University Publications - UBC Library Staff Meeting Minutes

[UBC Library Staff Meeting Minutes] Feb 7, 1949

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February 7, 1949.
Present: Miss Smith
Miss Jefferd      _ .
Miss Lanning
Mr. Lanning
Mr. Rothstein
Miss Fugler (as Secretary)
The first problem before the meeting was the matter of
requests being made by students, and by. Dr.. Birney of the English
Department on behalf of his students, to borrow volumes which form
part of valuable sets.  The difficulty had arisen because the
Department had not given the Library advance notice of the particular
stories they wanted the students to read, hence the demand for
anything that contained the stories.  The present question was
whether or not the new definitive edition of H. G. Wells's works
should be put on Reserve, as requested by Dr. Birney. Miss Lanning
pointed out that the books would receive very hard use on Reserve.
Mr. Lanning felt that such volumes should be made available only to
senior students doing research.  Mr. Rothstein pointed out that it
would be almost impossible, and certainly very expensive, to replace
individual volumes in such sets, but he did feel unhappy at the
prospect of such sets lying unused on the shelves when the student
need existed.
Miss Smith suggested tiding over this term by permitting the
use of these sets where nothing else could be provided, but she will
see Dr. Daniells and Dr. Birney and try to persuade them to give the
Library sufficient advance notice in future of assignments to students
to enable the Library to gather up the necessary books from the
general stock.
Miss Jefferd suggested that students should be advised, when
borrowing such books, of their value and the difficulty of replacing
them.  It was agreed that Miss Smith should see the professors
concerned and try to make some arrangement with them.
The question of putting books on Reserve arose, and Mr. Rothstein
asked what procedure he should follow.  Miss Smith and Miss Lanning
replied that when books were ready to go to Reserve Mr. Rothstein
should advise Miss Mercer, who would come and inspect them and
arrange for their arriving on the Reserve shelves.
Miss Smith reported that Dr. Maslow had requested the renewal
of the Library's subscription to Pravda.  The request had been given
careful consideration, and after consulting other faculty members
who might be interested it was decided that the subscription should
be cancelled.  It was expensive, and the use made of it was not
sufficient to justify its continuation.
Miss Lanning asked if all the books on photography could be
transferred to the Fine Arts Room and it was agreed that this should
be done.  It appeared that Mr. Lasserre was much exercised about
some of the books on architecture, e.g., those on hospital buildings,
being in the main library and had expressed the wish that these
might all be housed in the Fine Arts Room. Miss Jefferd pointed out that this sort of thing cuts right across the Library, but agreed
that if Mr. Lasserre would come and select the books he wished moved
she would meet his request.
Miss Lanning reported that Mrs. Dorothy Willis had offered to
sell to the Library a copy of the Kinsey Report, and it was agreed
that this purchased as a secondhand volume.
Miss Jefferd reported on her meeting with the student representative of the Open House Committee.  He had asked for the use of •
the main concourse for exhibits and had been promised this.  It was
also agreed that the Library should be closed at 6 p.m. on Friday,
March 4, and after 12 noon on Saturday, March 5«  The exhibits are
to be set up in the main part of the reading room only, leaving the
wings untouched.  The question arose as to whether students should be
allowed to conduct tours through the building as they wish, or
whether this should be in the hands of Library staff members.  It was
decided that students should conduct the tours, but that there should
be library staff in each department and one member■of■staff on the
top floor of the wing.  A schedule of manpower requirements will be
drawn up and duties allotted.
Further inquiries regarding Open House Day should be referred
to Miss Smith.  It was thought that not many should develop and
that it would save time all round to have Miss Smith deal with them
in the first instance.  The request was made that the Committee
on Open House arrangements should be reminded emphatically that they
would be expected to see that all furniture was replaced in the
main concourse and the place left ready for opening on Monday morning,
March 7.
The Howay-Reid room will be closed to visitors.
Miss Lanning requested that the people who wanted books from
the Library for exhibits should make their wants known to her in
good time so that any out on loan could be recalled and other plans
made.  Miss Smith invited other ideas and suggestions regarding
dpen House and suggested that notes regarding these could be left
with Miss Fugler if she was not available.  Notices, will be posted
for the guidance of students.
The Salary, Staff and Tenure Committee was named, as follows:
Mr. Rothstein (Chairman), Mrs. McCloy, Miss Mercer, Miss Rendell,
