Advocacy Archived Activities


  • March 25, 2009: Sunshine Week Program – Opening Doors: Finding the Keys to Open Government. A joint presentation hosted by NOCALL GRC and SLA Sierra-Nevada Region. Location: Pacific McGeorge School of Law,Gordon D. Schaber Library 3282 Fifth Avenue, Sacramento.


  • 2008 Annual Committee Report
  • March 21, 2008: Sunshine Week Program – a webcast and panel discussion hosted by NOCALL and SLA SF Bay Region Chapter: “National Dialog on Open Government and Secrecy.”
  • July, 2008 – Kelly Browne, NOCALL President, and Michele Finerty signed letters to California representatives Barbara Lee and Mike Honda. The letters were in support of the testimony Mary Alice Baish gave on funding GPO. Further letters to Barbara Lee and Mike Honda were sent in September, 2008.


  • March 12, 2007: Sunshine Week
  • Letter sent from NOCALL to Senator Waxman regarding the Presidential Records Act Amendments of 2007.
  • NOCALL was a signatory to this letter supporting the OPEN Government Act of 2007.
  • NOCALL also signed these letters to Representatives Lee and Honda in support of GPO funding.
  • April 18, 2007: California Library Legislative Day On CLA Legislative Day, librarians and their supporters throughout the state meet their state legislators in Sacramento. It provides us a fantastic opportunity to advocate for access to government information and other priorities. We are hoping that at least one GRC representative will be able to attend this event.
  • CLA Day In the District This event gives us the opportunity to meet with our state legislators in their local offices. It takes place on January 26th and February 2nd. Deborah Doyle, a member of Friends of the San Francisco Public Library, has scheduled February 2nd appointments with California Senator Carol Migden (10 am) and with Assemblyman Mark Leno (3 pm). I may be able join her for the 10 am appointment with Senator Migden. (I have a January 31st summons for jury duty.) Because this has been a last-minute arrangement, I do not know whether I or another GRC member can attend either meeting. Deborah has asked me to “bring material/talking points.” I will seek guidance from Prano, the Board, and GRC members about what issues warrant attention. Susanne Dyer has made helpful suggestions about how to proceed.
  • Closure of EPA libraries and proposed FY2007 budget cuts for EPA librariesIn her Daily Journal article on October 24, 2006, Susan Nevelow Mart encouraged her readers to contact their Senators about the closure of EPA libraries and the drastic reduction in services among EPA libraries that remain open. Mary Alice Baish, AALL’s  Associate Washington Affairs Representative, recommended that we consider thanking Senator Boxer for her support of  EPA libraries. At the time, concerned librarians and others sought to add signatures of other Senators to a letter proposed by Senators Boxer and Lautenberg. In what became the “Boxer-Lautenberg ‘Dear Colleague’” letter, several Senators asked the Senate Appropriations Committee to restore EPA library services while the EPA received public input on its “drastic cut” in library services. Mary Alice also recommended that we engage our sister Chapters in a joint letter to Senators Boxer and Feinstein. On October 31st, Greg Fite shared the recommendation with the GRC. He also shared Susan’s observation that Senator Feinstein should sign the letter. But Senator Feinstein did not sign it. According to a staff assistant at her San Francisco office, Senator Feinstein has still not taken a position on the closure of EPA libraries. I am trying to confirm that she has no position. At any rate, Senator Feinstein is likely to favor restoration of EPA library services. Because Senator Box now chairs the Environment & Public Works Committee, we will draft a letter per Mary Alice’s recommendation. Susan Nevelow Mart believes that she can draft a letter next month. I am not aware that we have an overriding reason for urgency in submitting a joint-chapter letter; however, I have contacted Mary Alice just to make sure that there is none.
  • Representation on the CLA Legislative Committee when David McFadden’s term expires at the end of 2007 David McFadden asked me whether a GRC member might join the Committee once his term expires. He has told me that “there has been a recent tradition to have law librarians who are members of CLA volunteer and be appointed by the incoming CLA President . . .[N]early monthly meetings are in Sacramento except for one meeting held at the CLA Conference in November.” I agree with David that geography makes it (at least) logical for NOCALL to consider a candidate for this position before December 2007. Susanne Dyer offers this additional information about joining the Committee. The volunteer must be a regular CLA member. CLA does not reserve a special slot for a law library representative. The volunteer must also be prepared to advance CLA’s legislative agenda even if it does not always coincide with that of  the law library community. Finally, the volunteer must also be ready for a long term. (Susanne recalls that the term is four years, and so it appears to be, as David’s term began in 2003.) Although this issue does not require immediate attention, it may be useful for Prano, Coral (as  President-Elect), and the Board to begin considering whether a GRC (or other NOCALL) member should volunteer. If NOCALL decides to recruit a volunteer, NOCALL would need to defray any travel expenses (and the annual CLA membership fee?), either through the GRC budget or otherwise. Respectfully submitted, Michael Ginsborg GRC Chair (Perhaps David McFadden was referring to an informal practice of recent CLA Presidents. Susanne may mean that CLA has no rule or formal requirement that the Committee have at least one law librarian.)


