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The participating libraries are linked together by teletype equipment for rapid interlibrary communication. This enables the library parton to have access to the resources of the entire network, just by visiting his own local library. LSCA Title III has been instrumental in stimulating state and regional network development in all parts of the country.
Increasingly, libraries are interconnected through teletype equipment such as the TWX service provided by Western Union. In addition to the library network in Santa Clara County just described, another example is KEXCLIP, the Kentucky Cooperative Library Information Project. Recent rate increases proposed by Western Union last summer and subsequently approved by the Federal Communications Commission have raised KENCLIP's costs by about $2,704 annually. In California alone, there were about 400 TWX machines installed in libraries in 1972. The Mountain Valley Library System is perhaps typical. Four TWS installations constitute the system—one in Sacramento, one at the California State University in Sacramento, one at the University of California at Davis and one at the Mono County Library. The previous monthly charge was $334 and the new monthly charge is $431.
Rate increases such as these jeopardize network development, particularly in rural areas, for the new rate structure for TWX places additional costs on rural communities by means of remote extension charge. In Vermont, for example, the State Librarian has informed us that the increased cost of TWX beginning September 1, 1975 results in an addition of about $1,500 to the annual TWS bill for five library installations located throughout the state. More than half of this amount, or $900, represents the new remote extension charge for areas outside designated cities, the remainder being increased access costs.
The New Mexico State Library with assistance from LSCA Title III has developed a network of resource sharing among 12 public libraries and 17 academic libraries located throughout the state and interconnected by means of TWX. “This communications network has been especially meaningful in a state such as New Mexico which is hindered by long distances and limited information resources,” the State Librarian reports. It provides a primary source of information for citizens in rural areas. With the recent inauguration by Western Union of the new remote extension charge, the State Librarian estimates an additional cost to New Mexico libraries of some $1.674 annually.
Under Title III, LSCA money is used to foster interlibrary cooperation, even across state lines. In southeast Louisiana, not far from my home, five public libraries, eight academic libraries and three special libraries have formed a cooperative library network for the New Orleans area. A farmer in a rural area 30 miles from New Orleans was having trouble with his cattle. They were afflicted with anaplasmosis. He did not know what to do. Through the cooperative library network he was able to get technical journals at his local library from the Louisiana State University Medical School library. His cattle pulled through.
The State Librarian of Ohio has told us that, thanks to Title III funds, patrons of the library in McArthur, an Appalachian community of less than 10,000, were able to borrow books from the Ohio State University Library, from the Akron Public Library and even from the Library of Harvard University. Here is a local public library with an annual budget of $12,660 giving service of this kind to its patrons, and this is made possible by Title III.
We are sometimes asked why federal funds should be provided for the interlibrary projects supported under Title III. There are several reasons. Many of these networks of cooperating libra ries reach across state boundaries as, for example, in metropolitan areas located in more than one state. The federal funds also stimulate and support the less-advanced library systems in their efforts to provide better service. Often Title III projects demonstrate the benefits of public library service, and the local people subsequently vote to tax themselves for its continuation. We have seen this happen many times, in state after state.
LSCA Title III is an important federal program, encouraging cooperative efforts across jurisdictional lines. As library networks are developed, duplication of effort can be reduced and the use of all libraries expanded. It is essential that this Title be extended, and that it be more adequately funded in the future, to help states meet the increased costs of networking. Evaluation of LSCA
The evaluative studies arranged by the Office of Education pursuant to the mandate of Congress confirm the essential stimulus and support for public library services that have been provided through the LSCA. The report of the Systems Development Corporation in 1973, for one, stated :
LSCA funds have been a critical factor in projects for special clienteles, and they have provided the bulk of the funds used for innovative projects: without LSCA (or a real substitute) there would be little or no innovation-in short, a rather static, even moribund public library in the U.S.
Another report by the same contractor reported to the Office of Education in 1974 that:
The Federal Government has played a role in recent years of helping the public library to organize into systems and to provide services to segments of the population who were previously unserved. While there are indications that Federal programs suffered from insufficient coordination, insufficient evaluation, and inadequate funding, there is much evidence to demonstrate that a strong impetus toward system organization and the availability of services to special clienteles was provided by federal intervention.
