MU Libraries gives update on moldy books to Faculty Council

The Feb. 27 meeting had a presentation from Director of Libraries Jim Cogswell.

During its Feb. 27 meeting, Faculty Council passed a resolution to amend procedures regarding resigning or rotating members, proposed by Vice Chairman Tony Lupo.

The council unanimously voted in favor of the amendment, which stated that faculty-at-large should respond to vacancy announcements by submitting a Curriculum Vitae and a short statement explaining why he or she would like to serve. Either the Faculty Council executive council or a subcommittee appointed by Chairman Craig Roberts will review the candidates to recommend members for the council to vote on.

Before the council passed the resolution, Jim Cogswell, director of MU Libraries, and Matthew Gaunt, director of development for MU Libraries, presented developments with the 600,000 library books affected by mold.

Cogswell told Faculty Council that of the 600,000 damaged books, which are stored in an underground cavern owned by Sub Terra, library administrators will be able to salvage 120,000.

Remediation of the contaminated books will likely go on for a large part of next year, Cogswell said. Among these are Missouri state documents, 19th-century journalism and agriculture periodicals and pre-1870 imprints.

Another 1.2 million books are in a UM System-owned storage site on Lemone Industrial Boulevard, where books undergoing remediation may be moved. MU Libraries is currently evaluating clean, temperature-controlled storage and holding spaces for the books not yet treated or ones under review for treatment.

Cogswell said a space that fits this criteria will hopefully be available as early as April.

In the meantime, MU Libraries is submitting a grant application to help with the costs associated with remediating the books.

Roberts also said that Chancellor R. Bowen Loftin will soon announce a plan for putting together the search committee for the provost, which the chancellor said will be heavily stacked with faculty.

Loftin plans to either have the provost in office or at least named by fall 2014.

Faculty Council also took a moment of silence for fallen firefighter Lt. Bruce Britt at the beginning of the meeting. Britt died while evacuating residents during the collapse of a balcony at the University Village complex Saturday.

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