Connecticut State Library with state seal


January 27, 2003

This report is prepared bi-monthly in conjunction with the regular meetings of the Connecticut State Library Board. Items to be routinely covered include the following: the significant activities of the State Librarian and the staff, significant administrative decisions affecting the operation of the Library, status reports regarding in-progress activities, information regarding external events having an impact on the Library, media coverage of the Library, and information of general interest to the members of the Board.

The following report by the State Librarian, which will be included in the minutes of the January 27, 2003 meeting of the Board, covers the period of November 26, 2002, through January 26, 2003.

Attached to this report.

All vacancies cancelled per OPM letter dated 6/18/02.


Most of my efforts and those of my senior staff have been directed to the budget situation and dealing with the layoffs. I met with almost all of the affected State Library employees to personally deliver their layoff letters and subsequently with those receiving "at risk" letters.

As of this writing, the State Library continues with the layoff process. A total of 16 positions were eliminated. Because of differing requirements in the contracts of the 3 bargaining units affected by the layoffs at the State Library, it appears that the process will not be completed until February 21. Because some employees had displacement rights, not all of those originally noticed in December will actually be leaving State Library service. However, all will have different positions and for the most part different job responsibilities. As of January 17, nine employees will have left the State Library. On January 10, I was instructed to send "at risk" letters to an additional six employees informing them that they could be displaced by one of the earlier layoffs. (Note: this does not increase the number of layoffs). The impact of the layoffs is still being evaluated. In addition to those at the State Library, the Judicial Branch had layoffs which included two of the officers on the State Library/Supreme Court Police force, bringing the number to five.

Cooperative Library Service Units
The Governor has proposed eliminating the 3rd and 4th quarter payments to the four CLSUs. This is effectively a $300,000 budget reduction. Although the reduction can not be implemented without legislative action, the payment is being held back, at least for now. This is placing severe financial pressure on the CLSUs. Sharon Brettschneider and I met with the Coordinators on January 14, to discuss the situation. Three of the CLSUs believe that they can get to the end of the fiscal year on their remaining reserves. One of the CLSUs indicated that it would have to close down at the end of March. It is also unclear whether any funding will be proposed for next year. Meanwhile the planning process continues as the library community attempts to reposition the CLSUs. The current proposal is to create a single entity that can carry out many of the programs now in place, but also be responsive to the changing needs of 21st Century libraries.

Federal Funds
The original budget for this fiscal year contained reductions in library programs which resulted in our being out of compliance with the maintenance of effort requirement to receive federal funds. The Institute of Museum and Library Services has determined that our Library Services and Technology grant for next year will be reduced by the percentage that we are out of compliance. Any additional reductions in accounts used to calculate our MOE, such as the proposed reduction in CLSU funding, will increase the reduction in federal funds on a ratio of approximately fifty cents federal for every dollar cut in general funds. With the proposed reduction in CLSU funding, we estimate that we will be loosing $271,634 next year.

Library Services and Technology Act
The Museum and Library Services Act of 2003 (H.R. 13) has been introduced in the United States House of Representatives by Representative Pete Hoekstra, Chairman, Subcommittee on Select Education. This would reauthorize the existing program which includes the Library Services and Technology Act.

I have submitted a grant proposal to the William Caspar Graustein Memorial Fund for a $20,000 grant to support the addition of a Training Calendar to the greatKidsCT website.

The grant from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC) for the Court Records Project is in limbo because of the layoff of the employees involved with the project.

Professional Activities
I attended the regular meetings of the Commission on Educational Technology, Connecticut History Online Project Committee, Connecticut Library Association (CLA) Executive Board, CLA Legislative Committee, DataConnections Committee, Fairfield Library Administrators Group (FLAG), Historic Preservation Account Advisory Board, Museum Assessment Program Planning session, NELINET Board of Directors.

I met with Diantha Schull, President, Libraries for the Future and Stephen Ristau, President, Ristau & Associates, LLC, to discuss the Connecticut State Library's participation in the Life Options Libraries Project. Funded by the Graustein Memorial Fund, this project will explore new directions in library services to seniors.

