Friday, June 10, 2011
LALINC-L The Letter for HCR 129
Dear Sir or Madam Representative:
I am writing you to urge your support for HCR 129 sponsored by Representative Michael Jackson of District 61. HCR 129 directs the Board of Regents to fully fund LOUIS: the Library Network. LOUIS connects 200,000 students and faculty to the information resources and services they need to for learning, researching, and teaching. It is a lifeline for all degree programs, and especially for community colleges that have small local library collections. Without LOUIS, all online degree programs would be impossible to support.
LOUIS is a purchasing consortium totaling 45 institutions. Member institutions are academic libraries, state and private libraries, and museums and archives. LOUIS provides information resources and services to these institutions in return for a fee that is assessed based on enrollment. Since its beginning in 1994, LOUIS has saved the state an estimated $151,544,908. Prior to the funding cuts, the Regents budget provided 70% of the funding and membership fees accounted for 30%. But, without central funding, the member institutions must find ways of raising the money on their own without raising tuition or cutting more academic programs.
LOUIS is “mission critical” for Louisiana’s universities. Because of LOUIS, students and faculty have the resources they need for their research. If LOUIS dissolves, smaller regional universities would lose 80-90% of their journal titles. Teaching, learning, and research operations would cease to be. In a letter to the Board of Regents, Dr. Belle Wheelan, the President of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, warned the BOR that the de-funding of LOUIS endangered program-level and institutional-level accreditation. For a copy of that letter, please go to: http://savelouis.org/sites/default/files/Scan001.PDF.
I ask that you fight for the future of LOUIS, and that of higher education. Please support HCR 129, and engage your fellow members of the House to direct the Board of Regents to perform their duty. Our students, their parents, and the faculty and administration of our universities and community colleges need LOUIS. And the Louisiana taxpayer needs more enterprises like LOUIS that save money while providing unparalleled service quality and rich information resources for our higher education systems. For more information on how LOUIS helps save Louisianans money, please go to: http://savelouis.org/about/more.