TexShare Advisory Board Meeting
July 12, 1999
Meeting Minutes

Meeting Location: Texas State Library and Archives Commission, Austin,
Texas


 

Robert Seal, TexShare Advisory Board Chair, convened the meeting.

 

TexShare Advisory Board welcomes new members

On 8 July, the Texas State Library and Archives Commission re-appointed
Paul Dumont and Joe McCord to the TexShare Advisory Board. To replace
Nelda Laney, who is not seeking re-appointment as a public representative,
the Commission appointed Darryl Tocker. Mr. Tocker heads the Tocker Foundation
, which awards grants to rural public libraries. These
appointees will serve three-year terms.

With the passage of HB 1433, the TexShare Advisory Board will add two
new representatives from public libraries on 1 September 1999. For these
slots, the Commission appointed Rhoda Goldberg, Deputy Director of the
Harris County Library System, and Eva Poole, Director of the Denton Public
Library. Ms. Goldberg will serve a two-year term, while Ms. Poole's term
will be three years.

Ms. Goldberg and Ms. Poole attended this meeting as observers. Robert
Seal, TexShare Advisory Board Chair, opened the meeting by welcoming Ms.
Goldberg and Ms. Poole to the Board, and inviting their participation
in the Board's deliberations.

 

Advisory Board considers TexShare tier assignment
issues

In July 1998, the Advisory Board began a review of the TexShare tier
assignment process. This process assigns TexShare members in three tiers,
based on each institution's library collection size and enrollment. These
tier assignments are the basis for the information access fees paid by
TexShare members for their database subscriptions.

Following review and approval of the revised tier assignments, the Board
asked staff to notify TexShare members of their FY 2000 tier assignments
and information access fee amounts. At the March meeting, the Board also
approved an appeals process, in case libraries might wish to contest their
tier assignments.

After the revised tier assignments were distributed, Stephen F. Austin
University appealed its proposed shift to Tier 1 from Tier 2. The Coordinating
Council reviewed this appeal, determined that the proposed Tier 1 assignment
for Stephen F. Austin is accurate, and recommended no change in the tier
placement. Upon being notified of this recommendation, Al Cage, Director
of Stephen F. Austin's Steen Library, announced his decision not to pursue
the appeal any further.

In January, the TexShare Advisory Board asked staff to review tier assignments
every other year. With the impending integration of public libraries into
TexShare, the entire issue of tiers and information access fees will need
to be revisited. Any changes in the TexShare tier structure will be carefully
planned and implemented gradually.

 

Board discusses TexShare governance roles and responsibilities

In March, the Advisory Board agreed that clarification is needed on roles
and responsibilities for the Board, TexShare contractors, and the State
Library. Working from a draft written by Robert Seal, TexShare Advisory
Board Chair, State Librarian Robert Martin circulated a document outlining
which parties are responsible for various aspects of TexShare governance
and operations.

After discussing the document and recommending revisions, the Board endorsed
the roles and responsibilities statement. Staff will distribute the document
to TexShare working groups, along with an explanatory cover letter. Staff
will also post the statement of roles and responsibilities on the TexShare
Web site, and publicize its availability in library media outlets such
as the Texas Library Association's newsletter. The Board intends to review
and revise the roles and responsibilities statement annually.

Under the new arrangement, the TexShare Coordinating Council (formerly
known as the Management Team) will cease. Coordinating Council members
will be appointed to the working groups they've represented on the Council.
Working groups will be invited to ask these former Council members to
represent the groups at Advisory Board meetings.

 

Legislative update

State Librarian Robert Martin reported on the recently-completed legislative
session:

* House Bill 1433, which was passed by the Legislature and signed by
Governor Bush, authorizes public library participation in TexShare.
It also expands the TexShare Advisory Board to include two members from
public libraries.

* The State Library's appropriation for the upcoming biennium includes
an additional one million dollars per year for TexShare. It also directs
the State Library to establish TexShare as a separate line item and
strategy, and requires the State Library to phase in this expansion
in a manner that will not reduce services to academic libraries.

Establishing TexShare as a separate strategy increases administrative
overhead, since it forces the State Library to compile two sets of statistics,
one for TexShare and a second set for other resource sharing services.
In terms of measurements for materials delivered and persons served, TexShare
performance costs are higher than those for other resource sharing programs.
While this is largely due to the smaller population served, creating a
separate strategy also makes it appear that TexShare is more expensive
than the State Library's other resource sharing services.

In future budget cycles, the Advisory Board would prefer a combined strategy
for the State Library's resource sharing services. To accomplish this,
Board members pledged to work cooperatively with each other and with TLA
(the Texas Library Association) to address the situation in the legislative
agenda for the next biennium.

 

Planning for the integration of public libraries
into TexShare

Integrating public libraries into TexShare will be an evolutionary process.
During the upcoming fiscal year, the State Library will work closely with
TexShare working groups to plan this integration. Although some integration
of services will happen quickly, much of the actual program integration
will occur in the second year of the upcoming biennium.

