Lincoln County Library Bookmobile operator Pete Gill talks with students at Pinoche Elementary School in Pioche, Nev. in March 27. Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval signed a bill Thursday providing an additional $500,000 for statewide library programs. Photo by Cathleen Allison/Nevada Photo Source

Funding approved for Nevada libraries by the Legislature will make a difference for people across the state, including those in some of the most remote places, librarians testified.

“We were thrilled when it passed, especially when it passed unanimously,” said Joan Dalusung, assistant director of the Washoe County Library and member of the State Council on Libraries and Literacy. “We were impressed and honored that the Senate Finance Committee took it upon itself to introduce this bill.”

Lawmakers approved Senate Bill 549 for $500,000 on Sunday night as the session end quickly approached. It was one of 71 bills Gov. Brian Sandoval signed into law Thursday. Funds will be allocated for collection development, bookmobile services, statewide databases and emerging technology.

Bookmobiles, which deliver books to some of the state’s most rural areas, are expected to receive about $30,000. “Nevada Bookmobiles are the critical lifeline to our rural citizens who have limited access to literacy and technology resources,” said Cyndi O, director of the Humboldt County Library. “Bookmobiles provide fair and equal access to materials, technology, learning and social opportunities to rural, isolated communities.”

Sena Loyd, director of the Carson City Library, expressed her appreciation to lawmakers for their support.

“Nevada libraries have seen over 9.7 million visits in 2016,” she said. “Funding an additional $500,000 over the biennium will allow libraries to enhance current services, develop today’s workforce and continue to decrease the digital divide. The Nevada Library Association would like to acknowledge Sen. Denis’ support of libraries within their communities to educate community members.”