These finding are confirmed by the reports reaching us from State and local library officials and organizations. Consequently we strongly disagree with the conclusions reached by the Administration that LSCA has outlived its usefulness and should be terminated.
II. AMENDMENTS TO LSCA RECOMMENDED BY ALA Authorization
The American Library Association urges an extension of the Library Services and Construction Act, to allow time for the findings of the White House Conference to be collected and analyzed before major revision of federal library legislation is considered. We recommend a five-year extension, with specific authorization for the first three years, and for the remaining two, such sums as necessary depending upon the findings of the state and national conferences on library and information services.
While we recommend that authorizations for Title I and II be continued at existing levels, we strongly urge the Committee to raise the authorization level for LSCA Title III so that over a three-year period it reaches at least $50 million. The states have laid the groundwork for highly successful interlibrary cooperative projects with assistance from Title III, but the program must be more adequately funded in future years, so that interlibrary cooperation and network development utilizing and expanding the use of school, public, academic, and special library resources will truly achieve its potential of greatly improved library service to all.
We anticipate that by 1978 the states will have concluded their conferences in advance of the White House Conference on Library and Information Services. Then, the states will have a more timely and accurate assessment of their needs for library services and of the resources available to meet those needs. Accordingly, we urge a specific authorization for three years and open-ended sums as necessary for the next two. Incentives for State support of libraries
We believe LSCA to be sound legislation. It has stimulated state and local library support while providing for innovation and attention to national concerns. Every federal dollar spent for LSCA Titles I and II is matched by the states or localities. "Thanks to the federal library services and construction program," says a recent report to the National Commission on Libraries and Information Science, “the states, without exception, now have the organizational structure—and in many instances the leadership—to guide the development of library services."
And yet, the same report also points out that a significant increase in library funding must come from the states. “Just as there is geographic interstate diversity in the ability to finance public services, there are inter-regional diversities within states this is as applicable to library services as it is to the financing of schools. These intrastate service inequalities can be handled much more readily when the funding is done on an area wide rather than on a local basis. When the state picks up a substantial portion-say 50 percent-of the funding, it has an opportunity to equalize the resources among local library systems." 2
2 "Alternatives for Financing the Public Library," a study prepared for the National Commission on Libraries and Information Science, U.S. Government Printing Office. May 1974.
For this reason, the Committee may want to give attention to the matching provisions of the Act. A strong case can be made, in our opinion, for amending the law to require matching of federal funds provided under Title I by state funds, instead of allowing the local match option now possible. Requiring state matching would serve to strengthen state programs of library support. The Committee may be interested to know that the following states provide no grants-in-aid to their local public libraries : Indiana, Montana, North Dakota, Oregon, South Dakota, Utah, Vermont, Washington, Wyoming. We believe that a requirement of state matching may prove persuasive in those states.
To allow sufficient time for states without aid programs to establish them, we propose that any state matching requirement be deferred in the legislation until two or perhaps three years after enactment. This would give the state legislatures time as well as an incentive to take action, and the state legislative action would also have the benefit of the facts and findings of the state conferences on library and information services.
We do not propose a state matching requirement for Title II of the LSCA dealing with construction projects. These are primarily of local significance and should receive strong local support. By the same token, however, we believe that a state matching requirement for Title III may well be justified. Currently, as you know, Title III has no matching provision. Title III programs of support for cooperative networks for the sharing of resources by school, public, academic and special libraries would seem to be particulariy appropriate for state matching. State administration
At present, there is no limit on the amount of LSCA funds the states can use for administrative purposes. A 1974 GAO report to Congress : recommended that such a limitation be established as one way of helping to insure that the target groups (such as the handicapped, the bilingual, the disadvantaged) are served in accordance with the purposes of the Act. HEW, in appendix II of this report, concurs in the recommendation that such a limitation be established on administration. The Association also supports this, and suggests the Committee may want to consider establishing a limit of no more than 10 percent of a state's LSCA Title I funds that can be used for state administration and indirect costs.