To start the process of integrating public libraries into TexShare, the
Advisory Board agreed on these steps:

* Public libraries that belong to regional library systems will automatically
become TexShare members by virtue of their system membership, effective
1 September 1999. Like TexShare's academic library members, public libraries
will sign agreements to participate in TexShare programs such as the
courier delivery service.

* The State Library will appoint public library representatives to
the TexShare working groups. These groups will develop written charges,
and then begin addressing the issue of public library participation
in TexShare programs. For the November meeting, the Board requests a
preliminary report from each of the working groups. This report should
outline issues that need to be addressed in order to integrate public
libraries into TexShare's programs and services.

* Two groups advise the State Library about electronic databases: TexShare's
Electronic Information Working Group makes recommendations about TexShare
databases, while another group offers suggestions about databases on
the Texas State Electronic Library. These groups will coordinate their
activities, and work toward eventual consolidation into one group.

* The State Library will inform public librarians about the timetable
for integrating public libraries into TexShare programs. TexShare will
continue to sponsor programs at the TLA Annual Conference as well.

 

Working group reports

TexShare Card

Jay Clark, TexShare Card Working Group liaison, reported on these issues:

  • To make it easier to follow-up on questions that might arise about TexShare
    Card statistical reports from community college districts with multiple
    campuses, the committee recommends that campus libraries be responsible
    for reporting TexShare Card use statistics.

  • The working group is evaluating the TexShare Card and brochure so the
    State Library can reprint these items in time for fall classes.

 

TExpress Courier Service

Jo Anne Hawkins, Courier Working Group liaison, said there are now 97 TExpress
sites. Though the number of sites has increased, the incidence of reported
problems with the courier service has remained low. Updated courier use
statistics show that TExpress sites have realized considerable cost savings
over what they would have paid to send their shipments through the mail.

Bonnie Juergens reported about courier administrative issues for Amigos,
the TExpress courier service agent. In fiscal year 1999, the State Library
has contracted with Amigos for management of the courier service, and provided
a subsidy to enable TexShare libraries to pay a lower rate for the courier
service. In FY 2000, the State Library will drop the TExpress management
contract in favor of an increased subsidy. This means courier sites will
pay even less than they are now paying.

The TExpress management contract expires on 31 August 1999, while the new
courier subsidy will begin on 1 January 2000. The AMIGOS price of $2,500
per site for a 12 month subscription for TExpress service has been only
partially subsidized by TexShare through December and more fully subsidized
only through the end of August, 1999. The current TExpress participants
have been invoiced through the end of December, 1999. Because of the difference
in timing cycles, the subsidy falls $10,453 short of the cost of the program.
Rather than charging participating libraries an additional fee, Juergens
recommended that TexShare cover this gap in funding. Juergens states that
Michael Piper proposed to have this paid from pre-1999 TexShare funding
currently being managed by AMIGOS. The advisory board supported this recommendation.

Ms. Juergens also reported that AMIGOS has launched the "TransAMIGOS" Express,
a courier service for Amigos members in Texas and Oklahoma. This courier
service will expand to Amigos members in New Mexico, Arkansas, and Arizona.
TExpress sites will be able to make shipments on this expanded multi-state
courier network at no additional charge.

 

Education

The Advisory Board accepted the Education Working Group's recommendation
that TexShare fund the Third ILL Workshop being planned by ILL Working Group.
TSLAC will fund the event, with the exception of food and travel costs for
working group members. AMIGOS will use approximately $7,500 from pre-1999
TexShare funding currently being managed by AMIGOS to cover these costs.

Upcoming TexShare workshops are planned on these topics: Copyright & the
Web, Using OVID, Using Ariel, and OCLC ILL. The Education Working Group
will develop guidelines on the types of training appropriate for TexShare
subsidies.

 

Electronic Information

Sue Phillips said the State Library has funded fully-subsidized access
to Electric Library and Ethnic News Watch for TexShare members. Both of
these services are available to public libraries via the Texas State Electronic
Library. In negotiating these public library database contracts, the State
Library was able to add academic libraries at an attractive rate, an illustration
of the positive effects of integrating the State Library's resource sharing
programs. These new databases will soon be available to academic and public
libraries across Texas.

Recent TexSelect database offerings include the MLA Bibliography from the
Modern Language Association, Books in Print, CINAHL (the Cumulative Index
to Nursing and Allied Health Literature) and two full text nursing journals
collections. Seventy-two TexShare libraries signed up for a total of 159
subscriptions. Renewals are in process for previous TexSelect offerings
-- Britannica Online and Gale products. Gale is also making its products
available to the Public Libraries under this TexSelect offer. Britannica
Online is already available to public libraries via the Texas State Electronic
Library.

Recently the Electronic Information Working Group's has conducted an initial
survey of TexShare members to determine their preferences for new databases.
Top choices identified in this survey will provide a basis for another follow-up
survey to be issued soon.

At the March Board meeting, Sue Phillips referred to a message on the TexShare
discussion list about problems with the latest release of the Ovid database
software. Updating the Board on this issue, Phillips said these problems
will be addressed soon.

