Connecticut State Library with state seal

State Librarian's Report

March 27, 2000

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 24, 2000 meeting of the Board, covers the period of January 25, 2000, through March 24, 2000.

Financial Report
Attached to this report.

Personnel Report

  1. Financial Clerk (Admn. Serv.) Recruitment in process.
  2. Material Storage Supervisor 1(Public Records) - Subject to OPM hiring freeze.
  3. Library Technician (BIS) Subject to OPM hiring freeze.
  4. Supervising Program Associate - (Arts) - On hold.
  5. Secretary 1 (Admn Serv.) -ERIP/Hold.
  6. Fiscal Administrative Manager 1 (Admn Serv.) To be reclassified.
  7. Lead Hand Bookbinder and Restorer (Conservation Lab) - On hold.
  8. Systems Developer 3 (Library Development) - Request to establish denied by OPM.
  9. Administrative Assistant - Request for refill denied by OPM.

Vacancies (Federal Funds)

  1. Library Specialist (reQuest) - Recruitment in process.
  2. Messenger and Supply Clerk (LBPH) - On Hold.
  3. Clerk (LBPH) - On hold.

Positions Filled Since Last Report

  1. Library Specialist (reQuest)
  2. Library Specialist (Serials)

State Librarian's Report

As I reported earlier, the Governor's budget proposal includes several reductions from the Legislative approved budget for FY01.

Personal Services - 42,425
Other Expenses - 25,935
Statewide Database Program - 23,000
CLSUs - 41,200
CPTV - 34,340

The budget freeze will also continue which will continue to have a negative impact on our operations.

Because no increase had been included in the budget for law materials in either year of the biennium, the net affect is a further reduction in our buying power.

I am also troubled by the reduction in the CLSU budget. Their funding level will remain below the FY99 level.

On the plus side, the Governor has proposed $2million for the Connecticut Digital Library. This represents a significant new investment in Connecticut's libraries.

The Managers and I had a very positive meeting with the Elementary and Secondary Education Subcommittee of the Appropriations Committee on February 28. Our emphasis was on restoring the Library's and Museum's hours and the budget for law materials. We pointed out that our budget is just now returning to where we were in 1989, not accountin g for inflation.

Off-Site Shelving Facility
A meeting was held with the Dept. of Public Health (DPH), Dept. of Public Works (DPW) officials and State Library staff on January 19, to try and resolve issues raised by Public Health over their space requirements. Although the meeting didn't move us forward, it did provide us with a better understanding of where Public Health was coming from. I then spoke with Public Works Commissioner Anson asking him to get this issue settled. On March 3, a meeting was held at the Dept. Public Works to inform both Public Health and the State Library of the Commissioner' s decision. Basically, the Dept. of Public Health was to get no more than 3,500 square feet and would not have all of its requirements met. On March 9 our leasing agent from DPW, the landlord, representatives from DPH and I met at the facility on Van Block Avenue supposedly to signoff on the final plans for the building. I was satisfied and ready to signoff, but DPH held out for "fire rated" walls between our area and theirs and a few other minor items. At this writing, we are still waiting for DPH and DPW to resolve the fire wall issue.

Meeting with the Office of Tourism
Dean Nelson, Howard Miller, David Corrigan, representing the Museum, Ed Sullivan, representing the Museum Advisory Committee, and I, met with Ed Dombroskas, Executive Director of the Connecticut Office of Tourism to discuss what that office can to help us with the promotion of the Museum. The basic message from Mr. Dombroskas was that since the Museum is not open on weekends, it is not considered part of the fabric of Connecticut's tourism. He said it is hard to promote it when it has such limited hours. It was, however, a very positive meeting. We are in the process of following up on many of the great ideas that Mr. Dombroskas shared with us. It was also very informative to learn of the services provided by his office. He also suggested that the First Lady was interested in the Museum and that I should write to her about the hours. I have done that, but have not had a reply as of yet.

Education Network/Digital Library
In addition to the Digital Library mentioned above, the Governor also has included in his budget proposal:

$20 million to finance 2 years of wiring schools and libraries.

$10 million to finance 2 years of the money needed to implement the CT Education Network (CEN).

$50,000 in the State Library budget as a pass through grant to CT Voices for Children to establish "parent academies". The intention here is to help parents understand and use the Internet.

On February 28, I was one of five presenters, in addition to Lt. Governor Rell, at a forum on School Technology. The Education Committee called the forum. The Committee seemed very receptive to the Education Network and the Digital Library. They were mainly concerned about teacher training and the infusion of technology into the curriculum.

Legislative Activity
Several bills have been introduced in this session that will impact directly on the State Library and/or libraries.

