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Grants for Alaska Libraries and Schools

The Alaska State Library helps public and school libraries acquire financial assistance.

Federal and State Grant Funding Information

Federal Grant Funding Through the Library Services & Technology Act (LSTA)

A variety of Federal programs have provided assistance to public, school and college libraries since enactment of the original Library Services Act in 1956. For forty years, these programs concentrated on public library development and interlibrary cooperation. In 1997, Congress passed a new program, the Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA), which recognizes the importance of all types of libraries in the provision of library services to Americans.  The Institute of Museum and Library Services is the federal agency that administers the Grants to States national program. Grants to States currently focuses on the below priorities:

Grants to States (20 U.S.C. § 9141)

  1. Expand services for learning and access to information and educational resources in a variety of formats (including new and emerging technology), in all types of libraries, for individuals of all ages in order to support such individuals' needs for education, lifelong learning, workforce development, economic and business development, health information, critical thinking skills, digital literacy skills, and financial literacy and other types of literacy skills;
  2. Establish or enhance electronic and other linkages and improved coordination among and between libraries and entities, for the purpose of improving the quality of and access to library and information services;
  3. A) Provide training and professional development, including continuing education, to enhance the skills of the current library workforce and leadership, and advance the delivery of library and information services; and (B) Enhance efforts to recruit future professionals, including those from diverse and underrepresented backgrounds, to the field of library and information services;
  4. Develop public and private partnerships with other agencies, tribes, and community-based organizations;
  5. Target library services to individuals of diverse geographic, cultural, and socioeconomic backgrounds, to individuals with disabilities, and to individuals with limited functional literacy or information skills;
  6. Target library and information services to persons having difficulty using a library and to underserved urban and rural communities, including children from families with incomes below the poverty line; and
  7. Develop library services that provide all users access to information through local, state, regional, national and international electronic networks.

The Alaska State Library administers the program for these priorities with the assistance of the Governor's Advisory Council in Libraries (GAC). This board advises the State Library on the development of the Library Services and Technology Act Alaska State Plan and on the development of specific programs. Federal funds are used to support regional services grants, the 800#/ILL backup grant, interlibrary cooperation grants, and continuing education grants.

The current LSTA Alaska State Plan outlines the goals, objectives, and activities that the State Library intends to carry out with LSTA funds to address the needs and critical issues facing libraries in Alaska. Previous versions of the state plan are included here for reference. The State Library is required by Federal law to evaluate its LSTA spending every five years; these evaluations are included here. For more information about the Institute of Museum and Library Services or the Governor's Advisory Council on Libraries, please visit their web pages.

Alaska Five-Year Evalutions

State Grant Funding Through the Alaska Statutes and Alaska Administrative Code

Each year, the State Legislature appropriates funds for library grants to the State Library. The State Library uses 75% of this appropriation to fund the public library assistance grants. These funds are simply divided up by the number of public library outlets that are eligible for the public library grant. In recent years, the amount of the public library assistance grant for each outlet has ranged from $6,200 to $6,350. The remaining 25% of this appropriation is used to fund netlender reimbursement and interlibrary cooperation grants.