LISP Newsletter

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October, 1999

Volume 1999:3


Message From The Chair

Greetings, LISP members, and welcome to the first of three issues for the 1999/2000 SIS year! I hope this will be a year for strengthening our SIS, both in terms of membership and participation. With the availability of two powerful communication tools - the LISP-SIS listserv and our website - I anticipate a much more informed and active membership with regard to our SIS's activities.

Last year's LISP activity culminated in two wonderful LISP-sponsored programs being delivered at the Annual Meeting in Washington, D.C. Check out Karlye Pillai's review of one of these programs - Internet Reference and the Non-Law Patron - in the September 1999 Spectrum! And once again, members bravely struggled through tight Annual Meeting scheduling to make the LISP Business Meeting, the minutes of which are available in this issue. Information on LISP-sponsored programs to be presented in Philadelphia, 2000, will follow in another issue. (For LISP programs in Minneapolis, 2001, join the Education Committee and help determine what those programs will be!)

Although LISP and other SIS's always play a substantial role in Annual Meeting activities and events, it's important to keep in mind that LISP members don't have to attend Annual Meetings in order to be very active in the SIS. In this issue you will find a call for committee volunteers. LISP relies on these committees, not only for the work done by committee members, but also for the continuity that committees can provide from year to year. I hope you'll take a moment to consider serving on one or another of LISP's committees. For no more than a couple hours a month, you get: recognition as a committee member in our newsletter; the knowledge that it's your efforts that are largely keeping the SIS vital; and the fun of working with other LISP members on activities that speak to the very nature of our existence. Yes, committee work is that metaphysical. Try it, and find out for yourself!

One committee that needs members is the new Membership Committee. This committee, once staffed, will play a big role in recruiting new people to LISP. At their disposal will be some brand new LISP pencils and bookmarks. Plans are underway for a new membership brochure as well. Our website continues to develop, thanks to Fred Hanson. Members may find the "About LISP" link useful for its new inclusion of a membership roster, complete with contact information for all current members. Committee assignments and contacts can now be found in the "Officers and Committees, 1999-2000" link. Our website is found at In this newsletter issue, I'd like to call special attention to articles by Greta Boeringer, Betsy McKenzie and Susan E. Tulis concerning public access within the federal depository program. Thanks also to Betsy for the great job she did in obtaining much other material for the newsletter. As usual, a big thanks is owed John Adkins, our newsletter editor, and Fred Hanson, our webmaster, for getting another fine issue "to press"!

Angus Nesbit, LISP Chair, Law Reference Librarian,University of Oregon


Voice: (541) 346-1673




The Obligations of the Federal Depository in the New Millennium

by Greta Boeringer, Reference/Documents/Non-Print Librarian Pace University Law School Library

"Depository libraries shall make Government publications available for the free use of the general public." 44 U.S.C. �1911 (1994)

This basic law of the Federal Depository Library Program (FDLP) gives rise to several obligations for depository libraries. First of all there is the obligation to serve the public. Second is the obligation to select appropriate materials for the library and the public--collection development. Thirdly, the collection must be maintained so as to be accessible--maintenance. Fourthly, there must be a way to identify materials in the collection--bibliographic control.

There are additional obligations for the depository such as cooperating with GPO and other depositories, maintaining an appropriate physical facility, and hiring adequate staff to complete these tasks. This article will examine these obligations severally. Each obligation will be looked at in the law library setting. Sometimes the law library setting makes these obligations more onerous than they might be in other settings.

Public access to law library depositories is problematical for a number of reasons. First of all, serving the public in a law library invites the unauthorized practice of law. Patrons will always ask questions that cannot be answered ethically. A lay patron can take three or five or ten times as long to serve at the reference desk as a law student, faculty member or attorney.

Secondly, law libraries are extremely focussed collections. We collect law. The Manual states that each depository is obliged to "select useful materials appropriate to the objectives of your library and to the needs of the larger community and congressional district that you serve." While we are not obliged to collect materials beyond law, it is difficult to honestly serve the FDLP mission of meeting the public's need for government information without doing so.

