Table of Contents

  1. Public Access to Government Information in the Twenty-First Century
  2. GPO Releases Study on The Federal Depository Library Program
  3. Department of Justice Issues Memorandum on GPO Printing
  4. ALA Godort Highlights by Susan Tulis
  5. The Problem with the FDLP
  6. Digital Government Information Archive
  7. Hackers Invade Justice Web Site
  8. Bernadine Abbott Hoduski Founders Award
  9. James Bennett Childs Award
  10. Readex/GODORT/ALA Catharine J. Reynolds Award
  11. CIS/GODORT/ALA Documents to the People Award
  12. David Rozkuszka Scholarship Available

(1) Four Senate Hearings Conducted on
"Public Access to Government Information
in the 21st Century"

The Senate Rules and Administration Committee conducted four hearings this summer on "Public Access to Government Information in the 21st Century." The hearings were chaired by Senator John Warner (R-VA) with the active participation of ranking minority Senator Wendell Ford (D-KY). Senator Warner said that the Committee has two goals: 1) to determine how government can use technological advances without sacrificing the public access, especially since only 10 percent of the public understand computers; 2) to bring Title 44 of the United States Code into the next century at the lowest cost to the taxpayers.

June 18

ALA President Betty Turock, representing ALA, the American Association of Law Libraries, the Association of Research Libraries, and the Special Libraries Association, told the Senators that the associations recognized the importance of Congressional leadership and oversight in ensuring public access to government information. She said the program that we have today in the legislative branch for getting government information to the public works extremely well and that Congress has already established the framework for the 21st century in the Federal Depository Library Program. Turock warned of the need to know the costs and implications of changes before abandoning current systems and institutions. Her statement also pointed out that librarians have been in the forefront of using new technologies for decades and have long advocated electronic dissemination of government information.

Turock also discussed the study for Congress that the Government Printing Office concluded in June and urged the Senators to adopt the five to seven year transition to a nearly all electronic depository library program, instead of the ambitious two-year transition proposed last year.

Other members of the panel included Daniel O'Mahony, Government Documents Coordinator at Brown University and Christie Vernon of Yorktown, Virginia. O'Mahony described the daily challenges of documents librarians in helping the public use electronic information. Vernon, who searches for government documents for clients, said she fears that more documents will become unavailable as agencies publish more online or try to avoid printing costs by contracting with commercial publishers, thus taking the publications out of the depository program.

Superintendent of Documents Wayne Kelley told the Committee: "We are going through a time of technological chaos. When we emerge, it is important that the American public still have equitable and free access to information about what its Government is doing. Clearly the new electronic information technologies have enabled new approaches toward getting government information published. However, in pursuing these new arrangements, agencies must not lose sight of the existing laws and regulations put into place to ensure broad and equitable public access, and to ensure that today's information is still accessible tomorrow. These are the concerns the Federal Depository Library Program has addressed for many years, and intends to pursue in the electronic future." He described how some federal agencies are acting as competitors to each other and to private enterprise, often using information as a source of revenue. Kelley said that to carry out the GPO's plan to transition to a more electronic depository library program, GPO will seek legislation that explicitly requires agencies to provide electronic documents without charge to depository libraries so that the public can use them.

June 19

Dennis Galletta, professor at the University of Pittsburgh, said "there are still some difficulties that must be overcome before all of this country's valuable information becomes available only via the Internet." He said the Web is too slow and much too variable in its response time, and the unreliability of connections appears to be on the rise. He discussed the demographics of the Internet and concluded: A very small proportion of today's population can be described as Internet users. He also discussed the value of Internet access.

William Wulf, professor from the University of Virginia said that it is absolutely certain that faster, bigger, cheaper, more capable computing and communications technology will cause continued, rapid change in the way we use the technology. What is absolutely unpredictable is the rate at which the technology will be deployed, precisely which of several competing technologies will be "the winner", and what the social implications will be.

Jeanne Hurley Simon, chair of the National Commission on Libraries and Information Science, described recent research by NCLIS on library networking and the Internet. She said that NCLIS Commissioners believe that advances in electronic information and communications technologies can increase and improve public access to and use of government information. They also see a world where printed information and digital information co-exist for a long time to come, in libraries generally and within the federal government as well. The proportions will shift, and governments and libraries at all levels are getting ready to deal with the shifts, as shown in NCLIS projections that by next year more than 60 percent of the nation's public libraries could be connected to the Internet.

July 16

Industry witnesses testified. Robert Claitor, President of Claitor's Law Books and Publishing Division, said that the Government Printing Office and Title 44 "are working just GREAT---let's not trade this combination for a pig-in-a-poke. There's plenty of work to be done on adapting the electronic media, and my suggestion is to concentrate on this with GPO, rather than the dismantling of GPO thru removal of Agencies' printing."

Speaking on behalf of the Information Industry Association, Eric Massant urged that Congress require the legislative branch agencies to abide by the principles contained in the Paperwork Reduction Act passed in 1995. He also cautioned against "the notion that government information should be standardized and the FDLP should be the catalyst for this standardization."

