February 17, 2018

IMLS Offers State Library Report

The State Library Agency Report for FY06 offers a wealth of information on topics such as libraries’ Internet access, services, collections, staff, and revenue. It covers state library agencies in the 50 states and the District of Columbia. The 159-page document is only available online (harvester.census.gov/imls/pubs/stla/index.asp) from the federal Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS).

From 1994 though 2007, the Department of Education’s National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) administered the State Library Agency Survey. The federal budget for FY08, which began October 1, 2007, funds the IMLS to administer both the state survey as well as the even more voluminous Public Library Survey. The survey gained a 100 percent response rate, thanks to a cooperative effort among the Chief Officers of State Library Agencies (COSLA), U.S. National Commission on Libraries and Information Science (NCLIS), NCES, and the Census Bureau.

Intriguing Data

The report covers seven main topics. Here are some examples:

  1. Governance, Allied Operations, Electronic Services, and Internet Access. Of the 49 agencies that are located in the executive branch, 32 are part of a larger agency. Ten state library agencies maintain the state archives or manage state records.
  2. Services to Libraries and Cooperatives. Nearly all agencies provide consulting services, continuing education, and interlibrary loan referral services. Thirteen agencies accredit public libraries. Four agencies administer state aid to academic libraries. Twenty-three agencies administer state aid to library cooperatives.
  3. Outlets and User Groups, Public Service Hours, and Collections. Two states (New York and Michigan) have book and serial volumes exceeding two million, while the agencies nationally have collections that total 23.4 million.
  4. Service Transactions. In FY06, there were 1.7 million visits to state library agencies, with Washington State and Virginia having over 250,000 each. Vermont and South Dakota provide the most interlibrary loans.
  5. Staff. Total FTE was 3500, with 52 percent in library services.
  6. Revenue. Total revenue nationally was $1.1 billion, with 82 percent from state sources and 14 percent from federal sources.
  7. Expenditures. Agencies averaged $3.66 per capita nationally, with 44 percent going to salaries and wages. New York ($95.3 million) and Pennsylvania ($81.2 million) provided the most direct assistance to libraries.
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