Connecticut State Library with state seal


July 25, 2005

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 July 25, 2005 meeting of the Board, covers the period of May 24, 2005, through July 24, 2005.

Attached to this report.

Vacancies (State Funded) Vacancies (Federal Funds)

Positions Filled Since Last Report

  1. User Support Specialist (Automation – part-time 30 hours) – Michael Manson
  2. Library Aide (Mailroom – part-time 30 hours) – Jaime Rodrigues
  3. Library Aide (Photoduplication & Graphics – part-time 30 hours) – Claudia Joseph
  4. Library Aide (Collection Management – part-time 30 hours) – Elizabeth Esquilin
  5. Library Aide (Government Information Services – part-time 30 hours) – Eric Paiva
  6. Library Aide (History & Genealogy – part-time 30 hours) – Angella Swaby
  7. Library Aide (Law Legislative Reference – part-time 30 hours) – Griselle Colon
  8. Library Aide (Preservation – part-time 30 hours) – Stefan Lupu

General Workers
In January 2005 I reported that we were informed that the state was revising the “general worker” classification calling it auxiliary worker and making it a not to exceed 1,040 hours a year position with benefits and that by July 1st we had to have everyone in conformance with the new classification or try and find them new positions. Thanks to the hard work of Louise Carey, head of our Human Resources office, and the cooperation of the Department of Administrative Services and the Office of Policy and Management, we were able to establish a new position – Library Aide – and have placed 6 former general workers in the new category. An employee from another agency who was on the re-employment list filed a seventh position. We will no longer be able to employee student workers – they can only by employed by higher education, but we are employing summer workers, and budget permitting will continue to in the future.

Legislative Session
Both the Regular Session and the Special Session have concluded and the Governor has signed the budget bills. In the general operating budget, all of the statewide library programs were level funded. These include: Connecticar, iCONN, the CLC, Grants to Public Libraries, and Connect card payments.

On a more positive note, Public Library Construction grants were funded at last year’s $3.5 million dollar level, which is higher than the Governor’s budget recommendation of $2.5 million. Additionally, the bond package included authorizations for 4 additional designated construction grants. The State Library has consistently objected to earmarking for specific projects, however, this does increase the total dollars authorized for public library construction in the State Library’s budget to $4 million in FY 06 and $5.125 million in FY07.

The State Library received a $70,000 increase in the book budget for FY06 and $140,000 additional in FY07. $300,000 was also authorized in bonding for the book budget in both FY06 and FY07. If approved by the Bond Commission, this would restore some of the earlier cuts to the book budget including some funds for the Service Center collections.

Additionally, an education curator position was added to the Museum staff beginning in 2006.

The Connecticut Education Network was funded through the Department of Information Technology at a level that will enable the work to connect public libraries to continue. All public libraries that wish to be should be connected by this Fall.

In other legislative matters, HB 6801 AN ACT CONCERNING CONFIDENTIALITY OF LIBRARY RECORDS passed the Senate, but was not taken up by the House of Representatives.

Advocacy Honor Roll
On June 24, 2005 at the American Library Association’s Annual Meeting in Chicago, ALA and the Association for Library Trustees and Advocates (ALTA) announced those to be added to the 2nd National Advocacy Honor Roll. Connecticut honorees were Governor M. Jodi Rell, the Friends of Connecticut Libraries and the Clementine Lockwood Peterson Foundation (Greenwich Library). The National Honor Roll was created in 2000 to identify and recognize those individuals and groups who have actively supported and strengthened library services at the local, state or national levels. I attended the Honor Roll Banquet along with Anita Wilson and her husband representing FOCL, and Mario Gomez and staff of the Greenwich Library representing the Peterson Foundation. The honorees names will be added to the Honor Roll plaque that will be placed at the Middletown Library Service Center.


Accomplishments/Division News

As part of our acceptance into the CONSER (Cooperative Online Serials) international authorized cataloging program, Rick Fitzgerald, a cataloger from the Library of Congress, provided training to Bibliographic Information Librarian Glynis Georgie on May 16th. Mr. Fitzgerald explained CONSER-level cataloging policies, discussed the original records we submitted with our program application for “authentication” and together, they worked on actual serials cataloging problems from our collection. Mr. Fitzgerald will continue to review our work for the next six months.

The Special Genealogical File project has been completed, adding 1,049 bibliographic records to our online catalog, CONSULS. Records can be searched by family name or keyword.

LBPH has been receiving much needed volunteer assistance from Rocky Hill High School, and from Care of CT and other regular volunteers.

New carpet tiles have been installed in the staff room and new tile has been installed in the receiving area where tape inspection is done. The new tile allows the tubs of tapes to move more easily. Air conditioning has been installed in LBPH Director Carol Taylor’s office.

Publicity and Publications
The June issue of the Family Tree magazine has an article on researching in Connecticut as part of its ‘State Research Guides’ series. Most of the article is about the wealth of resources at CSL and on our web site.

Web page updates
The web page creators have been extremely busy. The following new pages have been added and are linked from the New & Noteworthy Web page of our Web site.

