MBLC Service Update
June 18, 2020
As we work together to get through the current reality, the MBLC will provide regular updates on MBLC services and other statewide issues. Please let us know if there’s info you’d like us to cover—we’ll include it if we are able. Stay well.
State Aid- Reopening survey
Contact: Liz Babbitt
In light of the Governor’s phased re-opening plan, please update the COVID19 reopening survey via the new LibWizard form This will be shared with the library community in a Google spreadsheet titled “COVID19: Re-opening Public Libraries Survey”.
We understand that COVID19 will continue to be a serious threat to public health and that your plans may change as the situation evolves so we will NOT be creating a version of this survey for the public UNTIL libraries have started opening.
CARES ACT Grants
Contact: Lyndsay Forbes
The application for Virtual Programming for Distance Learning is due Friday
This grant opportunity is one way the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners (MBLC) is using CARES Act funding. Libraries may use Virtual Programming for Distance Learning grants to support increased public access to library virtual programs. Any library that is a member of MLS can apply. Public libraries must be certified in state aid. These are the only eligibility requirements for this grant. Libraries may apply for funding between $1000-$3500. We anticipate notifying libraries of their award status in early July. Funds must be spent by September 30, 2021.
The MBLC was notified this morning that the cap for MPLCP will remain at $20 million for FY2021. The FY2021 Capital Plan is a maintenance plan for the Commonwealth, primarily due to COVID-19 related obligations. Most lines are level-funding for the coming fiscal year. Although, the MBLC had been seeking an increase in the cap from $20 million to $25 million, in these difficult times, the agency is grateful to Governor Baker for continuing to fund the construction program.
The Senate Bonding Committee reported out favorably the Infrastructure Bond Bill, which includes the funding for the Massachusetts Public Library Construction Program. Senate Bonding has referred the Bond Bill to the Senate Committee on Ways and Means. The Bill includes $115 million, the same figure approved in the House. Senator Eric Lesser, the Senate Chair of the Legislative Library Caucus has agreed to file an amendment to increase library construction funding. Swift passage is expected since the Bill includes several capital projects related to COVID 19 assistance.
Given the current crisis and the economic difficulty that many communities are experiencing, the MBLC construction team is discussing how to handle grant awards in FY21.
Contact: Maura Deedy
Join us for our first Friends coffee talk on Monday June 22, at 11:00am. Inspired by ALA’s Friends of the Library and the Future of Booksales webinar, MBLC will host a coffee hour for Friends to discuss the webinar and the future of book sales at their library. You can still join us if you haven’t watched the webinar. We’ll recap and talk about local libraries. Bring your own beverage!
Registration is for MBLC Friends Coffee Talk is open.
LSTA/Federal Institute of Museum and Library Services Funding not through CARES Act
Social infrastructure mini grants: As part of the follow-up to the Opioid Symposium, the MBLC awarded the Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Services (MCPHS), a local university that trains health science professionals, a $1000 social infrastructure mini-grant. The MCPHS library purchased new LGBTQ resources with the funding and created a useful lib guide to showcase these items. The goal of the guide is to provide students and faculty a starting point for learning and teaching about LGBTQIA+ cultural competencies for healthcare professionals.
Preservation and Disaster Recovery
Contact: Evan Knight
Recording available – Hurricane Risks to Southern New England Webinar
On Tuesday, June 16, Matthew Belk, Lead Forecaster from the National Weather Service (Boston area), provided fascinating insight into hurricanes and hurricane preparedness. Hosted by staff from MBLC, MLS, and COSTEP MA, a statewide network of cultural heritage and emergency management professionals. A recording is now available. here: https://vimeo.com/429703062.
REGISTRATION OPEN – Virtual special collections symposium for smaller libraries
July 23, 9am-12pm
Local public memory collections provide important, unique, and sustainable opportunities to interpret a community’s contemporary experiences as they change over time. Yet there are many challenges in building, preserving, and sharing these collections, especially among smaller libraries. Renowned experts in the book trade, academic libraries, and library special collections will convene for a morning symposium of sharing and dialogue about these topics, tailored specifically for library workers, librarians, archivists, and collections volunteers with various levels of experience. Co-hosted by the Massachusetts Library System. Register
Opening Speaker – Ken Gloss, Proprietor of Brattle Book Shop
PANEL –Academic Special Collections perspectives
Lisa Conathan, Ph.D. – Head of Special Collections, Williams Libraries
Mike Kelly – Head, Archives & Special Collections, Amherst College
PANEL –Special Collections Management Case Studies
Cyndi Harbeson – Head of Special Collections, The Jones Library, Inc.
Sara Trotta – Librarian, Congregational Library & Archives
Statement from Digital Commonwealth Board on Black Lives Matter
The DC Board released a statement available here: https://digitalcommonwealth.wildapricot.org/BLM-Statement
We’re happy to announce that Massachusetts native, Charlie Coyle is the Bruins player who is featured on all of the summer materials. Please place your order. Items will be shipped directly to you at no cost to your library. Deadline: Monday, June 22.
Hockey will be played during the summer and the Bruins are in first place!
Statewide Summer Challenge
More than 65 libraries have registered for the summer challenge. Materials for the challenge will be mailed to libraries next week.
Watch the ARIS Workshop (recorded last week)
On ARIS page|MBLC website
Remaining ARIS(Annual Report Information Survey) workshops are listed below. Sessions are via Zoom and will take place from 10:00 am -12:30 pm. We’ve added half an hour to each session to allow for additional questions you may have. Registration is through the MBLC Calendar
The dates are:
Reporting Deadlines for FY2021:
ARIS will open as usual on July 1st but the deadline will be extended until October 2nd to allow libraries and networks more time to gather statistics. The Financial Report and State Aid Compliance Application will open August 7th as scheduled and also close on October 2nd. Municipalities applying for a waiver of the FY2021 MAR will have until November 6th to complete additional paperwork.
PLEASE NOTE: All dates are based on current information we have about COVID19 and the Governor’s State of Emergency. We will reassess deadlines if necessary but they will not be earlier than stated above.