On Monday morning I along with 25 other North Carolina Librarians and library advocates took a scenic bus ride to join those camping out in Washington DC for the 2012 National Library Legislative Day. We arrived just in time for the ALA sponsored reception. The room was much too small for the overflowing crowd waiting to enter. It was here that we received the news that NC had the most attendees in its’ group, beating out Illinois for the second year in a row. NCLA funds the trip and attendees have only to purchase their meals. After attending, I was thoroughly convinced of the value NCLA gains with this sponsorship. We had a late dinner in the hotel and an even earlier start the next morning. We divided ourselves into two different groups with one visiting Senator Hagen and the other Senator Burr. My first stop was with Senator Burr’s aide. He listened attentively as we shared our top concerns.
Federal funding for the Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) – You may remember these funds were used for our Digital Forsyth initiative. LSTA funds to our 5th district total 1.9 million over the last 5 years.
Federal funding for School Libraries – the Innovative Approaches to Literacy program.
Federal funding for the Library of Congress, GPO and the National Archives and Record Administration.
Thanks to the University of North Carolina at Greensboro Library and Information Studies Department we had this lovely video filled with stories demonstrating ways that “Libraries Change Lives.”
We divided the group again and paid visits to the other NC Representatives. My group met with the aides for Howard Coble, Mike McIntyre and Melvin Watt. After lunch we gathered for a photo on the steps of the Capital with Senator Burr followed by a brisk walk over to Union Station where we boarded the bus for home.