart) for their unwavering support of libraries. Their work on behalf of Michigan libraries is the reason we are seeing more than a million dollar increase for the second time in three years. In MLA's conversations with the two senators, they have made it clear they would like to see libraries continue to move upward toward previous funding levels. Both the governor and the House proposed a flat 2018 budget and the Senate proposal asked for nearly $3 million in additional library funding. The conference committee agreed on the $1,191,700 which brings the total state aid to libraries to $11,067,700. This represents a 12% increase and per capita payment of about $0.36.

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MLA Advocacy - May 25, 2017

Interior image of the Michigan State Capitol Dome

MPSERS Debate Continues

Folks in Lansing are focused on passing a state budget. However, disagreement over two bills HB 4647 and SB 401seem to be holding up the process. The legislation replaces the Michigan Public School Employees' Retirement System or MPSERS hybrid system . According to a MIRS report, the new 401(k) would mirror the current plan for state employees, which is an automatic employer contribution of 4 percent of the employees' salary plus a 100 percent matching contribution up to 3 percent for a total of 10 percent. The House Fiscal Agency projects this sweetened 401(k) and paying the upfront costs connected with the unfunded liability would cost $21.7 billion over 40 years.

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