For years, in order to restrict access by patrons we could not adequately serve, we would quiz them on what they were looking for, explain we didn't collect those materials and refer them to a larger depository nearby. Today we do not have that luxury. Almost any question that any patron has can be answered on the World Wide Web. And if the specific question cannot be answered, the web site of the agency in question will offer many leads on solving the question. Today, no law library can turn away any depository patron without offering them access to the World Wide Web. See, e.g. Depository Library Public Service Guidelines for Government Information in Electronic Formats and the FDLP Internet Use Policy Guidelines Note that patrons seeking access to the World Wide Web need not present identification to be entitled to access to the library.

A third reason law libraries find providing public access to depository materials burdensome is our buildings. For those of us saddled with older buildings, we often do not have enough seating to meet the needs of our own patrons, and the requirements of our accrediting agencies. But those of us with new buildings find ourselves even less willing to open our brand new facilities to the public!

A fourth problem some depositories face is the requirement that printing be made available to the public. Depositories are free to charge "usual and customary fees" for printing. Law libraries often collect fees for printing from their students, but these systems are not always set up to handle the occasional depository patron. Networks and intranets can also make it difficult to set up the public access terminal outside the network.

The second obligation, collection development, was discussed above. Because law libraries are specialized collections, it can be a strain to collect documents needed by the community in the setting of the law library. This is where strong cooperative links with other depository libraries and the use of selective housing agreements come in. Through these cooperative arrangements law libraries can see to it that the needs of the community are met without having to house large numbers of say, Agriculture documents.

Technology has been a friend to depositories when it comes to maintaining depository collections and bibliographic control. Online resources like the Monthly Catalog, online shipping lists, the Documents Data Miner, etc. have transformed the processing and management of depository collections. Information we once would submit in writing on a Depository Library Inquiry Form and wait for a reply in Administrative Notes or by mail we now have at our fingertips on the Web. Nevertheless, depository work is still quite onerous and time consuming.

Staffing requirements for depositories have not reduced, but like many other functions, technological changes make it necessary to hire more sophisticated support staff. Physical facilities requirements similarly now include much more expensive equipment requirements. In addition to providing access to microformat material, depositories must provide access to the World Wide Web and all those maddening CD-ROMs, each with unique search software. Even cooperating with GPO and other depositories can be a burden in the law library setting because law libraries tend to keep to themselves and support only their own national association. However, it is also an opportunity for the law library documents librarian to interact with librarians from other types of libraries.

These are the broad obligations that each Federal Depository Library must fulfill. Each law library depository should carefully consider the costs of these obligations as compared to the benefits of depository status in their own library setting.




Dropping the Depository: Or, What Was I THINKING?!

By Betsy McKenzie, Suffolk University Law School

I have a confession to make. During the same year I served as LISP chair, I recommended to my dean and University that we drop out of the Federal Depository Library Program. This is the Documents to the People program, created to get government information out to the taxpayers. I care about public access to information, both legal and governmental. I really do! So, what was I thinking when I recommended that my law school drop its federal depository status?

There were many factors that led me to this recommendation. First, we were told that our new building would be closed to anybody who did not have a Suffolk University Law School ID. That one factor is what tipped me over the edge. Refusing access would put us out of compliance with the Federal Depository Library Program (FDLP). I take it as a serious commitment when I accept government documents, that I also promised to make them available to the general public on the same basis as to our primary patrons. Even a rule that the library would be open to the public 9 - 5 would fail that promise, since our law students and faculty have access from 8 AM until 11 PM. But, there were other factors as well. Our new building is catty-corner to the Boston Common, right on the Freedom Trail. We were moving from a building tucked away in a less-traveled by-way of Beacon Hill, a residential area, to one of the most visited locations in Boston. We not only have a zillion tourists, but all the scam artists, pick-pockets, beggars and general odd-balls that are attracted to this cross-roads of history and tourism. Since moving here in June, we have had two incidents. One unbalanced visitor hid in the ladies room to peep. Another accosted a young woman staff member alone in an isolated office.

