Kentucky Fried

It’s only Monday, but the Worst Idea of the Week Award (Early Decision) goes to: the GOP-controlled Kentucky state legislature, for its override of Governor Andy Beshear’s veto of a bill that will allow local politicians to appoint anyone they want to library boards and block major library spending.

Kentucky Republicans say it’s about “accountability,” since many local library boards in the state are able to levy taxes, but it’s not hard to imagine what mischief those political appointees could get up to under the new law Which is no doubt the point. Local library boards set budgets, and can exercise control over the size and content over library collections.

While the motives behind them may be different, the Kentucky law, alongside recent efforts to create compulsory e-book licensing laws in Maryland and New York, show state that legislators are spending an unusual amount of time lately focused on the details of public library operations and administration.

I wonder how many of them actually have library cards.