Provincial Support for Public Library Service

2016 Provincial Support for Public Library Service

The role of the provincial government in public library service delivery is to:

  • support equitable access to library service
  • maintain a governance structure
  • provide funding assistance
  • establish and support a provincewide resource-sharing network

To that end, the provincial government, through the Public Library Services Branch (PLSB), provides monetary support in a variety of ways. 

Operating grants

The primary means by which the provincial government supports public library service is through annual operating grants to library boards.  In 2016, provincial grants from PLSB to municipal and system library boards totalled $29,744,701 ($21,270,958 to municipal library boards and $8,473,743 to system library boards).  This support equals $7.42 per capita served. 

Provincial grants to municipal library boards as compared to Local Appropriation can be seen in the following charts:

 Provincial and Municipal per capita (2016)  |  Provincial and Municipal per capita as a percentage (2016)

Public library network support

The provincial government also provides network support to enable provincewide sharing of public library resources.  Public library network support provided by PLSB totalled $4,446,156 in 2016.  This included:

  • $1,850,000 for SuperNet connectivity for all Alberta public libraries participating in the Public Library Network
  • $764,806 to cover the cost of interlibrary loan delivery
  • $250,000 to The Alberta Library to facilitate access to resources from the academic library sector
  • $276,898 to cover the costs for service to broker provincewide, national and international interlibrary loans from all types of libraries, as well as for the ME Libraries initiative
  • $1,304,452 for public library access to a variety of electronic resources

Total Provincial Support 

In 2016, total provincial support for public library service (as provided by PLSB) totalled

$34,190,857 or $8.52 per capita served

Have questions about the information presented here?  Contact Kerry Anderson at Public Library Services Branch.

  • Date modified: 2018-11-21