Washington eBulletin – March 2018

A Look Ahead

Advocating for Openness during Sunshine Week 2018

For more than a decade, Sunshine Week (March 11-17) has been celebrated annually to highlight the importance of access to information and an open government. A commitment to openness in government is a key part of AALL’s government relations policy and one of our public policy priorities for the current Congress. AALL supports legislation and policies to provide greater access to legislative and executive branch information, strengthen FOIA, release the results of government-funded research, and open up government data. We’ve recently spoken out against attacks on transparency and a free press, and we will continue to push back against secrecy in government. Only with an open government and access to trustworthy government information can we adequately support our justice system and ensure a strong democracy.

Title 44 Modernization Bill Coming Soon

AALL continues to work with the American Library Association and Association of Research Libraries to provide feedback to the House Committee on House Administration on a draft Title 44 reform bill that represents a major rewrite of the section of the U.S. Code governing the Government Publishing Office and Federal Depository Library Program. The Committee has provided AALL with several opportunities to comment on the draft, and Committee staff have incorporated many of our suggestions. We expect the bill to be introduced soon.

AALL in the States

UELMA in New York

Submitted by Amy Emerson, Association of Law Libraries of Upstate New York Government Relations Committee Chair

The Uniform Electronic Legal Material Act (UELMA) continues to make its way through the New York State Legislature (SB 6136 and AB 1922). Uniform Law Commissioner Mark Glaser recently conducted productive meetings with sponsors in both houses and states that he is hopeful that 2018 will be the year that UELMA is enacted in New York.

Maryland Library Day at the Legislature

Submitted by Joan Bellistri, Law Library Association of Maryland Government Relations Committee Chair

The Anne Arundel County Public Law Library hosted the Maryland Library Association’s Library Day at the Legislature breakfast briefing – breakfast, as always, provided by the Law Library Association of Maryland. We have nothing going for libraries in the legislature this year so visits were made just to say thank you and to talk about the value of libraries.

Roundup and Review

  • AALL participated in Operation #OneMoreVote, which drove hundreds of thousands of calls and emails to the Senate to save net neutrality. You can still help by urging your Senator to overturn the Federal Communications Commission’s bad net neutrality vote.
  • AALL Spectrum features The Ins and Outs of Advocacy by Stacy Etheredge, Peggy Roebuck Jarrett, and Karen Westwood. The article serves as inspiration for law librarians looking to get involved in advocacy and is filled with ideas on how to get started, no matter your interests or past advocacy experience.