The NOVELNY Program : Meeting Minutes
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Meeting Minutes

Wednesday, March 28, 2007, 10:30 AM - 2:30 PM, East Greenbush Community Library
10:30 AM - 2:30 PM

Present: Barraco, Bartle, Desch, Duncan, Ericson, Gundrum, Howe, Katzin, Killian, Klose, Krupczak, Kuntz, Pope, Storms, Todd, Tuliao, Weisman, Welch, Wyrwa

Absent: Bardyn, Borges, Bolton, Choltco-Devlin, Doll, Ebert, Hatch, Janowsky, McDonald, Roe, Stripling, Walsh, and Woodward

Guests: Jason Kramer, Executive Director, NYSHEI
Jeffrey W. Cannell, Deputy Commissioner, Office of Cultural Education

Recorder: Deitz

Welcome/Approval of Minutes-Randy Ericson

Mr. Ericson welcomed everyone to the meeting, especially our newest members for whom this is their first "in-person" meeting: Sue Bartle and Diana Wyrwa, as well as Kathleen Gundrum, Nylink. The minutes of the February 7 conference call were approved.

State Budget and Legislative Update-Carol Desch

    • Per the New York Knowledge Initiative (NYKI), the state budget contains:

      $14 million-Public Library Construction
      $8 million—Library System supplementary funds

      However, it does NOT contain $10 million for NOVELNY.
    • Letters to legislators and the leadership should be faxed rather than sent via e-mail.
    • ALA Library Day will be held in Washington, DC on Tuesday and Wednesday, May 1 and 2. Talk to your representatives about library funding, which is particularly important since NOVELNY is entirely supported by temporary federal LSTA funds. New York's share of LSTA funds will be reduced in the future because the State's population is increasing at a slower rate than other states.

    NYSHEI's ARIA Proposal-Jason Kramer

    Jason Kramer, the new Executive Director of the New York State Higher Education Initiative (NYSHEI), attended the meeting as our guest. He recently worked with the SUNY Research Foundation and has also been involved in public relations and marketing. He has registered NYSHEI as a lobbying organization. His goal is to move NYSHEI toward becoming more active with advocacy and to build alliances with other organizations. During this legislative session, he will be working on a $15 million initiative (ARIA) to purchase academic databases for higher education and research and development, as well as pointing out to legislators that there is still no state funding for NOVELNY. Information on ARIA will be posted to the NYSHEI website ( shortly.

    Regents' Commission Review/Update-Janet Welch

    The ten goals of the Regents Commission report are goals for the Regents and the State Library-the policy on which the State Library priorities are based. (Goal 1 addresses NOVEL, the New York Online Virtual Electronic Library.) This is the second review of the 2000 Regents Commission report. Please review the report on the State Library's website, and e-mail comments/suggestions to Janet Welch or Carol Desch by the end of April.

    NJKI Conference Call-Randy Ericson

    Randy reported on a conference call with Norma Blake, State Librarian, New Jersey, and Susan Kaplan, the lead person for the New Jersey Knowledge Initiative and a former corporate librarian, regarding their $6 million, state-funded program. New Jersey made the initiative their top priority and targeted professional and support staff, as well as librarians, to the effort. They surveyed business people and organizations to determine what kind of information they needed and let them know the cost of individual journals vs. the collective cost: $74.5 million if the same resources were purchased individually.

    Suggestions for dealing with New York State Legislators and business groups: Use "millions of articles or company records" instead of databases; use the words "free and convenient" as often as possible. Consider inviting the New Jersey staff to talk to the full Steering Committee.

    Charter Schools-Linda Todd

    The original guidelines for NOVEL required libraries to be part of a system in order to sign up for NOVELNY databases. Charter schools have emerged since then. We now have 97 charter schools in New York State. Charter schools were recently invited to participate in NOVELNY databases based on the following eligibility criteria, which is the same as that of schools:

    Charter Schools--Eligibility Criteria

    • A Charter School must have a collection of materials designated as a library collection and a designated space in the school that is considered the School Library or Media Center.
    • A Charter School must have the minimum library collection as stipulated in Part 90 of the Commissioner's Regulations as follows:
      • Under 200 pupils-1,000 volumes
      • 200-500 pupils-3,000 volumes
      • 501-1,000 pupils-5,000 volumes
      • Over 1000 pupils-8,000 volumes
    • A Charter School must have a certified school media specialist or a designated staff member who is responsible for the school library and the library collection.

    Charter Schools must submit a letter to Janet M. Welch, State Librarian, signed by their chief administrator, attesting that the above criteria have been met.

    Charter Schools that have questions regarding the NOVELNY program and registration procedures will be directed to contact the NOVELNY Help Desk by e-mail at or to call the Help Desk at 877-277-0250 from 9 AM to 4 PM Monday through Friday. (The School Library Systems are under no obligation to provide technical assistance.)

    School Library Systems have been notified of the approved charter schools in their area via a NYLINE message this month. When free NOVELNY vendor-sponsored Gale or EBSCO training is to take place in their region, School Library Systems will include charter schools in the schools they notify as to date/time/place of the vendor-sponsored training.

    NOVELNY Portal Project-Liza Duncan

    Liza provided background on the Portal Project for our new members: In 2005-06, there was a pilot project (Phase 1) with 14 libraries throughout New York State to test a federated search project with the NOVELNY databases, coupled with driver license access. Based on a survey, the 14 libraries thought a federated search item was useful, but wanted to include their own subscription databases, resulting in Phase 2. Four libraries: (Albany Public Library, Wallkill High School, Monroe County Library System, and Orange County Community College) are currently testing the model. The pilot will end in August 2007, with the exception of Monroe County Library System's pilot, which ends in September 2007. An evaluation will be conducted before August. The pilot and the agreement with WebFeat end on August 30, 2007, so thought needs to be given to what to do next and whether to subsidize a continuation.

