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Council Meeting Minutes #14: July 13-14, 2006

Council Meeting

July 13-14, 2006

Marylhurst University
Marylhurst, Oregon

Agenda | Meeting Participants

Maps: Campus, Marylhurst

David Bilyeu (COCC), Glen Jenewein (Clark), Pat Kelley (EWU), Lee Lyttle (TESC), Merrill Johnson (GFU), Nadine Williams (LCC), Jim Kopp (L&C), Susan Barnes Whyte (Linfield), Nancy Hoover (Marylhurst), Jan Marie Fortier (MHCC), Jim Morgan (OHSU), Marita Kunkel (OIT), Karyle Butcher (OSU), Ben Wakashige (Pacific), Berniece Owen (PCC), Helen Spalding (PSU), Vickie Hanawalt (Reed), Scot Harrison (SMC), Bryce Nelson (SPU), John Popko (SU), Teresa Montgomery (SOU), Deb Carver (UO), Rich Hines (UP), Karen Fischer (UPS), Betsy Wilson (UW), Carolyn Gaskell (WWC), Cindy Kaag (WSU), Gary Jensen (WOU), Deborah Dancik (WU), Béla Foltin (WWU), Lee Keene for Dalia Hagan (Whitman).

Absent: Tom Peischl (CWU), Shirley Roberts (EOU).

Guest: Sue Kopp, Warner Pacific University.

Consortium staff: Greg Doyle, John F. Helmer, Nancy Nathanson, Susie Scroggins.

Thursday's meeting was chaired by Susan Barnes Whyte.
Friday's meeting was chaired by John Popko.


Welcome from David Plotkin, Vice President for Academic Affairs, Marylhurst University.

1. Introductions  
2. Review of Agenda (Barnes Whyte)  
  DECISION: Council added agenda item #14 "Collection Development & Management Committee Report."
3. Consent Agenda (Barnes Whyte)

3.1 Review consent agenda process
DECISION: Council approved the use of consent agendas as described in the process document.

  3.2 July 2006 Consent Agenda
VOTE: Council voted unanimously in favor of the following consent agenda:

#1: Approve Summit Borrowing Committee's short loan renewal recommendation | Full report
Summary: The short loan rule is currently three days to the patron, with no renewal. SBC recommends a revision to allow one three-day renewal


#2: Approve Nathanson's Summit turnaround time recommendations  | Full report
Summary: In response to Council's interest in improving the speed of Summit Borrowing, SBC and Alliance staff have analyzed courier performance and local processing. Recommendations include: creating a Just-in-Time checklist and review of courtesy notices, overdue fines, paging slips, and bookbands/labels.

4. Reports  
  4.1 Executive Committee | Action items (Barnes Whyte)  
  Barnes Whyte emphasized EC's efforts to streamline and add value to Council meetings (e.g., reduction to three meetings per year, introduction of consent agenda, listing of expected outcomes, introduction of breakout sessions) and discussions concerning resources required to pursue initiatives identified at the retreat.
  4.2 Executive Director | Report (Helmer)  

In response to a question from Council, Helmer expanded on discussions with the Library and Media Directors' Council (LMDC): initial contact from Mindy Coslor (director of Skagit Valley College and chair of the LMDC) included an exploration of costs associated with having the 34 members of LMDC join the Alliance. Later contact indicates that the LMDC may focus their efforts on participation in the courier system. Helmer suggested that executive committees from the LMDC and Alliance meet to discuss shared interests.


Retreat Follow-up (Barnes Whyte)


Barnes Whyte reviewed and Council approved the following process for finalizing retreat outcomes:

  • July Council meeting: Refine potential initiatives drafted by EC. Discuss consortium and member library resources (staff and financial) needed if the Alliance is to pursue additional projects.
  • September EC meeting: EC will revise initiatives based on Council input and consider costs associated with new initiatives, Helmer will provide recommendations concerning consortium resources, and EC will prepare recommendations on priorities and resources.
  • October Council meeting: Council will discuss, revise and act on EC recommendations.

5.1 Summary of strategic directions | Report
Barnes Whyte reviewed the report and noted that it serves the limited purpose of recording strategic directions as of the end of the retreat. More detailed action items based on these strategic directions are offered under 5.2 below. Council discussed the difficulty of fully capturing the implications of "Moving to the Network Level."
MOTION: Kopp moved approval of the document as written.
SECOND: Kelly.
VOTE: Council voted unanimously in favor of the motion.

