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New Zealand libraries partnership programme

Find out about the COVID-19 recovery work being led by the National Library to support librarians and library services across New Zealand

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New Zealand’s library system COVID-19 recovery

The Government is entrusting the National Library to lead and support COVID-19 recovery work across New Zealand’s library system, especially in public libraries, with a funding package of $58.8 million, over two to four years.

The New Zealand Libraries Partnership Programme will support librarians and library services to be retained in NZ libraries and assist them to support community recovery.

Programme initiatives

The New Zealand Libraries Partnership Programme includes support for the following intiatives.

  • Funded secondments at public libraries to provide librarian jobs and upskill librarians to support community recovery.
  • Training, coaching and mentoring of librarians.
  • Provision for free public internet to be available through all public libraries.
  • Relief for New Zealand libraries by the waiver of user charges and procurement costs for collaborative library services.
  • An uplift in specialist library services for schools and young people with the greatest need.

Funding is also provided to increase the Public Lending Right in recognition of New Zealand authors’ books being available for use in libraries.

Who will be involved with the programme

We are working with key stakeholders in the library and local government sectors, including LIANZA, Te Rōpū Whakahau, Public Libraries of New Zealand, the Society of Local Government Managers (SOLGM) and Library Information Advisory Commission (LIAC).

We have written to local council Chief Executives outlining the programme, including fee waivers and secondment funding while underlining the key priorities of support for library jobs and for job seekers and the aim to support the provision of free public internet through all public libraries in New Zealand.

Local Councils who take up the offer to be part of the partnership will enter into a formal ‘Letter of Agreement’ with the National Library to assist with accountability for this funding. The Letter of Agreement will outline shared responsibilities, expectations and provide a basis for authorising payments and establishing reporting requirements.

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The partnership programme will support at least 170 full-time equivalent jobs in public libraries across the country for both experienced and trainee librarians. Secondments can be full or part time or job shared. Grade and level is at the discretion of the local authority, although there may need to be some discussion if the salary is outside of a typical range.

The funding will cover salary, superannuation, ACC and operating costs.
Operating costs can include all actual and reasonable direct operating costs associated with hiring and hosting a position funded through the programme. So for instance consumables, travel costs, desk/equipment (if none in place), project costs, but not generally indirect costs such as their manager’s salary, overheads.

In addition, a funded programme of training and coaching for the seconded library staff will be made available over the two-year period.

The secondments can be appointed at any time during the next two financial years for up to 21 months or maybe appointed for shorter periods of time depending on local authority need. We expect that secondment funding will be released in tranches, as libraries are ready to take in staff, and will be spread across the funding period.

The 21 months is on the basis that the position starts by 1 October 2020, so a later starting date would need to be for a shorter period.

Secondment process

Libraries will fill in an Expression of Interest (EOI) form which asks libraries to say how their initiatives deliver to the COVID-19 recovery funding criteria.

Payment will be arranged by invoicing the National Library for agreed salaries and costs.

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Free public internet

COVID-19 has helped underline the importance of the public being able to access the internet for information and services without cost being a barrier. The free internet provision is aimed at members of the public being able to access the internet for free through their local library wherever they are in New Zealand and regardless of whether they own a device.

The programme aims to achieve this through:

  • waiving of subscription fees for Councils that use the Aotearoa People’s Network Kaharoa (APNK) service
  • working with Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch libraries to support their existing free internet offers
  • providing all remaining Councils with the opportunity to join the APNK service at no charge and support for free public internet and device provision in those libraries — for a period of two years.

Local Councils not using APNK

It may not suit all Councils to change their current provision of the internet to their community by joining APNK. If a Council removes their charges to the public for accessing the internet using their own device or a Council device, then the loss of income will be reimbursed for 2020-2022.

The income earned from accessing the internet (excluding income from print chargers) during the 2018/2019 financial year will be used as the basis for the reimbursement.

Joining the APNK service

If a Council would like to join APNK they can. We will meet with Councils and determine their needs to provide APNK services. This will include getting quotes for cabling and orders for hardware to be placed. A timeline for upskilling library staff and the installation of the hardware needs to be agreed on.

Prior to the APNK service being implemented with a Council, the Council will be eligible to claim for the reduction in income related to providing public internet and computer services, on the condition that any charges to the public for accessing the internet are removed.”

