Update: Library Day on the Hill ask funded for 2020!

Dear Utah Library Community,

I hope you are all staying safe and sane in these tumultuous times. With everything going on in the world, Library Day on the Hill probably feels like a million years ago! I’m pleased to let you know that the Utah legislature did fund our primary ask in 2020: $270,000 one-time and $375,000 ongoing funding to support internet connections to 70 urban and rural libraries on the Utah Education and Telehealth Network (UETN). This funding covers the portion of the cost that is not covered by the federal E-Rate program and ensures that all public libraries in the state can purchase bandwidth according to their usage and needs and not their individual budgets. I have no doubt that having librarians directly advocating to their representatives about the need for high-speed, reliable internet helped UETN’s legislative priority move through committee successfully. Thanks to all of you for your civic engagement and commitment to making sure Utah libraries are able to meet the needs of our users.

Unfortunately, not every library request was funded this year. In addition to the UETN ask, Library Day on the Hill participants were also advocating for the PALS (Parents Advocating for Librarians in Schools) legislative ask of $3.2 million for an impact study to place 20 certified teacher librarians in 20 schools to measure the impact that having librarians in schools has on literacy scores. While the ask got close, it was not funded as part of the 2020-2021 state budget.

The Utah Library Association Advocacy Committee is thrilled with the results of Library Day on the Hill 2020. Not only did we bring the library community together in our state’s Capitol, we had the opportunity to meet individually with 80/104 of our state’s representatives to talk about the critical role libraries play in our communities. Many of us also had the gratifying experience of hearing how much our libraries mean to them and their constituents. Personally, I loved hearing about how much my representatives love Overdrive, our children’s programs, and the way we support small businesses. Most importantly, the additional $270,000 and $375,000 of ongoing UETN funding will have a tremendous impact on our libraries, particularly in rural areas.

Thank you again for making Library Day on the Hill 2020 a success, and we hope to see you again for Library Day on the Hill 2021 on February 11, 2021!

Sincerely,

Rebekah Cummings, Library Day on the Hill, Co-Chair

Alfred Mowdood, Library Day on the Hill, Co-Chair

Peter Bromberg, ULA Advocacy Chair

Cancellation of ULA 2020 Conference

Dear ULA Members,

It is with great regret that the Board announces the cancellation of the 2020 Annual ULA Conference that was to be held in St. George May 13-15, 2020. This difficult decision was made due to the sweeping concerns and travel moratoriums due to the Coronavirus that went in place by various organizations, including government and library entities across the state in the last few days. Some of these moratoriums are announced to last up until the scheduled conference dates. The board had an emergency session today and determined it was in the best financial interest of the association in the face of uncertain circumstances out of the board’s control to make the cancellation now while the costs that must be absorbed are lower than to have a conference that very likely few will be able to attend. The board also investigated the possibility of postponing the conference to this fall, but took into consideration that many librarians from our variety of institutions struggle to travel during that season for a multi-day conference away from home. The venues and lodging were also very tight on availability due to other conferences planned during that season.

In the coming days plans will be made to refund registration fees and sponsorship donations. We will send out more information to those affected. The board is also looking at how to make the Fall Workshop on September 25, 2020 a unique event this year.

We thank you for your support of the Utah Library Association and sincerely apologize for this loss. Our next annual conference will be the combined Mountain Plains Library Association/Utah Library Association Conference May 19-21, 2021 in Sandy.

Very respectfully,

Vern Waters, ULA President
Daniel Mauchley, ULA President-Elect

Utah Library Day on the Hill – Feb. 12, 2020

Our libraries receive funding from our local, state, and national representatives. Yet sometimes as a profession we struggle to do a great job building relationships with our representatives, lining up our priorities, asking for additional funding, and positioning ourselves as leaders on key issues like net neutrality. Utah Library Association is trying to build infrastructure to better meet this need. One of the efforts in this plan is active participation in the annual Library Day on the Hill alongside other partnering library organizations including the Utah State Library, the Utah Academic Library Consortium, and the Utah Educational Library Media Association. We will be hosting tables in the capitol rotunda and setting up meetings with state legislators for you, their constituents, to advocate for your library. We will be making a coordinated effort this year to ask specifically for $270,000 to be allocated to Utah Education Telehealth Network to help rural libraries and schools pay for reliable broadband Internet. This will make up the difference eRate discounts leave that those libraries and schools can’t pay.

This Library Day on the Hill will be:
February 12, 2020
7 AM – 5 PM
Utah State Capitol

General Schedule:
7 am – 8 am: Arrive, set up display tables in the Capitol Rotunda
8 am – 5 pm: Meetings with legislators
7 am – 10 am: Library Day Tabling, Welcome & Orientation, Group Photo
1 pm – 2 pm: Woman’s Suffrage Celebration
3 pm – 5 pm: Arts Day Tabling and Activities in the Rotunda

LDOTH Registration

To register for Library Day on the Hill 2020 go to this webpage and click on “Register for Arts and Library Days on the Hill.”

