Articles Posted in Library Organization and Planning

The Alabama Supreme Court and State Law Library is pleased to announce the launch of its new website. Please check us out at As part of our redesign, we are proud to present the full text of the Alabama Rules of Court-Civil, Criminal, Small Claims, Juvenile, Appellate, and Judicial Administration and the accompanying forms.

This morning I was one of many who received the following e-mail from Jessica Van Buren of the Utah State Law Library. :

A few weeks ago I asked if any of you had disaster plans to share. I offered to compile responses for a new Toolkit page on the SCCLL [ State Court and County Law Libries Special Interest Section of the American Association of Law Libraries (AALL) ] website if there was interest.

There was plenty of interest! Only two had plans to share, but it’s a start. The information I gathered is now on the new Disaster Planning page on the SCCLL website at

Oregon County Law Libraries Planning Grant, Request for Proposals

“Summary: The Oregon Council of County Law Libraries (OCCLL), representing 36 county law libraries throughout the state, received a planning grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services through the LSTA, administered by the Oregon State Library. The OCCLL has administrative responsibility for implementing the grant project. The grant project team seeks the services of a professional library consultant who will guide the OCCLL through the planning process. The general duty of the consultant is to facilitate the accomplishment of project goals and activities”.

Oregon Law Libraries RFP Rev4_1

OCLC’s QuestionPoint and Mosio’s Text a Librarian announce virtual reference collaboration Project to offer text messaging reference options to QuestionPoint users. Here is the Press Release :

DUBLIN, Ohio, January 15, 2010-OCLC and Mosio are working together to enable seamless integration of Mosio’s Text a Librarian text messaging reference software with OCLC’s QuestionPoint reference management service to provide a comprehensive virtual reference solution for libraries.

OCLC and Mosio are exploring solutions to the demands of a mobile world and the need for libraries to be able to communicate with their patrons online and on-the-go.

Robert C. Richard, Editor in Chief of Vox PopoLII reports thatSarah Rhodes has just published a terrific new overview of digital legal preservation, entitled “Preserving Born-Digital Legal Materials…Where to Start?” on Cornell’s VoxPopuLII blog. The post addresses core concerns, as well as emerging issues, and provides a thorough and accessible view of the field. He thinks it will prove a very rewarding resource for novices and experienced preservation professionals alike.

Since first hearing about the planned closure of of six of the fifteen courthouse libraries in Connecticut I have contacted I have heard from a number of people (both librarians and non-librarians) from throughout that state. By all accounts the announced closures will prevent attorneys, judges and members of the public from accessing the up-to-date legal materials they need. They will especially hurt disadvantaged citizens and pro se litigants, who are especially vulnerable and may be unable to access official legal resources and will be required to struggle to travel to far-away courthouses. While the dire budgetary circumstances are the state currently faces are understandable, it is essential that Connecticut’s public law libraries and courthouses remain open. They are irreplaceable.

To help spread the word, the American Association of Law Libraries (AALL) has been working closely with the Southern New England Librarians Association (SNELLA) to oppose the announced closures . Kate Hagan the AALL Executive Director has distibuted an e-mail (see below) which details that effort. It includes some useful links for those who want to become active in saving Connecticut court libraries.

People are also urged to search the directory of state legislators and government employees at the of Connecticut Website for other contacts that could be helpful in this effort. This web site includes a directory of state employees, a directory of state legislators, and a directory of federal legislators serving Connecticut, all with links for e-mail contact information.

THOMAS was launched on January 5, 1995, at the inception of the 104th Congress. The leadership of the 104th Congress directed the Library of Congress to make federal legislative information freely available to the public. Since that time THOMAS has expanded the scope of its offerings to include many features and content including those listed below.:

Bills, Resolutions Activity in Congress Congressional Record Schedules, Calendars Committee Information Presidential Nominations

Now, fifteen years later in response to user feedback and in celebration of its fifteenth anniversary, THOMAS has been updated for the second session of the 111th Congress.

BY: David Badertscher*

I have been following with great interest recent discussion on listservs and in the literature regarding a perception that libraries are becoming less relevant in a technologically-oriented society that relies increasingly on “instant gratification”(achieved largely through online searching and related techniques).

Technology is wonderful, and I think should it should be embraced, but not at the expense of alternative tools and methods that produce better results and may be more cost effective. If they are to accomplish their mission and remain relevant over time to their parent organizations, libraries must always be prepared to use a variety or mixture of techniques and materials, both technical and non-technical, to achieve results that are accurate, timely, efficient, cost effective, and deemed by patrons and managers to be trustworthy. The alternative is to increase the risk of libraries being perceived as no longer capable of meeting growing expectations and thereby becoming possible candidates for eventual closure.

We just received word about the outcome of the vote on the proposal to change the name of Special Libraries Association (SLA) to the Association for Stategic Knowledge Professionals. The name change proposal stemmed from the findings of the Alignment Project, an intensive two year research effort aimed at understanding the value of the information and knowledge professionals in todays environment and how to communicate that value.

Although not a member of SLA, I have followed developments related to this issue on the SLA listserv and have been very impressed with both the dedication and passion exhibited by the SLA membership.

As for the outcome, I think this is good news. As a professional librarian (an information and knowledge professional) I am very concerned about libraries and librarianship being viable now and remaining so in the future. An important part of that viability, it seems to me, relates to the essential need for libraries and librarians to maintain a clear identity as the preeminent information and knowledge professionals in the world, both now and in the future. There is a danger that proposals such as the one we are discussing here will, if ratified, result in a dilution of that identity and by extension diminish the perceived value of librararies and librarians (whatever their names) in the marketplace as compared to other organizations and occupations that are somewhat comparable. I commend the SLA membership for its decision.

David Badertscher
Here is a note from SLA Headquarters concerning the outcome of the vote of the SLA membership:
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