Tag Archives: San Francisco

Law Library Sues San Francisco for Breach of City Charter

“The San Francisco Law Library filed a lawsuit today against the City and County of San Francisco, alleging that since 1995 the city has violated a City Charter provision that requires it to provide proper funding and adequate space for the Law Library. For decades, the Library shared part of the fourth floor of City Hall with the Superior Courts and had additional space in the building. There it served its mission by providing free and public legal resources to the courts, lawyers and self-represented litigants alike. Following the 1989 earthquake, when City Hall closed in 1995 for retrofitting, the city moved the Library to a temporary space designed for the two year retrofit period at the Veterans War Memorial building that was and continues to be insufficient.”

via Rock Hill Herald Online

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Library-goers say expanding hours would increase use

“The public clamor for expanded hours at the San Francisco Public Library may be louder than library staff and stakeholders presume, according to a new survey. Sixty-four percent of the nearly 2,500 people surveyed by the library said they would use their branch more if it was open longer. Only 45 percent of library staff and 44 percent of groups associated with the library felt a significantly higher number of patrons would use it, though about a quarter of both groups admitted they didn’t know what effect more hours would have.”

via City Insider

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S.F. Law Library needs a temporary space

“Former San Francisco City Attorney Louise Renne has a wealth of resources at her fingertips as one of the city’s top lawyers. But when she needed to research the legislative history of a 40-year-old state law for a recent case, the San Francisco Law Library was the only local source. “It plays an important role,” she said. “There are many times when the ability to find documents that aren’t otherwise available is essential.” Every county in California has a law library, run independently from the regular public libraries. For small law firms, advocacy groups, public-interest lawyers, government agencies and citizens representing themselves, law libraries are vital, advocates say. The San Francisco Law Library offers free access to expensive online legal resources such as LexisNexis and Westlaw, along with more than 250,000 law books and free assistance from eight reference librarians.”

via SFGate

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Historic SF law library in jeopardy if city can’t find new site

“Robert L. Ferris, an estate-planning attorney, says the documents he has accessed through the San Francisco Law Library have helped him handle cases for nearly two decades. But he might be on his own next year when the War Memorial Veterans Building, which houses the historic library, closes for renovation in May. “The law library is a resource that I’ve relied on for years,” Ferris said. “The reason my office is located where it is is because the courts are close and the library is close.” City and county officials are required to provide space for the library and fund its operation, but a new location has not been secured.”

via California Watch

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School libraries hit hard by budget cuts

“The kids are back, but the media center at one of California’s largest high schools is quiet, even for a library. That’s because the 4,000 students at James Logan High School in Union City are starting the school year without access to the aisles of books and computers sitting in a darkened room, unused.

“Due to budget cuts, the library is closed,” read printed signs on the library doors. Carla Colburn, the school librarian for eight years and a teacher for 26, is the only person who goes in there now. For one period each day, she goes to the library and prepares book carts for English-language-learner classrooms or history classes working on research projects.”

via SFGate

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Pornography in Public Causes Some to Gasp, Others to Shrug

“On a recent morning at the main public library here, dozens of people sat and stood at computers, searching job-hunting sites, playing games, watching music videos. And some looked at naked pictures of men and women in full view of passers-by. The library has been stung by complaints about the content, including explicit pornography, that some people watch in front of others. To address the issue, the library over the last six weeks has installed 18 computer monitors with plastic hoods so that only the person using the computer can see what is on the screen.”

via NYTimes

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UCSF joins trend offering published research free

“UCSF has joined the growing ranks of academic institutions that are offering most, if not all, of their research free to the public, by requiring that all published scientific studies be added by their authors to a university repository accessible to everyone. The policy change at UCSF, which was announced last month, is part of a global shift toward “open access” – improving the exchange of scientific information by allowing free and widespread dissemination of research that has long been contained in subscription-only journals.”

via SF Chronicle

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E-readers grow; libraries can’t get many titles

San Francisco Chronicle – “The popularity of e-readers is soaring, but good luck finding that hot new title at your local library. Most large publishers refuse to sell critical portions of their digital catalogs for library lending, and those that do are imposing stiff fees and onerous rules.”

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S.F. mayor asked to remove Library Commission head

SF Chronicle – “The city’s Ethics Commission Tuesday sent a letter to Mayor Ed Lee, asking him to consider removing the president of the Library Commission for shouting down a member of the public during a meeting. Here’s the interesting part, though: It’s taken two years for the issue to be dealt with by the city’s Sunshine Ordinance Task Force and the Ethics Commission. It languished at the latter for 19 months.”

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Redding’s limits on leafleting at library blocked

SF Chronicle – “A spat over outdoor literature tables during Constitution Week led city officials in Redding to restrict leafleting outside the public library, an action that united a diverse set of opponents – local Tea Party groups and the American Civil Liberties Union. Now a judge has issued a ruling that could break new ground on free speech in civic plazas. “The library is an area dedicated to the free exchange of ideas,” Judge Monica Marlow of Shasta County Superior Court said Wednesday in an injunction halting enforcement of the restrictions that took effect in April.”

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