  • February 15, 2005: Sample letter to send to U.S. Senator or U.S. Representative re:  GPO announcement to limit distribution to “Essential Titles for Public Use in Paper Format.” NOCALL President sent out a version of the letter on behalf of NOCALL.


  • April 2004:  From the Southern California Association of Law Libraries (SCALL)  GRC Chair, David McFadden- APRIL 21 IS LIBRARY LEGISLATIVE DAY 2004!  It’s time to register for CLA Legislative Day 2004. On April 21, librarians and library supporters will meet in Sacramento to visit to our state legislators. Librarians and their supporters need to be seen and heard in the halls of the Capitol. Check the California  Library Association Web site,, for registration information. You can register on-line, and receive immediate confirmation of your registration. Positions on issues will be posted over the next few days. Once again CLA will partner with the California School Library Association (CSLA).
  • Legislative Updates
    • This year the Council of California County Law Librarians held their own leg day. The county law library task force created by last year’s AB 1095 (2003 Ch. 394) is underway but the CCCLL has no major legislation this year.
    • The SCALL Government Relations Committee is monitoring the following legislation.
      • AB 2437 – makes optional (“may” instead of “shall”) the Local  Depository Act currently requiring that city and county clerks deposit local documents with three libraries including UCLA.
      • AB 2714 – repeals the Legislative Open Records Act and places legislators under the Public Records Act. The major concern is that the safeguards protecting legislative materials and requiring that  they be kept either by the committee or State Archives, which were included in the current law as a result of law librarians’ work on SB 1507 ( 1996 Ch. 928) in 1996, would be lost under the current bill.
      • SB 1655 – allows the citation of unpublished opinions in California “for any persuasive value they may have.”. It also requires that  unpublished opinions be made available electronically to public and  private reporting services. The bill protects against professional negligence claims if an unpublished case is not found, cited or relied on. (There  was an earlier bill last year on this same subject, AB 1165, which  died after not being able to get out of its Assembly Committee.)
      • The Library Distribution Act – The state depository law is being  targeted for elimination under what I believe is the Governor’s  California Performance Review. When more is known, it will be reported.
    • If you have any questions about the Library Legislative Day or the bills and issues that the SCALL GRC is following, please contact me. David McFadden, SCALL GRC Chair