Government Information Unit Head Julie Schwartz, Bibliographic Information Unit Head Stephen Slovasky, Public Records Administrator Eunice DiBella, and Anne McLeod from the Dept. of Information Technology attended the Library of Congress NDIIPP (National Digital Information Infrastructure Preservation Program) State Consultation Workshop on May 25, in DC. Fourteen states and one territory sent representatives. This is a continuing national effort by the Library of Congress to assist states in preserving electronic information in all forms including archives, public records and state publications. This meeting may initiate another funding cycle for the project

History and Genealogy Unit Head Dick Roberts hosted a CT Professional Genealogists Council meeting at Van Block and provided a tour of the Information Services Division storage area, including newspapers and city directories on June 2. Assistant Archivist Paul Baran explained his Rowland papers project to the Council.

Continuing Education
One of the priorities for Library Development is providing quality continuing education for library staff in Connecticut. We sponsor regular continuing education sessions throughout the year for little or no cost to libraries. In June, the Division sponsored 16 training sessions. 12 were conducted in the Willimantic or Middletown technology training labs. In July, sixteen technology sessions were held. Some of the topics offered were: Evolving Web: Search Engines, Browser Alternatives & Accessing the Deep Web; Introduction to PowerPoint; and Access for Non-Programmers. Mary Louise Jensen and Jane Cullinane coordinated two sessions of Wet Books! A Hands-on Workshop: Responding to a Water Emergency at Your Library with Lori Foley, Director of Field Service Northeast Document Conservation Center, and Steve Krol, Fire Marshal of South District of Middletown.

In addition, WebJunction Connecticut enables us to offer over fifty online courses to library staff in the state. Kris Abery is the coordinator of continuing education for the Division of Library Development.

Long Range Planning Grants
The Division of Library Development announced the availability of $70,000 in Library Services and Technology Act funding for grants for public library long-range planning. Grants of $3,000 to $10,000 will be awarded. The purpose of the grant is to assist public libraries with development of long-range plans. Priority will be given to libraries that use the PLA Planning for Results process and are planning a construction project in the next four years. Grant applications must be submitted by October 7, 2005. The grant period will be January 1, 2006 to December 31, 2006. A local match of 25% of the amount of federal funds requested will be required. Applications are available online at:

Connecticut Education Network
The Division of Library Development and the Department of Information Technology held three information sessions for public libraries in June on the Connecticut Education Network (CEN). Policies for connecting public libraries to the CEN were adopted by the Commission for Educational Technology in March 2005. In April the State Library sent a letter to libraries explaining the status of the CEN and providing a copy of the policies. Public libraries were also asked to fill out an online survey and return a Letter of Agreement signifying their willingness to be connected to the CEN.

2nd round for Gates Staying Connected Grant Opportunity
The State Library received a grant of $163, 680 to support public libraries’ efforts to “stay connected.” The first round of free public access computer technical training made possible by the grant has been completed. 26 libraries successfully completed the training and are now eligible for grant-funded discounts on technical support through Bibliomation. An announcement has been sent to the remaining qualifying libraries of a second round opportunity. Libraries are eligible for the opportunity if (either): their service population is under 10,000; or the Gates Foundation has established that the poverty rate in their community is greater than 10%.

The series of enhancements planned to improve iCONN usability were successfully implemented on the evening of June 16, 2005. The response to these changes has been overwhelmingly positive. In addition, the collection of e-books contributed by Gale has been implemented with authentication in the public, school and college classic menus, and MARC records containing links to each e-book have been added to the reQuest main catalog. Direct links to each e-book have also been made available through the iCONN site index so that libraries can post the links on their home pages.

Public Awareness
The newly designed iCONN bookmark was distributed to 75,000 state employees along with their paychecks in June. Bookmarks are also being distributed upon request to libraries to make available to their patrons. We plan to print an additional 600,000 bookmarks to be distributed by the DMV along with motor vehicle registration renewal notices at the rate of 50,000 per month over a one-year period.

Gail Hurley, Statewide Catalog Coordinator, gave a presentation and answered questions on Circulation Status in reQuest at the Annual Meeting of Library Connection held at the Farmington Library on June 10, 2005. As a result of her presentation, Library Connection voted overwhelmingly to contribute circulation status information to reQuest for all Library Connection libraries.

The beginning of this fiscal year marks the fifth year of the Historic Documents Preservation Grant Program. On July 13, 2005, award letters for FY2006 Cycle 1 Historic Document Preservation grants were sent to grant applicants. A total of 107 municipalities received grants in Cycle 1 amounting to $939,000.

On June 14th, the Office of the Public Records Administrator and State Archives held a full day workshop for Connecticut Town Clerks entitled, “Winning Strategies for Successful Municipal Records Management Programs.” The workshop was funded by the Historic Document Preservation Account and was the seventh in a series of workshops for Town Clerks or their designees. The workshop was held at the Institute of Technology and Business Development Conference Center at Central Connecticut State University in New Britain, CT. Dr. Mark Langemo, Professor Emeritus in the College of Business and Public Administration at the University of North Dakota, spoke at the workshop. Mollie Keller, State Library Board Chair and Archivist and Records Manager for the City of Bridgeport attended the workshop and introduced the program.

State Archives
State Archivist Mark Jones chaired a meeting of the Connecticut State Historical Records Advisory Board on May 20th at the State Library Van Block Facility. Archives and Public Records Staff, along with State Librarian Kendall Wiggin and State Library Board Chair Mollie Keller attended the meeting. Mr. Wiggin reported on the State Library Budget.