Join APNK by 30 June 2021

Confirmation of the decision for a Council to sign up to the APNK service under the Libraries Partnership funding will need to be made by 30 June 2021.

APNK charges reinstated for 2022-2023 financial year

It is expected that the current charges for the APNK service will be reinstated for the 2022-2023 financial year.

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Fee waiver

The programme will provide relief for New Zealand libraries by the waiver of user charges and procurement costs for collaborative library services. LIbraries are free to use the value of the fee waiver on any library expense.

The fee waiver does not cover the services provided by Kōtui.

EPIC and Te Puna fee waiver 1 July 2020 to 30 June 2022

Te Puna and EPIC member subscription fees will be waived for the period 1 July 2020 to 30 June 2022, with the exception of some State sector organisations, these are listed below.

The State sector organisations not covered are:

  • Public Service departments and departmental agencies
  • Non-Public Service departments in the State Services and in the wider State Sector
  • Offices of Parliament

These specified State sector organisations will continue to pay their subscription fees as usual.

New Zealand’s State sector organisations — State Services Commission list of organisations of the State sector.

EPIC resources covered by the waiver

The EPIC subscription resources covered by the fee waiver are those that your organisation has committed to subscribing to through EPIC prior to 1 July 2020 either:

  • as part of the EPIC subscription confirmation process for the 2020-2021 EPIC subscription year, or
  • as pro-rated subscription addition through to 31 March 2021.

A full list of these will also be included in the letter to key contacts. The waiver will provide you with access to these resources through to 30 June 2022.

2020-2021 EPIC subscription fees reimbursed

As most EPIC member libraries have already paid the invoices for their EPIC subscription fees for the 2020-2021 EPIC subscription year (1 April 2020 to 31 March 2021), the National Library will reimburse these libraries for the charges covering the 9-month period 1 July 2020 to 31 March 2021.

Members will have a credit added against their account. They will then be able to request a refund against the credit or use the credit against future National Library charges.

Changing EPIC resources during the waiver period

You can cancel an EPIC subscription included in the fee waiver. You cannot replace an EPIC resource in the fee waiver with a similarly priced resource during the waiver period.

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New subscriptions to EPIC

EPIC members can set up new subscriptions through EPIC at any time during the year.

You will be charged, for any new subscription that you commit to after 1 July 2020 as these resources are not included in the fee waiver.

Subscribe to EPIC

Change to EPIC annual subscription year from 2022

In parallel to the fee waiver, EPIC will be realigning the EPIC subscription year so that from 2022, the EPIC subscription year will change from 1 April - 31 March to 1 July – 30 June. This is to align the EPIC subscription year with all other National Library services.

This means that prior to the end of the fee waiver period, member libraries will be asked to confirm their EPIC subscriptions for the period 1 July 2022 – 30 June 2023 to ensure that subscriptions are in place for the new subscription year beginning 1 July 2022.

Government members that are excluded from the fee exemption and those that take up paid subscriptions during the fee waiver period will be provided with options for bridging these subscriptions so that they will ultimately fit into the new annual subscription period.

Kōtui consortium to get one-off relief

Kōtui provides public libraries with the SirsiDynix Symphony LMS, the SirsiDynix Enterprise discovery tool and a 7-day service desk. As a core library platform, we are treating this as distinct from other National Library collaborative services to libraries which are either subsidised (APNK) or subscription-based (EPIC, Te Puna).

Kōtui libraries will not receive a fee waiver; instead, the Kōtui consortium will get one-off relief from upcoming procurement costs relating to the supplier contract.

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The funding provided for this programme is over a four-year period. Local Councils who take up the offer will enter into a formal agreement with the National Library.

Funding over four years

The $58.8m of funding over four years will be used as follows.

  • $30 million over two years to fund and upskill librarians in public libraries so they can provide greater support for library users and help bolster reading and digital literacy.
  • $4 million over four years to support the National Library’s Aotearoa People’s Network Kaharoa (APNK) public internet service, and to extend it to non-APNK public libraries. APNK provides free access to the internet and devices for any member of the public.
  • $11.5m over two years to help maintain library services by waiving National Library subscription charges to libraries.
  • $13.3m over four years for specialist library services to help schools and young people with the greatest need during the recovery.

Got a question?

Get in touch if you have a question, email us at librariespartner@dia.govt.nz

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Feature image at top of page. Library in Cheviot New Zealand. Photo by Michal Klajban. Wikicommons. CC BY-SA