PHILADELPHIA — Salem-South Lyon (Mich.) District Library, one of 10 recipients of United for Libraries' 2013 Neal-Schuman Foundation Grants, successfully passed a millage increase of .0495 for the library on Feb. 25. The millage increased passed by an almost 3-to-1 margin.
As part of the Neal-Schuman Foundation Grants program, the library’s advocates received expert advocacy training and tools for their campaign by United for Libraries. The training for this campaign was provided by Libby Post of Communication Services.
“Salem-South Lyon’s victory speaks to the importance of the United for Libraries training they received,” Post said. “When I met with them, they knew what their goal should be, but didn’t know how to get there. After training the board and staff on building their base, developing their message and organizing a campaign, they had a roadmap to success that was very well travelled.”
The additional .495 millage (less than 1 percent) for the next 20 years will enable Salem-South Lyon District Library to enhance its programs and services. The former millage of 1.1147 was established in 1995, when the community voted to approve the library district. Since then, the voters have elected the library's trustees and approved a bond to build the library. The library has not previously asked for an increase in its millage and, in fact, over the years had been able to pay for capital improvements without asking the voters for additional funds.
In 2014, as part of the Neal-Schuman Grants, United for Libraries will select another 10 libraries for training that will help friends of the library groups, library directors and trustees develop individual blueprints for advocacy campaigns to restore, increase or save threatened library budgets. Applications are being accepted through April 15. To apply, visit www.ala.org/united/grants_awards/neal-schuman.
United for Libraries: The Association of Library Trustees, Advocates, Friends and Foundations, is a division of the American Library Association that supports those who govern, promote, advocate, and fundraise for libraries. United for Libraries brings together library Trustees, advocates, Friends, and Foundations into a partnership that creates a powerful force for libraries in the 21st century. For more information or to join United for Libraries, visit the United for Libraries website or contact Jillian Kalonick at (312) 280-2161 or firstname.lastname@example.org.