Thursday, March 27, 2014

AWE Video Contest for Public Libraries

Create a short video, 30 to 90 seconds in length about your library and show how you use AWE's Early Literacy Station(s) at your library or why you want one at your library. And the video should tell how the Early Literacy Station™ currently benefits or would benefit the young children in your community.

Three libraries will be selected as the winners. Each winner will win a free Early Literacy Station.

The submission period is March 17 - June 1, 2014

For details:

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

New State Librarian

Hello Library Directors,
The Governor appointed a new State Librarian today.  The appointment announcement is located at
SACRAMENTO – Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. today announced the following appointment.

Greg Lucas, 55, of Sacramento, has been appointed State Librarian. Lucas has been a senior editor for Capitol Weekly since 2011 and has written and edited California’s Capitol, a website he created focusing on California history and politics, since 2007. He was Sacramento bureau chief and a Capitol reporter for the San Francisco Chronicle from 1988 to 2007 and covered the Capitol for the Los Angeles Daily Journal from 1985 to 1988. Lucas has been a board member at the Friends of the California State Archives since 2012. He earned a Master of Arts degree in professional writing from the University of Southern California. This position requires Senate confirmation and the compensation is $142,968. Lucas is a Democrat.
Jarrid Keller
Chief Information Officer
California State Library
914 Capitol Mall, Room 218
Sacramento, CA 95814
916-323-9786 fax
Check out the CSL Blog

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Public Library Broadband Proposal to go Before Budget Subcommittees in April – LETTERS NEEDED

Governor Brown’s January Budget contains $2.25 million in proposed new, ongoing funding to connect all public libraries to a statewide, high-speed broadband network operated by the Corporation for Education Network Initiatives in California (CENIC).  The budget also proposes that an additional $1 million in one-time money be used for grants for those public libraries that may need assistance with the purchase of circuits or other hardware, etc.   This funding and policy issue has been scheduled for hearing in the Budget Subcommittees on Education Finance next month at the State Capitol and we need your help.

The State Library budget is the purview of the Assembly Budget Subcommittee Number 2 on Education Finance and the Senate Budget Subcommittee Number 1 on Education Finance.  These subcommittees have scheduled a discussion of the Governor’s public library broadband proposal for late April (April 23 and April 24 respectively).  CLA, the State Library and CENIC worked tirelessly last year to educate the legislature and the Department of Finance about the need for this program.  That advocacy effort led to the creation of the major State Library Broadband Needs Assessment that almost the entire library community participated in during the Fall.  The Needs Assessment gave CLA critical data and validated the claims we had made at the Capitol regarding the overwhelming need for better broadband speed, capacity and connectivity for California public libraries.

Since the Governor has embraced this proposal as part of his January Budget, it is imperative that the library community demonstrate a strong show of support for the broadband plan when the issue is before the Budget subcommittees in April.  Please take a moment today to use the sample letter that we have provided or feel free to customize it to fit your needs.  Send your letter to each member listed below either by mail or by fax by Wednesday, April 16. 

There is also a fact sheet on the broadband plan that you may access on the CLA website at in the “Advocacy” section.   

Budget Subcommittee Hearing Dates and Contact Information – 
State Library/CENIC Issue

Senate Budget Subcommittee Number 1 on Education Finance
Hearing Date:  Thursday, April 24 – 9:30 a.m. or upon adjournment – Room 3191

The Honorable Marty Block, Chair
Senate Budget Subcommittee Number 1 on Education Finance
State Capitol, Room 4090
Sacramento, CA.  95814
Fax:  (916) 651-4939
The Honorable Carol Liu, Member
Senate Budget Subcommittee Number 1 on Education Finance
State Capitol, Room 5097
Sacramento, CA.  95814
Fax:  (916) 651-4925

The Honorable Mark Wyland, Member
Senate Budget Subcommittee Number 1 on Education Finance
State Capitol, Room 4048
Sacramento, CA.  95814
Fax:  (916) 651-4938

Assembly Budget Subcommittee Number 2 on Education Finance
Hearing Date:  Wednesday, April 23 – 4 p.m.    Room 126

Assemblyman Al Muratsuchi, Chair
Assembly Budget Subcommittee Number 2 on Education Finance
State Capitol, Room 4117
Sacramento, CA.  95814
Fax:  (916) 319-2166

Assemblyman Rocky Chavez, Member
Assembly Budget Subcommittee Number 2 on Education Finance
State Capitol, Room 2170
Sacramento, CA.  95814
Fax:  (916) 319-2176

Assemblyman Matt Debabneh, Member
Assembly Budget Subcommittee Number 2 on Education Finance
State Capitol, Room 5144
Sacramento, CA.  95814
Fax:  (916) 319-2145

Assemblyman Brian Nestande, Member
Assembly Budget Subcommittee Number 2 on Education Finance
State Capitol, Room 4139
Sacramento, CA.  95814
Fax:  (916) 319-2142

Assemblyman Phil Ting, Member
Assembly Budget Subcommittee Number 2 on Education Finance
State Capitol, Room 3173
Sacramento, CA.  95814
Fax:  (916) 319-2119


The Honorable [Name]
California State [Assembly or Senate]
State Capitol
Sacramento, CA.  95814

RE:                BUDGET ITEM # 6120-215-0001:  CALIFORNIA STATE LIBRARY –
            Statewide Library Broadband Services – Support Governor’s January Budget

Dear [Assemblymember or Senator _____]

I am writing to request your strong support of a program contained in the Governor’s January Budget that would provide essential broadband services for all of California’s public libraries.  This issue will be before the Budget Subcommittees on Education Finance in late April for a hearing when the State Library budget is considered. 