Reference Services
A state law requiring libraries to provide voter registration forms to new or renewing library card applicants will be implemented at CSL beginning this year. Circulation staff will provide the forms, assist patrons in completing the forms if asked, give them a date-stamped receipt, and send the forms to the appropriate town registrars. This is required of all libraries `open to the public'.

Many Library staff attended a teleconference on the USA Patriot Act, shown in four locations throughout the state in December. Sponsored by the American Library Association, the American Association of Law Libraries, and the Association of Research Libraries, the teleconference discussed issues affecting libraries under the Act. Procedures for responding to Patriot Act inquiries at CSL are being created by the Executive Committee and will be distributed to staff. A research guide on `Libraries and the USA Patriot Act' has been created by the Government Information unit staff, and listed as a Current Issues Pathfinder. It is linked on the CSL website under New and Noteworthy, and About Connecticut.

Government Information Federal Documents Librarian Nancy Peluso and Government Information Reference Librarian Nancy Lieffort gave a PowerPoint presentation on the history of CSL and previewed a new video on CSL services for staff at the Staff Development Day. The video will be available to publicize the Library.

Law/Legislative Unit Head Denise Jernigan addressed the Tolland County Bar Association on December 12, and showed them the new CSL video.

Ms. Jernigan taught a section of the Advanced Legal Research class at UConn Law School on November 17.

Three OCLC staff members interviewed Bibliographic Services Unit Head Stephen Slovasky and Government Information Unit Head Julie Schwartz to gather information for a case study to be written about the Digital Archive project. OCLC will use the case study as a marketing tool and as a `best practices' teaching tool for other libraries using the digital archive service.

History & Genealogy Office Assistant Kevin Johnson performed as William Webb on December 18, at the Madison Middle School, Trumbull and on December 20, at the Willimantic Library Service Center.

Quotations researched and chosen by Ms. Jernigan and Government Services Reference Librarian Marcia Matika as part of the Stamford Courthouse Lobby Committee have now been installed on the walls of the building.

Because of recent damage to the roof at Van Block, water leaked into the Information Services and Museum collections area. Boxes of oversize fragile newspapers were damaged. Another 17 items, some from the Masters collection, had significant mold growth. Preservation staff worked to dry them out; some had to be withdrawn. The roof will be repaired and since the damage was possibly caused by vandalism, there will be more surveillance of the property.

There is also a continuing problem of water leaking into Room L701 where legislative bills and committee archives are stored. Some files were damaged and are being dried.

There are now over 200 `objects' (publications) in the CT Digital Archive. Most are Office of Legislative Research reports and Comptroller reports. The 2002 Digest of Administrative Reports to the Governor, only available as an online publication, has been cataloged and archived as a digital document. The cataloging record for each state document placed in the CT Digital Archive contains links to both the online state agency copy, and the Digital Archive copy. A new flyer on the Connecticut State Documents Depository Library Program is being distributed to State agencies to inform them of the Digital Archive Project.

Library Automation
Unfortunately for the agency, Webmaster Chris Hickey was one of the January 4 layoffs. In the short term, Information Services Division Director Lynne Newell will attempt to maintain the CSL website by posting the most important additions and corrections. Administrative staff are exploring other possible options for maintaining the agency's websites.

Library For the Blind and Physically Handicapped (LBPH)
The program to provide free Mystic Seaport passes to patrons of the LBPH has been extended to December 31, 2003, through the joint agreement of the Library of Congress' National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped and the Mystic Seaport.

LBPH Unit Head Carol Taylor gave an LBPH presentation for the Board of Education Services for the Blind (BESB) Senior Grant Program in West Haven on November 6, and in Manchester on November 21.

Mrs. Taylor and Volunteer Tom Grossi attended the "Connecticut Commission on Aging 9th Annual Forum: Opportunities and Challenges for an Aging State and Union", sponsored by the Dept. of Social Services on November 8 in Waterbury.

