Greetings library community!
As Heather Sharpe, Director – Bureau of Library Development (BLD), stated in her January article, “operationally, it was a very challenging year for BLD with the turnover and vacancy of more than half of our team, the addition of new federal programs, and the development and application of new procedures that significantly increased everyone’s workload.”
Understanding this and all the moving parts it takes to get a new Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) grant year started, this article is to provide some high-level updates while the necessary internal work and approvals are in progress.
Here’s what you need to know:
- 2023-24 LSTA Statewide Library Service eGrants applications will open in May 2023. Applicants will have one (1) month to apply.
- All LSTA grant opportunities must be applied for using eGrants.
- A ‘Get Ready to Apply’ webinar for the 2023-24 program year is planned for April 2023. It will be recorded and made available on the PA Library Staff Academy for those who are unable to attend.
- Organizations can get ready to apply 365 days a year / 24 hours a day. Preparing sooner than later decreases the stress that can come with applying for a grant.
- Pennsylvania’s LSTA website content will soon migrate to LibGuides. Stay tuned for more information.
- 2023-24 LSTA Statewide Library Service grants will be written for an abbreviated period. Projects and contracts will occur October 1, 2023 – June 30, 2024. This is to align contracts with the state fiscal year.
- Because of the abbreviated program year:
- OCL will focus on statewide assessments to gather information needed to successfully implement the 2023-2027 five-year plan.
- Most Local Library Grants will open in 2024.
- Resource accounts ra-LSTA@pa.gov, email@example.com, and firstname.lastname@example.org will be deactivated. As of October 1, 2023, email@example.com will be the sole email for the Admin and Data unit of BLD. Please update your records accordingly.
Additionally, you are strongly encouraged to be familiar with the Office of Commonwealth Libraries (OCL) Five-Year Plan LibGuide. The guide outlines our three primary goals to
- refine and improve statewide services and impact;
- empower libraries at the local level to develop sustainable and scalable practices in serving their communities;
- connect with the statewide educational ecosystem in meaningful ways.
We will send updates as more information becomes available. Subscribe to the Compendium to ensure you receive the most up-to-date information, and please contact BLD’s Admin and Data Unit at firstname.lastname@example.org with questions, comments, and concerns.