Budget Item 6120-215-0001 would provide $2.25 million in ongoing General Fund money for public libraries to allow them to join a major high-speed broadband network, operated by the Corporation for Education Network Initiatives in California (CENIC).  An additional $1 million in one-time funding would be provided for the purpose of providing grants to libraries that may need additional assistance with the purchase of circuits or other augmentations, in order to join the CENIC network.

I am pleased that Governor Brown included funding in his Budget that will enable public libraries to join a high speed Internet backbone, which will allow libraries throughout the state to better meet the dynamic changing needs of patrons.  Library usage is at an all-time high [ - please insert some numbers  or percentages here from your own library - ] and yet many public libraries are equipped with broadband strength that is less than what one might find in their own home.  Your constituents are coming to the library to complete EDD applications, submit job applications, researching Affordable Care Act plans, accessing tutors for school assignments, applying for veterans programs – all online.  Not everyone has a computer or smart tablet at home, so libraries fill the role of the “great equalizer” of access for all in a community.

I strongly encourage the legislature to adopt the Governor’s proposal, which ultimately will allow the State Library to join the cooperative network, CENIC.  It is important to note that the legislature has a good familiarity with CENIC, as CENIC has been providing a high level of broadband service for the K-12, University of California, CSU, and community college systems for many years with great success.  

Your support of this project is vitally important to the public library community.  Thank you for your consideration.

Friday, March 7, 2014

CENIC Update

About the Pilot Project to Connect Select California Public Libraries to CENIC
Connections to California Research & Education Network to Enable 21st Century Service and Global Collaboration

Despite the recognized benefits of and increasing patron demand for innovative library programs, limited connectivity often prevents librarians in the California State Library System from offering programs and services they perceive would be of value to their patrons. (A comprehensive view of the current state of broadband connectivity for California's public libraries can be seen in the report High-Speed Broadband in California Public Libraries: An Initiative of the California State Library, created in response to a request by the state legislature.) Videoconferencing, streaming media, content creation, specialized software, longer sessions on terminals, and unlimited wireless access are badly needed by many of California's libraries, but insufficient bandwidth thwarts these libraries' efforts to fulfill their vital role in community research and education. In order to empower libraries -- particularly in challenged areas -- to play this role, better connectivity is crucial.

Work is underway to connect California's public libraries to CENIC's California Research & Education Network (CalREN) as a sixth segment, with the California State Librarian acting as the libraries' interaction point with CENIC. To understand the requirements and benefits of connecting public libraries to CalREN, four groups of libraries are currently being connected to the network as a part of a pilot project. The Peninsula Library System, a consortium of 35 public and community college public libraries, was the first to connect to CalREN at 10 Gigabits per second. The next phase will be to upgrade the bandwidth at every branch to 1 Gigabit per second, to be completed during the summer of 2014. A Gigabit connection has also been completed to the San Francisco Public Libraries, a 27-branch library system serving the San Francisco area. The San Joaquin Valley Library System and a group of nine county public libraries in northern Central Valley will be connected in 2014. Libraries in California's Central Valley will also be connected to CENIC as part of the Central Valley Next Generation Broadband Infrastructure Project.

California's education and research communities currently leverage their networking resources under CENIC (, the Corporation for Education Network Initiatives in California, a non-profit corporation created in 1997 in order to obtain cost-effective, high-bandwidth networking to support their missions and respond to the needs of their faculty, staff, and students. Members of CENIC include the 10 campuses of the University of California, the 23 campuses of the California State University, the 112 campuses of California's Community colleges, and nearly 10,000 K-12 schools, as well as private universities such as Caltech, Stanford University, and USC.

CENIC designs, implements, and operates CalREN, the California Research and Education Network, a high-bandwidth, high-capacity Internet network specially designed to meet the unique requirements of these communities, and to which the above institutions and others, the vast majority of the state's research and education institutions, are connected.

As well as connecting these and other research and education institutions to one another, CENIC also connects to other similar networks throughout the United States and the world to make California's research and education members of a truly global collaborative community.

During the spring and summer of 2013, CENIC conducted interviews with librarians in many of these libraries, asking them to describe current uses of technology in their main and branch public libraries, to identify the obstacles they face as a result of limited bandwidth, and to share ideas they have for using expanded broadband capacity to serve their patrons. The results of these interviews have been compiled in a series of reports available on the CENIC website at

From Cenic Library Update Volume 1, Issue 1 First Quarer 2014: