Left Menu Right Menu

Council Meeting Minutes # 2: July 10-11, 2003

Orbis Cascade Alliance Council Meeting
July 10-11, 2003

Washington State University Vancouver
Multimedia Building
Room 16

Directors present:
David Bilyeu (COCC), David Kaufman (CWU), Karyle Butcher (OSU), Patty
Cutright (EOU), Pat Kelley (EWU), Lee Lyttle (TESC), Jim Kopp (L&C),
Barbara Valentine for Susan Barnes Whyte (Linfield), Jan Fortier
(Marylhurst), Jim Morgan (OHSU), Marita Kunkel (OIT), Ben Wakashige
(Pacific), Leslie Riester (PCC), Tom Pfingsten (PSU), Vickie Hanawalt
(Reed), Ray Doerksen (SPU), Sue Burkholder (SOU), Deb Carver (UO), Rich
Hines (UP), Lori Ricigliano for Karen Fischer (UPS), Betsy Wilson (UW),
Ginny Steel (WSU), Gary Jensen (WOU), Béla Foltin (WWU), Henry Yaple
(Whitman), Larry Oberg (Willamette)

Absent: Merrill Johnson (GFU)

Consortium staff: John F. Helmer, Travis Honea.

Guest: Catherine Murray-Rust (Dean of Libraries, Colorado State Univ.;
Chair, RLSC Task Force).

Steel and Leslie Wykoff (Director of Information Services WSU-Vancouver)
welcomed Council to Washington State University-Vancouver.

1. Introductions

2. Review of agenda (Cutright)
Although presented in order in these minutes, item number 6 (RLSC) was
moved to the beginning of the agenda to accommodate Murray-Rust's
travel schedule.

3. Approval of minutes from April 2-4, 2003 (Council)
** DECISION: Approved with minor revisions.

4. Reports
- Executive Committee (Cutright)
** DECISION: Council discussed meeting locations and decided that three
meetings per year will be in the Portland/Vancouver area and one will
occur outside this area. Council will vary from this pattern as
appropriate and will generally try to visit member institutions with new
library buildings.

** DECISION: The October 8-9, 2003 meeting will take place in the
Portland/Vancouver area and will be coordinated with the Johannah Sherrer
Memorial Lecture.

- ICCL (Steel)
ICCL met just before Council's meeting and began a discussion of ICCL's
role relative to the Orbis Cascade Alliance. Kelley is now the Chair of

- OUS Library Council (Kunkel)
OUS library Council met at Skamania Lodge during the last retreat.
Discussion centered on budget cuts and a recent report on serials
inflation. Kunkel reported on a successful meeting with the OUS Academic
Council (provosts of OUS institutions) during which Kunkel and Helmer
reviewed RLSC and merger.

- PORTALS (Fortier)
PORTALS has hired Angee Baker to advise the PORTALS Council on the mission
and potential new directions for the consortium. A report is forthcoming.

- GWLA (Butcher, Carver, Steel, Wilson)
The RAPID automated ILL system has been a success but is operating at
capacity and new libraries cannot be added to the service. A task force
has been formed to conduct a cost analysis. GWLA has conducted a survey
concerning institutional depositories and concluded that faculty buy-in is
critical and that multi-institution collaboration may be quite difficult
to achieve. GWLA is also waiting for a funding decision on an IMLS
digitization grant. GWLA's fall meeting will take place in Seattle.

** DECISION: Council reaffirmed the value of reports from other consortia
and determined that OCLC should be added to the list of reports.

5. Merger topics

5.1 Consortium name and logo (Cutright)
Council discussed a set of recommendations forwarded from Executive

** DECISION: Full and legal name of the consortium: Orbis Cascade

** DECISION: Short name, nickname, or acronym for the Orbis Cascade
Alliance: No official short name was identified.

** DECISION: Catalog name: Our goal is to adopt a short and distinctive
name for the union catalog by the time of the Alliance Borrowing Day (July

** ACTION: Helmer will create a survey to gather ideas from staff at
member libraries. The deadline for submitting names will be short,
probably one week at most. Executive Committee will pick one name and
forward to Council for comment or objection. Again, the timeline will be
very short and we will not seek a vote. Council members not heard from
will be assumed to be in agreement.

** DECISION: Logo: Council reviewed four logo designs produced by graphic
artist Cindee Lee. At the end of the meeting Council selected logo #2: a
purple design featuring the name "Orbis Cascade Alliance" on the left and
three peaks suggestive of mountains or sails on the right.

** ACTION: Alliance staff will make appropriate changes to the catalog,
Web site, documentation, email lists, etc.

** ACTION: Helmer/Carver will inform the Washington community college ORCA
group of Council decisions.

5.2 Memorandum of Understanding (Helmer)
Signature copies of the MOU were distributed at the meeting.

** ACTION: Council members will secure final signatures, keep one copy,
and mail two to the Alliance offices.

5.3 Catalog merger update (Helmer)
Helmer, Nancy Nathanson, Pam Mofjeld and Mark Kibbey visited six
ICCL campuses in June. These meetings were enjoyable and very productive.

