Adopted by the Consortium of MnPALS Libraries User Council 1 February 2007
1. Definition and Purpose
Task Forces are a means for the Consortium of MnPALS Libraries User Council, User Groups, Executive Committee, Deans/Directors/Coordinators, and the PALS office (henceforth "Group(s)") to deal with studying and making recommendations for resolving problems or other situations relating to the ILS system in the area of the Group's concerns. For the purposes of this policy document, Task Forces are working groups, ad hoc committees, or any kind of special body created by Group(s) to deal with a special or specific topic. Two or more Groups may join together to establish a Task Force in an area of joint concern.
Each Task Force shall have a written charge to be approved by the Group(s) creating the Task Force and shared with the User Council and Executive Committee. The charge shall set forth the purposes for which the Task Force is established, the tenure of the Task Force, any areas of expertise that need to be represented on it, and the proposed number of members. If necessary, a charge may be modified (e.g. additional tasks assigned) with approval by both the Task Force and the establishing Group(s).
A Task Force may be either A) Standing or B) Temporary. If the establishing Group(s) determine(s) that a Task Force's charge requires ongoing responsibilities, the charge shall specify the Task Force as Standing. If the establishing Group(s) determine(s) that a Task Force's charge does not require ongoing responsibilities, the charge shall specify the Task Force as Temporary and shall include an anticipated completion date.
A. Standing Task Forces
Standing Task Forces shall review their charges with the establishing Group(s) every two years. When a Standing Task Force has completed its charge it shall cease to exist, and the convener shall provide written notification of the cessation to the establishing Group(s).
B. Temporary Task Forces
Temporary Task Forces may review their charges with the establishing Group(s) at the specified completion date. If additional time is needed to complete the charge, the Task Force and establishing Group(s) shall determine whether to amend the charge for the additional time or not. When a Temporary Task Force has completed its charge it shall cease to exist, and the convener shall provide written notification of the cessation to the establishing Group(s).
Membership on Task Forces shall be open to all members of the Group(s) establishing them, and may include members from other Groups, as appropriate. Every effort will be made to insure representation by size and type of library. The establishing Group(s) shall appoint a facilitator for the purpose of establishing initial membership. When resignations occur within an established Task Force, the Task Force will fill open memberships.
Each Task Force shall be chaired by a convener appointed by either the members of the Task Force or by the Chair of the establishing Group(s). The convener shall send notice of the name and Group association of each Task Force member to the establishing Group(s). The convener will see that the Task Force meets its responsibilities such as scheduling meetings, preparing agendas and minutes, documenting their work and reporting, but Task Force members may share in the execution of responsibilities as fits the needs of the Task Force.
6. PALS Support
The PALS office will provide appropriate support for Task Forces to complete their work. This includes such matters as setting up Web meetings and other communication facilities; maintaining documentation or other lists of problems, issues, concerns, etc.; providing online forms for reporting problems, etc.; maintaining a record of minutes of meetings and lists of decisions; arranging for conference calls; providing technical advice; implementing recommended changes; etc. One PALS staff member will serve as the liaison from the PALS office to the Task Force.
Information about the charge, membership, and work of the Task Force, including agendas, minutes of meetings, decisions, and the like, shall be available to the public through the PALS web site. Communications to the Task Force from outside its membership shall be directed through its convener.
The Task Force shall report to the establishing Group(s) as specified in its charge. If needed, additional reports may be made by the Task Force or as directed by the establishing Group(s).
The Task Force will develop its recommendations as guided by its charge. During this process the PALS liaison will help plan how the recommendations will fit into the PALS office work flow. When ready, the Task Force will request that the PALS office implement its recommended changes on the test server. The Task Force will review the changes in the test database and make adjustments as needed and the PALS staff liaison will assist as needed. When the Task Force finds that their work has met the goals of their charge they will seek final approval from the Group(s). Following final approval, PALS will implement the recommended changes on the production server.
The Task Force shall define a priority level/deadline for implementation of their work and communicate this to the PALS liaison early in the process. The PALS liaison should be alert to difficulties the recommendations may present for PALS for the test or final implementation. Any concerns raised by the PALS office upon review of the recommendations will be communicated to the Task Force by the PALS staff liaison so that a consensus may be reached in a timely manner.
ii. Final Approval and Voting
Approval of recommendations of a Task Force as implemented on the test server shall be presented to the establishing Group(s) either at a meeting of the Group(s) or through the electronic list(s) of the Group(s). Each consortium member (i.e., ADM) represented on the establishing Group(s) shall have one vote in approving or disapproving the recommendations. For votes conducted through the electronic list, a date after which votes will not be accepted shall be included. Failure to vote by the specified date shall be considered a vote in favor of the proposal. For recommendations that are not approved, the Task Force may submit alternative recommendations for further vote.
Any disputes relating to Task Forces and/or Task Force recommendations and implementation shall be referred to the establishing Group(s) for resolution.