SB130 An Act Concerning Educational Technology

Statement of Purpose: To implement the Governor's budget recommendations

Sen. M. Adela Eads, 30th Dist.
Rep. Robert M. Ward, 86th Dist.

Rep. Brian J. Flaherty, 68th Dist.
Rep. Leonard C. Greene, 105th Dist.

Bill History:
02/10/00 REF. TO JOINT COMM. ON Education Committee
02/18/00 PUBLIC HEARING 02/28

SB566 An Act Enhancing Cultural Heritage.
Statement of Purpose: To increase spending for and oversight of tourism and cultural heritage.

Commerce Committee

Bill History:
03/01/00 REF. TO JOINT COMM. ON Commerce Committee
03/03/00 PUBLIC HEARING 03/09

HB 5178 An Act Concerning Real Estate Filings And The Preservation Of Historic Documents.
Statement of Purpose: To make funds available for the preservation of historic documents.

Planning and Development Committee

Rep. Steve Fontana, 87th Dist.

Bill History:
02/09/00 REF. TO JOINT COMM. ON Planning and Development Committee
02/10/00 PUBLIC HEARING 02/16
03/07/00 REFERRED TO OLR, OFA 03/13/00-5:00 PM
03/10/00 RPTD. OUT OF LCO
03/10/00 FAV. RPT., TAB. FOR CAL. HO.
03/10/00 FILE NO. 37

HB 5737 An Act Concerning Underperforming Schools And School Readiness.
Statement of Purpose: ....To provide grants to public libraries in school districts which have schools on the list to establish partnership programs with such schools. . .
Note: this is just one of many stated purposes of the bill.

Education Committee

Bill History:
02/24/00 REF. TO JOINT COMM. ON Education Committee
02/25/00 PUBLIC HEARING 03/03

Connecticut Heritage Foundation (CHF)
The CHF met on March 13, but do to a lack of a quorum, was unable to conduct its annual meeting. The annual meeting will now take place at the June 12 meeting. Chairman Petersen was very concerned about what seems to be a lack of interest on the part of some of the Board members. There was discussion concerning the recruitment of new Board members. The Board can have as many as 24 members. I encouraged Board members to contact their legislators about funding to open the Library and Museum on weekends. There was also discussion about a planned event in May in conjunction with the new Civil War exhibit that opens in April and a new logo for the Foundation.

Space Study
Tim Desroches from the Department of Public Works and I met to discuss the lack of progress being made on the finalization of the space study. He has been trying to negotiate with Harvey Schorr of Providence Associates, Inc. Based on the discussions that I had with Mr. Desroches, I am drafting what I would like to see as recommendations (or more accurately, what I don't want to see). It is Mr. Desroches view that once we have a report that demonstrates the need (which the report does do) and suggests some possible solutions that we can live with, his office would then come up with estimated costs for the various options. The next step would be to sell the need to the Administration and the Legislature. Any funds that would be appropriated would include the funds needed to develop an actual plan.

Professional Activity
I have been attending meetings of the various units of the State Library in an effort to better understand their services and to meet the staff.

I chaired the (almost) Spring meeting of the Council of State Library Agencies in the Northeast (COSLINE). COSLINE is doing some strategic planning to see how we can utilize the New England Library Compact that was enacted by each New England state in 1963, particularly when it comes to licensing electronic library resources. I attended the Board meeting of Libraries for the Future (LFF). Connecticut has a growing number of public libraries that are involved in LFF's Family Place program.

I attended an informational meeting on a "Hartford Heritage Development Initiative" called by the Capitol City Economic Development Authority. In attendance were representatives from the Hartford arts and cultural heritage community, tourism, business and city government. The group will be developing a proposal for possible federal funding in support of the cultural heritage attractions in Hartford.

Sharon. Brettschneider and I have been participating in a small planning committee for a leadership conference sponsored by the Association of Connecticut Library Boards and the State Library to be held this Fall.

I participated in follow-up to the planning day for the Cooperating Library Service Units (CLSUs) as well as a strategic planning session for NELINET. These have been important meetings as we attempt to define and improve our working relationship.

I attended two legislative receptions hosted by the Western Connecticut Library Council, one at the Fairfield Public Library and the other in Washington at the International College of Hospitality Management. I also attended the Eastern Connecticut Library legislative reception in Colchester. I continue to participate in an ad hoc group that is looking at the data needs of various organizations involved in children's issues and the project to establish a web portal for parents.

In addition, I attended the regular meetings of the ConneCT Management Advisory Committee, CT Library Association (CLA), CLA Legislative Committee, CT Library Network, Joint Commission on Educational Technology, and Museum Advisory Committee.

