TexShare Electronic Information Work Group Meeting
March 6, 2009
TSLAC La Costa Room 217
10 a.m. – 2 p.m.
People in attendance: Working Group members: Kerry Keck, Chair; Laura Alfaro; Gayle Gordon; Todd Humble; Marta Knott; Karen Locher; Diane Lozano; Sandra Munger; Sue Phillips; JoAnn Van Schaik; Susan Smith; Russlene Waukechon, Guests: Beverley Shirley, Danielle Plumer, Recorder: Julie Hughes.
1) LRS FY10 Budget Review
Beverley Shirley reviewed the budget the Texas State Library and Archives Commission (TSLAC) submitted to the Legislature.
- TSLAC requested additional funding (more than base level funding) to maintain and expand our current electronic subscriptions. At base level budget, there is money for operations as usual but no room for inflation in subscription prices.
- K12 receives money for database funding from TEA. Those funds are only for K12 institutions, not for TexShare member libraries. TEA has requested that the Legislature continue funding the program, however flat funding for K-12 databases will not cover increases in subscription prices due to inflation. TSLAC included additional funding for K-12 Databases in the legislative funding request. How much money will be available for K12 databases this year is uncertain.
- The funding request also included funds to expand the database program to include better coverage of science, test taking and practice tests, (need to fill in this list from the itemization for the LAR).
- One of the results of a TexShare strategic planning held in February 2008 was a review of the TexSelect program. TexShare member libraries are free to participate in this program, which provides our members with discounted pricing for needed database products. Participants in the strategic planning session recommended an expansion of the TexSelect program, especially with regards to media formats (e-books, e-journals, e-audio, streaming video, etc.) TSLAC included funding to expand TexSelect program for TexShare and to start a similar program for the K-12 libraries in the appropriations request. If funded, TSLAC may outsource TexSelect contract management to another party. We must also be sensitive to the structure in place to serve libraries. Educational service centers currently provide a similar service to K-12 libraries and consortia such as Amigos provide services to their member libraries. We need for consortia to complement and assist each other rather than to compete. This is an idea to explore.
2) Review of options at base or reduced funding
There is enough money at this time to cover the database subscription costs for this subscription year.
If state funding is cut, the EIWG will have to cut databases. If the group waits until next year to do so, we will need to eliminate at least one major database. If we take the cut this year (with the summer renewals), we can begin to realize savings earlier. That would allow a less severe loss of content.
The working group discussed ways in which economies could be realized in the database program, including:
- Eliminating duplication. The group determined that there is an illusion of duplication because of the way in which content has been repackaged into a number of subject-specific subsets of Academic Search and Masterfile. In 2003, TexShare saved some money by eliminating these subject-specific subsets, but usage went down.
- Returning to the “pledge drive” model that was used for several years with Heritage Quest. The group determined that this was a very labor-intensive and unpopular model and would be reinstated only as a last resort.
- Locating less expensive databases to substitute for current subscriptions. The group determined to continue to monitor the marketplace.
Eliminating low use databases. Russlene Waukechon agreed to provide database-specific usage statistics for public and academic libraries and to provide cost-per-use data. The EIWG determined that should it become necessary to eliminate core databases this fiscal year, they would focus on databases with low use, probably one or more databases from ProQuest. They will have a conference call in May to discuss emergency funding situations further.
3) Review: Remove Matchmaking Utility from TexShare webpage
In response to recommendations that were generated in the FY2004 Statewide Resource Sharing Summit, the TexShare Advisory Board asked TSLAC to provide TexShare members with a mechanism for forming their own “buying co-ops” to enable them to get database subscription at lower, consortial rates. . In collaboration with strategic partners at Amigos, TSLAC developed a web-based tool to provide this functionality. The tool has been available for over two years, and it has never been used. TSLAC staff recommendation is to take it down. The recommendation approved and will be taken to the TexShare Advisory Board at its next meeting.
4) Review: Statute Change: TexShare Membership
Sue Phillips reviewed this issue: Under proposed changes, the definition of TexShare membership would reside with the Texas State Library and Archives Commission, and not with the Legislature. The TexShare Advisory Board discussed changing the statute to allow admission of other types of libraries, controlling admission in the Texas Administrative Code. These rules would govern membership and determine a structure determining how member cost sharing fees would be assessed. Russlene will keep the group updated on this issue.
5) Discussion: Shared Catalog Records. Danielle Plumer guided a discussion about shared catalog records. Many full text ebooks and e-documents are available online. Catalog records for these books link to the full text, providing library users access to the full book online. Records could be pooled to create sets of interest to TexShare libraries, such as the Latin American set, or Texana, or theses and dissertations from Texas universities. TSLAC could make agreements with libraries that catalog the items to submit them to an open cataloging utility such as Liblime’s biblios.net. It was decided to run a trial with Texana materials to see if there is further interest among the TexShare membership for partners in this experiment.
6) American Chemical Society (ACS)
The journal package of the American Chemical Society is a TexSelect offering. About two years ago, ACS expressed its intentions to move to a standard pricing model for all consortia. As with all database subscriptions, TSLAC tries to control price increases. Currently we have ACS locked into a 7.5% annual subscription increase. Under the new model, ACS has determined a specific amount of revenue that must be generated from the TexShare group ; they will raise the TexShare subscription prices over several years until they attain that revenue. The ACS representative has indicated that this pricing model is not negotiable. After the current cap on increases expires, ACS subscribers will experience dramatic yearly increases. The Working Group asked TSLAC to continue discussions with ACS in an attempt to keep this product affordable, especially in light of current economic challenges facing TexShare member libraries.
7) Review: TexSelect Program
a) TexSelect Possiblities for future inclusion in program:
- Auto repair manuals
- Reader’s Advisory Resources
- Expanding titles in Stat!Ref
- Atla through Ebsco
- Texas legal forms
- Elsevier science
New options for TexSelect selections will be pursued with TexShare vendors in 2010
8) Review: Ebsco Promotional Projects:
Over the last year TSLAC has been working with Ebsco on 3 communications projects.
- A newsletter, designed for small and rural libraries. Plans are for it to be published 3-4 times a year. Ebscohost.com/texshare
- Google Scholar. EBSCO (please try to standardize EBSCO) is partnering with Google Scholar to enable Google Scholar users to discover and access the full text resources provided by EBSCO subscriptions TSLAC has worked with EBSCO and Google to enable this service for community college libraries in TexShare. The service is available only on campus for all TexShare community college members and will work off campus if the library’s remote access is provided through a proxy server.
- Radio spots. EBSCO is sponsoring radio spots promoting public libraries in markets throughout the state. Ads will be run in English and in Spanish. A sample ad can be heard on the TSLAC website. TSLAC has contacted regional library system offices and public libraries to let them know when these radio spots will be run in their areas.
9) Review: NetLibrary Weeding Project.
NetLibrary titles that have never been used or rarely been used are being reviewed by a subcommittee of EIWG members in an ongoing project. The subcommittee has divided the netLibrary collection in to title lists based on subject. As they review each title within each subject category, they will recommend if it should remain in the collection or be weeded. While all eLibrary books will remain part of the TexShare collection, the EIWG will recommend that member libraries pull the weeded titles from their local catalogs. The list will be disseminated to TexShare member libraries via the TexShare mailing list soon. The weeding project is not complete but work in ongoing. Romance titles for weeding have been identified by the EIWG. The list with romance titles will be disseminated to TexShare member libraries via the TexShare mailing list soon.