Texas State Library and Archives Commission

Monday, October 12, 2007 11:10 a.m.


The Texas State Library and Archives Commission (TSLAC) met on Friday, October 12, 2007, at 11:10 a.m., in Room 314 of the Lorenzo de Zavala State Archives and Library Building, 1201 Brazos Street, Austin, Texas.

Commissioners Present:
Sandra J. Pickett, Chairman

Diana Rae Hester Cox

Sally Reynolds

Martha Doty Freeman

Cruz G. Hernandez
Commissioners Absent:
Sharon T. Carr

Sandra G. Holland
Staff Present:
Peggy D. Rudd, director and librarian

Edward Seidenberg, assistant state librarian

Carolyn Foster, assistant director, State Archives

Diana Houston, assistant director, Information Services

Ava Smith, director, Talking Book Program

Deborah Littrell, director, Library Development

Beverley Shirley, director, Library Resource Sharing

Karen Drabek, director, Administrative Services

Michael Heskett, director, State and Local Records Management

Manuel Alvarez, director, Information Resources Technologies

Erica McKewen, communications officer

Tracy Kuhn Lash, executive assistant

Guests Present:
Carleton Wilkes, Jefferson Wells, Inc.

Robert DuPuy, Jefferson Wells, Inc.

Gloria Meraz, Texas Library Association

Sam Miller, Legislative Budget Board

Todd Kercheval, Culture, Recreation and Tourism Committee

Chairman Pickett convened the meeting at 11:14 a.m. and welcomed everyone to the meeting.

1. Approve Minutes of the August 6, 2007, Audit Committee and Commission Meetings.

Commissioner Reynolds moved to approve the minutes of the August 6, 2007, Audit Committee. Commissioner Hernandez seconded.Motion passed.

Chairman Pickett asked for a motion to approve minutes of the full commission. Commissioner Freeman stated that she would like to see more documentation of discussions in the full commission meeting minutes particularly when staff are asked to follow up on any issues. She stated that there was a lengthy discussion during this meeting prior to the commission granting preliminary approval to local government records Retention Schedules EL (Records of Elections and Voter Registration), TX (Records of Property Taxation) and UT (Records of Public Utilities). She said the minutes as written do not adequately reflect her concerns expressed in the meeting about the schedules, particularly the one involving property taxation. Chairman Pickett asked Commissioner Freeman to provide some descriptive sentences to reflect her concerns to incorporate in the minutes and that the commission would consider the minutes at a later point in the meeting. Chairman Pickett informed the commission that the staff had noted Commissioner Freeman's concerns and would provide more detail in future minutes.

2. Public Comment.

Chairman Pickett asked for public comment. There was none. She introduced Sam Miller and Gloria Meraz.

3. General Announcements.

Peggy Rudd informed the commission that Chris LaPlante, state archivist, would not be back to work until after Nov. 1 due to illness. She introduced Carolyn Foster and Diana Houston, assistant directors in Archives and Information Services, who will be directing that division during Mr. LaPlante's absence.

4. Discussion and Scheduling of future meetings of the Library and Archives Commission.

Edward Seidenberg discussed possible commission meeting dates for the February 2008 meeting. He asked commissioners to let him know as soon as possible if Feb. 11, 2008, is a good date for them. Commissioner Hernandez invited the commission to Burleson for the February meeting. The commission meeting in April will take place at the Texas Library Association Annual Conference in Dallas and is scheduled for April 15.

5. Review of consent agenda: non-substantive corrections in other agenda items such as spelling, numbering, punctuation, grammatical or other revisions.

Non-substantive corrections to other agenda items were noted.

6. Consideration of Commemorative Resolutions.

There were no resolutions to consider.

7. Review and Approve Audit Committee Recommendations.

Commissioner Hernandez moved to approve the Audit Committee recommendations: acceptance of the Annual Internal Audit Report for FY2007 and approval of the Internal Audit Plan and Services Proposal for FY2008. No second is required. Motion passed

8. Report of the Director and Librarian.

Peggy Rudd provided a written report that updated the commission on agency activities during the fourth quarter of Fiscal Year 2007 and highlighted for the commission some of these as follows:

  • Talking Book Program activities including enrollment of over 1,200 patrons in the Unabridged program. Texas leads the nation in enrollment.
  • Library visits with State Rep. Lois Kolkhorst to highlight state funding of K-12 Database program for public schools, including online encyclopedia contract that commissioners will consider in this meeting.
  • Preliminary report of study on state's Interlibrary Loan program
  • Impact of additional state funds to public libraries through Loan Star Libraries
  • Impact on the agency of the Data Center Consolidation and particularly the computer downtime experienced due to problems with consolidation.
  • State and Local Records Management activities including the successful Eighth Annual e-Records Conference and the impact of falling revenue from imaging services.
  • Archives and Information Services activities related to moving archival material to offsite storage in preparation for the renovation of the Lorenzo de Zavala State Archives and Library Building. Contracts for offsite storage of archival material and asbestos abatement go before the Texas Facilities Commission on Oct. 17, 2007.
  • Cultivation events held in the library including an event being held that evening (Oct. 12, 2007).

