Dear Governor Strickland…

Here are two quick and effective ways for Ohioans to contact the Governor’s office and convey our thoughts on the library aspect of the budget crisis:

Contact the Governor is a standard contact form that resides on the official governor’s web site.

Ted Strickland’s FaceBook Page is amazing at this moment… there seems to be miles of supportive library comments posted on his wall.  Every single post is about library funding.  If you are a member of FB, I suggest that you consider adding your thoughts to the list.  Note that you have to “Become a supporter” in order to post a comment, but the most important criticism should come from those who support you.

Here is what I posted in both spaces:

Governor Strickland:  Please recognize that libraries allow those with limited means to access information and technology.  To severely cut funding at the same time that circumstances are pushing more people into the “limited means” category will only delay (and perhaps suppress) Ohio’s recovery.  Libraries do not expect to be exempted from budget cuts, but the severe level of the cuts means that many services and locations will not survive, just when people will need them the most.

Note that I do not suggest that libraries not face any budget cuts.  This is a statewide crisis, with many causes, and it will require intelligent and shared sacrifices by many.  To not expect any cuts would be unrealistic.  To implement modest cuts, combined with options to more effectively and efficiently serve patrons, could transform this into a win-win scenario.

I feel that there is a great deal of room for increased efficiency in library operations, especially when it comes to technology.  There are efforts to do this on a multi-state level, which is a solid step in the right direction.  Other steps can be taken statewide to save money and increase participation.  Efforts to find and implement technological efficiency at individual libraries themselves can provide greater service and budgetary savings in the long term.

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