I know I know for some, maybe many, YALSA members learning about the YALSA budget and the fiscal priorities of the Association seems like incredibly dry stuff. But, in order for YALSA to provide members with the services they need in order to work with teens successfully, the YALSA Board and the Association’s members have to think what monies are spent on, and where funding is coming from. That’s why there are three documents on the YALSA Board Midwinter Meeting agenda that are important to look at:

  • Item 17 on the agenda is titled Prioritizing Endowment Funds. The document explains the current state of YALSA’s endowments and includes recommendations of how the funds generated from the endowments should be spent over the next year. Take a look to find out what initiatives the Board is going to look at funding in this way – maybe you’ll find there is a grant coming up that you’d like to apply for if these funds are used as suggested. This agenda item is an action item which means that the YALSA Board needs to make decisions at the 2015 Midwinter Meeting in order move the process forward.
  • Item 21 on the agenda is titled 2016 Budget Priorities. This document provides an overview of the steps the YALSA Board needs to accomplish at the 2015 Midwinter Meeting in order to be fiscally responsible about planning for the 2016 budget, an overview of the ALA/YALSA budget process, and a review of some of the priorities the YALSA Board might set for 2016. This year the Board will work in small groups – organized within YALSA’s Board Standing Committees – and brainstorm the ways in which the Association’s dollars should be spent in order to reach specific goals of the organization. This agenda item is a discussion item which means that the YALSA Board will talk about the topic and will continue to talk about the topic but it is not something that needs to be acted on at this year’s meetings.
  • Item 27 on the agenda is titled FY ’14 Final Close Figures and Implications for FY ’15. This document gives everyone the chance to see how YALSA’s budget was spent in 2014 and trends in revenue streams over the past eight years. This data raises a lot of important questions for the Association and those are also included in the document. This agenda item is an informational item for YALSA Board members to read and know but it will not be acted upon or discussed specifically at the Midwinter Meeting.

It’s important for the YALSA Board to think strategically about YALSA’s budget and funding priorities. It’s important for YALSA Board members to keep at the front of their minds the capacity – human and fiscal – of YALSA to move things forward in order to engage and support members successfully. It’s important for members to understand how the YALSA Board makes decisions about the Association’s budget. Take some time to look over the fiscal information that is a part of this year’s YALSA Board member meetings and if you have any questions, feel free to get in touch with me. As YALSA’s Fiscal Officer I’d be happy to talk with you.

About Linda W Braun

Linda W Braun is a YALSA Past President, the YALSA CE Consultant, and a learning consultant/project management coordinator at LEO: Librarians & Educators Online.

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