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July 24, 2006

Library Community Urges Hearings on FRAPPA

The Association of Academic Health Sciences Libraries, the American Association of Law Libraries (AALL), Association of College and Research Libraies (ACRL), American Library Association (ALA), the Association of Research Libraries (ARL), the Medical Library Association (MLA), the Special Libraries Association (SLA), and SPARC (Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition) recently sent a letter to Senator Collins, encouraging the Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs to hold hearings on the Federal Research Public Access Act of 2006.

In part, the letter says:
"S. 2695 would promote widespread, affordable, and effective dissemination of scientific and scholarly research results.
...Federally funded research is a public resource collected at public expense. Importantly, increased access to this research accelerates the pace of discovery and innovation and fosters economic growth. It is critical that this new research be readily available to physicians, researchers, and members of the public, including those who are unaffiliated with or working in locations remote from libraries that subscribe to in increasingly expensive journals and databases developed from federally funded research.
... Posting of manuscripts stemming from agency grants or contracts falls squarely within an agency's rights and does not impinge upon the author’s copyright. Nevertheless, some publishers have challenged the right of federal agencies to implement public access policies, which may discourage or inhibit agency initiatives. This legislation will not take funding away from research to any material extent.
...The NIH, for example, estimates that the cost of its public access program would be $3.5 million if 100% of the 65,000 eligible manuscripts were deposited annually. That is a tiny fraction (about 0.01%) of the agency's $28 billion budget. It is also a small fraction of the $30 million per year the agency spends on page charges and other subsidies to subscription-based journals. The reality is that sharing of research results is part of the research process."

Posted by Katie Newman at July 24, 2006 12:15 PM