5.2 New Initiatives

  5.2.1 Regional Library Services Center
Background: EC does not advise any changes in the RLSC initiative. EC notes that preparation for RLSC is progressing well and advises that significant consortium resources will be required for this initiative.
Discussion: Council affirmed RLSC as a priority with discussion scheduled under agenda item #7.
  5.2.2 Cooperative Collection Development
Background: EC advises that Collection Development and Management Committee is working very well and should be encouraged to continue their work. In late 2006, EC will meet with the steering team to discuss options for moving from "grassroots" activity to a more explicit approach to shared collection responsibilities.
Discussion: Council affirmed cooperative collection development as a priority with further discussion scheduled under agenda item #14.

5.2.3 Shared Integrated Library System (ILS)
Potential new initiative: Form a Shared ILS Task Force to investigate opportunities, issues, potential costs and benefits of sharing an integrated library system.
Discussion: Council members searched for terminology that better describes the intended breadth of this initiative. Discussion included

  • multi-vendor interoperability
  • "successors" to the ILS
  • new models for interoperability
  • giving up local systems and focusing resources on Summit
  • more than what we call "ILS" but those traditional functions must be captured as well
  • integrated library functionality
  • cooperative library operations
  • investigation of the broader technical environment
  • flexible library systems
  • user-centered library systems
  • modular systems
  • don't dump old systems; move forward with what works

Council concluded that EC and the task force formed to pursue this topic can draft an appropriate name.

  Summit Program  

5.2.4 Data Harvesting Summit
Background: This initiative arose at the Council retreat and has independently appeared as a priority in the work of the Collection Development and Management Committee and Summit Catalog Committee.
Potential new initiative: Charge the Summit Catalog Committee (SCC) with developing recommendations related to the extraction and analysis of data available in Summit.

  • the concept should include "use" of data. For example, "Charge the Summit Catalog Committee (SCC) with developing recommendations related to the extraction, analysis, and use of data available in Summit."
  • Some potentially important data are not available in Summit or are only available in local systems. Thus the concept should include "creation of data." For example "Charge the Summit Catalog Committee (SCC) with developing recommendations related to the extraction, analysis, use, and creation of data in Summit."
  • investigation should include circulation data
  • SCC should be asked to consult with Electronic Resources Committee and Collection Development & Management Committee
  • we need to know what data is already collected
  • any data harvesting initiative should be informed by the work of our Accreditation Document Task Force and the discussion under agenda item #10.

5.2.5 New Summit search interface
Background: This initiative arose at the Council retreat and is also included in the Summit Catalog Committee report.
Potential new initiative: Charge the Summit Catalog Committee with developing recommendations related to III and non-III capabilities for a new Summit search interface.


  • catalogs developed at member libraries should serve as good models for Summit
  • article requesting could be included in this charge
  5.2.6 Article Delivery
Council discussed the fact that "article delivery" has been a long-standing interest, is included in the Summary of Strategic Directions (5.1), but not reflected among the new initiatives drafted by EC. A straw poll indicated that Council continues to see article delivery as an important area for action.
DECISION: "Article Delivery" is added to the list of new initiatives. EC will consider the best way to reflect this priority in initiatives forwarded for Council consideration in October. [For clarity, "Article Delivery" is added to these minutes as 5.2.6 in the "Summit Program" area.
  Leadership Development Program
Background: EC developed the concept of a "Leadership Development Program" under which a variety of activities could be logically grouped:

5.2.7 Leadership Institute
Potential new initiative: Form a Leadership Institute Task Force. Membership would include selected staff and directors drawn from member libraries.


  • Butcher has made a strong effort to spark activity via email but this approach has yielded little discussion
  • General consensus is that someone needs to spend time getting options on the table
  • Is this a candidate for outsourcing?
  • Kelley volunteered her administrative assistant to pursue options
  • Is an institute the only viable option? Council may have jumped to a solution without first engaging in a more general discussion of various ways to foster leadership. For example, perhaps we should be looking at job rotation and an exchange program that allow staff an opportunity to work at other libraries.
  • Importance of looking for partners and resources to achieve this goal. Could this be done as a multi-consortia initiative?
  • Perhaps what is needed is a Leadership Development Task Force to consider "member-to-member" opportunities as well as sponsorship of a leadership institute.

5.2.8 Information Literacy
Potential new initiative: Form an Information Literacy Task Force. Membership would include selected staff and directors drawn from member libraries.


