Connecticut State Library with state seal


November 22, 2004

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 November 22, 2004 meeting of the Board, covers the period of September 28, 2004, through November 21, 2004.

Attached to this report.

Personnel Report

Office Of The State Librarian
The Connecticut Heritage Foundation held a very successful Gala at the State Capitol Saturday evening October 23rd to celebrate the 150th anniversary of the Connecticut State Library. Proceeds from the evening will benefit the programs of the State Library and the Museum of Connecticut History.

The State Library has received a grant from the Department of Public Health for a media campaign to promote the State Library's website for parents of young children and caregivers. The State Library will be working with the DPH to add content on a variety of children's health issues.

A Division Staff meeting was held in the Attorney's Conference Room on September 30th to recognize the accomplishments of Information Services Division staff. Awards were given for achievement, innovation, outreach, team achievement, and persistence.

History and Genealogy Office Assistant Kevin Johnson received the DAR Nutmeg Award for "Enhancing and Adding Zest to History" on September 24. Mr. Johnson also received an award from the Connecticut Heritage Foundation at the CSL 150th Anniversary Gala.

The CT Daughters of the American Revolution and the Descendants and Founders of Ancient Windsor have each donated $150 worth of books to History and Genealogy in celebration of CSL's 150th Anniversary.

Government Information Unit Head Julie Schwartz attended the October 13 Advisory Committee Meeting of the Library of Congress Partnership for Preservation of Government Digital Information in Washington, D.C. as one of the invited experts.

Name Indexes
Legislative Aide Chelsea Hammond has begun compiling the names of people profiled in the Law & Legislative Reference biographical and obituary clipping files to make a name index available for searching on our Website. Other names from biographical sketches, judges' memorials, legislators, newspapers clipping file, the portrait index in the archives, and card drawers of indexes to portraits could all be included to enable access to names through one name search.

CSL Website
Recent additions to the State Library website include the 2004 Public and Special Acts Index, a new "Spotlight on the Law Collection" series with books on constitutional law as the focus of the first one, a basic bibliography on Connecticut history, a list of local histories containing genealogical information, and a list and topical index to the Connecticut Tercentenary Pamphlet series.

Reorganization of the Reading Room
Two Information Services Division staff meetings were held to discuss the reorganization of the Law reading room. Changes to be made include new flooring, elimination of the circulation desk, a new photocopy center, general redesign of the room, and inclusion of wireless technology.

The Library of Congress' National Digital Information Infrastructure and Preservation Program (NDIIPP) has awarded a $ 2.7 million grant to a consortium of eight institutions including CSL and four other state libraries, OCLC, and three universities. The University of Illinois is the lead partner in the grant that will develop criteria for determining which digital materials to capture and preserve, as not all digital material can or should be preserved. These materials will include sound and video recordings, historical aerial photography, Web-based government publications from the partner states, and primary and secondary historical materials made available by the Perseus Project. Bibliographic Information Unit Head Stephen Slovasky and Government Information Unit Head Julie Schwartz attended a conference on October 10 to organize the project. Two tools will be tested in April: 1) a domain tool to identify space and 2) an entity tool to set up organizational units. CSL will determine the effectiveness of the tools for state government preservation. The project will work towards a seamless technology between digital archive and new technological advances.

Connecticut Town Documents
Collection Management staff sent letters to the 169 town clerks asking for municipal documents and have received 102 documents to date.

National Book Festival
On October 9, 2004, Mary Engels of the Middletown Library Service Center, along with Kat Lyons, from the Connecticut Center for the Book attended the National Book Festival on the Mall in Washington DC. Over 75,000 people attend the festival to meet and hear authors celebrating books. Mary and Kat represented Connecticut with resources and information on our state in the Pavilion of the States at the festival. Funding is provided by the Library of Congress and administered by the council of State Library Agencies (COSLA) of which the State Library is a member.

New Director's Workshop
The Division held a New Director's Workshop for new public library directors on November 19th. The goal of the workshop was to inform new directors of the services of the Division along with an overview of their legal obligations such as the annual state aid application, patron confidentiality and records retention.