Neither incident was in the library, and we are not screening library visitors. But, I am still glad that we have more leeway to refuse access to folks who make our personal safety alarm bells ring. Another factor in my decision was the alternatives available to researchers. We are not the only, or even the first choice depository in our area. We are right down the block from the Massachusetts Statehouse. It's part of their main mission to help citizens with legal research. We are in walking distance of the regional depository, the Boston Public Library (BPL). Again, assisting citizens with government documents is a core part of the BPL Mission. I do not believe that any former user who may have been excluded has missed any research opportunities because of my decision. That is the flip side of being in a major urban area - we have lots of nuts, but also lots of alternative research libraries for legitimate researchers.

Alert readers may have notice that I spoke of "main mission" or "core part of their mission" in the last paragraph. This is another factor in my decision. Suffolk is a private law school. Our primary mission is to assist the faculty and students in our law school. Our secondary patrons are the students and faculty throughout Suffolk University. Many private law school libraries have found the depository mission to the general public to conflict with their primary mission.

Unlike state universities or many governmental law libraries, we serve primary patrons who expect (demand?) a closed environment. Not only did our faculty and students sometimes worry about the types who came for our government documents, but we began to see a conflict in allocation of resources. One pro se researcher can absorb hours of reference librarians' time, which might be spent instead creating new research guides, developing liaisons with faculty or creating web sites in support of courses. The FDLP demanded recently that depository libraries commit a computer with Internet access, CD-ROM capabilities and a printer to the primary use of depository patrons. We complied, though it seemed absurd with the low traffic we got for government documents. The final factor ties in with the FDLP's demand for computer and printer dedicated to depository business. They demanded that because more and more government materials are posted on the Internet. These materials are available to anybody with web access. There was less benefit to our institution and higher demands from the FDLP. Most of the government materials we selected (about 11.7% of the total available) are available more quickly, with value-added through vendors we have to deal with anyway. We HAVE to buy USCA and USCS; we MUST have Supreme Court Reports and Lawyers' Edition. There is less reason under the new ABA standards to keep paper versions of the U.S. Reports and the U.S. Code, although we did maintain those subscriptions.

In summary, I consider that I did the "right thing" by dropping the depository status at my library. I am no longer able to honestly meet the public access requirements of the depository program. My library benefits more from dropping out than from remaining in the program. I do not believe that the public is damaged by this decision. When I consider other law libraries fleeing the depository, I would hope that the directors weigh the benefits to their institution, but also account for the damage to public access in their location. There are many law libraries that are the only place for miles to access government documents or do legal research. Law libraries entered the FDLP with the rationale that we were uniquely qualified to help the public make sense of the documents. I hope directors consider the role their library plays in their own community when making decisions about the FDLP.


Stop, Look and Reconsider Before Dropping Depository Status

By Susan E. Tulis, Government Information Consultant (formerly, University of Virginia Law Library)

Back in 1995, I spoke at the AALL Annual meeting about the Federal Depository Library Program (FDLP) as it applied to law libraries. The question then was whether being a federal depository was an essential service for a law library or merely a status symbol. There is no doubt in my mind that the difficulty in identifying and locating government information, acquiring it even when it was theoretically available, and, in particular, the complexity of legal government information, all combined to make it essential that law libraries serve as government depository libraries.

Much has changed in the past 4 years in terms of access to government information. Agencies have made their "publications" or information much more accessible to the public by placing them on the Internet. Many more people can access this information from their homes and businesses and never have to set foot in a library - law or otherwise. Agencies have their own web sites and the Government Printing Office, manager of the FDLP, has created GPO Access, an Internet site that makes much legal government information freely available to citizens and libraries whether or not they belong to the FDLP.