  • there are other venues, e.g., LOEX of the West
  • an expansive information literacy initiative is seen as a lower priority but there is support for more limited activity, such as bringing the ACRL Institute for Information Literacy regional immersion program to the Northwest.

5.2.9 III Symposium
Potential new initiative: EC and Alliance staff work with III to create a "III Symposium." Purpose: discuss patron needs & expectations and the future of Millennium and INN-Reach. Audience: small group made up of senior library and III staff with skills related to system development & usability.


  • two approaches were discussed: one would focus on high-level design and functionality issues aimed at informing the development of Millennium and INN-Reach, another approach would include a broader discussion of technologies, vendors, and functionality issues
  • this would be a good opportunity to challenge assumptions and promote change
  • there could be a useful relationship to initiatives 5.2.3 Shared Integrated Library System (ILS) and 5.2.4 Data Harvesting Summit
  • Summit needs could be included (e.g., link resolver, holdings display)
  • article requesting functionality could be included
  • such an event could include more than III (e.g., CEO's from several vendors)
  Digital Initiatives  

5.2.10 Joint Task Force on Digital Assets Initiative
Background: EC suggests revitalization of the current Alliance & NWACC task force.
Potential new initiative: EC proposes a revised charge and membership for the Joint Task Force on Digital Assets Initiative.


  • Kelly (task force chair) reviewed history: the group's initial goal was an NWACC grant request that was turned down but interest is strong
  • This still seems like a promising activity and it is worth pursuing with renewed energy
  • The opportunity to work with NWACC is important and may pave the way for various collaborations

5.2.11 NorthWest Digital Archives (NWDA)
Potential new initiative: EC and Helmer work with NWDA to develop a proposal under which the Alliance would serve as administrative home and fiscal agent to NorthWest Digital Archives.

Council considered this initiative under agenda item #11, following a presentation by NWDA staff (agenda item #8).


5.2.12 LITA Regional Institute: Establishing an Institutional Repository
Potential new initiative: Work with LITA to bring a regional institute on Institutional Repositories to the northwest.

Discussion: this is pretty straight-forward; if Council decides to pursue this, we simply hire LITA to put on such a conference.

6. Application for membership: Concordia University    

Barnes Whyte reported on EC's site visit.

MOTION: Kelly moved that the Alliance offer membership to Concordia University.
SECOND: Jensen.
VOTE: Council voted unanimously in favor of the motion.

7. Regional Library Services Center | RLSC Planning Site    

7.1 Update (Carver)

Carver's report and Council discussion included the following:

  • Boora's has delivered a draft feasibility study but the final version is waiting for separately contracted geotechnical and environmental reports.
  • Next steps will probably include conceptual drawings to be used as part of the fundraising effort.
  • Fundraising group met once. UO and OSU corporate and foundation relations staff are exploring fundraising with Meyer Memorial Trust (MMT) and Oregon Community Foundation (OCF). MMT program officer feels that the RLSC initiative has "all the right ingredients." MMT will be considering the extent to which they can consider the Alliance's RLSC request separately from priorities forwarded by member institutions.
  • Bonding discussions continue. The preferred model is 50% fundraising and 50% G bonds (i.e., no debt). The timing of bonding approval and foundation grant funding decisions may be difficult. A secondary model is 30% fundraising, 30% G bonds, and 40% F bonds (thus, 40% funded as debt).
  • The RLSC Leadership Group has discussed the legal framework and predicts that there will be an MOU between UO (as fiscal agent) and all other members, a lease agreement and a service agreement between UO and Linfield College.
  • Brad King (CFO, OHSU) has produced proforma financial statements but several factors need to be updated.
  • Council members need an updated sense of their potential financial commitment. The budget model approved in October 2004 should be updated and discussed by Council in October 2006.

7.2 MOU concepts | Draft MOU (Hanawalt, Dancik, & Helmer)

Dancik reviewed the process of developing MOU concepts. Hanawalt, Dancik, and Helmer were charged by the RLSC Leadership Group to develop MOU concepts that are consistent with leadership group discussions. These three have met twice via conference call.

