The OLC testified on Sub. HB 166, the biennial state budget bill, on Thurs., June 13 in front of the Senate Finance Committee.
Michelle Francis, OLC’s Director of Government and Legal Services, formally thanked the Senate for making public libraries a priority in the substitute bill and for recognizing the strong partnership public libraries have with the state.
“Restoring the Public Library Fund (PLF) and increasing the percentage from 1.68 to 1.7% will help offset any additional unintended reductions in state funding that may result from the tax reform changes included in the proposal, ” Francis said.
Francis explained that state funding through the PLF ensures there is a minimum level of services provides to Ohio residents, regardless of zip code. She noted that almost half of funding for Ohio’s public libraries comes from the state. In addition, 20 percent of Ohio’s public library systems do not have a local property tax levy and rely solely on their state funding as their main source of revenue for day-to-day operations.
The testimony was covered live on the Ohio Channel and a video recording is available on the Ohio Channel website. OLC testimony begins at the 1:04:20 mark.
A transcript of the testimony is also available on the OLC website.