    NOVELNY Statewide Education and Information Program-Linda Todd

    Linda introduced our newest staff member, Dave Fiske, who has both an in depth technology background and years of experience as a librarian. He will be working with the Ivy Group to advance their activities and plans.

    Linda provided some background information for the newer members of the Steering Committee as to how the Ivy Group became involved in the Statewide Education and Information Program (a recommendation of the NOVELNY Steering Committee), the development of the communications plan, the PowerPoint presentation at the October 2006 meeting of the Steering Committee, Janet Welch's approval of the communication plan in November 2006, and Ivy's attendance at last year's NYLA Conference. Pam Fitzgerald of the Ivy Group plans to attend the September 19 Steering Committee meeting.

    Currently, staff are working with the Ivy Group to revise the NOVELNY logos and update the novelnewyork website. The new website will replace novelnewyork and take the Library Development web pages related to NOVELNY and bring them into one portal piece under

    All ToolKits have been approved except the "Homework" site, which will be updated with a picture of a group of students. Bookmarks and mailers will be available in PDF and HTML on the web in the near future and can be customized for individual library use. A one-page summary of the communications plan is currently on the website: Feel free to use the summary with your meetings.

    LSTA Five-Year Plan/Evaluation-Linda Todd

    New York State receives $9 million annually in federal funds from the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS). They mandate that we provide them with a plan of how we spend funds and an evaluation of the plan.

    Plan: We are in the final stages of creating the next five-year plan, working with an internal team in the Research Library and the field. The plan was discussed by the Regents at their March meeting and will be voted on at their May meeting. A complete draft plan is on the LSTA website:

    Evaluation: A summary of Himmel & Wilson's evaluation was sent to the Steering Committee on March 27. The entire LSTA Evaluation is on our website, complete with appendices: It is based on focus groups, online surveys and telephone surveys. Recommendations are located on the last page of the document. If you have questions or ideas on how we can use the information in the evaluation, please e-mail Mary Linda Todd at .

    Welcome to Jeffrey W. Cannell---Randy Ericson

    Jeff Cannell, former member of the NOVELNY Steering Committee and newly appointed Deputy Commissioner of the Office of Cultural Education attended the afternoon session of the meeting. He, Janet Welch and Loretta Ebert will meet with legislators to encourage a move toward statewide funding and increased funding of NOVELNY.

    NECAT-Randy Ericson

    Three of the NOVELNY Steering Committee members whose terms of office expire on August 30, 2007 are also member of NECAT: Randy Ericson, Gail Barraco and Jerry Kuntz.

    The contract for the newspaper database subscription was signed this morning with Thomson-Gale and will continue the newspaper coverage and add two titles: Biology and Contemporary Poetry. The next major issue is the general periodical database. Discussion will be held with Randy Ericson, Gail Barraco and Jerry Kuntz.

    NYLA Conference Programs-Maribeth Krupczak

    Reminder: NYLA is October 2007. The New York State Library programs include an update session with a focus on NOVELNY, and a double session with the legislators. The Ivy Group has offered to attend and give an update on communication plan activities.

    Poster session plans are not determined at this time; information will be provided as the date approaches. If any Steering Committee member has an idea for a poster session related to NOVELNY, contact Mary Woodward at by April 24.

    Digitization Planning Grant Proposal-Tessa Killian

    Tessa referred to the handout, "IMLS Collaborative Planning Grant, Creating New York Digital Heritage."

    Four partners (SENYLRC, Capital District Library Council, NY 3Rs Association, and the Office of Cultural Education) worked together on "Creating New York Digital Heritage" and submitted the planning grant proposal for $30,000 to IMLS at the end of February 2007. They expect to be notified by September 30, 2007.

    There are four primary goals in the planning initiative, if funding is received:

    • Structure for a statewide digitization program;
    • Create an environment where the partners and others are positioned to develop and execute the plan;
    • Identify collections and themes within the state that will become the backbone of the plan; and
    • Develop a strategy to fund the initiative, "New York Digital Heritage."

    The Steering Committee will consider how could act as a portal to digital collections across New York State at the September meeting.

    "Speakers Bureau"-Randy Ericson

    Randy encouraged all members of the Steering Committee to take every opportunity whether at libraries or with legislators, to promote NOVELNY-as library leaders in the field who depend on NOVELNY-and to fax the Governor and legislators (as opposed to letters and e-mail), to urge funding for NOVELNY.




    Kate Storms

    Upcoming article in New York City SLS newsletter about the NOVELNY Help Desk-"What we do and how we can help you."

    Linda Todd

    Will work with the Ivy Group to put NOVELNY-related activities on the Statewide Summer Reading website

    Spring 2007

    Cristina Pope

    A report to the Upstate New York Chapter of the Library Medical Association

    October 2007

    Conclusion/Reception-Randy Ericson

    Randy expressed his thanks to the New York State Library and the Steering Committee for all they have accomplished during his tenure. State Librarian Janet Welch presented "Certificates of Recognition" to Randy, Gail Barraco and Jerry Kuntz since this is their last "in person" meeting before their terms of office expire on August 30, 2007.

    *****Action Items*****

    • If any Steering Committee member has an idea for a poster session related to NOVELNY, contact Mary Woodward at by April 24.
    • The Steering Committee will continue a discussion (excluding the evaluation) of "Next Steps" for portal project and federated search during the May conference call.
    • The Steering Committee will consider how could act as a portal to digital collections across New York State at the September meeting.

    The meeting adjourned at 1:45 PM with a reception for outgoing members.

    NEXT MEETING: Wednesday, May 16, 10:00-11:00 AM Conference Call