So, do I still believe that law libraries should remain participants in the FDLP? You bet! In fact, it is probably more important today than it was in 1995. But how can that be, you may ask, when so much government information is readily accessible via the Internet?

First, all government information is not available on the Web and some that is may not be easily located. Librarians serve an important role in assisting the public to locate and obtain the information they need. So what, you say - you don�t have to be a depository library to do that. Well, as more and more government agencies start to charge a fee for access to some of their Web sites, GPO has managed to secure one password per depository library for no-fee access.

Second, much of the primary legal government information is only available through the depository library program and cannot be purchased from GPO. You might be able to obtain some of this information directly from the agencies, but think about the time and effort to get on all the necessary mailing lists - if there even are mailing lists. A primary example of this is congressional hearings and committee prints. You still pretty much have to request these titles individually as they are published. You cannot have a standing order for all hearings of a particular committee. In addition, many committees have reduced the number of copies they have printed and if you don�t get your request to them in time you may not be able to obtain a copy of a particular hearing or committee print. As a depository library however, once you have selected the item number for that particular committee�s hearings, you would automatically receive copies of the committee�s hearings through the FDLP.

Third, many law libraries have historical collections of government publications that could be removed and transferred to other depository libraries if the library dropped its depository status. Once gone, these materials would be difficult, if not impossible, to replace.

Fourth, librarians in law libraries have the knowledge, expertise and supplemental materials to assist those searching for legal information. The public is often better served when looking for legal government information by going to a law library rather than trying to find and use materials directly from the Internet.

This is not to say that there are no disadvantages or costs associated with being a depository law library. You still must abide by all the rules and regulations of the program - providing access to the public, maintaining a piece level record of the depository collection, preparing discard lists when you want to weed your collection, having to keep everything you receive through the program a minimum of 5 years, etc. I will be the first to admit that some GPO practices and requirements leave me shaking my head in wonder - why do I have to get all this "stuff" under an item number when all I want is one title? Why am I getting one issue of a serial publication on microfiche when the rest of the issues are in paper? Why am I getting a CD-ROM with no technical documentation?

Nonetheless, I think GPO does an amazing job operating the FDLP with the budget it receives from Congress and the "cooperation" it receives from the agencies themselves. Many of the complaints I have heard from law librarians with regard to GPO and depository materials have actually been beyond GPO�s control. For example, GPO has no control over what an agency decides to publish. If an agency decides to cease publication of a particular title or put it on hold due to budget constraints, there is nothing GPO can do to make that title or issue appear. If an agency decides to print somewhere other than through GPO and doesn�t give GPO the necessary copies for depository distribution then often times, GPO�s only recourse is to reprint the title on microfiche - if GPO can even obtain a copy to use as a master. GPO has no control over what an agency puts on its CD-ROM - GPO merely prints what the agency submits and in the process obtains extra copies for FDLP members.

Plus I think GPO has made a number of changes to the program over the past 10 years that have resulted in improvements at the libraries� end. For instance, they have cut down on the number of titles per item number, they have dropped the requirement to have libraries select a specific number of item numbers, they have been more diligent in seeking out fugitive materials to get them into the program, they have been actively talking to agencies about the requirements of the program, etc. I won�t debate every complaint I have heard over the past 20 years here. No, it is still not a perfect system, but tell me what one is.

So, if the costs to a library of being a participant in the FDLP really do outweigh the benefits, then I think it should drop out of the program. Or as Judy Russell (former GPO employee) stated at the June 1995 American Library Association conference, you have to get enough out of the program for your primary users to make it worthwhile to handle the duties and responsibilities of your secondary users. Betsy McKenzie�s description of the reasons Suffolk decided to drop its depository status make sense to me. But it was clear this was done only after serious consideration. Please don�t drop your depository status just because some of the "costs" drive you crazy. What impact will that have on your community? Make sure you carefully consider the needs of your library�s clientele (and remember that as a depository library this includes the members of your congressional district) - as well as the costs - before you decide to drop depository status. You could lose more than you think.









