LSTA Competitive Grants

2021–2022 Local and Collaborative Competitive Grants help California’s libraries respond effectively to local needs and align services with local community aspirations; support experimentation and R&D in California’s libraries; and provide training and support in grant writing and grant management for the California library community. The funding period is July 2021–June 2022, and awards will be made after federal IMLS funding levels are confirmed for 2021–2022 and the 2021–2022 California State budget has passed.

Application Process

  • Phase One: Intent to Apply form (non-binding). All potential competitive grant applicants must complete the Intent to Apply form.
  • Phase Two: Full Application After Intent to Apply forms are reviewed by State Library staff and Project Advisors, selected applicants will be invited to complete a full application.

We invite libraries to apply for funding to support local and collaborative projects that address community needs, align with community aspirations, and are from agencies that support equity, diversity, and inclusion. We are especially interested in

  • projects that focus on underserved and vulnerable populations, sustainability, and workforce development;
  • from library jurisdictions and branches of library jurisdictions that have not received LSTA funding in the last five years;
  • collaborative projects that represent a variety of regions, library sizes, and populations.

However, we welcome applications from all California library jurisdictions and library consortia, and on any topic and serving any group.


Date Event
October 12, 2020 Intent to Apply process opens.
October 20, 2020, 2:00–3:00 pm Information session for potential applicants (recorded)
November 20, 2020 Intent to Apply Form closes.
December 18, 2020 Notifications to all applicants, full application materials available to those invited to apply.
February 24, 2021 Application Form closes.
April 9, 2021 Notifications to all applicants. Projects will be selected in the spring; however, awards cannot be made until federal IMLS funding levels are confirmed for 2021-2022 and the 2021-2022 California State budget has passed.
July 2021–June 2022 The funding period starts when the California state budget is signed (typically July 1) and ends June 30, 2022. Libraries implement their activities. Grantees meet to share strategies, resources, ideas, successes and lessons learned

Two types of grant opportunity are available:

  • Local Competitive Grants support projects that focus on one library jurisdiction and can include projects focusing on one branch in one library jurisdiction.
  • Collaborative Competitive Grants support projects that are implemented by three or more library jurisdictions.

Application materials