Thursday, January 25, 2007


LLD appeared to be a big success. The organizing team did a good job in putting the program together. We started out with an "Early Bird Briefing"

Paul Nelson, WLA Legislative Chair gave an overview of the WLA Legislative Agenda. Bob Smiley, WEMA Legislative Chair gave an overview of their Legislative Agenda. Tony Driessen, WLA Lobbyist, gave tips on visiting your Legislators, and Michael Blumenfeld, WEMA lobbyist did the same.

Kris Adams Wendt, Co-chair of LLD had welcomed the attendees and introduced the subsequent speakers. Rebecca Berger, the President of WLA spoke to the group as did Annette Smith, the President of the Wisconsin Educational Media Association (WEMA).

Elizabeth Burmaster, the State Superintendent, blew us away with a powerful Keynote Address. She received a standing ovation from the crowd!

She was followed by Ed Van Gernert, the Acting Director of the General Library System of UW-Madison and Tia Nelson, Executive Secretary of the Board of Commissioners of Public Lands. Tia spoke regarding the critical Common School Fund.

The program fired up the group, enriched our knowledge and made us eager to go see our respective legislators. I ended up seeing one Senator and two Assemblymen. All seemed to be appreciative of the issues facing libraries and were sympathetic to our concerns. Now, we will see how they vote!!

One thing that was apparent as the day went on was that although Library Legislative Day is very important, contact with the legislators has got to be more than a one day a year undertaking. We must stay in contact with them throughout the year as key pieces of legislation come before them. (The legislators I saw invited this type of communication). Information for you to do that comes from many sources. WLTA through our newsletter, e:mails, and this blog will also help to keep you informed. Over the next week or so I will make postings that will summarize all the materials that were distributed by the organizing committee as well as those prepared by the Wisconsin Valley Library Service staff.

You should also be aware that a large percentage of the WLTA board members attended the session and spoke with legislators.


Post a Comment

<< Home