JULY 18, 1999

THE 1999 LISP BUSINESS MEETING WAS CALLED TO ORDER AT 4:00 P.M. BY CHAIR PATRICIA COURT, all members of the 1998-99 Board were present: Vice-Chair/Chair-Elect Angus Nesbit, Secretary/Treasurer Joan Allen-Hart. Also present were 1999-2000 Vice-Chair/Chair-Elect Lee Warthen and Secretary/Treasurer-Elect Laura Stockton. (A complete list of members attending, with email addresses and institutional affiliations, appears at the end of these minutes.)


Each office had two candidates running: for Vice-Chair/Chair-Elect, the candidates were Lee Warthen, Quinney Law Library, and Beth Youngdale, Tarlton Law Library; for Secretary/Treasurer, the candidates were Jill Henderson, Taylor County Law Library, and Laura Stockton, Riverside County Law Library. Lee and Laura were elected for their respective offices. The out-going board expresses its appreciation to all candidates for agreeing to run in this year's election. Motion made, seconded, and passed to destroy ballots for the 1999-2000 election.


Joan reported that the 6/22/99 statement from headquarters, containing all revenues and expenses through May 1999, reflected a balance of $4,655.89 for the SIS. This balance will be reduced slightly by the costs for the recent election (approximately $150.00), plus the costs for the current conference. A final report will be prepared for the Board after all invoices are received and will appear in the next newsletter.


A. Report on the LISP Clearinghouse: Beth Schneider reported that she sent out 200 letters soliciting items for the Clearinghouse and received a number of items in response. She has updated the bibliography, which will be placed on the LISP website. There was some discussion about whether the materials themselves could also be placed on the website, but that is not possible at this time. Beth also suggested that the Board purchase more bookmarks and pencils, as well as the SIS brochure, for next year's conference, as the supply is running low. Consensus was that 500 of each item should be purchased.

B. Public Library Toolkit: Marsha Thomas gave the history of its creation and reported that she has updated the toolkit in preparation for the upcoming program on Wednesday, "Internet Reference and the Non-Law Patron: Dangers, Policies, and Solutions." Both she and Pat Court will be participating in the program, along with Charlotte Bynum, Deborah Norwood, and Laura J. Orr-Waters. Marsha also announced that this would be her last AALL conference, as she is leaving the profession to practice law. SIS members present expressed their gratitude to Marsha for her contributions to the SIS over the years and wished her well in her new profession.

C. Report on this year's LISP programs: Program Chair Sharon Blackburn reported that of the 6 programs the SIS proposed for this year's conference, 2 were accepted: Sunday's program, "Unauthorized Practice of Law 1999: Two Views from Two Different Pews," and Wednesday's upcoming program, previously discussed by Marsha.


A. Call for proposals for AALL 2000 in Philadelphia and request for a new Program Committee Chair: Pat and Angus thanked out-going Chair Sharon for her hard work and asked for a volunteer to chair the committee. The Education committee also needs volunteers. Next year's conference theme will be "Gateways to Leadership." Angus said that the format planned for the meeting would be that Sunday is the designated day for SIS-sponsored programs. Each SIS will get one proposal of its choice automatically approved for Sunday. The deadline for proposals is Aug. 16th.

B. Membership: There was discussion about ways to increase membership and participation in LISP. While we have 258 members, many of whom subscribe to the listserv, attendance at our annual Business meeting is low, with the same 20 or so members attending each year. And getting volunteers for committees is an on-going problem. Low attendance at the business meeting may be attributed to the fact that we have to compete with the other SIS's with which we share members, such as the State, Court, and County SIS. Beth said that it has been several years since LISP has had a membership drive and suggested that this might be the time to revitalize the SIS. The consensus was that this is a good idea.

