On Tuesday, December 13, 2016, the Assembly Standing Committee on Libraries and Education Technology held a five-hour public hearing in Albany. The primary intent of the hearing was for Committee members to learn more about the impact of the 2016/2017 State Budget on the mission of New York State’s libraries and library systems in the 21st century.

The video from that hearing is now available at: http://www.nysl.nysed.gov/libdev/future/index.

Chair of the Assembly Committee Thomas Abinanti and Assembly Committee member Steven Otis heard prepared statements from 21 witnesses, who also provided the Committee members with ideas on how NYS could further assist local communities, libraries, library systems and the NYS Library in improving library services for all New Yorkers.

Thank you to CLRC regional librarians, Darby O’Brien and Wanda Bruchis for participating.

Here is the list of witnesses that gave testimony.
· Mike Neppl, Director of Government Relations and Advocacy, New York Library Association

· Michele Bonan, Vice President of Government and Community Relations, Brooklyn Public Library

· Norah Yahya, Associate Director of Government and Community Affairs, The New York Public Library

· Nick Buron, Chief Librarian, and Jonathan Chung, Director of Government Affairs, Queens Library

· Scott Jarzombek, Director, Albany Public Library

· Rebekkah Smith Aldrich, Coordinator for Library Sustainability, Mid- Hudson Library System

· Terry Kirchner, Director, and Rob Caluori, Director of IT, Westchester Library System

· Robert Hubsher, Executive Director, Ramapo Catskill Library System

· Beth Berlin, Executive Deputy Commissioner, and Bernard Margolis, Assistant Commissioner for Libraries and State Librarian, State Education Department

· Nate Hill, Director, Metropolitan New York Library Council (METRO) and Kathleen Gundrum, Executive Director, Capital District Library Council; representing the Empire State Library Network

· Dr. Colleen Sadowski, Director of School Library Systems and Media Services, Rochester City School District; representing the Regents Advisory Council on Libraries

· J’aimé Pfeiffer, School Library System Director, Washington-Saratoga-Warren-Hamilton-Essex BOCES; representing the School Library Systems Association, Inc.

· Darby O’Brien, Director, Utica Public Library

· Wanda Bruchis, Director, Mid York Library System

· Brian Hildreth, Executive Director, Southern Tier Library System

· Lauren Moore, Executive Director, Pioneer Library System

· Timothy Burke, Executive Director, Upper Hudson Library System; representing the New York Alliance of Library Systems

· Ronald Kirsop, Assistant Director, Pioneer Library System

· Eli Guinnee, Executive Director, Chautauqua-Cattaraugus Library System

Questions may be directed to Dr. Colleen Sadowski at Colleen.Sadowski@rcsdk12.org or to the Office of the State Librarian at paula.paolucci@nysed.gov.