Ann Hutton, Executive DirectorIf local funding for library operations trends upwards, even ever so slightly, then library Maintenance of Effort (MOE) is an aspect of fiscal management that never crosses the administrator's desk. However, when MOE questions arise, the topic is often confusing due to the complicated nature of the formula and the need to review levels of support from multiple years. This year in particular Library MOE is even more confusing with an amendment to Minnesota Statutes 134.34, Subd.1 and Subd. 4 and the unprecedented actions by the Governor unallotting at the beginning of the State's biennium to balance a budget shortfall.
The new statutory language incorporates the suggestions of the hard working Minnesota Library Funding Committee. The supporting documents listed below explain the outcome of the changes to the statutory language regarding Minnesota library funding, both the minimum level of support and maintenance of effort. Please share these with public library boards, other library staff and city or county staff and elected officials interested in the topic.
- The MOE Legislative Outcomes document is meant to be used as a handout when talking to library boards, city councils and county boards. (PDF 58KB)
- The MOE Talking Points will give the presenter in the above scenario more detail. Either can be widely shared. (PDF 55KB)
- The final Library MOE statutory language approved by the Legislature and signed by the Governor. (PDF 64KB)
There were many issues raised during the discussions by the Minnesota Library Funding Committee that did not involve a statutory language change as part of the solution, but do nevertheless change the definition of maintenance of effort. An example is the list of items included under "capital costs". State Library Services was instrumental in both defining and allowing these changes, which represent significant positive changes to MOE.
Libraries across the state owe their thanks to Peg Werner, Viking Library System Director and Chair of the Minnesota Library Funding Committee, Ken Behringer, Dakota County Library Director and 2009 MLA President, Elaine Keefe, Capitol Hills Associates and MLA/MEMO Lobbyist, and Mark Ranum, Plum Creek Library System Director and 2009 MLA Legislative Committee Chair, for shepherding the Library MOE amendment through the 2009 legislative session, including finding passionate authors, testifying and providing prompt, meaningful and illustrative data.