C. Newsletter: Angus reported that John Adkins (University of San Diego Legal Research Center) would continue to serve as Newsletter Editor. LISP was the first SIS to make its newsletter completely electronic. During a discussion of how to motivate members to write articles for the newsletter, Betsy McKenzie suggested having someone volunteer to assist John with each issue. She volunteered to help John with an issue. Pat reported that David McFadden (Southwestern University), who usually attends the business meeting but had another commitment this year, has also volunteered to help with the newsletter. The deadline for the fall newsletter will probably be late September. John will post a message to the listserv.

D. LISTSERV: Angus reported that we have 202 subscribers to the listserv. He also has contacted 30 SIS members (from the 1998-99 AALL Directory) who were not subscribed or did not have listed emails to let them know about the listserv. AALL will auto-subscribe all SIS members to their appropriate listservs in September. Deborah Norwood suggested posting a "Welcome to the LISP listserv" message after the auto-subscribe is done. [NOTE: Angus did so in September]

E. Website Development: Angus requested committee help for the website, as he would like assistance in determining content, links, etc.

F. & G. Strategic Planning: Pat encouraged members to offer an SIS perspective for the AALL Strategic Planning Survey and reviewed the questions. A lively discussion followed, with Pat taking notes for her response to headquarters.

There being no other business to discuss, Pat thanked the 1998-99 Board and turned over the meeting to new Chair Angus, who welcomed his new Board and thanked the members for attending. The meeting was adjourned at 5:15 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,

Joan Allen-Hart

1998-99 Secretary/Treasurer



Joan Allen-Hart, San Diego County Public Law Library,

Sharon Blackburn, Texas Tech,

Pat Court, Cornell Law Library,

Betsy McKenzie, Suffolk University,

Angus Nesbit, University of Oregon,

Deborah Norwood, Washington State Law Library,

Karlye Pillai, New York Supreme Ct. Lib.-Troy,

Maria Protti, City Attorney San Francisco, no email

Beth Schneider, Texas Tech,

Laura Stockton, Riverside Co. Law Library, LSTOCKTON@CO.RIVERSIDE.CA.US

Steven Thorpe, University of Tennessee,

Marsha Thomas, Quinney L.L. University of Utah,

Lee Warthen, Quinney L.L. University of Utah,


AALL Research Committee Seeks Comments on Research Agenda

The Research Committee is charged with several duties, including that of periodically reviewing AALL's Research Agenda. The Agenda is scheduled for review this year.

The Research Agenda highlights the Association's research priorities and was first approved by the Executive Board at its April, 1993, meeting. The purpose of the Agenda is "to identify researchable questions and issues for law librarians to explore with practical impact on the improvement of law libraries and their services, the job performance and professional development of law librarians, and the contributions of law libraries to the legal profession."

AALL's members are encouraged to read the Research Agenda and send suggestions and recommendations to the Research Committee. The Agenda can be found on AALLNet at <>. Hardcopy is available at 25 AALL Newsletter 92 (no. 2, October 1993). Comments on the Research Agenda and suggestions for updating its contents can be addressed the Committee Chair, Barbara Bintliff, or to any member of the Research Committee (see the Committee's web page for contact information).




LISP is the sponsor or co-sponsor of the following 5 program proposals submitted to the AALL Annual Meeting Program Selection Committee to be considered for the Annual Meeting in Philadelphia, 2000: Greeting Them at the Gateway: Exactly Who are Our Lay Patrons, What Do They Expect from Us, and How Can We Help Them? (co-sponsored with Research Instruction and Patron Services, and Government Documents SIS's) Stopping the Madness at the Gateway: Law Librarians Leading the Way to Justice by Forging Pro Se Service Partnerships (co-sponsored with Research Instruction and Patron Services SIS) Stumbling Through the Gateway: Accented Speech at the Reference Desk Taking the Lead in Pro Bono Work (co-sponsored with Social Responsibilities SIS) Widening the Gateway to Legal Information: Building Partnerships with Public Libraries to Increase Availability of Legal Information to Non-Lawyer Researchers (co-sponsored with State Court and County Law Libraries SIS) Thanks to Sharon Blackburn, Greta Boeringer, Camille Broussard, Kelly Browne, Kathy Carlson, Felise Thorpe Moll, Melissa Serfass, Lee Warthen, and Karen Westwood for contributing these proposal ideas!