 

Interlibrary Loan

Sara Lowman said plans are underway for TexShare's Third Annual ILL Workshop,
which is set for November 19 in Dallas. Public librarians will be invited
to this session. Statistics and a report on the Cost Effectiveness of Using
Ariel are available on the TexShare Web site at http://www.texshare.edu/About/groups/LibLoan/LibLoan.html.

 

Texas Collections

Michael Piper reported for Kathy Hoffman. In the FY 2000 TexTreasures grant
cycle, there were nine proposals totaling $135,366. The Texas Collections
Working Group reviewed these proposals, and recommended funding for seven
of them.

On 8 July, the Texas State Library and Archives Commission approved the
group's recommendations with this reservation: the Commission requested
clarification on one proposal. This clarification will be presented at the
Commission's August meeting, when the Commission will take final action
concerning that proposal.

This fall, the State Library will announce the FY 2001 TexTreasures grant
cycle. Board members agreed the emphasis in TexTreasures needs to be on
improved access to unique resources, wherever they are located. So the Advisory
Board endorsed the State Library's recommendation to open future TexTreasures
grant cycles to public libraries.

Since the working group's funding recommendations for the FY 2000 grant
cycle were less than the full $100,000 budget, the Board saw no reason to
increase the budget for TexTreasures in FY 2001. This issue can be revisited,
once the Working Group has reviewed the FY 2001 grant proposals. To improve
the quality of TexTreasures grant proposals, the Advisory Board endorsed
the Working Group's recommendation to offer grant writing workshops.

 

FY 2000 technical support contract with UT is in
process

Michael Piper reported that negotiations for the TexShare technical
support contract are underway. For FY 2000, the Board endorsed including a
remote access demonstration project in the technical support contract with
the University of Texas.

Plans call for UT to implement remote database access gradually, with a
few volunteer sites at first. After gaining experience and compiling cost
data during the demo project, remote access will be offered as a TexSelect
service on a cost-recovery basis in subsequent years. For more on remote
access, see http://proxy.texshare.edu

 

Board endorses FY 2000 courier contract provisions

With regard to the TExpress courier, the TexShare Advisory Board agreed
to:

* Set the target price for TExpress at $1,000 per site in FY 2000.
Since the full cost is $2,500 per site, TexShare will subsidize TExpress
at $1,500 per library next year. [Note: the subsidy may be "per member"]

* Subsidize 200 academic and public library sites statewide, for a
total subsidy of $300,000. Adding public libraries to TExpress will
increase service to all courier sites, in the Advisory Board's view.

* Establish a $50,000 contingency in the TexShare budget, in case more
than 200 libraries sign on for TExpress service.

* Keep the current calendar year courier service subscription period,
to give the courier provider and the State Library plenty of time for
start-up.

 

Advisory Board accepts preliminary budget

Michael Piper presented the proposed FY 2000 budget for TexShare. Although
the Legislature approved a one million-dollar increase for TexShare in
FY 2000, the actual total budget increase is $921,897. That's because
the 1999 budget includes a one-time carry- over of $102,703 in capital
funds from TIF, the Telecommunications Infrastructure Fund.

The proposed FY 2000 TexShare budget totals $2,251,300. It includes $1.4
million for database services, double the amount in the FY 1999 TexShare
budget. After reviewing the numbers, the Advisory Board asked staff to
proceed with implementing the proposed FY 2000 TexShare budget.

 

Board expresses appreciation to Robert Martin for
his service as State Librarian

Board members gave thanks to State Librarian Robert Martin, who is leaving
the State Library to accept a teaching post at Texas Woman's University.
He will be missed.

Upcoming TexShare Advisory Board meetings

* Fall meeting: September 22, 1999 at the State Library in Austin

* Late Fall meeting: December date to be determined, at the UT Southwestern
Medical Center conference Room, Dallas (contingent upon decision of September
meeting)

Present:

Advisory Board members present: Marty Adamson (University of Texas Southwestern
Medical Center at Dallas); Paul Dumont (Dallas Community College District);
Marsha Harper (Abilene Christian University); George Huffman (Amarillo College);
J.Grant Jones (public representative, Abilene); S. Joe McCord (University
of Houston - Clear Lake); Robert Seal (Texas Christian University) and Darryl
Tocker (public representative, Austin)

Working Group liaisons: Bonnie Juergens (Amigos); Jay Clark (San Jacinto
Community College); JoAnne Hawkins (University of Texas at Austin); Sara
Lowman (Rice University) and Sue Phillips (University of Texas at Austin)

Texas State Library and Archives Commission: Robert Martin and Michael
Piper

Visitors: David Gill (Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board); Rhoda
Goldberg (Harris County Public Library); Norman Hood (Independent Colleges
& Universities of Texas); Mark McFarland (University of Texas at Austin)
and Eva Poole (Denton Public Library)

Recorder: Beverley Shirley, Texas State Library and Archives Commission

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