In his testimony, William Gindlesperger of ABC Advisors, Inc., urged that executive agencies be allowed to compete for print procurement. He said, "[T]o address any concerns that a decentralized print procurement system might raise with respect to so-called fugitive' documents or public access to printed documents procured or purchased directly by the executive agencies, Congress could further mandate that, as a condition of establishing direct non-GPO print procurement services, agencies must make all such documents available to the Superintendent of Documents and the depository libraries in electronic or printed format after a reasonable period has lapsed for the agency to promote and market its own publications."

Although his testimony focused on printing issues, Benjamin Cooper of the Printing Industries of America recommended that an appropriation be made specifically to assure "the agency producing the information is not reluctant to provide material through the Superintendent of Documents because of cost considerations."

July 24

Judge Royce Lamberth spoke for the Judicial Conference of the United States and argued that a migration toward publishing government information in electronic format will be successful if: 1) standards are developed for file formats, access, software functions, licensing agreements, and archiving;(2) a helpful, well-staffed central help desk with many phone lines is provided by GPO; 3) funding is provided for equipment, Internet access, and telephone lines for the participating libraries; 4) the need for staff training in FDLP libraries is recognized; and, 5) the electronic format is appropriate to the materials (with print continuing to be available for presentation of material with tables and charts).

Sally Katzen, Administrator of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs in the Office of Management and Budget, said that while OMB is prepared to maintain the short term status quo, "we cannot support GPO's continued control over Executive branch printing for the long-term." She said that GPO's recent study of the Federal Depository Library Program suggests visions of a funnel where government information pours in yet trickles out. "Rather than trying to devise ways of making the funnel work, we should question the use of the funnel at all, although we are committed to the preservation and indeed enhancement of the depository library program."

Roy Francis, Chairman of the Interagency Council on Printing and Publications Services, testified that through the current centralized printing procurement system Congress has sought to ensure that government publications for public use are made available to the public. He said, "By decentralizing the printing procurement system, we face the real possibility that some publications will not be entered into the Depository Library system."

Donald Johnson, Director of the National Technical Information Service, said that NTIS is "prepared to provide Depository Libraries with on-line access on demand to the electronic images of Federally funded scientific, technical and engineering publications in our collection at no charge, as often as needed, and without any time limitation in exchange for a simple agreement from each library not to release the electronic file outside the library." Christopher Schroeder, Acting Assistant Attorney General, discussed the memorandum opinion of the Office of Legal Counsel recently issued on the subject of GPO involvement in executive branch printing (see related story in this issue), concluding that GPO's "extensive control" over executive branch printing and duplicating violates the constitutional principle of separation of powers.

As the final witness, Public Printer Michael DiMario said that he does not agree with the Department of Justice opinion: "I think it was wrongly decided, and I think it sends the wrong message to agencies and the public. GPO does not have extensive control' over executive branch printing. We perform an administrative function to ensure that Government printing is performed in the interests of the taxpayer and made available to the public on a comprehensive and equitable basis. By signaling that the Justice Department will not uphold the law, the message is being sent that there is no need for economy in public printing, and that providing effective public access is a secondary concern."

Source : ALAWON, August 14, 1996, Volume 5, No. 51.

(2) GPO Releases Study on
The Federal Depository Library Program

GPO released its report to Congress, Study to Identify Measures Necessary for a Successful Transition to a More Electronic Federal Depository Library Program in June. GPO's study was the second report GPO has prepared on the transition to a substantially electronic depository program. The first, released in December 1995, assumed a two-year transition to an almost entirely electronic program. GPO's second study responded to the concerns of librarians and others that the first transition plan was based on an overly ambitious time frame, and GPO has now recommended to Congress a five to seven year transition.

A strategic plan included in the document proposes four ways in which GPO could bring electronic information into the FDLP:

ALA joined with other library associations to send a series of letters to the Public Printer commenting on various draft versions of the report during the past year. During this same period ALA President Betty Turock testified at four Congressional hearings on government information issues reflecting the importance that the library community places on this important issue. During the past year, ALA representatives were part of the working group established by the Public Printer to develop the study. ALA was also among the organizations invited to serve as advisors to the working group.

Although long supportive of a more electronic depository program, librarians have continuing concerns about the transition to a mostly electronic program including:

Availability of report: The report has been mailed to every depository library. It is also available on the GPO Web Site:

Source : ALAWON, August 14, 1996, Volume 5, Issue 52.

(3) Department of Justice Issues
Memorandum on GPO Printing

Walter Dellinger, Assistant Attorney General, Office of Legal Counsel, U.S. Department of Justice, issued an 18-page memorandum on May 31 based on a request by the General Services Administration to analyze the constitutional implications of the involvement of the Government Printing Office in executive branch printing and duplicating. The Department of Justice found that "the GPO is subject to congressional control, and conclude that the GPO's extensive control over executive branch printing is unconstitutional under the doctrine of separation of powers."

