Library receives $48M from Legislature


The U received $48 million to earthquake-proof the Marriott Library after four years of administration and student-lobbying efforts.

“We are thrilled, to put it mildly. We are completely elated and thrilled beyond measure,” said Nancy Lyon, U lobbyist. “It’s been four years of just constant effort, with a lot of ups and downs, but this year the stars aligned and there was money and goodwill.”

The original request for the library was $48.488 million, but legislators took $465,000 off the top to pay for art storage equipment in the Utah Museum of Fine Arts.

However, Lyon was happy with some of the other money the U received.

In addition to the $48.023 million for the library, the U received money for its operation and maintenance budget as well.

Also, the higher-education system received $5 million ongoing funding plus $5 million in one-time funding for power and fuel costs. The U will receive about half of that money, Lyon said.

While Lyon knows receiving the funding came in large part because of the recent upturn in economy, she said human factors also helped get the job done.

“The Legislature has really been strong in supporting our new president right now. Our student ambassadors also made a huge contribution,” she said.

This year, the U launched a pilot Presidential Ambassadors Program, where about 20 student volunteers attended every committee meeting and spoke with every senator and representative to show U students cared about the money the school received, according to Bryson Morgan, director of the Associated Students of the University of Utah’s Government Relations Board.

“It went really well. We’ve gotten awesome feedback from legislators who have appreciated U students coming up and getting involved,” Morgan said.

Morgan said the U administration is supportive of starting a paid internship program next year for students to continue the ambassador program.

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