HEW did not concur with another CAO recommendation that a limitation be placed also on statewide services. We heartily agree with HEW on this point, for we feel that a dollar or percentage limitation on statewide services would defeat the purposes of the Act in many cases. In rural states, particularly, the most efficient type of library service may be that provided by the state library agency to many communities far too small to support their own library service. In New Mexico, for example, bookmobiles are run by the state agency to many sparsely settled areas that would otherwise have no access whatever to library service. In Vermont, the state library agency runs a very successful books-by-mail service, which provides library access to persons in rural sections of the state. Programs such as these are badly needed and would be disastrously curtailed if a limitation were to be placed on statewide services.
In considering a limit on the amount of Title I funds that can be retained at the state level for adminisration, therefore, we urge the Committee to make a distinction between administration and indirect costs on one hand and statewide services on the other. The limitation should be upon the former, most definitely not upon the latter. Advance funding
[The American Library Association further proposes that the extension of the Library Services and Construction Act make explicit the provision for advance or forward funding contained in the General Education Provisions Act to emphasize the urgent need for timely funding of LSCA.] Ideally, the new congressional budget procedures will obviate the need for advance funding, but that has not been the experience thus far, because of the authority given to the Administration for proposing rescissions and deferrals.
Last year the states did not receive their allocations under the LSCA until April, or two months before the close of the fiscal year. This year states were not advised of their allocations until November, or four months after the start
3 "Federal Librarı Sunport Programs: Progress and Problems," GAO report to Congress. Dec. 30, 1974 (MWD-753-4).
of the fiscal year. As a result, services were curtailed, projects were interrupted, and plans for the most effective use of library dollars were necessarily made piecemeal.
To illustrate, we received reports from the following states, among others:
Indiana--Delayed enactment of federal appropriations and impoundment or deferral of appropriated funds have had the following effects among others in Indiana : (a) a minimum of new projects have been funded ; (b) even though there have been several requests for funds for bookmobile demonstrations in counties without service, these have had to be turned down due to the uncertainty of funds (c) funds budgeted for state institutional library services have remained at the previous year's level even though book and equipment costs have increased.
California-A project cannot be sustained when the federal fund flow is interrupted causing years of pre-planning to be wasted, staff redirected to other areas of need. When federal funds are withheld, even for a short period, the effect is disastrous in light of the percentage of public funds wasted because of the shut-down and start-up of a project.
New York-Projects are dropped or delayed. State planning is impossible. Staff is laid off, and those that remain are plagued with uncertainties. Chaos is created generally. We desperately need assurance of advance funding for the best and most effective use of federal funds.
Pennsylvania-Delayed funding seriously jeopardizes significant progress made throughout the state in such areas as statewide delivery services, automated cataloging systems, film services, and library development advisory services. Impoundment makes long-range planning impossible. It raises the expectations of the community and ultimately the library user-only to let them down which further erodes their confidence in government.
Iowa-Delayed appropriations and impoundment have created many problems in the administration of federal programs. Libraries lacking the resources to continue LSCA-assisted programs on their own budget prematurely, are forced to close what might have been a very successful service program. Delivery systems to the handicapped, aging, and isolated, suffer the greatest damage due to increased fuel costs, and the lack of stability in funding.
Wisconsin-Delayed availability of appropriations interferes most seriously with the joint state/local planning for LSCA projects. This is particularly characteristic for communities where the local share of project funding is difficult to obtain.
To avoid these problems we urge the Committee to include an advance funding authorization in LSCA. Special needs of urban/metropoltan libraries
[The central city library systems of major metropolitan areas have special needs that should not be overlooked. Because they are older and larger, they have rich collections lacking in the smaller libraries on their periphery.] Indeed. the large urban library is typically at the center of a cooperative network of libraries where these have been developed. [In addition to serving residents of outlying areas through cooperation with their libraries, the center city libraries also serve directly many people who neither live nor pay taxes in the central city.]
