July 4, 2012

Library Support

News Release - Hawaii House of Representatives
July 11, 2012 - For immediate release
Contact: Rep. Angus McKelvey 808-586-6160

Bill Allowing Nonprofits To Support Local State Libraries Becomes Law

Honolulu, Hawaii.  A bill to authorize affiliates of the Friends of the Library and other nonprofit organizations to support state library branches was signed by Governor Abercrombie today, which would allow local groups to direct their fundraising to their local library branch and not have it go to statewide use.
   HB1054 allows the organizations to use state library facilities for concessions, vending machines and other activities and to maintain their own accounts for the net proceeds under specified conditions.  The bill also provides greater flexibility for individual groups of library supporters to assist their neighborhood branches.
According to Rep. Angus McKelvey, who was a strong supporter in the House of the measure, "our public libraries need all the help they can get, and this bill gives them the independence to go forward with projects that will raise more money for the individual branches.
  According to McKelvey, the issue arose least session when the Friends of the Aina Haina library where advised by the Attorney General's office that under interpretation of existing state law that any money raised by non-profits for a particular library could not be earmarked for that facility and instead would have to be allocated across the entire state system instead of at the branch for which the funds were raised.
   "When the representative from Aina Haina explained their situation, I immediately saw parrellels between their situation and the work that is being done by our non-profits for the Lahaina library and was concerned that the interpretation could affect the community's current efforts to improve our branch," McKelvey explained.
   "It is timely that this bill is being signed, given the recent successful "Savor the Sunset" fundraiser by the Friends of the Lahaina Library, and I believe the new law will make it less cumbersome for their accounting purposes," McKelvey said, adding that the measure will also provide "an opportunity for more people to participate in benefiting not only the Lahaina library but the Hawaii public library system as a whole."