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From:  Pukalani, HI
To:  denwall@aol.com (Patricia Wallace)
Date:  January 22, 1997

Dear Pat Wallace,

        Thank you for your activity regarding outsourcing in Hawaii's
libraries.  I am one of those employees who can't afford to speak
out.....Therefore, I ask you to keep my identity and situation

        You must be getting e-mail...about the mess,  but I haven't
seen any that shows the results in layman's terms.  You know how
you go into a franchised store in a mall and the employees are
ignorant of their stock because "it just comes"--they don't order
it?  Now that employee is me.  When work is never done, I  prioritize
and reading reviews is at the bottom because I have so little say-so
in getting  items I read about anyway.  Not only am I ignorant about
current materials, I'm also ignorant about procedures.  We read
about policies in the newspaper like the public does.  More and
more, my colleagues and I find ourselves answering "I don't know."
That was never an acceptable answer in the past, but we feel
helpless, frustrated, castrated, etc.

a librarian
From: Pat Wallace <DENWALL@AOL.COM>
Subject: Outsourcing Contract with B&T

Forward from  Patricia D. Wallace,  Chair, Hawaii Working Group
(ALA Social Responsibility Round Table /Alternatives in Print Division)
SLIS graduate student, Texas Women's University

From: "Grant Gutermuth" <gutent@hgea.org>
Deborah Gutermuth,
Kaneohe Public Library, AV and Reference Librarian
To: "Patricia Wallace" <DENWALL@aol.com>
Cc: "Laurel L. Indalecio" <laindale@leahi.kcc.hawaii.edu>
Date: Jan 27, 1997

Dear Pat,

        Thank you for keeping the discussion going.  After reading the article
in"our" national magazine   [January edition of American Libraries],
I can see why no one thinks this is such a big deal.  In trying to be
unbiased, they fell for Bart's cover up completely. "That was then",
"it's all automation's fault",  etc.

        What you don't hear is that things are not much better.
Our adult and children's shelves are being flooded with paperbacks,
(each at $20.94) so that Baker and Taylor can meet their price.

        In reading our "contract", I've found that Baker & Taylor gets to
choose what mix of paper vs. hardbacks we get.  They also choose
who gets what copies of books, apparently without thought to which
libraries are regional centers, etc.  It sounds more and more like
Baker & Taylor corporate lawyers wrote this contract, perhaps
using our letterhead.

        Nowhere do I see "why" we had to pay "start up" costs of $720,000,
which are non-refundable.  For all this money, we got not one volume!
When I think of all the books that money could have bought, I could just cry.

        All their rhetoric about review committee, etc. is just that - so much
verbiage.  When protests of choices have been made, our suggestions
were ignored.  Unless. of course,  they got public exposure like the
"Practical guide to lambing".  We were going to get 34 copies of this dilly.

We don't raise lambs here in Hawaii.  Luckily our local reporters got wind
 of this title in time to publicize it.  Title quickly withdrawn.  But we
get all the poor choices in the paper.

        I believe there will be challenges to the contract, if we can keep up
the pressure.How would any of you Librarians out there like to have a
"no return" clause contract with someone else picking your books?
If you don't like them, want them, or need them, toooo baaaad!

        We are getting 1/6th the book budget of 1993, and 100% goes to
Baker & Taylor.  The holes in our collections are getting worse by the
day.  Meanwhile we get reprints and "best sellers" that have been out
so long we have donated copies from our wonderful patrons who got
tired of waiting!  We were promised that we would get our national
best sellers at the same time as the bookstores.  Never has this been

        Oh, I forgot.  This is only a guideline, and doesn't constitute
grounds for default of the contract.  Further reading assures me

        How this legal bit of fluff got by the State Attorney General
needs to be explained!  Perhaps if he knew his future was riding
on the answer, he might be able to come up with an explanation.

        Any system considering outsourcing should think long and hard.
As a concept, I have little problem with most of the technical side
being outsourced, if indeed it can be done for a better price.
Here in Paradise, there are very few jobs.  It bothers me to see
some of them being sent to North Carolina, and elsewhere, while
our State Government gives local contract bidders a 15% incentive,
to help keep jobs here, and people employed.  Somehow, this
seems inconsistent, to say the least.

        NEVER should our professional duties, like selection and
collection development be sacrificed on the alter of "savings".
It is a disservice to our State, our patrons, and to all the Librarians
who have spent years developing a superior Library system.

Please keep the discussion alive.  Hawaii's Librarians and
Libraries need you and your support.

Deborah Gutermuth

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