LSTA Grants

We administer the LSTA (Library Services and Technology Act) program, funded through the independent federal agency IMLS (Institute of Museum and Library Services).

LSTA funds are used in one of three ways:

  1. Supporting in-house initiatives, e.g., the Summer Reading Program
  2. Supporting statewide initiatives, e.g., Ohio Libraries Share: MORE, Ohio Library for the Blind and Physically Disabled, and Guiding Ohio Online
  3. Competitive grant programs

Our staff works with the LSTA Advisory Council to determine funding priorities each year. Libraries may apply for either a planning grant or a project grant. Announcement of grant availability is posted on library listservs and application materials and the timeline for each grant cycle can be found on the website.

All types of libraries (i.e., public, school, academic and special) may apply for LSTA grants. Partnerships with other libraries and organizations are required.

Previously Funded Projects

Previously funded projects for the 2013 calendar year are available below.

Five Year Plan

The Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) requires each state to create a 5-year plan outlining how it will use LSTA funds for programs and projects to strengthen the efficiency, reach, and effectiveness of library services in the state. The State Library of Ohio worked with the State Library Board and the LSTA Advisory Council to develop the LSTA 2013 – 2017 Five-Year Plan.

The following LSTA grant programs are currently open. Select the Apply button or tab to access application documents.

Celebrating Ohio Book Awards & Authors Grant Program

Under this special program, prospective applicants will have an opportunity to expand their collections to include more Ohio book award winners and Ohio authors, incorporate programming, and expand community engagement and awareness of the state’s rich literary offerings and award programs. This grant program has a maximum award of $1,000, $750 of which may be used to improve a library’s collection of Ohio award-winning books and authors. Proposals for the Celebrating Ohio Book Awards & Authors grant program are due March 22, 2017.

COBAA Grant Program RFPApply

Open Grant

Proposals may be submitted anytime; typically notification is delivered within 30 days of receipt.  As of March 1, 2017, awarded grants will be processed on a quarterly basis, and grant terms will commence as outlined below.

Proposals received between: If awarded, grant term will begin
February 16th and May 15th July 1st
May 16th and August 15th October 1st
August 16th and November 15th January 1st
November 16th and February 15th April 1st

Open Grant RFPApply


Competitive Grants

2016-2017 Competitive Grant proposals were due at 11:59 pm,  September 1, 2016.

Competitive grant applications are accepted in the following categories:

Data Management and Analytics: Create strong libraries and communities by defining outcomes, developing assessments, drawing conclusions from data, data visualizations, and/or managing and using data to make better decisions.


Literacy: Supports the library role in the learning experience where literacy is defined as the ability to read, write and interact across a range of platforms and tools, and it encompasses early literacy, digital literacy, functional literacy, and others.


Outreach and Partnerships: Assist libraries in providing new and innovative ways of providing services to users and potential users and in reaching individuals at a range of locations  and through a variety of methods.


STEM (or STEAM): Provides for innovative and adaptable projects which will include creative, educational, programmatic and/or instructional elements designed to increase skills and knowledge for student success.


TV White Space

The TV White Space was due August 15, 2016

The TV White Space grant provides public library patrons, especially in outlying areas greater connectivity. Round one is closed.

Application materials are located under the “Apply” tab.

TV White Space rfp

Conservation Grant

The Conservation Grant is now closed. The grant provides institutions funding to conserve an item(s) in their collection. Attendance at the Conservation Care Class is required in order to apply.


2017 Summer Library Program

The 2017 Summer Library Program grant is now closed.
This grant program supports libraries incorporating the concept of building a better world into their 2017 SRP/SLP programs and activities.

2017 Summer Library Program rfp

Questions may be addressed to Cindy Boyden at , or 800-686-1532.

Proposals must be submitted electronically as a complete package to

Questions may be addressed to Cindy Boyden at , or 800-686-1532.

Special Grants

Celebrating Ohio Book Awards & Authors Grant Program

COBAA Grant Program RFP

Budget FAQ
Budget Form
Sample Title Page
Books List Appendix

Open Grant

All types of Ohio libraries are eligible to request up to $4,999 in federal funds. Applications are accepted on an on-going basis.