In 1993, Dellinger wrote another memorandum to GSA stating that the statute in question "does not violate the separation of powers by delegating executive authority to the GPO." In a June 11, 1996 letter, GPO's General Counsel, Anthony Zagami, pointed out to Dellinger that there have been no procedural changes or statutory modifications of any substance that would warrant a different conclusion such as that contained in the recent memorandum. Zagami requested that the Justice Department review this matter once again and return to the opinions expressed prior to the May 31, 1996, memorandum.

Source: ALAWON, August 14, 1996, Volume 5, Issue 52.

(4) Report from the Big Apple
1996 ALA Godort Highlights

The 1996 American Library Association annual conference was held in New York City July 5 - 9. Many of the Government Documents Round Table (GODORT) meetings dealt with the transition to a more electronic Federal Depository Library Program (FDLP), beginning with the usual Federal Agency Update.

Wayne Kelley, Superintendent of Documents, began by announcing that GPO expects their budget to remain marginally intact for the coming year. While this is clearly good news, there are bigger issues still to come - like a rewrite of Title 44, and a reexamination of the principles underlying federal information policy.

Currently, there is a push by agencies to sell their government documents to make money. While this is understandable due to agency budget cuts, it leads to a marketplace, not federal information policy. In fact, it leads to an information policy whereby those who can afford the documents buy them; those without funds are disenfranchised.

Restructuring the federal government has resulted in two kinds of change - good and bad. Good change is when the public is well served by functions best performed by the government and when the pain of change is temporary and the people who survive feel a sense of pride in their activities. Bad change is when there is no measurable benefit to the public (although there may be to certain narrow interest groups) and when the pain of change is of long duration and crippling and the survivors feel inadequate in their new roles. Kelley feels that if we network and support each other, the change will be good change. One of the changes that GPO is planning is to a more electronic future which really serves people.

Judy Russell, Office of Electronic Information Dissemination Services, outlined the highlights and implications of the "Study to Identify Measures Necessary for a Successful Transition to a More Electronic Federal Depository Library Program." Russell ran through some of the key definitions of the study (to make sure we are all talking about the same thing) - such as, "government information," "government information product," "government electronic information service," "permanent access," and "preservation." [Note, these definitions can be found on pages v-vi of the Study - GP 3.2:El 2/3/final.]

Russell then moved to the results of the Study. The first conclusion deals with the scope of the program. One of the things that came out of the study process was an awareness of the potential to broaden the scope of the program. However, in setting out priorities, the highest priority is to retain the information content that already exists, then look beyond to expand that body of information. As one might imagine, this goes back to the issue of various formats and how the information is complied.

A second conclusion deals with notification and compliance. Historically, the program relied heavily on the ability of the FDLP to obtain material as it was printed or procured through GPO. With the increasing emphasis on electronic dissemination and decreasing compliance with statutory requirements for agencies to print through GPO, identifying and obtaining information for the FDLP is becoming increasingly difficult. There must be new means to inform agencies of their responsibilities and to ensure compliance with agency FDLP obligations.

Jay Young, Directory of Library Programs Service (LPS), began with some details about the FY 1997 Superintendent of Documents Salaries and Expenses (S&E) appropriation. GPO requested $30.7 million; the House has recommended just over $29 million. The House cut the following from GPO's request: $500,000 for the technology grants; $1.2 million by directing that the Serial Set would be provided in CD-ROM only (except for Regionals who would continue to receive paper); $50,000 by directing the conversion of the bound Congressional Record to CD- ROM only.

Young continued with an overview of LPS actions to implement the strategic plan. LPS has identified four major areas for LPS electronic transition activities, assigned individuals to oversee them, and developed specific steps and milestones toward their completion. The four areas are:

  1. Acquisitions (Robin Haun-Mohamed) (detailed below)
  2. Cataloging and Locator Services (Tad Downing) (detailed below)
  3. Services to Depository Libraries (Sheila McGarr) - updating the technical specifications for computer work stations, finalizing the depository library self-study, developing an FDLP administrative information Web page to form the basis of an electronic channel for official program communications, etc.
  4. Permanent Public Access to Official and Authentic Information (Ric Davis and Duncan Aldrich) - the FDLP has always had the responsibility for providing permanent access and historically this has been the role of the regionals. To ensure permanent public access to official electronic government information, all of the institutional program stakeholders (information producing agencies, GPO, participating depository libraries and the National Archives) must cooperate to establish the authenticity of official information, provide persistent identification and description of government information products, and establish arrangements for their continued accessibility.
Robin Haun-Mohamed, Chief of the Depository Administration Branch (DAB), addressed the activities of her area within LPS. The transition to a more electronic FDLP has added a whole new dimension to the problems associated with fugitive products. For example, LPS surveyed in Jan 1995 for the 40+ School District Atlas CD-ROM set. Due to budget limitations, the Education Department does not have the funds to make the copies available for depository distribution. LPS was referred to a Web site where this material was supposedly located, but in fact, it was summary files, not the whole product. Another problem is that older material is often taken off an agency server as newer material is loaded. Or data from a report might appear on a web site, but not the entire print version. Robin does rely on depository librarians to notify her of titles not making it into the program, for whatever reason, like "Hispanics-Latinos; Diverse People in Multicultural Society," "Tide Tables," FBIS/JPRS on CD-ROM, "Population of States and Counties of the United States: 1790-1990," etc.

