Legislative Updates

State Budget Updates

FY15 State Budget

The  State Budget for FY15. 
Governor Christie recommended the following funding levels for library programs in the FY15 State Budget. The NJLA is very grateful that the NJ Legislature proposed additional funding for the state per capita aid program in its final budget but the Governor veteod it in the final budget. The FY`15 budget number for library programs remain at:

  • The amount of funding for the NJ Library Network remained unchanged at $4,299,000.
  • The amount for funding for the State Per Capita aid program is unchanged at $3,676,000
  • The amount of funding for the operational NJ State Library is $5,194,000.
  • State funding for library programs was significantly reduced in the FY11 state budget by 42% from the amount in the FY10 budget.
  • The proposed FY15 budget keeps funding for library programs at the FY11 level.

Patricia Tumulty, NJLA Executive Director,  testified before both budget committees urging restoration of state support for local libraries. See:http://njla.org/content/testimony-fy15-state-budget.

Recently Enacted Library Legislation

P.L. 2011, c.38 (S2068/A2679/A3240)

Provides dedicated line item on property tax bill to fund municipal free public libraries and joint free public libraries. Primary sponsors Senator Nia Gill ( District 34), Assemblyman Uprendra Chivukula ( District 17),Assemblyman Ruben Ramos ( District 33), Assemblywoman Valerie Vainieri Huttle ( District 37) and Assemblyman Frederick Scalera ( retired). Co-sponsored by Senator Sandra Cunningham ( District 31) and Assemblywomen Amy Handlin ( District 13), Mila Jasey ( District  27) and Assemblymen John McKeon ( District 27), Jason O’Donnell ( District 31), Thomas Giblin (34).

Signed 3/21/2011.

P.L. 2010, c. 83 (A2911 / S2070)

Requires transfer of municipal free library surplus amounts above 20% to municipality for its general purposes, which may include property tax relief. Sponsored by Assemblyman Vincent Prieto ( District 32), Assemblywoman Joan Quigley (District 32) Senator Nicholas Sacco (District 32) Senator James Beach (District 6).Passed both Houses of the Legislature on June 28, 2010.NJLA opposed this legislation for several reasons. The legislation was unnecessary since it amended a voluntary process which had been working very well for several years. The new legislation removed protections for county libraries and removed over site by the New Jersey State Library.  This legislation was subsequently conditionally vetoed by Governor Christie. Veto message at: http://www.njleg.state.nj.us/2010/Bills/A3000/2911_V1.HTM. The Governor put back many of the safeguards which the library community requested. Amends P.L. 2008 c. 8. S429/A1265 signed into law on April 7, 2008. The Assembly passed the bill with the Governor’s recommendations on Sept. 20, 2010. The Senate passed the bill with the Governor’s recommendations on Oct. 18, 2010. The bill was signed by Governor Christie on Oct. 27, 2010 as P.L. 2010, c. 83.

 Information from the NJ  State Library at: http://lss.njstatelib.org/lss_files/MUNICIPAL%20AND%20JOINT%20LIBRARY%20...

For a packet about Return of Funds: http://lss.njstatelib.org/lss_files/ReturnOfFundsPacket08092013.zip

P.L. 2011, c.224 (A3971/S3110).

Prohibits municipal library trustees from transferring donated funds to municipality. Prime sponsors were Assemblyman Craig Coughlin (District 19), Assemblyman Daniel Benson ( District 14) and co-sponsors by Assemblyman Upendra Chivukula (District 17), Senators Joseph Vitale ( District 19), Nia Gill (District 34), Diane Allen (District 7) and Linda Greenstein (District 14.)

P.L. 2009, C.141

Concerns Citizen Service on Municipal Authorities, Boards and Commissions. Requires municipal officials including library trustees to take an oath of office.

 

P.L. 2013, c.56 (S1358/A2971)

States that a municipal public library established by referendum can only be dissolved by the voters of a community through a referendum.  The legislation provided a parallel dissolution structure for municipal libraries which had been already provided under both joint and county library legislation. Sponsors of this legislation were Senator Joseph Pennacchio (District 26), Senator Jeff Van Drew ( District 1), Assemblyman Craig Coughlin ( District 19), Assemblyman Albert Coutinho ( District 29), Assemblywoman Mila Jasey ( District 27) and Assemblywoman Annette Quijano (District 20). Signed into law by Governor Christie on May 9, 2013

NJLA Supports the Following Legislation

A1396/S967

 

A1396/S967

 

A1396 enacts the "Reader Privacy Act" Sponsored by Assemblyman Benjie Wimberly (District 35), Assemblywoman  Mila Jasey (District 27) and Assemblyman Daniel Benson (District 14). Additional sponsors are: Assemblywomen Shelia Oliver (District 34), Celeste Riley (District 3) Grace Spencer (District 29) Cleopatra Tucker (District 28) and Assemblymen Ralph Caputo (District 28), Charles Mainor (District 31),Gregory McGuckin (District 10) and John Wisniewski (District 3).Released from the Assembly Consumer Affairs Committee on  Feb. 20th. Awaiting a vote by the full Assembly. This was voted out of the Assembly on May 22, 2014.

