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Wayne State University

Aim Higher

Mar 31 / Christine Illichmann

Defunding IMLS and LSTA Hurts Michigan Libraries and LIS Education

The current federal budget proposal calls for the elimination of LSTA (the Library Services and Technology Act) and the IMLS (Institute of Museum and Library Services) – the organization responsible for management of funds designated by LSTA. (http://www.ala.org/advocacy/advleg/federallegislation/lsta)

At Wayne State, IMLS and LSTA elimination could impact certain IMLS funded scholarships which benefit our students and create educational opportunities that might not otherwise exist.

These funding sources impact libraries in every state. In Michigan, the impact would be felt state-wide and most significantly by the Library of Michigan. One of the services that will be most drastically impacted is the Michigan eLibrary (MeL), a treasure trove of electronic databases supported and managed by the Library of Michigan. According to a recent Michigan Library Association Advocacy e-newsletter (http://www.milibraries.org/mla-advocacy—march-23-2017/), MeL receives $1.7 million in federal funding each year. While state funds also support MeL, it is inevitable that a $1.7 million loss would make an impact.

Other services supported by the Library of Michigan include “…early literacy programs, continuing education programs such as Small and Rural Libraries Conference, summer reading programs and E-rate training and support.” (http://www.milibraries.org/mla-advocacy—march-23-2017/) These opportunities would also be impacted by the loss of IMLS funding.

You can learn more about the impact of IMLS and LSTA elimination through the following links:

ALA State Fact Sheets (outlining LSTA funding for each state): http://connect.ala.org/node/138571

March 23, 2017 Michigan Library Association Advocacy Newsletter: http://www.milibraries.org/mla-advocacy—march-23-2017/

Library of Michigan Introduction to LSTA: http://www.michigan.gov/libraryofmichigan/0,2351,7-160-18668_77699—,00.html