Few if any of the large urban libraries continuously record the extent of this kind of service but many have made statistical studies from time to time. From these studies, we learn, for example, that 38 percent of the users of the Detroit Public Library were nonresidents. The corresponding figure for Baltimore is 20 percent and for San Francisco about 13 percent. We believe that these figures and others that will be presented to the Committee in the course of these hearings will buttress the case for continued Federal support for public library services, as well as the case for increased State support.
We have proposed that a imitation be placed on LSCA Title I funds retained at the state level for administration and indirect costs. This, we believe, will allow more of the Title I funds to go to metropolitan public libraries which are one of the Title I priorities. In addition, we have propose that LSCA be amended to require state appropriations to match the state's allocation under LSCA Titles I and III. Such a requirement will result in more realistic state support of state library agency services including those to public libraries, and increased state grants-in-aid which can be used in conjunction with LSCA funds to assist local libraries.
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Some of our nation's greatest city libraries are facing severe crisis today, not only in New York City, but in other urban areas as well. The economic crisis has had severe impact on urban public libraries. Mayor Paul Jordan of Jersey City has been quoted as saying "We may become the first major city in the nation with no library system as a result of our money problems." The Brooklyn Public Library has been forced to develop a plan to pare down its branch service. Employees are being discharged and vacancies not filled. Similar problems are being faced by the libraries in San Franciso and Los Angeles, Chicago and Detorit, to name just a few.
Additional funding of LSCA Title I is urgently needed to help the great city libraries in this time of crisis. As the director of the Detroit Public Library, Mrs. Clara Jones, recently said: "America leads the world in library organization. The best-organized libraries are in this country. This is where the record of our civilization is kept and, fortunately, ours is not an elitist library tradition."
The American tradition of public libraries readily accessible to the people, is indeed a great tradition, an essential element of our nation's democratic heritage. It would be a tragedy, in our national bicentennial year, if major public libraries are allowed for lack of funds to deteriorate beyond repair. The taxpayers of Cleveland have recently voted an operating levy which significantly increases operating funds for the Cleveland Public Library. But in today's economic climate, increased local support for lilbra ries in urban areas is rare. Additional funding for such libraries is needed from the states, from LSCA, and perhaps most important, from other federal programs designed to offset the effects of an emergency economic crisis such as we are facing in America today.
III. THE ADMINISTRATION'S LIBRARY PROPOSALS
Library Partnership Act
In 1974, President Nixon proposed a new initiative for libraries—a Library Partnership Act, which would encourage exemplary and innovative developments in the provision of library and information services. Introduced during the 93rd Congress for discussion purposes by Sen. Jacob Javits (S. 3944), the bill saw no action and virtually no support last year, and has not been reintroduced this year although HEW again sent the draft to Congress in March 1975.
The goals of the proposed partnership act are similar in many ways to those of the existing library and information science demonstration program authorized by title II-B of the Higher Education Act. Both the partnership act and HEA II--B are discretionary, and both are focused on demonstrations to encourage exemplary and innovative developments in the provision of library and information services. Because of this similarity, the American Library Association has recommended to the House Subcommittee on Postsecondary Education now considering HEA amendments, that these demonstration aspects of the Library Partnership Act be incorporated within HEA Title II-B.
We note also that the Library Partnership Act would authorize some interlibrary cooperative projects, similar to those authorized by Title III of LSCA. There is a major difference, however, in that decision-making occurs at the state/local level under LSCA, a state formula grant program, but the Administration's partnership proposal would return decision-making to Washington, at the discretion of the Commissioner of Education. We would like to note for the record our strong support for the state and local determination encouraged by LSCA Title III.
We agree with the Administration that interlibrary cooperative activities are worthy of federal support and encouragement, but we strongly disagree that this should be done by inaugurating a new program with all funding decisions retained at the federal level. The states are planning for their own intrastate and interstate library cooperative networks, with assistance from LSCA Title III. It simply makes no sense whatever to abandon this kind of state support for interlibrary cooperation and move instead to a more fragmented discretionary approach centered in the U.S. Office of Education.
It is our recommendation, therefore, that the Committee continue and increase the authorization for LSCA Title III, which we believe will serve far more successfully to advance the aim of strengthening interlibrary cooperation among all types of libraries.