November 6th Assembly Hearing on Library funding

Claudia Depkin, Chair of the Regents Advisory Council on Libraries (RAC) announced today that a video recording of the November 6th Assembly Standing Committee on Libraries and Education Technology Public Hearing on library funding is now available at: Also available on the Creating the Future: A 2020 Vision webpage are copies of written testimony submitted to the Assembly Committee by New York library leaders from across the State.

On Friday, November 6th 2015, the Assembly Standing Committee on Libraries and Education Technology held a four hour public hearing at The New York Public Library’s Schwarzman Building in Manhattan. The primary intent of the hearing was for Committee members to learn more about the impact of the 2015-2016 State Budget on library services in New York State. Chair of the Assembly Committee, Thomas Abinanti and Assembly Committee members Joseph S. Saladino, Steven Otis, and Michaelle C. Solages heard prepared statements from ten witnesses. The Assembly members were joined on the dais by Andrew L. King, New York City Councilman and Chair of the New York City Council’s Subcommittee on Libraries.

Also present at the public hearing was Bernard A. Margolis, State Librarian and Assistant Commissioner for Libraries. The expert witness testimony addressed the many ways in which New York’s libraries are education. Witnesses described how libraries and library systems across the State are using innovation, collaboration and technology to better leverage their resources in order to expand and sustain library services for all New Yorkers. Witnesses also provided the Assembly Committee members with ideas as to how the State of New York could further assist local communities, libraries, library systems and the New York State Library in improving library services for all New Yorkers.

Witnesses testifying at the November 6 public hearing included:
Claudia Depkin, Chairperson, Regents Advisory Council on Libraries and Director, Haverstraw King’s Daughters Public Library
Mike Neppl, Director of Government Relations and Advocacy, New York Library Association
David Woloch, Executive Vice President of External Affairs, Brooklyn Public Library
George Mihaltses, Vice President for Government and Community Affairs, The New York Public Library
Bridget Quinn-Carey, Interim President and CEO, Queens Library
Nate Hill, Director, Metropolitan New York Library Council
Robert Hubsher, Executive Director, Ramapo Catskill Library System
Rebekkah Smith Aldrich, Coordinator for Library Sustainability, Mid-Hudson Library System
Terry Kirchner, Director, Westchester Library System.
Bernadette Harrison, Finance Director, Monroe County Library System/Rochester Public Library

Questions about this message may be directed to Claudia Depkin, Chair of the Regents Advisory Council on Libraries at or to the Office of the State Librarian at

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