Mrs. Taylor and Mr. Grossi were featured on the WKND (Windsor) radio show, "A Touch of Sugar", hosted by Audrey Levine on November 24.

Mrs. Taylor and Mr. Grossi staffed an LBPH exhibit for the Connecticut Society of Eye Physicians at the Radisson, Cromwell on December 13.

Nancy Peluso and Connecticut Documents Librarian Al Palko attended the CT GODORT (Government Documents Round Table) meeting at UConn on November 22.

Preservation Librarian Jane Cullinane attended the NEDCC (New England Document Conservation Center) Advisory Committee meeting on November 15, and the ACRL Preservation/Conservation Interest Group meeting on December 6.

Law/Legislative Reference Librarians Hilary Frye and Louise Tucker attended the NELLCO (New England Law Library Consortium) Reference Librarians meeting at Western New England School of Law on November 22.

A new Legislative Aide, paid for by Legislative Management, has begun work in the Bill Room and will be with us through the legislative session.

The Division of Library Development sponsored two workshops for New Library Directors on December 20 and January 13. A total of 40 directors attended the two events. Staff from the Division of Library Development reviewed available services, grant opportunities and programs of the Division as well as legal requirements for public libraries. The Cooperating Library Service Units (CLSUs) also spoke about their services for libraries. Based on the positive response to the workshop the Division will be making it an annual event.

Mary Engels received fourteen nominations for the Excellence in Public Library Service Awards that were due in December. This award program is a joint project of the Connecticut Library Association and the State Library. Judges from outside Connecticut will be meeting the first week of February to choose the winners. The award honors excellence in library service.

Another joint project of the Connecticut Library Association (CLA) and the State Library is the exhibit of library photos in the Legislative Office Building (LOB) from April 1-15, 2003. A joint committee is soliciting photos from public, academic and school libraries to grace the walls of the LOB concourse during that time. Those attending the CLA Legislative Pot Luck Supper at the State Library on April 2 will be able to view the photos before or after the dinner.

On December 2, Susan Cormier, Children's Consultant made a presentation on public libraries to the Department of Education's After School Steering Committee. Ms. Cormier spoke on the kinds of after school services offered by libraries across the state as well as the resources libraries could offer to after school programs at other agencies.

On December 3, Susan Cormier and Linda Williams coordinated a field trip to the Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art in Amherst, Massachusetts for sixty-five children's services librarians. Information about the museum may be found at

Fifty children's services librarians attended the Book Examination and Discussion program on December 20. The program focused on the African American experience in children's literature. Kevin Johnson, from the History and Genealogy unit, gave his William Webb presentation at the program. Attendees were also given the opportunity to examine recently published books.

On January 10, Susan Cormier presented a program on summer reading to the Eastern Connecticut Libraries' Children's Librarians Round table.

Sharon Brettschneider spoke about voter registration requirements for public libraries at a meeting of the Southern Connecticut Library Council Circulation Roundtable on December 12, at the Willoughby Wallace Memorial Library in Stony Creek. Ms. Brettschneider and Eunice DiBella presented a workshop for the Public Library section of the Connecticut Library Association on November 20, at the Henry Carter Hull Library in Clinton. Ms. Brettschneider spoke on the confidentiality of library records. Ms. DiBella gave an overview of the records retention requirements for public libraries.

Stephen Cauffman, iCONN, took part in Auto-Graphics' Interlibrary Loan customer focus group via teleconference on December 11, 2002, to review and discuss new Interlibrary Loan screen mockups.

Steve Cauffman and Gail Hurley, iCONN, participated in an Auto-Graphics user group meeting on January 8, 2003.

