Health Science Librarians of Ilinois

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Archive for the ‘Legislation’ Category

Legislative Update, 06/19/2017


Curious about what’s on the table with the American Health Care Act of 2017? The act narrowly passed in the House on May 4, 2017, with a vote of 217 – 213. Now, Republicans in the Senate have hopes to get a health care bill passed by July 4. Read about H.R. 1628 AHCA 2017 at The section titled What’s the Bottom Line? has a quick summary of how the AHCA will impact individuals.

Paul Spitalnic, Chief Actuary for the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, provides this June 13, 2017 memorandum: Estimated Financial Effect of the AHCA 2017.


We still remain without a budget in Illinois.  Our representatives and senators will go back into session on June 21st.  So now would be a good time to contact them and let them know how you are feeling about the situation and what you as a registered voter think that they should do.

If you need to, you can look up your Illinois senator or representative using this tool:

Unfortunately if you prefer electronic communication, the tool doesn’t always include a website or e-mail address so you may have to google them once you have the name.

As the funding situation keeps getting bleaker for many of our libraries, there really is no better time to speak up.

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Legislative Update, 06/05/2017

Federal News:

Recently, both medical and library professional associations made statements regarding federal funding.

The Medical Library Association (MLA) and Association of Academic Health Sciences Libraries  (AAHSL) recommended funding the NLM at levels of at least $412.1 million in FY18. Their justifications for these recommendations are outlined in this Statement, submitted to the Senate Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education & Related Agencies.

ALA President Julie Todaro responded to the Trump Administration’s FY18 budget proposal in this Statement, in which she documents strong support by Americans for their public, school, academic, and special libraries. Trump’s budget would cut $207 million of $230 million for the Institute of Museum and Library Services, according to this Washington Post article. Also noted in the Washington Post article, the Department of Health and Human Services and the National Institutes of Health would each see budget cuts of 18%.

The FCC voted on May 18, 2017 to roll back Obama-era Net Neutrality regulations put into place in 2015. Read the FCC news release. Also, view this Net Neutrality fact sheet published by the Internet Association, which illustrates their findings that Net Neutrality does not impede the economy of Internet Service Providers.

A summary of activities surrounding National Library Legislative Day, which was May 1-2, 2017, is available on the District Dispatch.

State News:

Here is the latest on the Abraham Lincoln Museum and Library.

And more on the impact of our budget situation.

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Legislative Update, 05/16/2017


Take action to support federal library funding! Contact your senators to sign each of the Reed/Collins LSTA and Reed/Grassley/Stabenow IAL “Dear Appropriator” letters. Senators have until May 19 to sign. President Trump has proposed elimination of the Institute of Museum and Library Services and most all other library funding sources. Read the full story on the District Dispatch.

The Joint MLA/AAHSL Legislative Task Force met with lawmakers in Washington DC in mid-April. They advocated for continued support in funding the NLM and NIH. Representatives were given fact sheets on NLM resource use, benefits of public access to federally-funded research, and NLM research support. For those attending MLA 2017 in Seattle, look for the Activism in a Time of Turbulence open forum. Read more about the Legislative Task Force’s meeting.

The ACRL Legislative Agenda for 2017 includes four focal issues. In priority order, these are:
(1) Federal funding for libraries
(2) Network neutrality
(3) Access to federally funded research
(4) Privacy and government surveillance
Read about each of these issues and view the Watch List of issues of “great concern” to academic and research libraries, but which have no legislation pending.


Just a couple of news items of interest:

Illinois Senate OKs Internet Privacy Measure” from The State Journal-Register

Monday Bid Deadline Prompts Scramble Among Illinois Insurers, Legislators” from Modern Healthcare

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Legislative Update, 04/26/2017


National Library Legislative Day is right around the corner: May 1-2, 2017. Registration to participate in the Virtual Library Legislative Day is open! You’ll be emailed a reminder and talking points on May 1. Sign up today.

Many library supporters contacted their House representatives over the past few weeks to encourage the signing of two Dear Appropriator letters, supporting funding for the Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) and Innovative Approaches to Literacy (IAL). With the signatures garnered, support for IAL grew 18% and for LSTA by 64%. Later this month, there will be a call to contact your Senators to support library funding, which is under threat of elimination in the proposed FY18 presidential budget. The full story is at the District Dispatch.


Our Illinois politicians are back in session this week and hopefully working on the budget.  For a quick overview of the state of that budget work and a few big issues being discussed right now, you can check out this article from the State Journal Register: Lawmakers return from spring break; ‘bargain’ remains unresolved.

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Legislative Update, 04/05/2017

Federal: Updates to the FCC privacy rules approved under the Obama administration in October 2016 were repealed last week in Congress. The new resolution allows internet service providers to collect user information and sell it to advertisers without having to obtain the user’s consent. Suggestions to aid librarians in protecting their patrons’ privacy may be found at the District Dispatch.

The Library Copyright Alliance (LCA) is opposing a bill that would give the President oversight of appointing the Register of Copyrights. Currently, this responsibility is in the domain of the Librarian of Congress. LCA is against this action because it would politicize the appointment, slow action in modernizing the Copyright Office, and decrease accountability due to a proposed 10-year term. Further information is available at the District Dispatch.

State: The House bill (HB 0136) to make the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Museum and Library a separate state agency has been voted on by the State Government Administration Committee, which unanimously voted to recommend that the bill be adopted.  The bill has also picked up another Chief Co-Sponsor – Rep. Tim Butler.  Dates have not yet been set for future actions.

