The Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) consists of a state grants program and competitive grant program administered directly from the federal level by the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS), including the National Leadership Grants, Laura Bush 21st Century Librarian Program and grants for Native Americans and Native Hawaiians.
State Library Services, a division of MDE, administers the state grant program in Minnesota. It was signed into law on September 30, 1996, as part of the Museum and Library Services Act and reauthorized on September 25, 2003. The federal goals of the LSTA state grants program are:
- To expand library services for learning and access to information in educational resources in a variety of formats, in all types of libraries, for individuals of all ages.
- To develop library services to individuals that provide all users access to information through local, state, national and international electronic networks.
- To provide electronic and other linkages among and between all types of libraries.
- To develop public and private partnerships with other agencies and community-based organizations.
- To target library services to individuals of diverse geographic, cultural and socioeconomic backgrounds, to individuals with disabilities and to individuals with limited functional literacy or information skills.
- To target library and information services to persons having difficulty using a library and to underserved urban and rural communities, including children (from birth through age 17) from families with incomes below the poverty line.
The LSTA funds in the state grants program provide support for statewide library programs and seed money for projects that improve library services throughout the United States. In Minnesota funds are allocated based on the goals and programs in the current State of Minnesota LSTA Five-Year Plan 2013-2017.