Hanawalt reviewed highlights, including:

  • ownership is retained by member institutions
  • RLSC policies govern the management of shared collections such as the journal archive
  • Limited withdrawal is permitted
  • Large withdraw is defined by the MOU and requires notice and discussion of process, costs, impact on RLSC staff, timing, etc.
  • Council governs RLSC with recommendations provided by an advisory group

Helmer reviewed next steps

  • Consultation with Ed McFarlane (CFO, Reed College) & Carl Vance (CFO, L&C College)
  • Review of concepts by RLSC Leadership Group
  • Review of concepts by Executive Committee
  • Review and approval of concepts by Council
  • Legal language finalized through review by Linfield, UO, and attorney greneral offices in Oregon & Washington
  • Distribution of signature copies (or return to RLSC Leadership Group and Council if significant new issues are discovered)

7.3 Local preparation (Popko)
Popko introduced the agenda item noting that EC thought it would be valuable to hear about steps member institutions have taken to prepare for RLSC.

Western Washington University (Foltin)

  • provost has included RLSC in the library's budget
  • collection development work is seen as important and WWU may decide to be more active in this area

Seattle Pacific University (Nelson)

  • Nelson distributed a handout summarizing SPU preparations
  • Members will need to have notice at least 12 months prior to the fiscal year in which an RLSC fee would be billed

University of Oregon (Carver)

  • to date most activity has centered on bonding, fundraising, and contracting for the feasibility study.
  • Operations costs are significant and UO has not yet come to a solid understanding of the extent and source of their recurring financial commitment to RLSC.
Discussion session: Northwest Digital Archives
PowerPoint | NWDA home | NWDA letter proposing collaboration | Purpose & Objectives

Jodi Allison-Bunnell (NWDA Consortium Administrator) and Larry Landis (OSU University Archivist, NWDA Consortium Director) provided an overview of NWDA's history, achievements, and plans for the future.


Summit Catalog Committee recommendations | Report (Mark Dahl)
Popko noted that SCC complied with an EC request to provide information on resource impact associated with each recommendation. Such an assessment of impact will be routinely requested from all committees issuing recommendations. Popko further noted that EC proposes to integrate SCC's recommendations with retreat initiatives and develop proposals for Council consideration in October.

Dahl provided an overview of the committee's work. Discussion centered around 10 committee recommendations:

9.1 "Work for less record duplication for electronic resources in Summit by pursuing the use of a special 001 field for ERM brief records, ISSN matching for journal bib records, and developing standards for using the 001 field for e-book records."

Discussion: SCC has not attempted to determine the extent to which electronic resources are being added to Summit.

9.2 "Request an INN-Reach enhancement for a 'link resolver router' that would direct patrons to their local link resolver from Summit records (this would allow patrons to identify their library”s electronic holdings for a journal easily). "

Discussion: Potential impact on patrons is not known.

9.3 "Conduct usability testing on Summit to: evaluate how patrons navigate journal holdings information, discover how patrons are using Summit (as their primary or secondary catalog?), and generally to identify areas where improvement is needed."


  • The order in which recommendations are pursued is important. For example, it is probably worth doing usability testing first.
  • We could draw on the expertise of those who have done such testing on local systems.
  • It would be worth contacting other consortia that use the INN-Reach system.

9.4 "Add a Summit link to OCLC Open WorldCat" and
9.5 "Create a Summit link within Google Scholar"

Discussion: Dahl provided an update on a current discussions involving the Alliance (Nathanson and Mike Spalti, WU), Google, and III (Sandy Westall).

9.6 "Provide recommendations and education to member libraries regarding linking to and optimizing links from Open Worldcat, OpenURL resolvers and new search engine services."

Discussion: SCC has not discussed potential implications of Myspace or Facebook.

9.7 "Review record policies governing the way that bibliographic records are contributed to Summit in order to improve record quality and reduce duplicates."

Discussion: Dahl and Nathanson reported that practice among member libraries has tended to become more diverse over time and it is time to review and potentially update record contribution policies.

9.8 "Work toward 'next generation' functionality for Summit including a redesigned Summit interface and richer data for Summit records including book jackets and TOC data."


  • This recommendation is consistent with retreat initiatives 5.2.3 Shared Integrated Library System (ILS) and 5.2.5. New Summit search interface.
  • Alliance members should focus efforts on Summit rather than local systems.
  • LCC reports positive impact of working with Syndetic Solutions

9.9 "Make Summit data available for harvesting by member libraries for analysis and local projects."

Discussion: This recommendation represents a significant technical challenge and is consistent with retreat initiative 5.2.4 Data Harvesting Summit.

9.10 "Develop ways to identify Summit member holdings on bibliographic records in OCLC to aid in cataloging and acquisitions and reduce duplicate records in Summit."