  • Advocacy Alert: Governor Davis signs AB 1095!
  • September 19, 2003 From Anne Bernardo, president of the Council of California County Law Librarians: The governor signed our bill on Tuesday, and it was chaptered 394 on Wednesday. Thank you to each and every one of you for your efforts of support for passage of AB 1095. The teamwork evidenced was amazing. Extra special thanks to Annette Heath and the legislation committee for coordinating our efforts; to Michael Corbett, Dan Pone, and Rubin Lopez for their  wise counsel; to our chapters and leg. colleagues, David McFadden, Michele Finerty, and Joan Allen Hart for their unrelenting support. This is excellent news for California’s county law libraries and for those we serve. Thank you again for your support. Anne Bernardo, CCCLL President
  • September 2, 2003:  AB 1095 was approved by the California Assembly and sent to enrollment.
  • Letter sent by GRIC chair Michelle Finerty and NOCALL president Suzanne Dyer to Governor Davis
  • Letter sent by CCCLL chair Anne Bernardo
  • AB 1095  Assembly Bill 1095 (Corbett, 2003) establishes a task force to consider and recommends possible funding mechanisms for the state’s county public law libraries. NOCALL supported this measure and, in April 2003, the NOCALL Government Relations Committee fowarded a letter soliciting support from members of the Assembly Judiciary Committee.For information on the bill, please see a letter prepared by Anne Bernardo, CCCLL chair (Word Document).July 2003 The NOCALL Government Relations Committee sent letters to Governor Davis, Senators John Burton and James Brulte, and Assembly Members Herb Wesson and Dave Cox, letting them know that CCCLL (Council of California County Law Librarians) may seek their support for funding in the near future. As explained in the attached letter, raising the civil filing fees may cause county public law libraries to lose revenue for the reasons outlined in the letter. Law librarians understand the state’s grave budget situation, but AB 1759 may have some unforeseen consequences. Click here to see the letter to Senator Burton.
  • Participation in the American Association of Law Libraries (AALL) Annual Meeting:  Workshops on Legislative Issues.
    • “Legislative Advocacy Leadership Training,” Saturday, 7/12/03, 8:30 a.m.
    • “Envision Permanent Public Access to Government Information,” 7/13/03, 10:00 a.m.
    • “A History of Wiretapping from U.S. v. Olmstead  to the USA Patriot Act,” 7/14/03, 4:15 p.m.
    • “Annual Legislative & Regulatory Update,” Tuesday, 7/15/03, 2:15 p.m.
    • Maximize the Message: Develop Substantive Advocacy Web Sites,” Wednesday, 7/16/03, 2:30 p.m.
      • “Maximize the Message” bibliography (Word)
      • “Maximize the Message” presentation (to run the presentation, you’ll need to have PowerPoint software; the script for the presentation is in the notes).
  • March 2003:  NOCALL GRC Program, “Law Library Advocacy Map on Highway 101,” presented at the NOCALL 2003 Spring Workshop / Joint Institute.



  • May 22, 2001 update by Samuel Trosow, Chair NOCALL Government Relations Committee. Since the last report to the NOCALL Executive Board (date January 24, 2001), the Government Relations Committee (GRC) has been working on the following activities:
    • The committee began the year by planning for the pre-institute workshop on legislative advocacy held on March 15th in Sacramento.  Sacramento area committee members Susan Van Syckel, Maggie Kauffman and Shirley David are worked on various aspects of the program. Given the inactive status of UCITA in California and also given the emergence of funding for County Law Libraries as an issue before the 2001 Legislative, the focus of the program was changed to address both issues.
    • The program was attended by 23 participants who were addressed by Bob Oakley (AALL President), Adam Cohn (from Sun Microcomputer), Charles Dyer (Director of the San Diego County Law Library), and Michael Corbett (Sacramento lobbyist for CCCLL).  In the afternoon, participants visited individual members of the legislature and this was followed by a debriefing session. There was general agreement among the participants that the event was worthwhile and should be repeated in future years.
    • The committee continued to monitor the status of UCITA in California.  The legislation was not introduced in the 2001 session.
    • The committee continued to work with the Legislative Committee of the California Library Association in an attempt to improve communications between CLA and the AALL chapters in California. The committee chair has nominated, and the grants committee has approved CLA President Cindy Mediavilla as chapter VIP to attend the AALL Conference in Minneapolis. We will use the opportunity of her attendance at the conference to further acquaint her with the legislative advocacy efforts of AALL.
    • To date, there is no new information on the federal database legislation. The Washington Affairs Office of AALL is monitoring database legislation and will issue an alert should new legislation be introduced. A new mobilization for letter writing and calls to members of Congress will be undertaken should a new database bill be introduced in the 107th Congress as is still anticipated.