ACRL

College & Research Libraries News

WASHINGTON HOTLINE

(202) 547-4440; (ALA0025)

Carol Co Henderson

Deputy Director, ALA Washington Office

HEA II-D funding.I think it’s safe to say that there WILL be funding for the new Higher Education Act title II–D College Library Technology and Cooperation Grants for the 1988-89 academic year. The House has passed $5 million; the Senate, $2.5 million.

The remaining uncertainties at this writing include: What level will Congress finally agree upon? Will the final funding level receive an automatic cut of up to 8.5% under the newly revised Gramm–Rudman-Hollings deficit control law? When will proposed regulations governing administration of II–D be published? News on those developments will be reported in future issues.

Both House and Senate provide $6 million for HEA II–C research library grants, but no funds for II–A college library grants. For II–B library training and research, the House has $1 million; the Senate, only $500,000, a 50% cut from current funding.

FBI’S “library awareness” program. ALA’s Intellectual Freedom Committee issued an advisory October 1 alerting librarians to the “unwarranted government intrusions upon personal privacy" that threaten "the First Amendment right to receive information" which are the result of an ongoing "library awareness" program undertaken by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Over the past year the FBI has approached at least several academic libraries to alert them to the "possibility of members of hostile countries or their agents attempting to gain access to information that could be potentially harmful to our national security" and to "request assistance," such as disclosing the names of foreign national student users and the subject of their searches.

Librarians are urged to contact ALA’s Office for Intellectual Freedom with any information on approaches by federal agents, and on any institutional actions taken. The full text of the IFC Advisory Statement is included in an October Extraordinary Memo from OIF, in the November Newsletter on Intellectual Freedom, and in an October ALA press release.

FCC proposal. The House Telecommunications and Finance Subcommittee held a hearing in Boston October 2 on the Federal Communications Commission proposal to impose access charges on enhanced service providers (value-added networks such as Telenet and Tymnet). Jacqueline Bastille, Director of the Health Science Library at the Massachusetts General Hospital, testified in opposition to the proposal for both ALA and the Medical Library Association. FCC Chairman Dennis Patrick defended the proposal, but admitted he had received thousands of letters on the subject.

(cont’d on inside back cover)

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