On January 28, 2021 the Directors from Allegany, Garrett, and Washington counties, and WMRL participated in a Zoom meeting with the Senators and Delegates from Western Maryland. COVID-19 made it impossible to have our usual Maryland Library Legislative Day in Annapolis this year, so we had to go virtual.
There were three pieces of legislation we discussed with the Delegation. The vote to override the veto of the Building Lifelong Library Learners Act, the vote to improve public library access to electronic book licenses, and the vote to support libraries and digital equity with the Digital Connectivity Act of 2021, were all on our agenda.
The Delegation spent nearly an hour with us as we talked about our legislative priorities and what they would mean to the citizens of western Maryland. They asked some very good questions, and were very interested in how we have all responded to the COVID-19 pandemic. They were all very impressed with how hard the library staff has worked to continue to provide, and in some cases expanded library services.
Special thanks goes out to our talented Public Relations staff in all three counties, Laurel Baker in Garrett, Ashley Swinford in Allegany, and Sarah Nadeau in Washington counties for the Legislative Priorities flyer they created. They concisely stated our case regarding all three bills that the members of our Delegation were able to refer to and print.
We are still waiting on the outcome for two of our bills, but the Building Lifelong Library Learners Act's veto was overridden and will go into effect in March.