Public Records Administration
Public Records Administrator Eunice G. DiBella did two records management presentations for local governments. On February 22, 2000, Ms. DiBella did a presentation on the retention and disposition of local government records for Town of Bloomfield employees. On February 24, 2000, she did a presentation for Town of Windsor employees on the same subject.

On January 28, 2000, State Archivist Mark Jones assisted Librarian Richard Frieder of the Connecticut Historical Society by recommending priorities for processing.

On February 23, 2000, Public Records Administrator Eunice DiBella and State Archivist Mark Jones attended a meeting in Cromwell of the Connecticut Town Clerk's Association Executive Committee. The purpose of the meeting was to discuss the recording fee legislation and continuing the partnership with the Governor's Historical Records Advisory Board in holding educational workshops.

On February 25, 2000, Special Projects Archivist Barbara Austen began working on a project processing the official records of Governor William A. O'Neill. This is a joint project between the State Library and Central Connecticut State University's Institute for the Study of Public Policy and Practical Politics. The processing/preparation phase will last for two years. The long range goal is a microfilm copy of the O'Neill records. The Special Project Archivist is working under the supervision of State Archivist Mark Jones.

On February 9, and March 1, 2000, State Archivist Mark Jones appeared at two sessions of the History of Hartford course at Trinity College. Mr. Jones spoke on sources for Hartford history and African-Americans in Hartford after 1900.

Division Of Library Development

Continuing Education
The Division's Continuing Education Program continues to bring the library community hands-on computer and software training at about one tenth of the cost of the same training in the private sector.

Two sessions of Working Smarter in Microsoft Windows/Word were planned for April 4th and May 11th. Since registrations filled in 48 hours and a waiting list developed, two additional sessions of the workshop have been scheduled for May 18 & 19.

Developing Budgets and Charts in Excel: An Introduction and MS Access: An Introduction will be presented in April and repeated in May. Introduction to Publisher 98 will be conducted for the sixth time on April 3.

The three-day workshop PC Repair & Maintenance has been presented to the library community over thirty times at Norwalk C/T College during 1997-1999. This workshop will be presented at the Middletown Library Service Center (MLSC) Computer Training Center for the first time starting April 26. It may need to be repeated several times during the coming year.

A series of half-day workshops called Resources on the Internet has been popular with the library community. In 1999, Legal Resources on the Internet, Federal Information on the Internet, Genealogy Resources on the Net and State Documents on the Internet were presented multiple times. This year Business Resources on the Internet will be presented on May 31, and repeated on June 21. Family Law Resources on the Net for Public Librarians will be given on June 15 and repeated on July 20. Investment Resources on the Net is currently being planned.

Mary Louise Jensen, Building Consultant, held a workshop on the Library Space Planning Guide at the Middletown Library Service Center Training Center on March 9, and at the Willimantic Library Service Center on March 14 with a total attendance of 17 people.

Connecticut Digital Library (reQuest)
A total of 191 libraries have submitted agreements to participate in reQuest, including 113 public, 46 school, 20 academic and 12 special libraries. 151 libraries have been trained and activated to provide interlibrary loan services, enabling their patrons to submit and track requests over the Web; 103 libraries have been trained in cataloging services; and 182 libraries have been trained in basic services.

A candidate has been identified to fill the Interlibrary Loan Coordinator position. The new coordinator will start in May.

A statewide database discount program for Ethnic News Watch and Diversity Your World has been offered to Connecticut libraries.

Public Library Awards
The Connecticut State Library, the Connecticut Library Association, and the Connecticut Chapter of the American Institute of Architects are co-sponsoring a joint award program for the design of public libraries in Connecticut.

To encourage excellence in the architectural design and functional planning of Connecticut public library buildings, we are offering a certificate and cash award for a public library building project in Connecticut designed by an architect practicing and licensed in Connecticut. The project may be for a new building, an addition, renovation or conversion to library use. An award will be made at the AIA Connecticut conference in October 2000 and at the Connecticut Library Association conference in 2001 and every other year thereafter. Sharon Brettschneider, Mary Engels and Mary Louise Jensen are on the Public Library Awards Committee. Ms. Jensen is chair of the Building Awards subcommittee and will facilitate the juror process for the committee.

Assistive Technology
The Connecticut State Library, the Office of Protection and Advocacy (OPA) for Persons with Disabilities, the University of Connecticut Assistive Technology Training Center and the Connecticut Tech Act Project will be cooperating on a joint training and awareness initiative focusing on assistive technology for Connecticut library patrons. Coordinating the project are Gretchen Knauff, Assistive Technology Coordinator for OPA and Carol Magliocco, Coordinator of Assistive Technology at UCONN, along with Sharon Brettschneider, Director, Division of Library Development and Mary Louise Jensen, Building Consultant, Division of Library Development.

