Resolution on the Creation of a National Law Library

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November 2001

WHEREAS, In June 2001, the Board of Governors of the American Bar Association unanimously gave the Standing Committee on the Law Library of Congress authorization to confer with appropriate individuals and entities outside of the ABA regarding the creation of a National Law Library; and,

WHEREAS, As our nation's de facto National Law Library, the Law Library of Congress needs adequate annual funding to develop and maintain a comprehensive legal collection, including foreign and international materials essential to global commerce; to achieve timely cataloging and processing of all new materials; to support a full-time curator to oversee the conservation of the Law Library's collection of over 65,000 rare books; and to provide specialized legal research to members of Congress and their staff; and,

WHEREAS, The Law Library of Congress has developed unique and important digital projects, such as the Global Legal Information Network (GLIN) and A Century of Lawmaking for a New Nation 1774-1873; and

WHEREAS, The American Association of Law Libraries is very concerned that during the past decade, the Law Library's services, collections, facilities and digital projects have not been sustained with adequate budgets or staffing necessary to fulfill the Library's mission to serve Congress as well as the legal community and the public; now, therefore, be it

RESOLVED, That the American Association of Law Libraries supports the concept of a National Law Library as an independent, separate entity that would include the Law Library of Congress; and be it further

RESOLVED, That the American Association of Law Libraries will assist the ABA's Standing Committee on the Law Library of Congress in defining new and expanded services to the judiciary, the bar, law schools and universities, and the public, as well as the structure, operation, governance and funding for a National Law Library; and be it further

RESOLVED, That the American Association of Law Libraries will work with legislators to urge support and funding for a National Law Library to serve Congress, the legal community and the public.