Annual Goals & Objectives: 2002-2003

Request for input from the MOBAC Reference Committee regarding future planning by the MOBAC Administrative Council

What are your committee’s long-range goals? What are your short-term objectives?

GOAL: To continue to take a leadership role in helping MOBAC member libraries improve reference service by means of resource sharing throughout the system.



To select and make available ongoing training opportunities that will allow member library staffs to improve their reference skills, become more familiar with MOBAC libraries’ specialized resources such as the MOBAC Regional Catalog, and expand their knowledge and use of online information resources.



To continue to support and promote MOBAC reference services to the public.


Within the areas of responsibility of your Committee, what are the issues that MOBAC should address to meet member needs and improve library service by MOBAC members?

In your opinion, what opportunities in your Committee’s areas of responsibility lie ahead for MOBAC members? What are the barriers?


MOBAC members can look forward to:


There is a definite need for ongoing information and documentation regarding the issues, features and limitations of the MOBAC Regional Catalog. Timely communication regarding technical problems, both ongoing and temporary, especially needs to be emphasized as it directly affects our ability to perform effective reference service. As an adjunct to this, better communication between all the committees should be implemented. This might be accomplished through joint meetings or committee liaisons.
There needs to be more emphasis on committee meeting attendance and a greater commitment to allowing staff enough release time to plan and participate in the various training opportunities sponsored by the Reference Committee. Library Directors should emphasize to their staff the importance of attendance and support adequate release time to attend meetings.
Member libraries have too many staffing problems to be able to participate in collaborative reference ventures like the Q&A café.
The majority of barriers, however, are economic in nature:

What policy decisions will the Administrative Council need to make to help achieve your goals? Please be specific with policy recommendations.

What are the fiscal considerations of your goals and policy recommendations? If you can provide cost estimates, please do so. Are you aware of outside funding sources, such as grants? If so, please describe them.

This Fiscal Year the Reference Committee received $20,152.00 of the $62,037.00 in California Library Services Act (CLSA) funds granted to MOBAC for reference services. The committee used this funding for the annual Hands-On Workshop, the Plan of Service to the underserved, the purchase of an online reference database for each library, First Search searches, three InfoPeople workshops, and MOBACULP.
The Reference Committee does not receive any local funding to support system reference programs. We would like to request that additional funds be allocated for the following activities:
Member libraries ran out of First Search searches this year. This extremely useful and popular reference tool benefits all MOBAC libraries, regardless of type. There were no funds budgeted for the service this year. Present cost of searches is $ .65 per search purchased in blocks of 500 each. The committee would like to request $10,000 for 15,000 searches.
The cost of online databases is very high. Due to the sizes and diversity of the MOBAC libraries it is difficult for the Reference Committee to purchase reference databases that will be useful to all member libraries given our current budget. This year funds available for the purchase of online databases totaled $13,000. We would like an additional $25,000 next Fiscal Year so that we can broaden our range of choices for databases that will be helpful to all MOBAC libraries, regardless of type.
There is presently no money in the budget for developing documentation to help the public and new staff use the MOBAC Regional Catalog. The committee would like to request approximately $2,500.00 for design, printing and distribution costs.
The MOBAC web page and Intranet have the potential to be helpful tools for member library staffs and, in the case of the web page, a way to promote MOBAC’s services to the public. To do this it would be necessary to hire a web designer to overhaul and maintain the website. Estimated cost to do so: $9,500.00 ($5,000.00 for the redesign, $4,500.00 for maintenance – three hours per month at $125.00 / hour) for the first year.
We are not aware of any grants but we recommend that the Administrative Council recruits and supports a professional who could not only write grants for the various committees’ projects, but administer them as well.

What else does the Council need to know?

Just as the Administrative Council feels it is important for a Reference Committee representative to attend each Administrative Council meeting, the Reference Committee would also like to have an Administrative Council representative attend as many Reference Committee meetings per year as possible to answer questions and give the committee feedback.
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