As part of the Assistive Technology Initiative, will be publicizing the efforts of local libraries to meet the needs of their patrons with disabilities. The Division of Library Development is conducting a survey to determine the features, services or equipment offered by libraries in order to spotlight them in a local newspaper, project website or library conference or newsletter.

LSTA Grants
A Library Services and Technology Act grant announcement has been sent to all public, school, academic and institutional libraries in Connecticut. Grants applications are being accepted in the following categories:

Adaptive Technology
Resource Sharing Technology
Children in Poverty
Outreach Programs for Children
Outreach Programs for Older Adults
Family Literacy
Foreign Language Collection Development
Long Range Planning
Grant applications must be submitted by May 12, 2000.

Information Services Division

Reference Services
Through our consortial arrangement with the Connecticut State University libraries, we have become the first State library to acquire JSTOR, a non-profit provider of journal runs from first date of publication in electronic form. Access to over 4 million pages in 729,000 articles from 117 titles in fifteen subject disciplines of serial is now available from the Reference Resources Webpage. Some of these titles duplicate runs we hold in paper copy; removing the paper copies will free badly needed shelf space for newly published materials.

Since October the Division has been participating in a OCLC pilot project called Cooperative Online Resource Catalog (CORC), an international effort of several hundred libraries to create a database describing Web-based electronic resources. Connecticut State Library's project evaluates, selects, describes, and presents substantive policy resources, "published" only in electronic format, in the areas of Brownfields, Campaign Finance Reform, Children's Health Indicators (Asthma, Immunization, Infant Mortality), Medical Technology, and School Readiness. We focussed on Connecticut government electronic resources in these areas, but also searched for and described substantive policy resources in these areas from the federal government, other state and local governments, and from major private institutions. In February, the results of this project were made available through Public Policy Pathfinders on the CSL Webpage.

Visitors, tours, presentations and training

As in the past several years, groups of school students with their teachers visited the Library to do research and preparation for their History Day projects.

In collaboration with Legislative Management, tours specifically for Legislators and their staff were offered for the first time. Two were quickly 'sold out' and a third tour scheduled. A snow day caused cancellation of one, but the others were extremely well attended and well received.

Law/Legislative Research Unit Head Denise Jernigan guided a tour of new researchers from the Office of Legislative Research. Four tours for legislative interns were also given.

As follow-up to the Staff Development Day request for better understanding of what other parts of the agency do, tours of each work group are being held for CSL staff members. In January and February tours were given in Bibliographic Services, Government information, Collection Management, and the CT Library Network.

Government Information Reference Librarian Nancy Lieffort and Denise Jernigan gave a tour for two groups of elementary school students from the Branford district at the request of their legislator.

History & Genealogy Unit Head Dick Roberts gave a presentation on the History & Genealogy Unit's services at the Stafford Public Library.

The History & Genealogy Unit hosted a Valentine's Day Appreciation Luncheon for members of the CSL Researchers List. Held in the Attorneys' Conference room, the event included lunch, special recognition awards, and a William Webb presentation.

Office Assistant Kevin Johnson gave William Webb presentations at the Blue Hills Branch of the Hartford Public Library, the Hopewell Baptist Church, the Enfield Public Library, the Daughters of the American Revolution in Meriden, the Union Baptist Church, and St. Timothy Middle School.

Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped Unit Head Carol Taylor gave presentations about LBPH at the Masonic Home Ashlor Retirement Village, the Masonic Home Windham Falls Estate in Groton, the Windsor Senior Center, the Amity Junior High School, and the Board of Education And Services For the Blind's Senior Grant Program in Norwich. The Masonic Home Low Vision Group came for a tour of LBPH.

Meetings Attended
Government Information Unit Head Julie Schwartz and State Documents Librarian Al Palko attended a 'Reference Points' Project meeting as part of the Parenting Webpage Project. Al Palko also visited the UConn Health Center Library with Ken Wiggin and Sharon Brettschneider as part of this project.

Press mentions
Channel 3 interviewed History & Genealogy Unit Head Dick Roberts and took footage in the H&G Reading Room. This footage was aired on the 11:00 p.m. news on February 16, as part of the Sally Hemings program follow up.

The Bibliographic Information Services Unit cataloged the originals and the microfilm copies of the Connecticut Archives, making this important series available through the catalog for the first time. Cataloging of the Library's collection of broadsides is being updated and added to the online catalog.

Carol Trinchitella began working as Serials Librarian in Collection Management. She has been the Head of the Serials and Receiving Unit at the North Texas University Library and has a strong background in serials management, Innovative Interfaces, and electronic resources.

Through the support of Legislative Management, Legislative Aides Paris Beckford and Elizabeth Corona have been hired to work in the Bill Room during the legislative session.