MLA News | Michigan Library Association

Update for Attendees - Spring Institute and COVID-19 Concerns

March 11, 2020

MLA’s top priority is the health, safety and well-being of the library community especially in relation to the Coronavirus and Michigan’s newly declared state of emergency. We are mindful that our members may have concerns and questions regarding attending our Spring Institute for Youth Services, scheduled next week, March 19-20, 2020.  

It is okay to be concerned, but more importantly, it is essential to be prepared. MLA is doing our due diligence and closely monitoring the Center for Disease Control (CDC) website's guidelines for public events, monitoring local travel advisories and communicating daily with our conference venue, the Ann Arbor Sheraton Hotel. This is a rapidly evolving situation and we will reassess immediately should anything change in the days ahead. 

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Letter from Debbie

February 27, 2020

Most of you know that I come from an arts background…more specifically, a theatre background. From my humble beginnings in the MSU theatre department, I have been blessed to work and build friendships for the past 40 years in an industry that is populated by individuals driven by sheer talent and devotion to their calling.

A healthy theatre environment thrives, indeed soars, when a new production is staged; a group of artists and technicians come together to form a new family; group effort and teamwork are prevalent; and innovative, creative, challenging ideas are put on the table. That is what producing theatre is all about – molding and shaping of ideas from hundreds of different perspectives and opinions – a truly collaborative environment.

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Contact Your Federal Legislators and Urge Them to Support Funding for Libraries

President Trump's proposed FY 2021 budget ends federal funding for libraries and museums. For the fourth year in a row the proposed budget eliminates funding critical to libraries. The budget proposal requests funding to cover the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) administrative expenses for an orderly shutdown of the agency beginning October 1, 2020. The budget proposal also cuts $27 million from the Innovative Approaches to Literacy program, which helps school libraries serve students in the most vulnerable communities across America.

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MLA's Official Position on SB 611 – Michigan Library Privacy Act

February 6, 2020

On Friday, January 31, 2020, the MLA Board of Directors unanimously voted to support and approve a substitution bill for Senate Bill 611 (SB 611).

Last October, Senator MacGregor introduced SB 611 to amend the Michigan Library Privacy Act, 1982 PA 455. The intention of his bill was to enable libraries to work with law enforcement when the library is a victim of a crime. After hearing both concerns and support from the Michigan library community on Senator MacGregor's proposed amendments to the Privacy Act, MLA drafted a substitute bill that clarifies and updates SB 611.

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Advocacy and Legislative Priorities Survey

We want to hear from you! Share your input on your library's biggest challenges and highest priorities by Friday, February 14.

The Michigan Library Association has made advocacy one of its highest priorities. It has never been more important for librarians, staff members, trustees, and others with a vested interest in their libraries, to convey and address their challenges and successes. We hope you will take time out of your busy day to help us pinpoint the highest priorities that face our field.

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Good News and Bad News for Michigan’s Budget

January 23, 2020

GOOD NEWS! While estimates set at the May 2019 Consensus Revenue Estimating Conference predicted a very flat revenue scenario this year, some good news was presented to the legislative and executive branch by fiscal experts in early January. According to new estimates, Michigan expects to see an additional $235.2 million in General Fund revenue and $85.7 million more in School Aid Fund support for the current Fiscal Year 2020. For the upcoming budget, which begins October 1, 2020, officials are expecting additional revenues of $274 million in the General Fund and $138 million in the School Aid Fund for a combined $412 million in additional revenue.

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Lisa Visits Detroit Libraries

by Lisa Buttigieg, MLA Administrative Assistant

Last week I had the opportunity to visit a few of the Detroit Public Libraries.

My gracious hosts were Alma Simmons, Assistant to the Executive Director of the Main Library downtown, Charlene Hyland, Assistant Manager and Children’s Librarian of the Conley Branch and Crystal Jolly, Assistant Manager and Children’s Librarian from the Parkland Branch.

They each took time out of their busy days to show me why their libraries are the heart of the communities they serve. As they showed me around and spoke of the many services each branch offered, I could hear and see the pride they have for their library.

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