Discussion: none

Council expressed their thanks to SCC for their outstanding work and to Dahl for his skilled leadership.


Breakout: two parallel sessions on Accreditation & Alliance Statistics (Popko)
Kunkel and Bilyeu distributed a discussion document (to be linked) and facilitated breakout sessions. Council input will be incorporated in a report made to Council in October 2006.


Alliance role in Northwest Digital Archives (Popko)
Expected outcome: decision about whether the Alliance should develop a proposal to serve as fiscal agent and administrative host for NWDA. Final decision on any proposal would be made at a later Council meeting.


  • the opportunity to work with a broader set of institutions (museums, archives, etc.) is a plus
  • this would broaden Alliance service to its membership
  • there are many positive aspects of NWDA
  • appears to be a natural fit and in keeping with Alliance mission
  • further study is needed before we will understand how NWDA fits with Alliance mission and goals
  • clearly would require additional staff and add duties to existing Alliance staff. These aspects should be included in any proposal.
  • NWDA should be broadened to include digital content (i.e, more than finding aids)
  • a proposal should include detailed costs and a clear articulation of the benefits to members and the Alliance as a whole

MOTION: Jensen moved that EC and Alliance staff prepare a proposal to have the Alliance serve as fiscal agent and administrative home for NWDA. Such a proposal is to be delivered to Council for consideration during the October 2006 meeting.
SECOND: Dancik.
VOTE: Council voted unanimously in favor of the motion.


Membership Criteria | Report (Popko & Kopp)
Popko noted that EC's review of membership criteria has revealed several issues that may require a revision of bylaws. EC intends to take up a review of bylaws at their next meeting.

Council conducted a detailed review and many relatively small revisions were noted by Popko. Broader concepts include the the following:

Introductory statement: "This document outlines criteria, expectations and obligations for both prospective and continuing members of the Orbis Cascade Alliance. Members in good standing will remain in compliance with these criteria as well as Alliance bylaws and memoranda of understanding."

#14: "All member institutions must use the same interoperable library system in use by the Alliance (in 2006, Innovative Interfaces Inc. Millenium integrated library system)."

MOTION: Kaag moved adoption of membership criteria as amended.
SECOND: Wilson.
VOTE: Council voted unanimously in favor of the motion.


Electronic Resources Program Evaluation (Helmer & Doyle) | Report
Recommendation: At its March meeting EC voted unanimously to recommend continuance of the ER program and to thank Greg Doyle and Debi Place.
Expected outcome: Vote on EC's recommendation.

Helmer reviewed the report.

MOTION: Jensen moved acceptance of EC's recommendation.
VOTE: Council voted unanimously in favor of the motion.

Congratulations to Greg Doyle, Debi Place, and the ER Committee for a job well done!


Collection Development & Management Committee Report | Report (Popko)
CDMC's report was distributed at the beginning of the meeting and scheduled for discussion and decision as a final agenda item. Popko reported that CDMC's report was not ready by the time of EC's last meeting and requested that Council consider the report now in order to keep momentum up on this project.

CDMC's recommendation:

"The Collection Development and Management Committee seeks Council approval to solicit proposals from monograph vendors for a consortium purchasing agreement. Information about discount, service, and support for selection within a consortial environment will be requested from each vendor. Alliance members will have the option of opting in or out of any resulting contract or agreement."


  • due to the potential impact on an already weakened vendor environment, we should emphasize cooperative collection development rather than discounted pricing
  • the group could distribute an RFI but should not issue an RFP without prior consultation with Council

MOTION: Popko drafted and Kaag moved acceptance of the following charge:

"The Orbis Cascade Alliance Council charges the Collection Development & Management Committee to initiate appropriate contacts with vendors, below the threshold of a formal RFP, that will result in a program of improved coordination for monograph selection within and among Alliance member libraries. Responses from each vendor will include their support for selection within a consortial environment, services, and pricing considerations. The Committee is expected to make a progress report to the Council's Executive Committee at or before its meeting on September 7, 2006, with a further progress report or proposal ready for the Council meeting in October 2006."

SECOND: Foltin.
VOTE: Council voted in favor of the motion with one abstention.



Wilson: ACRL's national conference will be held in Seattle on March 12-15, 2009. Council expressed enthusiasm about having the Alliance contribute to this event. EC will discuss and follow up.

Fischer: the first Northwest Academic Library Directors Symposium will take place on November 9, 2006 at UPS in Tacoma.

Minutes by Helmer & Scroggins.