DAB is currently reviewing titles in the List of Classes against a list of those titles not used for acquisitions since 1992. A random sample of titles are being checked with the agency to determine the status of the titles. The assumption is that if the product has not been received in LPS since 1992, then it is probably no longer active, at least not in a paper format and the class should be discontinued.

LPS continues to work with other agencies to try to expand access to their services. Discussions continue with STAT-USA to try to increase the number of access points to the online service and also to try to obtain an agreement to allow mounting of the NTDB on a LAN once again. In addition, talks continue with the Census Bureau about depository access to the online "Electronic Subscription Service." According to Census, this service includes all Census Bureau publications printed by GPO after January 1, 1996 as well as selected reports released before that date.

Two new Pathway Services to look at are: the "Browse Electronic Titles" page ( and the Test Page for Graphically Intensive Documents ( The first is a listing by agency of new electronic titles in the FDLP and is essentially a current awareness tool. It is updated once a week and the listings are hot linked to the product sites on the Internet. All material on this site will be cataloged for inclusion in the FDLP. Item numbers and class numbers listed on the "Browse Electronic Titles" page are the same class numbers and item numbers that were assigned to these products in a physical format. Only products that are brand new to the program are given a new class and item number. In response to a Council recommendation that LPS investigate alternate formats for scanning of documents, GPO took eight products that would otherwise be distributed in microfiche and had them converted to JPEG, PDF, and ASCII files and placed on the test page. Please evaluate these products and get your comments in to LPS.

Lastly, Robin outlined the eight objectives her branch is working on to make the transition to electronic dissemination as easy and systematic as possible. The objectives include obtaining the source data files from federal agencies, coordination with Federal agencies to provide FDLP access to Government information products at their sites, maintenance of the "Browse Electronic Titles" page, development of format standards for source data file conversion, reduction of duplication of product content, and identification of agency fee- based services for Government information products. Timelines have been established for each objective with specific tasks identified for completion within a five year time frame.

Tad Downing, Chief of the Cataloging Branch, described cataloging and locator services as they are evolving to support an increasingly electronic FDLP. Their objectives are to catalog physical forms shortly after distribution and electronic forms shortly after notification of their appearance at Web sites. The Monthly Catalog Web Site ( includes URLs hot linked to electronic publications at various Internet sites. Comprehensive policies have been established for transcribing URL data in records for maps, monographs, and serials. Currently, LPS is entering URLs only in the 856 field. As time permits, they expect to move URL data in older records from the 530 to the 856 field. Note, the Cataloging Branch staff do not routinely "surf the net" to identify equivalent electronic editions as they catalog titles in physical forms. The URLs in cataloging records are obtained from physical form publications and from DAB personnel.

In the near future, LPS expects that Monthly Catalog Web record ID numbers will be displayed in edited records at the Web site, and in all records in the CD-ROM and abridged paper editions.

An additional Internet related effort is the creation and maintenance of Pathway GILS records at the agency level. This Pathway Browse application contains 34 GILS records and users are able to navigate from the GILS records to an agency's Web site via hot links. (

Maggie Farrell and Raeann Dossett, Internet Specialists, demonstrated various parts of the Pathway Services Web page ( "Browse Topics" is for individuals who are looking for general or broad subjects. "Pathway Indexer" searches keywords of selected Federal government Internet sites and points to the file level. It is much deeper and detailed than "Browse Topics." "Pathway Indexer," still in a prototype stage, can be found at

Larry Carbaugh, Census Bureau, talked some about the development of their Data Access and Delivery System which is desgined to make data more easy to access and obtain. This system will be using the Internet as a primary access tool through the Census Web site. They are trying to get away from an organizational structure so that users don't need to know who puts out what statistic. Carbaugh also talked about the just developed CENSTATS - an electronic subscription service, whereby publications that are to be released will be put in PDF format and users will be allowed to download for a price. Census is looking to make this a paid subscription beginning October 1, 1996. They are also working to get software so depository libraries can access the system free of charge. Census envisions 3 tiers to this system - 1) general publications, general data series, 2) more value added statistics, creation of custom and thematic maps, more detailed access to CD-ROMs, and 3) allow users to develop their own customized tabulations.

The GODORT Legislation Committee presented two resolutions for membership endorsement: 1) regarding federal agency compliance with Title 44 U.S. Code and 2) on the principles for federal government information. The first resolution was asking for OMB to instruct agencies to comply with appropriate sections of Title 44 which results in agency materials going to depository libraries, plus it addressed the conflicting directives offered by the May 31, 1996 Department of Justice (DOJ) memorandum and the April 11, 1996 White House Chief of Staff's memorandum. (The DOJ memo presents an opinion which interprets established laws and policies to provide agencies with a rationale for not complying with the existing statutes; and the White House memo instructs federal agencies to make maximum use of GPO for its printing and duplicating needs.) Resolution two asks that ALA endorse and adopt the Principles for Government Information as articulated by GPO in its Study.