Helmer and Nathanson visited III to talk about the merger with Sandy
Westall and Jerry Kline. Loading is going slower than expected and various
data problems have been encountered. III may have underestimated the need
for new hardware prior to loading. New hardware is also late in arriving.
Other complexities include the division of the WSU/EWU system and the
combining of COCC and OSU systems. In short, INN-Reach merger is a big
project and a technical challenge that is new to III and consortium staff.
The project is slower and more difficult than might have been expected but
great progress is being made. Nathanson is to be especially commended for
her efforts.

Nathanson is working on plans for Alliance Borrowing Day scheduled for
July 31 at WSU-Vancouver.

5.4 Correlation of fines and timely return of materials (Butcher)
Butcher reported on efforts to collect data from five or six member
libraries. Initial analysis indicates that materials are either returned
within three weeks or remain overdue for a very long period. More work is

** ACTION: Butcher will report at the next Council meeting.

5.5 Coordinating public relations (Helmer)

Helmer reviewed a coordinated public relations plan for the launch of the
union catalog. Pfingsten suggested that Council members write Op-Ed
pieces for general regional news sources as an alternative to sending news
releases. Council members agreed and various members volunteered to work
together on Op-Ed articles.

** DECISION: Member libraries will each handle on-campus and local news
sources but will take a coordinated approach to professional news sources
and those general sources covering a broader region. A news release will
be sent to professional news sources. Council members will write Op-Ed
articles for general regional news outlets. Copies of all articles will
be sent to the Alliance offices.

** ACTION: Helmer will revise PR chart of responsibilities, place a copy
on the Web, and inform Council of the address.

** ACTION: Helmer and Executive Committee will write a news release for
adaptation by all member libraries.

6. Regional Library Services Center

6.1 RLSC Task Force Report (Murray-Rust)
Murray-Rust summarized RLSC Task Force activities to date and reviewed
recommendations included in the Task Force report.

Recommendation 1: Focus the site selection process on Linfield College and
OHSU West Campus.

** MOTION: Yaple moved to approve Recommendation 1. Seconded by Butcher.
Motion approved by unanimous Council vote.

Recommendation 2: Revise RLSC Task Force charge, membership, and chair.

Discussion: Council discussed the broadening of this initiative to now
include ICCL libraries. Will this add complexity? Will additional sites
in Washington be considered? General consensus was that additional sites
will not be considered at this time. Wilson and Steel noted that while
their institutions are supportive of the process, no commitment to deposit
materials has been made. Each institution must weigh RLSC development
against local options currently under consideration. Steel indicated that
WSU would like to appoint a member to the task force. Wilson wondered
whether state ownership will become an issue but did not request action on
this front at this time. Council felt that both potential hosts should be
provided with an opportunity to serve on the task force. Thus, Linfield
will be offered an additional position on the task force.

** MOTION: Kopp moved to approve Recommendation 2 with the addition of
Task Force members from WSU and Linfield. Seconded by Foltin. Motion
approved by unanimous Council vote.

Recommendation 2: Convene an RLSC Capital Construction Funding Meeting.

** MOTION: Jensen moved to approve Recommendation 3. Seconded by Carver.
Motion approved by unanimous Council vote.

** ACTION: Helmer will continue to work with Lesley Hallick to set up this

6.2 Preservation Committee survey (Helmer)
Helmer reviewed results of the preservation survey and the Committee's
summary report identifying and prioritizing preservation options for RLSC.

Council accepted the report and asked Helmer to convey thanks to the
Preservation Committee.

7. Task Force on Committees Report (Kopp)
Kopp presented the report and suggested that Council consider the
definition of committee types before determining their application to the
consortium's current needs.

The report was well received by Council and the Task Force was thanked for
making such great progress on this complex topic. Several Council members
had received input from staff that expressed disagreement with the
recommendation to create a cataloging interest group instead of a standing
committee. Some Council members also questioned the need to create a
collection management committee, as recommended in the Task Force report.

Council conducted a wide-ranging discussion about the purpose of
committees, the structure best suited to the needs of the Orbis Cascade
Alliance, and how to manage the transition from previous Orbis and Cascade

Purpose of committees:
Although Council appreciates the professional development benefits of
committee work, general consensus was that the wide geographic
distribution of the consortium, cost of travel, and limited library
staffing require a very compelling justification for each standing
committee. Most Council members indicated that a standing committee
should be formed only when a consortium activity requires continual and
extensive membership involvement. Council members favored the use of ad
hoc task forces for sporadic activities and special purpose

Council members noted that the Task Force report recommends that
committees be reserved for "core activities with a recurring need for
committee involvement." Several Council members expressed concern that a
decision about committee structure might be misinterpreted as a value
judgement about the functional area. Committees, task forces, and
interest groups should be viewed as equally valid structures that reflect
the nature of the consortium's programs and need for membership activity.
Many critical or "core" activities of the consortium are more sporadic in
nature and may be better served by task forces. Others are critical for
member libraries but are not current programmatic activities of the
consortium and might best be handled by interest groups.