Mrs. Bryce.  Their terms of reference are: to gather up all background
material on job descriptions, formulate this as far as possible and
relate it to salary standards based on those operating in B.C.L.A.
and elsewhere in the province, and to make recommendations.
Miss Smith stated that Mr. McLean had told her he realized that
the Library classification would probably be somewhat different from
that of the Campus generally and he appeared to appreciate the
special problems involved in Library work.
Miss Smith also reported to the meeting that she had sent a
circular letter to members of Faculty about the Library, giving
general information and including a plan of the building as it now
is.  She had also included information about the copying facilities
which exist on the campus.  Mr. Barton of the Extension Department has undertaken to instruct one member of Library staff in the use
of the photostat machine and he stated that it would be possible to
run off photostats at any time at a cost of .100 per page.  This
would be the amount charged by the Library to Faculty, the Library
absorbing the labour cost as part of its service.  It was specified
that only legitimate demands for such service would, be met, and
that it was being undertaken largely as a means of saving the
Library's journals, etc.
The meeting heard Miss Smith's account of her conversation with
the President last Saturday morning when she presented the
Library's case against the 20% cut in 1949/50 Estimates requested
by the Bursar.  It appeared that the University funds would be
seriously reduced this year, and that campus-wide adjustments were
necessary.  Dr. MacKenzie did not entertain any notion of cutting
salaries and, in view of the fact that curtailment in any other
direction seemed impossible if the Library were to perform its
function at all satisfactorily, he. suggested a curtailment of services.
He requested a new draft budget.  The Department Heads canvassed
thorough^ every possibility that occurred to them, but no way out
could be found.
Miss Lanning suggested adopting a working day of 3:30 to 5 o'clock.
Miss Smith suggested a possible cut in the number of periodicals
being taken by the Library. This would provoke great dissatisfaction
among Faculty, but it was a possible source of economy.
Mr. Lanning pointed out that the large new holdings which came
to us from the Royal Canadian Institute would involve many new
subscriptions if the Library planned to continue these periodicals.
He added that it would be foolish not to continue the more important
ones, as we would then have only broken files and this would be a
sorry end to the efforts made by  Dr. Lamb arid the University Administration to obtain these files.
Miss Smith had also' presented the Library's appeal for more
telephones.  It appears that the University is not in a position to
spend the $15,000 that would be required for a new P.B.X. and a new
cable, prerequisites to an extension of the present service on the
campus.  However, Dr. MacKenzie appreciated the predicament in which
some departments of the Library were placed, and it was hoped that
one more line at least could be provided for the Acquisitions and
Periodicals Departments.
Miss Fugler's office, where much of the work of administration
is done, is at present in use as a student reading-room for the
Northwest collection of books, and it was agreed that this situation
could not continue indefinitely.  No alternative could be offered
except to put the N.W. books back into the hands of the Circulation
Department, and it was decided not to do this for the present.
It had been agreed previously that a rope should be strung
across the stairway from the Reference Room to the Faculty Reading
Room to discourage students who persist in going up to the Faculty
Room.  The rope is to be borrowed at once and put in place. Miss Smith reported having discussed with the President
the problem of smoking and discipline generally in the Library.
He had suggested, as a last resource, a fee of $5.00 added to
student fees to pay the cost of maintaining a Commissionnaire or
other person with authority to enforce discipline, and a graduated
scale of fines for offenses against Library rules. Mr. Rothstein
felt that the students should be provided with a place where they
can smoke, and the lower hallway was suggested as a possible
smoking-room.  If the trophy case were removed and the area supplied
with chairs or benches it might serve the purpose.  Miss Smith
pointed out that if this promised to cost any money it could not be
done, but the plan seemed the only one,apart from forbidding smoking
entirely within the building, that had possibilities.  She did not
like the plan to exact fines as she believed this would rouse
great resentment and create a further problem.
Miss Jefferd asked if the Library Directory would be ready for
use by Open House Day, and Miss Smith replied that the plan was
prepared but that the Directory could not be provided unless funds
were available, and this she would not know for some days yet,.
The meeting adjourned at 12:10 p.m.


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