Request for Proposals

Budget FAQ
Budget Form
Sample Title Page


Competitive Grants


Data Management and Analytics Grant Application Guidelines
Literacy Grant Application Guidelines
Outreach and Partnerships Grant Application Guidelines
STEM Grant Application Guidelines

Competitive Application Materials

Budget FAQ
Budget Form
Partnership Statement
Project Summary Format
Sample Title Page
Sustainability FAQ
Partnership Statement (if applicable)

Special Grants

Summer Library Program Grants

Request for Proposals
Budget FAQ
Budget Form
Sample Title Page

TV White Space Grants

Request for Proposals
Budget FAQ
Budget Form
Sample Title Page
Partnership Statement

LSTA Publicity Information

All publications, press releases, websites, events, and products (including promotional materials) produced as part of the LSTA project must credit both the State Library of Ohio and the Institute of Museum and Library Services. IMLS logos, taglines, and guidelines are detailed in the Grantee Communications Kit.

The Institute of Museum and Library Services suggests you use the following language when writing press releases: “Thanks to a grant from the federal Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS), awarded by the State Library of Ohio…..”

In terms of publications, products, and events, the LSTA Office recommends using one of the following options.

This project was supported in whole or in part by federal Institute of Museum and Library Services funds, granted through the State Library of Ohio. The opinions expressed herein do not necessarily reflect the position or policy of IMLS or the State Library of Ohio, and no official endorsement by either agency should be inferred. Or,

This publication was funded through a federal Institute of Museum and Library Services LSTA grant awarded by the State Library of Ohio. The content does not necessarily reflect the position or policy of the granting agencies. Or,

This event is supported by the State Library of Ohio with federal funds from the Institute of Museum and Library Services.

For space–saving concerns you may also use “This publication funded in part through a federal Institute of Museum and Library Services LSTA grant awarded by the State Library of Ohio.”

If you promote grant-funded projects through social media, please be sure to tag both IMLS and the State Library.

Twitter: #US_IMLS and #statelibohio

Facebook: and

If you have any questions, please contact  Cindy Boyden at  or 800-686-1532.

The State Library’s Guiding Ohio Online program, which targets populations in rural Ohio, helps Ohioans develop digital skills needed to fully participate in the digital age. Trainers will assist libraries with computer instruction, technology-focused community outreach, hands-on help, and other technology-related duties. Previously an AmeriCorps program, Guiding Ohio Online is now supported with LSTA funds. Guiding Ohio Online applications are due May 19, 2017.

Site ApplicationBudget Form


LSTA Equipment Policies

Equipment purchased as part of an LSTA grant is subject to federal regulations (45 CFR 1183.32), state and grant requirements.

Inventory Requirements

Equipment costing more than $5,000 per item purchased in whole or in part with federal funds must be carried on a federal equipment inventory. Each piece of equipment meeting the above requirements must carry a sticker with the project number, library inventory number and date of purchase. In addition, federal regulations require that the following information be kept as part of the equipment inventory form:

  • A description of the equipment including manufacturer’s model number, if any
  • Identification number, such as the manufacturer’s serial number
  • Identification of the grant under which the equipment was acquired
  • Vendor, acquisition date and cost
  • Federal share (percent of acquisition cost paid by LSTA funds)
  • All pertinent information relating to the ultimate transfer, replacement or disposition of the equipment

All equipment purchased as part of an LSTA grant must be inventoried. For cooperative projects equipment must remain on the inventory of the administering agency for the lifetime of the award. It is recommended that upon termination of the grant, the administering agency request, in writing, that the inventory be transferred to the participating libraries. Requirements for equipment disposition then become the responsibility of the individual libraries.

Guidelines For Equipment Disposition Due To Upgrades, Broken or Obsolete Equipment

Should a library wish to dispose of equipment purchased as part of an LSTA grant, they need to notify the State Library. A letter or email should be sent to the LSTA office indicating the grant name and project number or year, what equipment is to be disposed of and why. State Library staff will respond indicating that the library may trade–in, sell, or discard the equipment and any proceeds received shall be allocated for the library’s technology projects.

Guidelines For Equipment Disposition in Cases of Library Closures or Mergers

Should equipment no longer be needed for use in the library, it must revert back to the State Library for reallocation to another library. The State Library will redistribute equipment based on the following guidelines:

  • Equipment may not be transferred to a classroom or other facility not associated with a library.
  • If the Subgrantee Library has other operational library facilities (branches of a public library, media centers in a school district for example), the subgrantee may request permission from the State Library to transfer the equipment to one or more of the operating facilities.
  • If the Subgrantee Library does not have other operational library facilities or cannot use the equipment in those facilities, the equipment will be redistributed by the State Library in one of the following ways:
  • If the original LSTA grant was through a cooperative project (ITC, Regional Library System for example) the administering agency will make a recommendation to the State Library as to which library(ies) from the original grant should receive the equipment.
  • If the original LSTA grant was awarded to an individual library, the State Library in consultation with the library administration and other regional or network providers will determine what library(ies) should receive the equipment.