Advocacy Updates from Indiana Library Federation
February 22, 2019
In this issue of your ILF Advocacy Update
  • Updates from the Statehouse this week
  • A member of Congress visits Johnson County Public Library
  • Quick Links
What YOU can do
What you missed in prior issues - Catch up here.
In the Statehouse this week
This week was the deadline for bills to make it out of committees. The House and Senate have Monday and Tuesday (Feb. 25-26) deadlines to pass out of the first chamber. As they "cross over" to the second chamber, bills will be assigned to committee and follow the same process of committee hearing, floor debate and vote.
Several House bills important to libraries that are moving on to the Senate include:
  • HB1001, the biennial state budget bill, includes funding for Indiana State Library operations, statewide library services, as well as our ILF priorities of stable funding for INSPIRE, Indiana's virtual library, and internet connectivity, which helps libraries offer free internet to millions of Hoosiers each year. The budget includes funding for state institutions of higher education, including certain capital projects. The budget includes increased funding for K-12 education. Specific proposals to increase teacher pay are in separate bills. The bill will likely pass out of the House on Monday, 2/25.
  • HB1052, Local Income Tax, changes the allocation of LIT revenue that is based on property taxes to be based on maximum permissible property tax levies instead of actual levies.
  • HB1214, Construction Managers as Constructors, adds public libraries to the list of public agencies in a definition. The remaining parts of the bill are not specific to libraries.
  • HB1343, Libraries, provides the elected fiscal body the option to have binding review over library budgets, and the ability for the elected fiscal body to reduce a public library's budget in a budget year no more than the percentage reduction of any other taxing unit's operating budget over which the fiscal body has oversight. See updated explanation.
The Senate continues second and third readings on the floor, and the House continues third readings, during the last week of February. One bill of importance to libraries is SB64, Criminal Background Checks, which would require background checks for employees and volunteers whose scope of work includes contact with children less than 14 years of age .
What YOU can do :
  1. Thank your State Representative for funding INSPIRE and Internet Connectivity in the state budget. Take action here.
  2. Learn more about library-related bills through the ILF Bill List (linked through the Bose Report) or by attending the Virtual Advocacy Update on Feb. 25.
  3. Order your yard signs for National Library Month (contact your own vendor or order in quantities of 10 here).
  4. Always be respectful. Be a trusted resource for policymakers.
NOTE: We will have more information during our online/conference meeting on Monday, Feb 25 . Library Directors are especially encouraged to attend.
What YOU can do: Attend Advocacy Update on Feb. 25
ILF offers bi-weekly Advocacy Virtual Updates during the legislative session. Learn the inside scoop from our Advocacy Committee co-chairs and staff. Share what you are hearing about issues in your local community. Ask questions. Learn more about the issues.

RSVP for the VIRTUAL Advocacy Update at 10am ET on Feb. 25 to receive the link to join the online meeting by computer or telephone. Note that sessions are scheduled bi-weekly: 2/25, 3/11, 3/25 and 4/8.
What YOU can do: Visit the Statehouse and Meet with Your Legislators
The Indiana Library Day at the Statehouse will be held Tuesday, March 12 . Plan to attend and bring a board member or community library champion. Register today. Participants are provided an update at ISL and then are accompanied by experienced advocates to meetings with your legislators. Note: we also are looking for a few volunteer photographers. Email us to volunteer or with questions.

Be sure to register ASAP so that ILF can schedule your legislator appointments .

Photo at left: Vigo County Public Library Director Kristi Howe and Sen. Jon Ford at the 2018 Statehouse Day.
What YOU can do: Attend a Third House or Meet Your Legislator event
Legislators meet with constituents through "Meet your Legislator," "Third House" or "Cracker Barrel" events from December through May. Sessions are often hosted by a local library, chamber of commerce or League of Women Voters. See our calendar for upcoming Third House events in your area. Several are coming up in the next two weeks.

At right: a Third House session in Hamilton County
Prepping to Meet Your Legislator
  1. Find your legislators where you live and where you work. Research their bio and committees. Or email us for insight and tips.
  2. Download the 2019 Policy Priorities or one-pager. Email us for specific information and let us know what you learn. Develop a relationship.
  3. Plan to develop or deepen your relationships with legislators and key influencers in the community. Introduce yourself. Offer to be a resource for them about any library questions.
Indiana Library Federation Links