Commissioner Freeman asked if the agency had any success recovering documents missing from the archives. Ms. Rudd said that Office of the Attorney General attorneys are very determinedly working on this issue.

Chairman Pickett informed the commission that in the future, they would receive monthly emails from Ms. Rudd to keep them informed of activities and issues between commission meetings.

Chairman Pickett recognized Todd Kercheval, clerk of the House Culture, Recreation and Tourism Committee. Mr. Kercheval stated that Chairman (Harvey) Hildebran has decided to pick up the ball for libraries the way he did for parks. Mr. Kercheval stated that there would be a concerted effort to educate committee members about the agency.

9. Review and Approve Acceptance of Gifts Greater than $500.

Peggy Rudd informed the commission of the following gifts presented to the agency:

The Talking Book Program received an unrestricted gift of $1,000.00 on Sept. 12, 2007, from Ira and Dorothy McNeely in appreciation of the program.

Commissioner Hernandez moved to approve this gift. Commissioner Cox seconded. Motion passed.

10. Review and Approve Contracts Greater than $100,000.

Beverley Shirley requested approval of the American Chemical Society database contract renewal negotiated by TSLAC staff to provide Texas libraries with access to online subscription databases produced by the ACS, the world's largest scientific society. Ms. Shirley stated that the contract value will be over $1,000,000. Subscribing libraries pay for the databases with no cost to TSLAC. The contract will run from Jan. 1 to Dec. 31, 2008. Commissioner Freeman moved to approve the contract. Commissioner Reynolds seconded. Motion passed.

Beverley Shirley requested approval of a contract with Encyclopedia Britannica to provide an online database encyclopedia for public school libraries. The value of the contract will not exceed $700,000, she said. The database includes an online school edition, a Spanish language encyclopedia and coordinates with the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills (TEKS). TSLAC staff negotiated the price, which Ms. Shirley said is a very good value. Commissioner Hernandez moved to approve. Commissioner Freeman seconded. Motion passed.

11. Discussion of plans to renovate the Lorenzo de Zavala State Archives and Library Building.

Peggy Rudd gave a brief report of building renovation activities including the following:

  • Final floor plans are available
  • Tile, carpet and paint color selections are available to review
  • Staff have begun work with shelving vendors to design and price systems
  • Because of the complexity of the project's phasing and the need to move archival material, the Texas Facilities Commission hired a moving consultant to coordinate the move. She required staff to complete inventory lists of all equipment and furniture and plans for that equipment and furniture. Her work has reduced move costs by 25 percent.
  • Moving company hiring had to be rebid. Moving contract will be approximately $600,000 although there is only $150,000 in the budget for moving.
  • The agency has a contract for offsite storage for archival material. Cost will be approximately $500,000 for two years

12. Discussion of plans for the Transforming Texas Libraries / Statewide Visioning Process.

Peggy Rudd informed the commission about the agency partnership with the Texas Library Association (TLA) for a broad, statewide long range planning process for library development and the future of libraries in the state. Called "Transforming Texas Libraries," the timing of this initiative will dovetail with the agency strategic plan and appropriations request for the next legislative session.

The initiative for Transforming Texas Libraries came about this past summer out of discussions with TLA staff and officers that it was time for a statewide planning process for the future of libraries. The last process took place in the early 1990s and was called Access Texas.

Those involved formed a steering committee that has planned a summit and is inviting approximately 100 library stakeholders and representatives from certain state agencies. The summit will explore and then determine direction and guidance to libraries in the coming years. The summit will take place in early December with plans to present a draft of the summit findings at the TLA Annual Conference in April 2008. Ms. Rudd invited the commission to attend the summit and future regional meetings to learn from participants what challenges libraries face and how t hey can position themselves for the future.

Edward Seidenberg mentioned that Commissioner Carr and Former Commissioner Patrick Heath will participate in the summit.

No action required.

At this point in the meeting, Chairman Pickett reopened Item No. 1 to approve commission minutes from the Aug. 6, 2007, commission meeting. Commissioner Freeman asked that the following be inserted in the minutes: There was discussion about the records of property tax. Dr. Heskett offered to investigate in response to questions and to bring his findings to the full commission for consideration. Commissioner Reynolds moved to approve the minutes. Commissioner Freeman seconded. Motion passed.

