For Immediate Release:
Contact: Judy Calhoun President Association for Rural & Small Libraries
(870) 367-8584, ext. 222 firstname.lastname@example.org
Association for Rural & Small Libraries Statement on Federal Funding for Libraries
The Association for Rural & Small Libraries (ARSL) believes that taking a position on issues and policies are important ways in which we serve our membership and the communities they serve. The proposed federal budget seeks to eliminate the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) which provides the main source of federal support for libraries and museums within the United States. IMLS provides nearly $250 million dollars in grants to libraries to enhance lifelong learning and innovation; sustain heritage, culture and knowledge; and to support professional development. Without this funding many rural libraries will be forced to make dramatic cuts from programs and services such as early literacy, summer reading programs, subscription databases, technology and broadband opportunities and materials for the blind and physically handicapped.
ARSL is a network of people throughout the country dedicated to the positive growth and development of libraries. ARSL believes in the value of rural and small libraries and strives to create resources and services that address national, state, and local priorities for libraries situated in rural communities. We therefore urge Congress to preserve and protect the Institute of Museum and Library Services and to maintain the LSTA funding investment in libraries as vital infrastructure and economic development. Our organization believes this funding is crucial in preserving the much needed support and resources to our communities.