LDOTH Parking and Transportation

Directions, Parking, and Public Transportation to the Utah State Capitol

Advocacy 101

We will also be hosting an Advocacy 101 training on Friday, February 7 from 12 – 1:30 that you can attend in-person at Viridian Center or remotely via Zoom. Utah Cultural Alliance Executive Director Crystal Young-Otterstrom will lead a 90 minute training on cultivating relationships with your elected representatives and how you can maximize the impact of Library Day of the Hill 2020.

Click here to register for Advocacy 101 on Friday, February 7 from 12 – 1:30 pm. Pizza will be provided for in-person attendees.

 

Advocacy may sound like a political activity–but it’s fundamentally about making our passion for the work we do, and our transformational impact on the community, more visible. We invite ULA members to come be part of this unified effort on behalf of all our libraries! Please direct questions about Library Day on the Hill to rebekah.cummings@utah.edu

EBook and EAudiobook Licensing Changes Are Causes for Concern

The summer of 2019 has brought dramatic changes in eBook and eAudiobook licensing to libraries from many publishers.  Among the most prominent is Macmillan Publishers’ July 25th announcement that beginning November 1, 2019, a library may only purchase one copy of a new title upon release in eBook format, after which an eight-week embargo will be imposed on additional copies sold to libraries.1  Blackstone Audio is also placing a moratorium on libraries, prohibiting them from purchasing new content within the first 90 days of the retail date.2

Rather than imposing embargos, publishers Penguin Random House,3 Hachette Book Group,4 and Simon & Schuster5 have announced they are doing away with library-owned perpetual licenses and are adopting two-year licenses.  In many cases the publishers have lowered the initial prices of these timed titles which may help some libraries, but others have expressed concern over long-term costs to libraries by requiring continual purchasing of popular older titles.3

Macmillan’s representatives have pointed to reduced retail eBook sales in connection with library use as the primary motivation for their changes.6  Steve Potash, founder and CEO of OverDrive, has rebutted such claims, pointing out many timed licenses that libraries purchase never reach their maximum checkouts in the time allotted to the license, resulting in higher costs per circulation than Macmillan reported.7

ALA President Wanda Brown has expressed great concern over the timed license changes and the embargos.  “Eliminating perpetual access increases challenges to the long-term preservation of the nation’s cultural heritage. . . Furthermore, a price point of as much as $79.99 for two-year access to one copy of an audio book is excessive and reduces public access.”5  Also from President Brown, “Macmillan Publishers’ new model for library ebook lending will make it difficult for libraries to fulfill our central mission: ensuring access to information for all. . . Limiting access to new titles for libraries means limiting access for patrons most dependent on libraries.  When a library serving many thousands has only a single copy of a new title in ebook format, it’s the library – not the publisher – that feels the heat. It’s the local library that’s perceived as being unresponsive to community needs.”1

While the Utah Library Association agrees that the rights of authors, publishers, and libraries should be balanced, we echo the concerns over the potential consequences of these various changes, particularly in the cases of the large libraries of our state as they strive to serve large populations.

 

1 American Library Association. “ALA denounces new Macmillan library lending model, urges library customers to voice objections”, July 25, 2019. www.ala.org/news/press-releases/2019/07/ala-denounces-new-macmillan-library-lending-model-urges-library-customers (Accessed August 29, 2019)

Document ID: 7ee1b4cf-aba7-476e-8ef6-f4d3146e4797

2 Blackwell, Michael. Readers First. “Hachette, Blackstone change library digital content models/availability”, June 17, 2019. www.readersfirst.org/news/2019/6/17/hachette-blackstone-change-library-digital-content-modelsavailability (Accessed August 29, 2019)

3 Enis, Matt. Library Journal. “Librarians react to new Penguin Random House ebook terms”, Oct. 12, 2018. www.libraryjournal.com/?detailStory=181012PRHebookterms (Accessed August 29, 2019)

4 American Library Association. “ALA ‘concerned’ over Hachette Book Group ebook and audio book lending model changes”, June 17, 2019. www.ala.org/news/press-releases/2019/06/ala-concerned-over-hachette-book-group-ebook-and-audio-book-lending-model (Accessed August 29, 2019)

Document ID: 9684779e-4c06-44fb-ba09-6d5ea3324305

5 American Library Association. “ALA uneasy about Simon & Schuster digital lending model changes”, July 2, 2019. www.ala.org/news/press-releases/2019/07/ala-uneasy-about-simon-schuster-digital-lending-model-changes (Accessed August 29, 2019)

Document ID: 84e2ae19-9d06-4ca4-962a-199cf00110d3

6 Enis, Matt. Library Journal. “Publishers change ebook and audiobook models; libraries look for answers”, July 17, 2019. www.libraryjournal.com/?detailStory=publishers-change-ebook-and-audiobook-models-libraries-look-for-answers (Accessed August 29, 2019)

7 Potash, Steve. Thoughts from a digital advocate: The official blog of Steve Potash. “Macmillan publishes a work of fiction”, Aug. 1, 2019. overdrivesteve.com/macmillan-publishes-a-work-of-fiction/ (Accessed August 29, 2019)