The subscriber list for this listserv was autopopulated on September 13, 1999. This means that, if your dues have been received by AALL and you indicated membership in the Legal information Services to the Public SIS, you were automatically added (or re-added) to this list.

LISP-SIS is intended to provide a forum for the exchange of ideas, opinions and information. This listserv is probably our best tool for regularly communicating with each other and facilitating participation in our SIS by even the most remote and/or sleepy members! Although it gets used mostly for LISP SIS business, the listserv is also a great way to: share ideas, react to others' ideas, voice a concern, get opinions from folks with your same interests, exchange information, etc. Let's let our listserv help us become a tighter community!


I've fixed all the bad email problems I know about, so if you haven't received any messages from the listserv since September 13, or if your messages to the list are bouncing back to you, please send an email to, or call 541-346-1673 to let me know.


You can subscribe to lisp-sis by going to AALL's listserv subscriber gateway at, or sending the following message to (leave subject blank): subscribe LISP-SIS

NOTE: If your email has changed since you sent in your dues, you should check your AALL membership profile at and make sure your email address as listed is correct. If it is not, please send corrections to - Angus Nesbit, LISP-SIS listserv owner.




LISP wants to know what its members are doing. Have you, or anyone you know, given or attended a lecture, seminar, training session or other presentation? Published an article? Discovered a good Internet site or other resource? Know of any other news that LISP members may be interested in? Don't keep it a secret - LISP wants to know! No news is too small! LISP News is published three times a year -- in October, March, and June. Please send submissions to:

John Adkins, University of San Diego Legal Research Center, 5998 Alcala Park San Diego, CA 92110 Email an attachment or use regular mail - with a 3.5" floppy, and current version of Word or WordPerfect.



Year 1999/2000 Committee Volunteers Still Needed!

As you can see from the LISP Committees directory elsewhere in this issue, there are still a number of great opportunities for getting involved with LISP. Participation on committees is a great way to build professional relationships, make yourself known outside your own library, add professional association work to your other occupational activities, and generate that warm feeling that comes from active participation in a worthwhile SIS. (Just ask newest committee volunteers Betsy McKenzie, Brendan Starkey, and Ruth Nunez-Schaldach!) Participation requires only a small time commitment - a few hours/month for the busiest - but is of great value to the SIS. Below is the name and description of each committee still needing staffing. Except for the Nominating Committee, these are all new committees. Please look over the list, and call or email Angus Nesbit at 541-346-1673,, if you would like to chair or otherwise participate in any of these committees (or if you have questions about any of them).


(Responsible for soliciting program, workshop, or other educational ideas from LISP members, for use both inside and outside of the Annual Meeting. Also helps format/select/prioritize program and workshop ideas for submission to AALL's Annual Meeting Program Selection Committee.) Will be working to collect program ideas for Minneapolis 2001!


(Responsible for maintaining and increasing membership and participation in LISP.) This is a new committee, but with a projected membership drive coming up, LISP could really use help here.


(Responsible for finding candidates for LISP officer elections.) Unlike other committees, this committee is selected anew each year by the LISP Executive Committee, according to our bylaws. Chair: Joan Allen-Hart, Branch Librarian, North County Branch, San Diego County Public Law Library, 325 South Melrose, #300, Vista, CA 92083-6697, (760) 940-4386, Members: Ruth Nunez-Schaldach, Public Services Librarian, Sacramento Public Library.


(Responsible for developing and maintaining the wonderful Toolkit resource found on LISP's website.) Another new committee, and an opportunity to make a real impact for LISP! Check out the Toolkit at and see if this looks like something you'd want to help with.

Thanks, LISP members, for considering joining one or another of these important committees!