The twenty members of the Connecticut Library Consortium (CLC) Planning Committee met for the first time on December 10 at the State Library's Van Block Facility. The Planning Committee's goals to be met by July 1 include building a consensus on the overall form and purpose of a new CLSU organization, the broad outline of major program and service areas for the CLC, transfer of incorporation from the existing Cooperating Library Service Units, a governance structure defined, including the composition and definition of the Board of Directors and its officers, and by-laws developed and approved. The Committee will meet regularly during the months of January through June. Diane Baden of Nelinet is facilitating the process for the State Library.

iCONN has prepared a mailing to all legislators providing current information about iCONN along with a newsletter insert that legislators may use to provide iCONN information to their constituents. The mailing will also serve to educate new legislators about iCONN. In addition, new legislators will receive the same special iCONN library cards (enabling remote access to the databases) that were distributed to all legislators last year.

ICONN has added many more sources and topics to the Additional Research Resources section of iCONN at, with an emphasis on full-text primary sources in the public domain. The site will continue to be developed as new sources become available.

A Proposal Review Team was formed to complete development of the Request For Proposal (RFP) for the next generation of reQuest. The Proposal Review Team will also be developing evaluation criteria, and will be involved with the evaluation vendor responses. The committee includes representatives from public and academic libraries. iCONN is receiving good guidance from the Department Of Information Technology on the RFP process.

ReQuest Participation Statistics
There are now 245 libraries using one or more of the reQuest statewide library catalog services (an increase from 228 libraries in July 2002). Included are 132 public libraries, 76 school libraries, 21 academic libraries and 16 special libraries. 191 libraries are using the interlibrary loan service, 183 using WebCAT, 65 using CatExpress and 27 using full cataloging.

Filled Interlibrary Loan Requests: Public Access Catalog Searches:

ICONN Statistics
Statistics for the first six months of this fiscal year show a 22% increase in use from last year. From July through December 2001, there were 2,030,589 searches on iCONN. During the same period in 2003 there were 2,498,643 searches.

The January 2003 issue of iCONN Times is now available at in the iCONN Times section. A copy is included in your packet.

Meeting with Auto-Graphics on the AGent
Kendall Wiggin, Sharon Brettschneider and iCONN staff (Steve Cauffman, Jane Emerson, Gail Hurley and William Sullivan) met with Albert Flores, Vice President of Marketing for Auto-Graphics on November 22, to discuss implementation of the AGent. Auto-Graphics has provided us with an iCONN-specific version of the AGent, which we are now attempting to further customize to meet our needs, including our authentication and logo requirements. AGent will provide a single-search interface for all the databases on iCONN, including the reQuest catalog. When implemented, users will be able to type in a term and search all the databases at once.

CT Digital Library Board Database Committee
The Database Committee, coordinated by Sharon Brettschneider, met on November 21 to develop strategies for dealing with possible budget cuts for the next fiscal year. Jane Emerson presented the committee with the current statistics on usage, cost and cost per search for each database. The contract for the Tier One databases is in the second year of a two-year contract with two one-year extensions possible. Given the current budget situation, the general satisfaction with the databases and the work that is being done for the reQuest RFP, it was decided not to work on a new RFP for the Tier One databases for next year. The committee will begin looking at an RFP for the fall of 2003 for implementation by July 2004. Given the possible budget cuts for the next fiscal year, Sharon Brettschneider asked the committee for their recommendations on how to prioritize the databases well in advance of July 1. It was decided that the Connecticut Council of Academic Library Directors would be the best group to decide on priorities for the academic library databases. Jonas Zdanys (Dept. of Higher Education) and Sam Brown (Albertus Magnus College Library) subsequently brought this issue to the Council's December 13 meeting. For the school library databases it was decided that the Connecticut Educational Media Association Executive Board focus group discussions would be the best way to determine priorities. Subsequently, Jane Emerson attended Connecticut Educational Media Association's January 8 meeting for this purpose. Ms. Emerson is in the process of scheduling discussions at the regional public library reference roundtables in order to get feedback from the public library community

The membership of the Connecticut Digital Library Advisory Board and category of membership, effective January 1, 2003, is as follows:

