Library of Congress Fiscal 2014 Budget Justification: Submitted for Use of the Committees on Appropriations

Library of Congress Fiscal 2014 Budget Justification: Submitted for Use of the Committees on Appropriations (PDF) Source: Library of Congress

The Library of Congress is submitting a fiscal 2014 budget request to maintain current services funding levels, adjusted for inflation. … The Library along with the entire federal government is facing significant budget challenges. The most critical of these challenges before us at the time of submitting this request is sequestration. although this budget does not reflect estimated funding levels under the potential sequester, this overview statement will address the impacts sequestration will have on the Library’s mission and programs, if it takes effect. even without these potential future budget challenges, the Library is grappling with the impacts deep budget cuts of recent years have had on the Library and its services to the Congress and to the nation.

it will not be easy to sustain the Library’s unique leadership role in the three core functions any library serves. Maintaining this leadership role is even more challenging for a library that serves all americans by (1) acquiring important records of human knowledge and creativity, (2) preserving them, and (3) making them maximally accessible. “Memory, reason, and imagination” were the three categories into which Thomas Jefferson organized his private library, which became the seedbed for the Library of Congress’s universal collections and unique curatorial staff.

The Library is close to the point where it may have to reduce significantly the three key services that it provides for the american people. This might involve further reduction to the Library’s staff, which currently accounts for 65 percent of its overall annual budget and 90 percent of the budget of the Congressional research Service. The Library has had virtually flat budgets in recent years and, if faced with another set of across-the-board cuts, the Library would risk a decline in its core services at precisely the time its mission is becoming more important than ever for america.