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2001, District Judge Norma Holloway Johnson accepted the joint report of the Library
and the Cook class action plaintiffs, which resolved the disputes related to a 1998
motion filed by plaintiffs alleging violations of the 1996 settlement agreement. The joint
report includes a new Library hiring process to be used from March 1, 2001, through
December 1, 2002, and a new statistical methodology to be used to report on the new
hiring process. All other matters contained in the 1996 Settlement Agreement expired
upon the court's January 18, 2001, order.
- Center for Russian Leadership Development
As part of the fiscal 2001 legislative branch appropriations bill, the Congress
approved the establishment of the Center for Russian Leadership Development, a
permanent center to provide emerging political leaders of Russia with firsthand exposure
to the American free market economic system and the operation of the American
democratic institutions. The Library's budget for fiscal years 2000 and 2001 funded
successful pilot programs that brought an unprecedented 3,650 Russian political leaders
to America. Because the center is not yet independently organized and will not be part
of the Library's fiscal 2002 budget, the Library has included on behalf of the center (as
an information item only) a $10 million request for the center's appropriated support. We
anticipate that the center's board, when appointments to the Board have been made by
the House, Senate, and Librarian of Congress, will submit an amended budget
justification to the Congress.
"Knowledge will forever govern ignorance," James Madison wrote in 1822. “And
a people who mean to be their own governours, must arm themselves with the power
which knowledge brings.” In 1800, the Congress established a Congressional Library to help provide it with the information required to administer this questioning and expanding
land. Thanks to the continuing vision and support of the Congress, its Library has
expanded and become not only a resource for the Congress but also the de facto
national library of the United States and one of the world's greatest intellectual and
At the start of the third millennium and the Library's third century, the Library must acquire, preserve, and ensure rights-protected access to "born digital works that
are playing an increasingly important role in the intellectual, commercial, and creative
life of the United States. The amount of “born digital works that have already been lost
is unknown but substantial. The average life of a Web page is only about 75 days.
Given the immeasurable size and short life span of much of the Web's content, the
Library clearly faces a substantial challenge in both (1) defining the scope of its
collecting responsibilities in this new world and (2) developing a whole new range of
partnerships and cooperative relationships to continue fulfilling our central historic
mission in the new digital universe. In conformity with the Congress's recent special
appropriation, the Library's digital strategy will focus first on formulating an
implementable national strategy for the life-cycle management of digital materials as part
of the national collection. The Library must make sure that it has the digital
infrastructure that can be scaled in the future to support and sustain the national digital
information strategy that we will be cooperatively developing.
Librarians will be needed more than ever before as objective knowledge
navigators amid the sea of unorganized and often undependable information that is
increasingly inundating the Internet. Libraries will be needed to assure free public
access for those who would otherwise be on the losing side of the digital divide -- and
also for those who might otherwise never learn to work both with new information and
with old books. Libraries, like America itself, add the new without subtracting the old.
Properly used, the Internet will help (a) scientifically to solve common problems shared
by widely dispersed groups in fields like health and the environment, and (b)
humanistically to share on-line the materials that express the distinctive cultural identities
of different peoples.
On behalf of the Library and its staff, I thank the Congress and the American
people for the outpouring of support for the Library of Congress during its bicentennial
celebration. The Library celebrated its 200th anniversary last year with a wide array of
programs and activities. A resolution by the Congress commended "the Library of
Congress and its employees, both past and present, on 200 years of service to the
Congress and the Nation.” A Presidential proclamation on April 21, 2000, stated that
“The Library of Congress is truly America's Library." Commemorative coins and a stamp
were issued. There were privately funded bicentennial exhibitions, symposia, events,
and publications. Almost 1,300 Local Legacies projects – from all 50 states -- were
registered by more than 400 Members of Congress documenting traditional community
life. Many special donations were made to the collections, and the Library was given the
largest single monetary gift in its history by Mr. John W. Kluge.
The Library of Congress is entering a critical period when it must, in effect,
superimpose a select library of digital materials onto its traditional artifactual library if it is
to continue to be a responsive and dynamic force for the Congress and the nation. We
are not seeking appropriations for any new function, but merely trying to sustain our
historic core function of acquiring, preserving, and making accessible knowledge and
information, which are now being generated and communicated in a radically new
There is a special need this year for the Law Library and the American Folklife
Center. They will play important national roles but have been seriously depleted, having
received no significant funding increases from the Congress for many years.
With congressional support of our fiscal 2002 budget, the Library of Congress
will continue its dedicated service to the work of the Congress and to the creative life of
the American people.
NATIONAL DIGITAL LIBRARY
Mr. TAYLOR. Thank you, Dr. Billington. The largest increase in the budget is for the National Digital Library, $21.5 million and 58 FTEs. This request is in addition to the $100 million previously appropriated in FY 2001 which required this program be carried out in accordance with a plan., or plans approved by the Committee on House Administration of the House, the Committee on Rules of the Senate, and the Committees on Appropriations of the House and Senate.
I can tell you, as you continue to build the Digital Library, it is serving the country well with additional opportunities to do a great deal more, we are appreciative of that initiation. Would you like to bring us up to date on the plan?
Dr. BILLINGTON. Yes, Mr. Chairman. Basically the Library of Congress is superimposing a digital library on the traditional artifactual library; that is, the traditional books, the movies, the films, the photographs, the maps, the periodicals, all are in tangible artifactual form. The digital revolution is really presenting every aspect of the Library with a whole new view.
Now, this is not a new function for the Library. The classic function of acquiring, preserving, and making accessible the collections that bring knowledge and information to the Congress and to the Nation is now to be done in a new format, and it affects all aspects of the Library. As the world's largest library and most comprehensive one, we simply have to be able to provide for the Congress what is happening in the digital universe.
Thanks to support of the Congress-and we are very grateful for that-the success of the National Digital Library Program, and the other services that we have provided, we have moved, I think, dramatically into the digital area. There are three aspects to the digital activities of the Library of Congress. The first is itself, the National Digital Library. That is, the historical collections that we have put on the Internet; material already in the Library that we have converted into digital form. That effort has been funded already. We met the target of having 5 million items online of our national heritage, the great historic documents of america.
We have a program with two national libraries—Russia and the Spanish National Library. The National Digital Library is becoming an international one. It is basically the conversion of existing materials, mostly from the Library of Congress, and a few others. We have incorporated 34 other repositories in America and added to that. That is nearly 7 million items now of American history and culture and of the broader world impinging on America. That is the first part. That has been funded and it is continuing.
The second aspect to the Library's digital program that is crucial, and which is what we are asking for in this budget, is the technical backbone infrastructure that will support what is called the “lifecycle management of digital material,” which is coming in all ways. We acquire things in four different ways. We get gifts, we make direct purchases, copyright deposits, which is most of our American materials, and let's see what-oh, yes, exchanges.
In all of these categories of acquiring things, more and more of