 

S967 is companion legislation sponsored by Senators Nia Gill (District 34) and Peter Barnes (District 18). This bill was released from the Senate Commerce Committee on March 17. It is in the Senate Appropirations and Budget Committee.

 

A967/S234

A967  Makes a supplemental appropriation of $ 3 million for increased Per Capita Aid support to public libraries.  A967 is sponsored by Assemblymen Troy Singleton (D) District 7; Wayne DeAngelo (District  14), Thomas Giblin (District 34),   Assemblywomen Shavonda Sumter (District 35),  Cleopatra Tucker (District 28), Linda Stender (District 22), Mila Jasey (District 27), Celeste Riley (District 3), Annette Quijano (District 20),Valerie Vainieri Huttle (District 37),  Assemblymen Patrick Diegnan (District 18), Craig Coughlin (District 19), Daniel Benson (District 14)  Ralph Caputo (District 28),  Reed Gusciora ( District 15), Benjie Wimberly (District 35), Uprendra Chivukula (District 17),Jack Ciattarelli (District 16), John McKeon (District 27), Sean Kean (District 30), Raj Mukherji (District 33, Assemblyman Gregory McGuckin (District 10) Assemblyman David Wolfe (District 10),  Assemblyman John Burzichelli (District 3), Assemblyman Louis Greenwald ( District 6) and Assemblyman Carmelo Garcia ( District 33).

S234 is identical legislation and is sponsored by Senators Diane Allen (District 7), Senator Anthony Bucco (District 25),  Senator Jennifer Beck (District 11), Senator Shirley Turner (District 15), Senator Peter Barnes (District 18), Senator Christopher Bateman ( District 16), Senator Jeff VanDrew ( District 1), Senator James Beach, (District 6 ), Senator James Holzapfel (District 10), Senator Sandra Cunningham ( District 31), Senator Joseph Kyrillos (District 13), Senator Fred Madden (District 6) and Senator Linda Greenstein (District 14).   NJLA is actively seeking additional sponsors for this legislation.  These are the first bills in many years which seek to restore funding to the library state per capita aid program.

A1314/S1803

 

A1314/S1803

Creates the option to make a voluntary contribution for the support of local libraries on gross income tax returns. Sponsored by Assemblywomen Annette Quijano (District 20) and Valerie Vainieri Huttle (District 37).  Additional sponsors Assemblymen Daniel Benson (District 14) Troy Singleton (District 7), Gilbert Wilson (District 5), Reed Gusciora (District 15), Angelica Jimenez (District 32), Upendra Chivukula (District 17), John McKeon (District 27) Craig Coughlin (District 19) and Assemblywomen Mila Jasey (District 27), Pamela Lampitt (District 6), and Nancy Pinkin (District 18).  Voted out of the Assembly Housing and Local Government Committee on Feb. 6 and by the full Assembly on  Feb. 27, 2014 with a vote of 74-0.

S1803 (companion legislation). Sponsored by Senator Jeff VanDrew (District 1) was voted out of the Senate Community and Urban Affairs Committee on March 17. S1803/A1314 was passed by the full Senate on May 12 with a vote of 39-0.

This bill was signed into law on Sept.10. 2014 by Governor Christie. It is now P.L. 2014 c.47.

NJLA Opposes the Following Legislation

A1693

Revises requirement that Library tax be assessed against equalized value of property. Sponsored by Assemblyman John Wisniewski (District 19). Referred to the Assembly Housing and Local Government Committee.

S425

Would require municipal governing body approval of new municipal free public library capital projects. Sponsored by Senators Joseph Pennacchio and Stephen Sweeney. This bill was referred to the Senate Community and urban Affairs Committee.

Federal Legislation

H.R.3361/S1599

  H.R. 3361/ S. 1599 “The USA Freedom Act.” 

The NJLA Executive Board voted to support this legislation.

Notable among its provisions are: the setting of “a single standard for Section 215 and National Security Letter protection to ensure the Administration doesn’t use different authorities to support bulk collection.  It also adds a sunset date to NSLs requiring that Congress reauthorize the government’s authority thereby ensuring proper congressional review”; and the changes to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court.

ALA District Dispatch

Keep up to date on federal legislation with the ALA District Dispatch: News for Friends of Libraries.

USA PATRIOT ACT

Congress has extended the three key sections of the USA Patriot Act including section 215( commonly called the library records provision) until June 1, 2015. More information can be found http://www.districtdispatch.org/2011/05/congress-renews-usa-patriot-act-without-needed-reforms/

H.R. 113 The WILL Act

Would require a public library representative on a Workforce Investment Board. Sponsored by Congressman Rush Holt.  NJLA supports this legislation