GPO distributed a working draft of proposed changes to Title 44 for review and comment. As a result of reviewing this draft, the GODORT Legislation Committee brought forward a motion which identified 4 principles that any changes to Title 44 USC Chapter 19 regarding regionals should address.

Odds and Ends

  • The is out; the Guide to Official Publications of Foreign Countries is expected out in the fall 1996.
  • Readex plans to mount its United Nations Index on the Web, including full-text documents along with the index.
  • The URL for the State Documents Checklists and Shipping Lists is
  • GPO has created 66,000 bibliographic records for government Internet resources, with both GPO item numbers and SuDoc classification numbers assigned.
  • Concern was raised about the need for GPO to establish and maintain "persistent uniform resource locators," or PURLS for government web sites/publications.
  • Jack Sulzer, 1996 winner of the CIS Award, has donated the $2,000 stipend to GODORT "to provide the seed capital to establish a GODORT government information transition education fund ... to be used for the support of a project of projects to develop electronic and distance education resources."

    Source : Susan E. Tulis, University of Virginia, Law School Library, 580 Massie Road, Charlottesville, VA 22903; E-mail:; Phone: 804/924-3504; Fax: 804/982-2232.

    (5) The Problem With the FDLP:
    Testimony by Wayne P. Kelly Before the
    Commitee on Rules and Administration, June 18, 1996

    Mr. Chairman and Members of the Committee, thank you for this opportunity to testify about an important, and endangered American Institution--the Federal Depository Library Program.

    The program was created by Congress to promote public knowledge of Government activities. It traces its roots back 183 years when congressional materials were first deposited at certain libraries for public inspection.

    Today the program is a partnership between the Government and some 1,400 libraries in communities throughout the nation. Public libraries, academic libraries, law school libraries.

    The U.S. Government Printing Office supplies copies of publications from all three branches of Government. Depositories house the documents and provide staff to give citizens free public access to the information.

    There are 53 regional depositories, serving each state in the country. These regionals permanently retain all Government documents provided. I'd like to emphasize the word "permanently." That is our nation's only guarantee of continued, free public access to a vast storehouse of Government information. Nowhere else in law, or in practice, is there provision for permanent, no-fee, public access to Federal information.

    The program is efficient. Last year some 20 million copies of publications were distributed at a cost of just over $1 per copy. Libraries contribute resources valued at some 4 to 5 times the cost of the publications they receive.

    It is effective. Dedicated professional librarians assist millions of Americans each year in locating print and electronic information for business, education, personal needs, and evaluating the performance of our Government.

    It is not political or subject to censorship. For 101 years, since the landmark Printing Act of 1895, responsibility for the program has rested with the elected representatives of the people in the Legislative Branch. There is a depository library in nearly every congressional district, to directly serve all types of users in local library settings. A conservative estimate is that 10-12 million citizens use them annually.

    The Depository Library Program continues to change to take advantage of electronic technology. Under the GPO Access Law passed by Congress in 1993, the public is getting a rapidly expanding list of publications delivered free of charge over the Internet. Users are downloading electronic documents at the rate of more than two million per month. We are taking initiatives for a successful transition to a more electronic depository program. A congressionally mandated study of this transition was just completed and copies are available here this morning.

    This program, serving the needs of a democratic society for an informed electorate, is more important today than ever before. But it is in real jeopardy. Because content is being bled from the program. First, a trickle. Then a steady stream. Until the fundamental, supporting principle of free, equitable access to Government information is itself in danger.

    Until recently, Government agencies generally focused attention on carrying out their missions. Publications and collections of information were predominantly the byproducts of their work. Few agency publishers sought to control access to, or reuse of their information. Copyright on Federal information, produced at taxpayer expense, was prohibited. Information was in the public domain, available to everyone.

    But today, dangerous new precedents are being set. Government information, produced by government employees at taxpayer expense, is being turned over to certain groups who are given exclusive distribution rights. These groups are establishing copyright or copyright-like controls.

    Here is an example. The Commerce Department recently published a 480-page, four-color book titled "The Big Emerging Markets." The introduction says "the Big Emerging markets are a key focus of our National Export Strategy," and success there will "largely determine the United States' position as the world's economic leader."

    The book lists U.S. and foreign trade contacts for American businessmen. But you will not find it in the depository library program.

    All the editorial and design work was done by employees of the U.S. International Trade Administration of the Commerce Department at government expense. The names of 135 Government workers are listed as contributors. But the Commerce Department asserts it is not a Federal government document. It was printed by a private sector publisher under an exclusive agreement with the National Technical Information Service, a Commerce Department agency.