13. Authorization to propose amendments to 13 TAC 3.4 relating to Texas Record and Information Locator (TRAIL).

Beverley Shirley requested approval from the commission to publish the proposal to amend 13 TAC 3.4 in the Texas Register for comment. She said that rules governing the Texas Record and Information Locator (TRAIL) need to be updated to reflect the changes in the technology that powers the TRAIL system. Commissioner Reynolds moved to approve and Commissioner Hernandez seconded. Motion passed.

14. Review and approve local government records retention schedules HR (Records of Public Health Agencies), and PW (Records of Public Works and Services).

Michael Heskett requested preliminary approval of local government records retention schedules HR (Records of Public Health Agencies) and PW (Records of Public Works and Services). The latter is everything from street repair to government-owned radio stations. Dr. Heskett said he would not verbally enumerate each change. Commissioner Cox asked for clarification of Part 4 of the HR records that involves vital statistic records (births, deaths, burial transfers, etc). Dr. Heskett said that he and his staff felt that this section was no longer necessary as the same section appears in other schedules.

Commissioner Freeman inquired if the records governing County Indigent Health Care Records were different from pauper records. Dr. Heskett said that these records were different from pauper records which appear in local records schedule CC. Commissioner Freeman inquired if he had any knowledge of how far back such records go; Dr. Heskett did not.

Dr. Heskett responded affirmatively to a question posed by Commissioner Cox regarding whether a marriage is considered valid if the marriage license is not recorded.

With regard to records of the county inspector of hides and animals, Commissioner Freeman asked who reviewed the records before disposal and why certain records are not permanent records, stating that such records would be of interest to someone who might be writing a book. Dr. Heskett said that the records management officer of the county reviews such records and that in the past the quality of the records has been uneven and without uniformity. Commissioner Freeman suggested that inspection records (Record Number 4875-04) have historical value because of the information about trends, weather, drought, and other forces that would have an impact on numbers of livestock. Commissioner Freeman said that these records would be valuable because of the destruction of some kinds of tax records in some counties, the state doesn't have enumeration of tax records after 1915.

Dr. Heskett agreed and said he would change that record's retention period to permanent.

In addition, there was discussion of Horticultural Files (Record Number 5525-02). Commissioner Freeman asked that this records series be looked at again with the goal of strengthening the possible historical value of some of these records. Dr. Heskett agreed to review the records series and prepare revised wording before the commission is asked for permission to publish the schedule.

Commissioner Hernandez moved to give preliminary approval. Commissioner Reynolds seconded. Motion passed.

The commission then considered Local Schedule PW. In response to Commissioner Freeman's concerns about losing information from blueprints on original structures, Dr. Heskett will revise the wording on Record Number 5250-01a before presenting to the commission for final approval. Commissioner Hernandez moved to grant preliminary approval. Commissioner Cox seconded. Motion passed.

15. Authorization to Adopt Amendment to 13 TAC 1.71 - 1.74, 1.77, 1.79 and 1.80 relating to the accreditation of libraries in the Texas Library System.

Deborah Littrell requested adoption of amended rules 13 TAC 1.71 - 1.74, 1.77, 1.79 and 1.80 regarding the minimum standards for accreditation of libraries in the state library system. The 80th Legislature repealed TSLAC's authority over County Librarian Certification. These amendments reflect the statutory repeal of county librarian certification. Commissioner Reynolds moved to adopt the amendment. Commissioner Freeman seconded. Motion passed.

16. Consider approval of the loan of archival documents to National Constitution Center.

Peggy Rudd requested approval to loan the Texas Ordinance of Secession from the archives to the National Constitution Center for exhibition at the Museum of History and Industry in Seattle, WA, from January through April 2008. Commissioners discussed possibility of damage, repair, and insurance on the document and visibility of the agency's name at the exhibit. Commissioner Cox expressed concerns about the document's safety and expressed reluctance without knowing specifically how safe the item would be. Commissioner Reynolds expressed confidence in State Archivist Chris LaPlante's judgment in recommending the loan. Commissioner Hernandez expressed confidence in the center since Former President George H. W. Bush is chairman. Commissioners requested that during this loan period that TSLAC be notified immediately if there is any damage to the document. Commissioner Reynolds moved to approve the loan. Commissioner Hernandez seconded. Motion passed with Commissioner Cox abstaining.

17. Report on agreements to recover historical documents from private collections.

Edward Seidenberg informed the commission that a draft settlement had been reached between the agency and the Davis Estate and the Davis Family Trust for the return of historic documents to the state archives.

18. Demonstration of digital talking book machine.

Ava Smith demonstrated a digital talking book machine for the commission. The equipment is part of a National Library Service pilot project to provide downloadable books to patrons. However, patrons wishing to participate are required to purchase the machine for $329. Patrons download the digital talking books from the Internet.

With no further business, Chairman Pickett adjourned the meeting at 1:55 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,

Peggy D. Rudd

Peggy D. Rudd

Director and Librarian

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