We are sometimes asked if it takes three years to get re-certified in the State Aid program.
I am not quite certain where this time table originated, but I imagine it has something to do with the calculation of the Municipal Appropriation Requirement (MAR) — the average of the prior three municipal appropriations to the library, plus 2 1/2 percent.
The answer to how long it takes to become certified again after lapsing depends on the reason that the municipality and its library were not certified as meeting the statutory and regulatory requirements in the State Aid program, and for how long.
- If a library closes due to a decimated or eliminated budget from the city or town and is certified in the State Aid program at the time, the municipality is, as of the date of the closing of the library, decertified in the program. The library must then be open a full fiscal year (assuming it meets all of the other requirements) before being eligible to again apply for State Aid to Public Libraries. So, depending on the timing and duration of the closure, it could be 1 or more years.
- If a library applies for a waiver of the MAR and is denied by the Board of Library Commissioners, the municipality and its library will not be certified as of the date of denial (the February Board meeting). The library will be eligible to apply for State Aid in the next fiscal year as long as the other requirements are being met. If a waiver of the MAR is again applied for, that application will be assessed by the Board at their January meeting and an action taken at their February board meeting. If no MAR waiver is needed, the municipality and its library could be certified as soon as the first Board meeting at which municipalities are certified, November.
So, as you can see, it really depends on the reason for the loss of certification in the State Aid to Public Libraries program.
Posted under State Aid to Public Libraries
This post was written by lbabbitt on March 15, 2013