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Legacy Amendment

Access the MELSA Legacy dashboard.

Minnesota Legacy Amendment Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund

MELSA and its member libraries present an array of arts, cultural, literary, and Minnesota history programs in collaboration with arts and cultural organizations, independent artists, historical societies, and community organizations. Programs are funded in part with money from Minnesota’s Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund.

Click here to view upcoming Legacy events in your metro public libraries.

Download a list of Legacy programs from FY 2010–2011.  Note:  Many of these entries represent series of programs held in multi-library locations over multiple dates. If you wish to have more information on a specific program, please send an email request to

To access the MELSA section on the Minnesota’s Legacy website (created by the Minnesota Legislature), click here.


In November 2008, Minnesota voters approved a constitutional amendment to dedicate funds for Minnesota's Outdoor Heritage, Clean Water, Parks and Trails, and Arts and Cultural Heritage. Under the Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund (ACHF) Minnesota's 300+ public libraries receive funding distributed through existing formulas to the 12 Minnesota Regional Library Systems to provide programs and services in four areas: arts (visual, performing and media), culture, literary and Minnesota history. The law states that these funds are intended "for regional programs and working with arts and cultural partners."

MELSA received:

  • $1,362,900 for FY1, July 2009–June 2010
  • $1,383,133 for FY2, July 2010–June 2011
  • $955,295 for FY3, July 2011–June 2012
  • $996,000 for FY4, July 2012–June 2013
  • $1,141,083.24 for FY5, July 2013–June 2014
  • $1,141,083.24 for FY6, July 2014–June 2015
  • $844,623.55 for FY7, July 2015-June 2016
  • $844,623.55 for FY8, July 2016-June 2017

The current MELSA allocation is divided into four areas:

  • 8% to statewide projects in cooperation with other regional library systems
  • 60% for local programs provided by the 8 MELSA library systems
  • 29% for regional programming
  • 3% for administration

MELSA's Legacy Committee created a white paper outlining goals for the metropolitan region's libraries. The group recommends the following goals for the ACHF program:

  • Highlight the unique role/position of public libraries in the cultural life and heritage of our communities, region and state.
  • Develop sustainable partnerships between public libraries and other arts, cultural and educational organizations throughout the state.
  • Utilize the local talent within arts and cultural organizations throughout the state.
  • Develop innovative and exciting programs that our patrons want and use.
  • Create cultural opportunities to serve the diverse demographics of our residents
  • Be good stewards of a limited financial resource.