    An introductory page states that "Big Emerging Markets" contains copyrighted material. But there is no specific designation of what information is subject to copyright. The book contains four pages of advertisements for other books available from the publisher.

    This book deal would seem to violate current Federal information policy. On June 25, 1993 the Office of Management and Budget issued a Revised Circular A-130 on the Management of Federal Information Resources. OMB told agencies to "avoid establishing, or permitting others to establish on their behalf, exclusive, restricted, or other distribution arrangements that interfere with the availability of information dissemination products in a timely and equitable basis."

    OMB also directed agencies to "insure that government publications are made available to depository libraries through the facilities of the Government Printing Office, as required by law." NTIS refused to supply depositories print copies, offering microfiche instead. Microfiche of a book containing four-color graphs is unusable.

    One would think that A-130 and Title 44 of the U.S. Code established the rules for agencies. But an increasing number of agencies seem to be operating by a new set of rules. And the first rule is this -- that there are no rules.

    This book deal hits taxpayers three times. First, for the cost of the large number of government employees who worked on the book. Second, in the pocketbook for those who purchase a glossy copy at an inflated price. And third, when citizens walk into their local depository library and find either no copy, or a copy a locally supported library had to purchase with local tax dollars.

    There are many other examples of agency actions removing government information from both the public domain--and the Depository Library Program.

    Current Population Reports from the U.S. Bureau of the Census are vital, frequently used reference materials in all of the nation's libraries. Depository librarians recently asked GPO to help them obtain copies of a new book, "The Hispanic Population of the United States: March 1994." This is the most recent volume in a series of Census publications, the P-20 Series, which routinely have been available to the depository program.

    Despite some verbal, pre-publication assurances, the book was not made available for depositories. We found that it had been published, under a different title, by a Washington-based trade association. The Census Bureau provided data, staff assistance, and research help. Publication of the book was funded by Phillip Morris Companies Inc. The Phillip Morris corporate logo and a list of its companies was on the second page next to the Bureau of Census logo.

    Copyright is held by the trade association and no material in the book can be reproduced or distributed without permission. Cost of the book, including handling and postage, is $15. Had it been printed by GPO, the book would have cost $3.50 for anyone who wanted to buy a copy. And it would have been sent without charge to depository libraries for free access to the public.

    Government agencies turning over their publications to trade associations or any other special interest groups would seem to create the potential for serious conflicts of interest. Especially if the agency provides the time and assistance of its employees and then permits the interest group to obtain copyright over the material.

    Vital and valuable Federal information is being transferred from the public domain to organizations with exclusive distribution rights at an alarming rate. McGraw Hill, a large private-sector publishing company, issued a press release on May 14, 1996, announcing that it had signed an agreement with NTIS to publish the popular United States Industrial Outlook and collaborate on "a multitude of information products and services."

    For 35 consecutive previous editions, the U.S. Industrial Outlook has been published by the Commerce Department. The information was in the public domain and free for reuse by anyone, including private sector publishers. Its forecasts are widely used by American businessmen, scholars, researchers and the media. In a prospectus circulated late in 1995, NTIS said it would provide "appropriate copyrights" to any private sector partner selected. Government employees apparently will write forecasts for some industries and McGraw Hill will write forecasts for others. It is not possible to say for certain. When I asked NTIS for a copy of the NTIS-McGraw Hill agreement, I was told it was not available because it may be "confidential." Nor would it be possible to get information by attending the NTIS Advisory Board meeting held yesterday at the NTIS headquarters in Springfield, Virginia. According to the Federal Register notice of the June 17 meeting, it was closed to the public because, and I quote, "premature disclosure of the information to be discussed would be likely to significantly frustrate implementation of NTIS' business plans."

    Is this the future? Government agencies entering into secret agreements and meeting behind closed doors to decide what information citizens will get, and the terms and conditions under which the public may have it?

    Electronic information is just as likely to disappear from the Depository Program, and from the public domain, as print information. On April 1, 1996, staff of the Office of Export Services, a Commerce Department Agency, informed us they had awarded a $100,000 contract to NTIS to make a database of the United States Export Administration Regulations. Despite repeated requests, that database will not be available free to the public through the Depository Library Program. NTIS is selling it to the taxpayers who paid for it in the first place -- at an annual fee of $250.

    Unless appropriate safeguards are established, the government's most valuable and marketable information may quickly disappear from the public domain. Special interest groups may control what citizens know about certain government activities. Federal workers may be used to subsidize private publishers.

    Under long-standing regulations, government agencies must get "waivers" from the Joint Committee on Printing to publish glossy, four-color books. The idea is that when the government gathers useful information, it should publish it at low cost in no-frills documents. Agencies are finding ways to evade oversight policies and provisions of present laws. If any changes in law are contemplated, they should be strengthened. The public should be protected against any attempt to use loopholes and taxpayer dollars for the purpose of creating a vanity press of eye-catching publications for the purpose of promoting an agency or touting the accomplishments of high-level officials. Government information should have integrity.

