Archive for the 'libcrisis' Category

What is going on with New York’s public libraries?

chart showing rising demand and program attendance at NYs libraries and lowering support

Rising demand for NY’s libraries and lowering support. Source.

I know people are probably pretty up on the general level of change, upheaval and consternation that are happening surrounding NYPLs big changes, most notably the changes at the Central Library but also the closure and sale of the Mid-Manhattan branch. You may not know about the closure and sale of some of the Brooklyn Public Library’s branches in which buildings are being sold and new spaces are being leased/rented to fit the library collections, programs and staff into. I know we’ve been fighting against some of the major downsides involved in leasing versus owning content, I think it’s important to think about the major downsides involved in renting rather than owning real estate. Here is some further reading about the Brooklyn plans.

Want to get involved?

Brown’s proposed CA budget eliminates library funding

Californa Governor’s proposed budget includes eliminating state funding for libraries. Now, library funding is a complex thing so this is a different sort of animal than saying “Let’s close all the libraries!” but it’s still not only a blow for CA’s libraries but could also endanger other federal funding which is predicated on matching what the state already offers. The California Library Association has posted a response to Brown on their website.

Single link library advocacy sites

I am collecting a list of single-link “save the library” sites or other library value advocacy sites. If people want to add some in the comments, please do. The Save Libraries umbrella site is a good go-to place for general information on funding crises hitting libraries and ALA has a decent page with links to some Facebook examples.

Others?

Library Journal on Libraries in Crisis

A friend who is working with the Save LAPL campaign has also been actively paying attention to all of the other libraries in crisis stories that Library Journal [itself newly for sale and purchased] has been writing. Here they are.

LIBRARIES IN CRISIS

Boston:
http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6719906.html
http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6725545.html

Charlotte, NC:
http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6723200.html
http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6724087.html
http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6723882.html
http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6726630.html

Florida:
http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6723308.html

Houston:
http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6726308.html

Indianapolis:
http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6725481.html

Lexington, KY:
http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6723655.html

Los Angeles:
http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6727913.html

Massachusetts:
http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6727650.html

Michigan:
http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6721718.html

New Mexico:
http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6720424.html

NYC:
http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6726822.html
http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6726822.html

Ohio:
http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6725584.html
http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6727977.html

Portland, ME:
http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6725481.html

San Francisco:
http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6722800.html

San Jose:
http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6722394.html

Tennessee:
http://www.libraryjournal.com/article/CA6722036.html

more economic crunching at MA libraries statewide

According to j’s scratchpad, Massachusetts libraries are seeing their consortial system go from six regional consortia to one statewide system. If this were a move being planned for reasons other than “we don’t have any money” I’d be cautiously optimistic that maybe this would get the state some economies of scale and improvement of some services. As it is they’re going from 45 FTEs to 22 and I can only imagine how much ILL in the state of Massachusetts is going to suck [as opposed to some other programs that will just be halted altogether. Good luck Massachusetts!

Save the libraries roundup

So, I have some free time this week since I am supposed to be at PLA. My slides and my notes and links are online: Library 2.0 and Reader’s Advisory. I read about what the other speakers had to say, it sounds like it was a really lively pre-conference.

I came back to a facebook full of pleas for library assistance including the Save Libraries umbrella group for all the assorted campaigns. Apparently this is a very bad time to be a library. I’ve been meaning to do a wrap-up of some of the save the library campaigns. My apologies that it’s taken me so long to do this.

  • Charlotte & Mecklenburg County libraries [in NC, original home to 23 Things] may have to close 12 branches depending on what happens with the budgets. I was alerted to this via the $2 million in one week facebook group. Clicking on “learn more” on their website takes me to a donation form with a little more information but I think this budget page is most useful and this news release explains what’s really happening.
  • Los Angeles Public is in trouble again and their Save the Libraries website is back up and running with newly updated information and some good action items including sample letters you can send to the mayor. There is a meeting today. Facebook page has some more details.

  • Florida is looking at wiping out state aid for libraries. Coming from a state that has no state-level funding for libraries, I know what a mess this is going to be. I’ve also been to two different Florida library systems in the past few months. They’ve got a good thing going on, it would be a shame to screw it up. Blog is here. Here’s the FLA’s statement and list of links.
  • The New Jersey Library Association has posted a Critical Legislative Alert (pdf). There’s more information on their legislative page. Looks like budget cuts and furlough days for state library employees.
  • There’s a mostly-empty Save Libraries website up at LISHost. ALA has an undated page which may or may not be relevant. The pages it links to seem to be from 2009.
  • Ohio has a very attention-getting website at Save Ohio Libraries with links to some great tools by OPLIN including a find-a-library tool.
  • In a little bit of good news, it looks like after the hubub of the past few years Providence Public Library is doing okay.

If people want to add more in the comments, please do. Times are tough all over, but libraries are needed more n tough times, not less.

back from boingboing

I had a good time over at BoingBoing. You can read a post on my other blog that sort of lists the 29 posts that I made [I know!] and where I got my ideas from. A few library posts, maybe not enough. I just got back from Niceville Florida where I gave a talk about Content Management Systems. I also got to hear Nicole talk about open source [heard it before but always enjoy it] and met Tim Daniels who works for Georgia Libraries and gave a great talk about open source OPACs.

And I’m still unpacking. I got back late Sunday and spent most of today helping the folks at the high school get settled in with their new mail server. However I did read this post about the status of Haitian libraries that I thought was worth a mention. Things are better than expected, and better than first reported. Of course, as always, there’s still work to be done.

now this is how you do a save the library campaign

The right to read of blind and partially sighted Canadians is in jeopardy.” More information about the Canadian National Institute for the Blind’s financial crisis in this CBC article. Stay up to date on what’s happening on their facebook page. If you are Canadian, please consider sending a letter expressing your concerns.

another state library in trouble

Massachusetts Governor Patrick is contemplating “closing the State Library of Massachusetts as a cost-saving measure.” People who want to show their support for the library remaining open can sign their petition

libraries in These Tough Times

So if you read the papers at all, you know that even though things are tough, people use libraries like crazy. That said, libraries are getting funding cuts, despite, in many cases, increased use. This sucks. One of the things about living in Vermont is that there’s not that much to even trim from our budgets, but the state library (and the newish state librarian whose job I do not envy at all) closed one of Vermont’s very few regional libraries to the public and libraries who want to borrow materials now have to make appointments. This is at a time when library circulation in the state is up almost six percent and local tax support is up five percent. In other state library news