Fear! Panic! Dismay! Or, maybe not…I have no idea what this all means!
See below for an announcement passed on by my pal Liberal Lucy. After chatting with an anonymous buddy with connections to HAL, I was told there is little idea of what this really means for libraries in Michigan. It could be meaningless…just a change of who reports to whom. (Who, whom…uh, whatever). I guess we will have to watch and see.
If you know what this really means for Michigan Libraries and HAL, please post and let me know!
Right, yes, well on with the report:
Gov To Close Book On HAL
As part of an administration-wide attempt to scale down the size of government, Gov. Jennifer GRANHOLM is poised to propose the elimination of the Department of History, Arts and Libraries (HAL) as soon as Tuesday’s State of the State address. Former Gov. John ENGLER created the department in 2001.
Under the Governor’s proposal, the units of HAL would be scattered throughout state government. Before Engler signed the legislation creating the new department, the Michigan Library was in the Legislative Council, the state archives and Historical Commission was in the Department of State, and the Mackinac Island State Park Commission was in the Department of Natural Resources.
Engler signed a 19-bill package completing the creation of the new department in 2001 (See “20th Department Created In Library Ceremony Today,” 7/23/01).
Granholm Press Secretary Liz BOYD declined to discuss if the new arrangement would be similar to the old arrangement. She neither confirmed nor denied the news of the elimination of HAL.
“Clearly, the Governor will be giving a no-frills message on Tuesday,” Boyd said. “The Governor will be focusing on the challenges we face and she will not be sugarcoating those challenges. The focus of the Governor’s address will be creating jobs, while training and educating citizens for those jobs.”
HAL’s elimination comes more than a month after the department’s only director Bill ANDERSON retired (See “Founding HAL Chief To Retire,” 12/15/08).
HAL will be the third state department Granholm has morphed into other parts of the state bureaucracy since taking office in 2003. The former Department of Career Development was combined with the former Department of Consumer & Industry Services (CIS) to form the Department of Labor and Economic Growth shortly after Granholm took office.
More recently, the Department of Civil Service was made an arm of the Department of Management and Budget.