Gail Hurley returned to her former position at the iCONN office as the Statewide Library Catalog Coordinator, on October 15.

Kris Abery, formerly a reference librarian at the State Library, has become the new Continuing Education Coordinator, replacing Barry Woods who retired in July. Kris began her new position on November 12th.

New Contract with Auto-Graphics
Auto-Graphics and the Department of Information Technology have signed a new master agreement that encompasses the continuation and enhancement of the statewide library catalog service, authenticated access to all iCONN databases, federated searching and hosting of the iCONN home page. The enhanced service will allow patrons to search the statewide catalog and the iCONN databases with a single search. The agreement term is three years with options for three one-year extensions, and includes complete price protection for the duration of the agreement. The contract has been sent to the Attorney General's office for approval. iCONN has begun a 30-day acceptance test that will involve a number of participating libraries.

Durham Fair
iCONN exhibited at the Durham Fair on September 24th through the 26th. Over 230,000 people attended the Fair. The booth was successful in that it provided information about iCONN to at least 1,500 people during the three days of the Fair. The vast majority of people that we had conversations with had no knowledge of iCONN, but were amazed and pleased to learn that such a service exists for all of Connecticut. Bill Sullivan and Steve Cauffman coordinated the exhibit. We are very grateful to members of the Connecticut Digital Library Board who contributed part of their weekend to help staff the exhibit: Patricia Daragan (U. S. Coast Guard Academy Library, New London), Elizabeth Frechette (Naugatuck Valley Community College Library), and Alana Meloni (C. H. Booth Library, Newtown). Sharon Brettschneider, Mary Louise Jensen and Jane Emerson also helped staff the booth.

The Connecticard Task Force contracted with Mary Jackson of the Association of Research Libraries to conduct a cost study of non-resident loans. Data was collected from 28 participating libraries in October 2004. The report of her findings will be released at a public meeting for the library community on December 3rd, 2004 at 10:00 a.m. at the Legislative Office Building, Room 2C.

LSTA Grants
The Division of Library Development announced the availability of approximately $300,000 for the next round of Library Services and Technology Act funding for grants in the following categories: Adaptive Technology, Collaborations to Support Children's Literacy, Programs for Children in Poverty, Programs for Individuals with Disabilities, Programs for Children in Poverty, Programs for Individuals with Disabilities, Programs for Non-English Speaking Populations, and Programs for Older Adults. The grant period will be from July 1, 2005-June 30, 2006. Applications are due March 4, 2005. All libraries planning on applying for an LSTA grant will be required to attend a one-day workshop on Outcome Based Evaluation.

Gates Foundation Grant
The State Library has been awarded a grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation of $163,680 to support public access computing sustainability efforts in public libraries. Funds will be used to provide:

  1. Replacement computers for the poorest of the libraries receiving computers under the original Gates State Partnership grant;
  2. Training through Bibliomation's BiblioTech program to create on-staff technical experts via a rigorous, 2-day certification program; and
  3. Subsidies for tech support contracts - again through Bibliomation's BiblioTech program.

Connecticut Libraries: It's Never Too Early Workshops
The Division of Library Development will kick off their emergent literacy publicity campaign, Connecticut Libraries: It's Never Too Early at three workshops in November and December. Participants will review the key elements of our early literacy message, develop strategies to keep this message on the minds of our patrons and our professional peers (teachers, board members, town officials, early childhood educators etc.) and learn creative ways to use the items in the PR kit. The goal of the campaign is to convey the role of public libraries in emergent literacy to parents, caregivers and literacy partners.

State Archives

Presidential "Politicking" in Connecticut" The State Archives with the assistance of the Museum of Connecticut History installed an exhibit documenting twentieth century trips by Presidents and candidates for the presidency to Connecticut and the role of Connecticut delegations at the 1940 Republican National Convention and the 1968 Democratic National Convention. All of the items on exhibit came from the State Archives and the Museum. A one-page handout describes the exhibit and its objects. On September 19, State Archivist Mark Jones appeared on the Channel 3 program, "Face the State," to discuss the exhibit and talk about a couple of photographs that appear in it.