Effort By Some In Legislature To Defund Most Libraries In Southeast Missouri And The Rest Of The State

(Jefferson City) Missouri has more than 160 state taxpayer-supported libraries.

A legislative effort aims to pull the plug on full state funding to them in the next state budget.

House Budget Committee Chairman Cody Smith, a republican, wants to cut 4.5-million-dollars because the Missouri Library Association is suing over the state law that limits what materials can be in school libraries.

State Representative Maggie Nurrenbern, a democrat from Kansas City, opposes Smith’s effort.

Democratic State Representative Peter Merideth of St. Louis explains it this way.

The funding could be added back into the Missouri state budget proposal later this spring during the budget process.

Local libraries that could be impacted are the Bollinger, Crawford, Jefferson, Reynolds and Washington County libraries.

Plus, the Ozark Regional Libraries in Annapolis, Ironton, Viburnum and Fredericktown, along with the Bonne Terre, Crystal City, Desoto, Desloge, Farmington, Festus, Park Hills, Piedmont and the Salem Public Libraries.