An article of interest was recently published in the State Journal Register: $2.2M more in budget cuts could be coming to SIU medical school  The article specifically mentions that the library acquisitions budget is a cut that might be made.


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Legislative Action Item: Support NIH and Library Funding

A “Dear Colleague” letter is being circulated by Reps. David McKinley (R-W.Va.), Andre Carson (D-Ind.), Peter King (R-N.Y.), and Susan Davis (D-Calif.) to support funding the NIH “at least $2 billion above the Fiscal Year (FY) 2017 enacted level” for FY18. As reported in yesterday’s HSLI legislative blog post, the proposed FY18 budget would decrease NIH funding 18%, from $31.7 billion in 2017 to $25.9 billion in 2018.

To support an NIH funding increase, congressional representatives are being asked to sign this letter by the end of the business day on March 31, 2017. Contact your local representative to encourage their support. Find your representative here. To sign on, state representatives must contact Zach Bunshaft,

Action is additionally being sought in support of funding libraries, which are also at risk of significantly reduced budgetary allocations, along with the proposed elimination of the Institute of Museum and Library Services. More on how to support library funding is available from the District Dispatch. The deadline for action on this initiative is April 3, 2017.

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HSLI Endorses March for Science

Health Science Librarians of Illinois exists to support the dissemination and use of evidence-based scientific information. Health sciences librarianship is a profession that serves and supports science. HSLI endorses the National March for Science on April 22, 2017. HSLI endorses the satellite March for Science events in Illinois, which as of this writing include events in Carbondale, Champaign, Charleston, Chicago, Palatine, Peoria, Rockford, and Springfield.

HSLI members depend heavily on resources provided by the National Institutes of Health. HSLI strongly supports public funding of health sciences research and open dissemination of publicly funded research. Our member librarians provide evidence to support health care decision making and enable scientific inquiry. HSLI members support science and HSLI supports the March for Science.

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Legislative Update, 03/21/2017


The Trump administration’s proposed 2018 budget includes major cuts to most executive departments, while defense-related departments would see an increase in allocations. The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) faces a 17.9% decrease in funding, from $84.1 billion in 2017 to $69.0 billion in 2018. Federal allocations to the NIH would be reduced 18.3%, from $31.7 billion in 2017 to $25.9 billion in 2018, and the Fogarty International Center would be eliminated. Health professions and nursing training programs would be cut by $403 million, but scholarships and loan repayments would be retained to support those working in U.S. areas experiencing healthcare professional shortages.

Some segments within HHS have proposed funding increases. The Health Care Fraud and Abuse Control program would be expanded to $751 million in 2018, from $681 million in 2017. Emergency preparedness and prevention programs would see a boost, including a new $500 million block grant for State public health initiatives, administered by the CDC.

Read more about the proposed budget in this Washington Post piece and view the 2018 budget proposal. Stories on cuts to HHS and NIH are also available from The Washington Post.

The elimination of the Institute of Museum and Library Services has also been proposed. Additional agencies facing cuts that could affect library funding include the Department of Education, the Department of Labor, and the National Endowment for the Humanities. More on this is available from the District Dispatch.


Speaker Madigan has again proposed making the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Museum and Library a separate state agency.  The Amendment to House Bill 136 was filed on March 9th.  It was referred to the State Government Administration Committee on March 13th and is on their agenda for March 22nd.

Read an article in the Dome
Read Full Text of the Amendment to HB136
Find out who is on this committee


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Legislative Update 03/06/2017


ALA and ARL are among 50 organizations that have signed a statement supporting privacy protection of transnational travelers from undue search of personal electronic devices. The American Civil Liberties Union and Electronic Frontier Foundation both report an increase in complaints filed within the past month regarding U.S. border official searches of laptops and smart phones. In a recent legislative hearing, Department of Homeland Security secretary John Kelly proposed that submission of social media passwords could be required of non-citizens trying to gain access to the U.S. Requiring access to non-citizen social media accounts has ripple effects on U.S. citizen privacy, as well. More on this story is available from the District Dispatch.


Your state legislators are in session this week.  Check out what they’ll be discussing:  Senate Weekly Schedule & House Weekly Schedule.  Need help understanding what “Last Action” means and why it is important to understanding where the bill is in the Illinois legislative process?  Then try this flowchart.  For even more help, try this guide from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.


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Legislative Update, 2/13/2017


The MLA and AAHSL have filed comments in support of the new NLM Strategic Plan, under development in 2017. The new plan includes four central themes:

(1) Role of NLM in advancing data science, open science, and biomedical informatics;
(2) Role of NLM in advancing biomedical discovery and translational science;
(3) Role of the NLM in supporting the public’s health: clinical systems, public health systems and services, and personal health; and,
(4) Role of NLM in building collections to support discovery and health in the 21st century.

Future planning panel meetings are scheduled in March and April 2017.

The MLA and AAHSL made recommendations to the NIH regarding data management practices in response to the NIH request for information (RFI) made in late 2016. The NIH aims to update its 2003 Data Sharing Policy. The current RFI includes two sections, considering guidelines for data sharing and data and software citation.


Be sure to check out the Illinois Library Association’s 2017 Palm Card for a quick summary of the legislation that you should be watching in the Spring session of the General Assembly.

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