Requested Funding Given to Some Library Line Items


April 12, 2018
Matthew Perry
Outreach Coordinator
1-800-952-7403 x208

On Wednesday, April 11, the House Committee on Ways and Means released their $40.99 billion FY2019 budget, proposing a 3.1% increase in state spending. Three of the budget line items overseen by the MBLC were funded at the amount requested in the FY2019 legislative agenda. Two of the budget lines received a 1% increase, one was level funded, and The Massachusetts Center for the Book was left unfunded. The detailed budget chart can be seen on the MBLC website.

In its FY2019 legislative agenda, the MBLC requested a significant increase in the MBLC’s administrative line, 7000-9101, as well as modest increases for the Worcester Talking Book Library and the Perkins Library. All of these lines received the requested funding.

The Board also requested a significant increase in the Technology and Resource Sharing line, 7000-9506, which is 52% lower than it was in 2001. This line received an increase of  .88% or $18,598. This funding supports the nine Automated Library Networks. Lack of funding to this account passes costs of library networking back to cities and towns and denies residents access to essential electronic research materials to support education and economic development.

State Aid to Regional Libraries (the Massachusetts Library System and Library for the Commonwealth at Boston Public Library), 7000-9401, received a 1% increase. Per capita funding for Library for the Commonwealth was set at a  minimum of 40.7 cents. State Aid to Public Libraries, 7000-9501 was level funded to the FY2018 amount of $9,090,000.

Funding for The Massachusetts Center for the Book was eliminated in the budget proposal. In the Governor’s budget proposal, the Center received level funding to the FY2018 amount of $200,000. 

Members of the House have until Friday, April 13 at 5 p.m. to file amendments to the budget. Library leaders are currently working with legislators to file several amendments that will bring funding closer to the levels requested in the Legislative Agenda. The budget will be debated on the House floor during the week of April 23. Following its passage, the Senate Committee on Ways and Means will release its budget recommendations in May.

About MBLC

The Board of Library Commissioners ( is the agency of state government with the statutory authority and responsibility to organize, develop, coordinate and improve library services throughout the Commonwealth. The Board advises municipalities and library trustees on the operation and maintenance of public libraries, including construction and renovation. It administers state and federal grant programs for libraries and promotes cooperation among all types of libraries through regional library systems and automated resource sharing. It also works to ensure that all residents of the Commonwealth, regardless of their geographic location, social or economic status, age, level of physical or intellectual ability or cultural background, have access to essential new electronic information technologies and significant electronic databases.