WASHINGTON – The U.S. House of Representatives passed the Museum and Library Services Act (MLSA) by a voice vote today, clearing the last legislative hurdle in its reauthorization process. Last week, the U.S. Senate also passed MLSA under unanimous consent. MLSA will now be sent to the president, who is expected to sign it into law.
The passage of MLSA ensures that the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) can continue its federal leadership role by administering the numerous programs in the Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) portion of the bill.
This bill received bipartisan support from both Republicans and Democrats in both House and the Senate.
“The ALA is relieved by today’s action in the House – both in that the reauthorization process was wrapped up before the end of the year and that LSTA funds maintained current authorization levels and were not cut by a Congress that is increasingly looking for ways to save a dollar – even at the cost of invaluable programs, such as library services,” Emily Sheketoff, executive director of the ALA Washington Office, said.
“While the needs of libraries far exceed the funding levels this program was reauthorized under, librarians have always been masters of providing priceless services to patrons at little cost to the taxpayer. The library community is appreciative to Congress for protecting LSTA and library programs.”