    Mr. Chairman, I sincerely hope the Members of this Committee will continue to support the Federal Depository Library Program, and the historic principles of Federal Information Policy which are its foundation:

    That the public has a right of free and equitable access to government information.

    That information created or compiled by government employees, or at government expense, should remain in the public domain.

    And that government has an obligation to guarantee the authenticity, integrity, and preservation of its information.

    Thank you for this opportunity to testify.

    Source : GOVDOC-L, June 28, 1996.

    (6) Digital Government Information Archive Under Development

    The Congressional Information Service, Inc. (CIS), and LEXIS-NEXIS have announced plans to develop a digital archive of U.S. government information. The CIS Compass Library of Government Information will provide access to high-value government publications created in digital formats as well as access to electronic versions of print publications.

    The announcement comes at a time of growing concern over long-term access to government information published in digital formats, according to CIS. In response to a congressional mandate to cut costs, the Government Printing Office (GPO) recently declared its intention to convert primarily to electronic distribution within the next several years. Yet, as librarians an other government information users have noted, no definitive plans have been made to guarantee future access to this information.

    The Compass Library will address these concerns by archiving the information, regardless of the digital format it wa issued in, and then providing precise and reliable electronic access to the information. The library will combine electronic availability with an emphasis on expanding user access to government information.

    By applying information access approaches that focus on the needs of the end user, the Compass Library will open access to government information to an increasingly broad base. This larger user base, combined with the ability to manipulate and creatively combine source data, will expand the research and business concerns to which government information can be effectively applied, according to CIS.

    The Library will focus initially on legislative materials, including congressional hearings, reports, prints, bills, and documents. Over the next three years it will expand to compromise additional high-value statistical, regulatory, judicial, and executive branch publications. CIS will work closely with government document specialists and other librarians to determine the types of materials to which the Compass Library will provide access, the system's capabilities, and the timetable by which new components will be added to the service.

    Searchers will gain access to Compass Library through CIS's Web- based Compass government information services, the first of which, Congressional Compass, will be available this fall. These services, which integrate access to source documents in digital, print, and microform formats, apply a common user interface with content-specific help designed for those users unfamiliar with government documents. The second Compass service, Statistical Compass, will be available in 1997.

    For over 25 years, researchers have relied on CIS to provide precise and authoritative access to government information. LEXIS- NEXIS brings its technological resources and expertise in the maintenance and storage of electronic data to the partnership. "This joint initiative marries the individual strengths of LEXIS- NEXIS and CIS," said Paul Massa, CIS's president. "Our goal is not simply to provide electronic access to as much government data as possible, but to make it easier and more efficient to locate and actually use government information. This way, a wider audience than ever before can apply government information to answering their questions. Electronic access gives us another means of doing what CIS has always done: add value to government information."

    CIS is a leading commercial provider of electronic databases, printed indexes, and microform collections that provide access to U.S. government information. For additional information, contact CIS in Bethesda, MD, by phone: 301/654-1550; by e-mail:; or visit their World Wide Web site:

    (7) Hackers Invade Justice Department Web Site

    Internet hackers infiltrated the Jutice Departments's home page on August 17th, altering the official web site to include swatiskas, obscene pictures, and lots of criticism of the Communications Decency Act.

    The official web site, which was turned off the same day when the discovery was made, was changed to read the "U.S. Department of Injustice". In addition to a running commentary about the Communications Decency Act, the web site was doctored to include numerous links unflattering to President Clinton, Bob Dole, and Patrick Buchanan.

    Source : Detroit Free Press, August 18, 1996, p.4A. and Lansing State Journal, August 18, 1996, p.3A.

    (8) Bernadine Abbott Hoduski Founders Award Nominations Sought

    The Bernadine Abbott Hoduski Award recognizes documents librarians who may not be known at the national level but who have made significant contributions to the field of state, international, local, or federal documents. This award recognizes those whose contributions have benefitted not only the individual's institution but also the profession. Achievements in state, international, or local documents librarianship will receive first consideration. The award winner receives a plaque.

    Past recipients include : Rosamund Jacob and Karen Lynn (1994) and Dorothy Butch (1995). There was no award given in 1996.

    The nomination form and supporting documentation must be submitted no later than December 1, 1996. For more information contact the ALA/GODORT Awards Committee Chair: Susan E. Tulis, University of Virginia Law Library, 580 Massie Road, Charlottesville, VA 22903-1789; 804/924-3504 (voice); 804/982-2232 (fax); (e-mail).

    Source : Susan E. Tulis, GOVDOC-L, July 13, 1996.

    (9) James Bennett Childs Award Nominations Sought

    The James Bennett Childs Award is a tribute to an individual who has made a lifetime and significant contribution to the field of documents librarianship. The Award is based on stature, service, and publication which may be in any or all areas of documents librarianship. The award winner receives a plaque with a likeness of James Bennett Childs.

