Tuesday, April 27, 2010

State Aid Restored!

From Charlie Parker, FLA Legislative Committee Chair.

Budget Chairs Restore State Funding to Public Libraries to $21.2 Million

At midnight the House accepted a Senate offer to restore State Aid to Public Libraries to the current year level of $21.2 million. When Senate Budget Chair J. D. Alexander made the offer, he asked if "the library guy" with the signs was in the room. The library guy we all know is Paul Clark who has pretty much lived in the Capitol keeping the issue in front of legislators and the press for 6 weeks. Senator Alexander was disappointed that Paul wasn't there and said that other advocates could learn a lot from him.

There, working the issue until midnight were FLA lobbyist Chris Lyon, Small County Coalition coordinator Chris Doolan, and whole contingent from the Department of State including Secretary Kurt Browning, lobbyist Rivers Buford III, and John Boynton. This group barely left the Capitol all weekend long. Chris Doolan had a very positive impact for us, especially on Sunday morning. The folks from the Florida Association of Counties, and many county lobbyists have been working the issue aggressively as well.

The Salter/Mitchell pr folks distributed press releases for us at several critical junctures. FLA's CapWiz wizard, Lisa Manners did an incredible job of keeping the message fresh and for generating over 60,000 messages in the last 6 weeks. And nothing good happens at FLA without Executive Director Faye Roberts talents and effort.

Thanks to everyone for their incredible efforts and congratulations on the wonderful success!

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