Structure best suited to the needs of the Orbis Cascade Alliance:
Council members generally approved of the definition of two types of
1) standing committees with steering teams, and 2) task forces. The
concept of interest groups was not dismissed but most discussion centered
on the circumstances that call for a standing committee. Council asked
that the Executive Committee work further on committee, task force, and
interest group definitions.

Transition from previous Orbis and Cascade committees:
Council members offered various approaches to managing the transition from
old to new committee structures. Although the Orbis Catalog and
Collection Development committees were the subject of most of the
discussion, committee transition also applies to Cascade committees and
the Orbis Preservation and Government Documents committees.

Council suggestions included:
* make a clean break with the past and create only those committees and
task forces that are clearly needed now.
* provide Orbis committees with one additional year and ask for a summary
report before determining a new structure. Some noted that this approach
would probably require that ICCL libraries join these extended Orbis
* create catalog and collection management task forces
* create catalog and collection management committees
* create an ad hoc group to replace each existing committee and determine
over time which groups should become standing committees.
* create various topical annual events but no additional committees
* define functional areas and needs and then determine appropriate

Miscellaneous topics:
* several Council members reiterated their difficulty in staffing a large
number of groups
* some suggested the need to clearly delineate "business" and "social"
* some noted that the depth of feeling about committee involvement is a
good thing and suggested that Council find ways to reward that enthusiasm
and make use of various talents within the consortium membership
* importance of moving away from committee structure as a signifier of
value or indication of importance.
* importance of taking this opportunity to start with only those groups
that are unambiguously required to accomplish the work of the consortium.

** MOTION: Jensen moved to accept the recommended committee structure and
create standing committees to support INN-Reach borrowing and electronic
resources. Seconded by Kopp.

** DISCUSSION: Hanawalt suggested that to "accept the recommended
committee structure" may be too broad a statement. Council has not
discussed the concept of interest groups and may feel that the definitions
of standing committees and task forces need refinement.

** AMENDED MOTION. Wilson offered an amended motion that was accepted by

1) Create Borrowing and Electronic Resources Committees modeled after the
Task Force's concept of a standing committee and steering team.

2) Ask that Executive Committee further investigate cataloging and
collection management functions, refinement of committee definitions, and
creation of charges for the Borrowing and Electronic Resources Committees.

** DISCUSSION: Council agreed that this motion has no effect on consortium
governance. Further, this motion specifically excludes other
recommendations of the Task Force report, including the creation of
interest groups and a Collection Management Committee. Finally, it was
noted that the RLSC Task Force was separately considered elsewhere in the

The amended motion was approved by Council vote: 26 yes, 1 no.

** ACTION: Helmer will work with Executive Committee to establish
Borrowing and Electronic Resources committees. Council members will be
asked to appoint members. Executive Committee will investigate remaining
issues and bring recommendations to Council.

8. Web Clearinghouse Task Force Report (Cutright)
Report accepted with thanks to the task force. WCTF has completed its

9. Membership Applications (Cutright)
9.1 Saint Martins College
Cutright reported on Executive Committee's meeting with Saint Martins
College on July 9. This meeting included Saint Martins provost and
president. Executive Committee was impressed with the newly constructed
O'Grady Library and clear commitment conveyed by college administration.
Lyttle expressed his support and noted that Saint Martins has been an
outstanding partner in their shared INNOPAC system.

** MOTION: Lyttle moved to offer membership to Saint Martins College.
Seconded by Fortier. Motion approved by unanimous Council vote.

** ACTION: Helmer will draft a membership letter for Executive Committee
review and investigate timing, etc. with Saint Martins.

9.2 Clark College
Council reviewed a membership application received from Clark College and
noted the lack of a description of library collection strengths.

** ACTION: Helmer/Carver will contact Clark College and request a summary
of collection strengths.

Council will reconsider at the October meeting and request that Executive
Committee conduct a site visit based on findings at that meeting. Council
asked Bilyeu to join Executive Committee in helping to evaluate Clark
College's application for membership.

10. Request for a copy of the union catalog database (Helmer)
Helmer reviewed a request from Cyril Oberlander (PSU). Oberlander has
requested a copy of the union catalog database as part of his effort to
develop a collection assessment tool. Council expressed interest but had
many questions or concerns related to ownership, privacy, commercial
applications, and Alliance priorities.

** DECISION: Although the topic is of interest, Council does not want to
pursue now. Oberlander's research project may be included in future
analysis of collection development tools.

** ACTION: Helmer will provide an update for Oberlander.

11. Announcements
Council members expressed some interest in arranging topical discussions
as part of Council meetings. If time allows, the Council chair may call
for topics prior to meetings and determine an approach depending on topic,
level of interest, etc.

Council thanked Cutright for her service as chair and presented her with a
framed print of Yaple's photograph of "Tsagaglalal" or "She who watches,"
a petroglyph and pictograph along the Columbia River in Washington.

Minutes --- Honea & Helmer