    Past recipients include: James Bennett Childs (1976), Bernadine A. Hoduski (1977), Mary Elizabeth Poole (1978), Catharine J. Reynolds (1979), Margaret T. Lane (1981), James Adler (1982), Bernard M. Fry (1983), Francis J. Buckley, Jr. (1986), Robert W. Schaaf (1987), Patricia Reeling (1988), Joe Morehead (1989), Judith S. Rowe (1990), LeRoy C. Schwarzkopf (1992), Sandra Peterson (1994), Karlo K. Mustonen (1995), and Julia F. Wallace (1996).

    The nomination form and supporting documentation must be submitted no later than December 1, 1996. For more information, contact the ALA/GODORT Awards Committee Chair: Susan E. Tulis, University of Virginia Law Library, 580 Massie Road, Charlottesville, VA 22903-1789; 804/924-3504 (voice); 804/982-2232 (fax); (e-mail).

    Source : Susan E. Tulis, GOVDOC-L, July 31, 1996.

    (10) Readex/GODORT/ALA Catharine J. Reynolds Award Available

    The Readex/GODORT/ALA Catharine J. Reynolds Award provides funding for research in the field of documents librarianship, or in a related area that would benefit the individual's performance as a documents librarian or make a contribution to the field. This award, established in 1987, is named for Catharine J. Reynolds, former Head of Government Publications at the University of Colorado, Boulder. It is supported by an annual contribution of $2,000 from the Readex Corporation.

    Past recipients include : Barbara Bell, Karen Fachan, Diane Garner (1987); Sheila Nollen and Steven D. Zink (1988); Henry Terrill and Helen Sheehy (1989); William E. Sudduth, III (1990); Suzanne Clark, John Shuler, Laura Carter, and Dan O'Mahony (1991); Mary Mallory and John Walters (1992); Kate Lee (1993); Irene Herold (1994); and Susan M. Ryan and George D. Barnum (1996).

    Applications for the Readex/ALA/GODORT Catharine J. Reynolds Awards are accepted from documents librarians who have not less than three and not more than ten years experience. The awards support research in all areas of government information, U.S., foreign, international, state, regional, or local. The grant can be used to finance research costs, such as computer time or including travel. Recipients are selected on the basis of a well-defined proposal, potential ability to complete the project, promise of future contributions to the profession, financial need, and activity to the profession. Preference is given to GODORT members. An application and all supporting documentation must be received by the ALA/GODORT Awards Committee Chair by December 1, 1996. Additional questions should be addressed to Susan E. Tulis, Awards Committee Chair, University of Virginia, Law School Library, 580 Massie Road, Charlottesville, VA 22903-1789; (804) 924-3504; Email:

    Source : Susan E. Tulis, GOVDOC-L, July 31, 1996.

    (11) CIS/GODORT/ALA Documents to the People Award

    The CIS/GODORT/ALA "Documents to the People" Award is a tribute to an individual, library, institution, or other non-commercial group that has most effectively encouraged the use of government documents in support of library service. The award includes a $2,000 cash stipend to be used to support a project of the recipient's choice. This award is sponsored by Congressional Information Service, Inc.

    Past recipients include : Joe Morehead (1977); Lois Mills (1978); Yuri Nakata (1979); Sandra K. Faull (1980); LeRoy C. Schwarzkopf (1981); Arne Richards (1982); Nancy M. Cline (1983); Jaia Barrett (1984); Barbara Smith (1985); Judith E. Myers (1986); Jeanne Isacco (1987); Agnes Ferruso (1988); Government Publications Librarians of New England (GPLNE), a NELINET Task Group (1989); (jointly) Myrtle S. Bolner, Barbara Kile, Jan Swanbeck, Laura Tull (1990); Mary Redmond and the New York State Library (1991); Ridley Kessler (1992); Susan Tulis (1993); Gary Cornwell (1994); Larry Romans (1995); and Jack Sulzer (1996).

    The nomination form and supporting documentation must be submitted no later than December 1, 1996. For more information, contact the ALA/GODORT Awards Committee Chair: Susan E. Tulis, University of Virginia Law Library, 580 Massie Road, Charlottesville, VA 22903-1789; 804/924-3504 (voice); 804/982-2232 (fax); (e-mail).

    Source : Susan E. Tulis, GOVDOC-L, July 31, 1996.

    (12) David Rozkuszka Scholarship Available

    The David Rozkuszka Scholarship provides financial assistance to an individual who is currently working with government documents in a library and is trying to complete a masters degree in library science. This award, established in 1994, is named after David Rozkuszka, former Documents Librarian at Stanford University. The award winner receives $3,000.

    Past recipients include Lucie Ellen Mayeux (1995) and Linda Chia (1996). The application form and supporting documentation must be submitted no later than December 1, 1996. For more information, contact the ALA/GODORT Awards Committee Chair: Susan E. Tulis, University of Virginia Law Library, 580 Massie Road, Charlottesville, VA 22903-1789; 804/924-3504 (voice); 804/982-2232 (fax); (e-mail).

    Source : Susan E. Tulis, GOVDOC-L, July 31, 1996.

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