Alan Benkert, Groton Public Library - for public librarian
Cheryl Beturne, Enfield Public Library - for public librarian
David Bretthauer, UCONN/Storrs - for academic librarian
Samuel Brown, Albertus Magnus College - for academic librarian
Betty Goyette - for State Department of Education
Alfred Hopkins, Jr., Area Cooperative Educational Services - for business community or library user
Anne Maio, Bridgeport Public Library - for librarian (other)*
Alana Meloni, C.H. Booth Library - for parent of K-12 student
Jenifer O'Connor, Sarah Noble Intermediate School - for school librarian
Deborah Salewski, Hebron Elementary School - for school librarian*
Jim Smith, Naugatuck Valley Community College - for teacher (school or college)

Permanent Members:
Kendall Wiggin, State Librarian, CT State Library
Jonas Zdanys, Chief Academic Officer, State Dept. of Higher Education
* new members

iCONN Training
The Regional Educational Service Centers announced a series of new iCONN training sessions for public school library media specialists for January - May 2003, including:

Location: ACES (Hamden)
January 6, 2003 (9:00 am - 3:00 pm)

Location: EASTCONN (Hampton)
February 4, 2003 (8:00 am - 2:00 pm)

Location: LEARN (Old Lyme)
February 14, 2003 (9:00 am - 2:30 pm)

Location: EASTCONN (Hampton)
March 3, 2003 (8:00 am - 2:00 pm)

Location: CREC (Hartford)
April 2, 2003 (8:30 am - 11:30 am)

Location: CREC (Hartford)
April 2, 2003 (Noon - 3:00 pm)

Location: CES (Trumbull)
May 1, 2003 (9:00 am - 3:00 pm) AND
May 8, 2003 (4:00 pm - 6:00 pm - follow-up)

Location: LEARN (Old Lyme)
May 6, 2003 (9:00 am - 2:30 pm)

iCONN training for public and academic libraries was provided by Stacy Knibloe from Gale Group and Jane Emerson from iCONN in four half-day, hands-on training workshops at the Middletown Library Service Center on December 18 and 19. Six additional half-day training sessions have been scheduled for January 28 at the Middletown Library Service Center, January 29 at Van Block and January 30 at Darien Library.

LeAnn Johnson attended a three-day workshop at the Northeast Document Conservation Center on December 11-13, 2002, held in Andover, MA. The workshop was on Collections Maintenance and included topics on processing archival material; storage and handling of books and paper; library binding; planning and managing an in-house repair program; in-house treatment; care of photographs, magnetic, optical and electronic media; working with a conservator and professional conservation treatment. This is the second workshop in a five-part series.

Ms. Johnson reviewed and processed 55 grant applications for Cycle 2. Out of 169 towns, 164 towns applied and received a grant for Cycle 1 and Cycle 2 for a combined total of $1,026,825.

State Archives
On December 31, we received 1,000 copies of the Guide to Archives in the Connecticut State Library. This is the fourth edition and first guide issued since 1981. It gives summaries of approximately 180 record groups. Throughout the text, there are photographs of images and records from the collection. An Index will help researchers locate records by subject. The State Library sent complimentary copies to all of the State Archivists and State Librarians, all principal Connecticut public libraries, and all of the private and public academic libraries in the State.

On December 10, State Archivist Mark Jones conducted a tour of the Van Block facility to the Connecticut Library Consortium Planning Committee.

On December 3, Mark Jones and Kendall Wiggin attended a meeting of the Connecticut History Online Selection Committee at Mystic Seaport to discuss procedures in determining what materials from participating institutions will be posted to the Connecticut History Online website.

The Museum is hosting a traveling exhibit "Preserving Memory: America's Monumental Legacy", with its statewide debut January 13, in Memorial Hall. The exhibit was developed by Save Outdoor Sculpture!, a national project devoted to caring for and learning from America's collection of outdoor sculpture. The exhibit is a series of 20 full-color panels that feature nearly 200 artworks. Visitors will be encouraged to consider the impulses behind the creation of public sculpture and to reflect on their own community's origins memorialized through its monuments. The exhibit runs through February, 2003. Preserving Memory" is co-sponsored by the Connecticut Historical Commission and the Militia Heritage Committee of the Connecticut Military Department.