Dear SACO Task Group, Here is the beginning section for the report that I have been playing with. Please bear in mind that this is an introductory section and more details will follow in other sections. One of my deficiencies as a writer is that I find it hard to elaborate so I may be needing lots of help on subsequent sections even after building on the comments some of you have already sent. Please comment freely on both style and substance. Thanks, Jimmie (Summary and introduction section) The SACO Program has been providing a way for other librarians to join with librarians at the Library of Congress to propose new and changed Library of Congress Subject Headings (LCSH) needed for works they catalog for more than 10 years now. Through SACO many useful changes and additions to LCSH have been proposed and adopted over this time, and the often-heard criticism that LCSH is unresponsive to change can be answered. While many of the libraries participating in this program also join in the other collaborative efforts of CONSER, BIBCO and NACO, SACO has so far lacked the formalities of institutional membership characteristic of these other PCC programs. Inconsistencies exist in quantity and quality of subject authorities proposed and in support provided by participant libraries, including the Library of Congress. How can the SACO Program obtain more support and produce more and better subject authority proposals? The PCC Task Group on SACO Program Development was formed and received its charge in February 2003. The group's charge has been to address the following points: 1) To identify institutional/participant needs to facilitate subject proposal contributions for inclusion in LCSH. 2) To recommend parameters for membership in SACO 3) To propose a list of responsibilities that accompany SACO membership, both from the PCC and the participant perspective. In addition, the Task Group was asked to provide recommendations that: 1) Outline a SACO training scenario, including what responsibilities the PCC has in providing/sharing the existing subject cataloging documentation or some which might be newly developed. 2) Suggest a mechanism for facilitating the contribution and distribution of subject proposals among subject trainers and training institutions for internal review, for final review by LC editorial review staff, and for distribution of approved headings to the community at large. 3) Identify whose responsibility it should be to implement each of the elements described. The mandate for this work grew out of discussions about SACO at the November 2002 PCC Policy Committee. It also followed a commissioned study completed at the Library of Congress by Charles Fenly in July 2002 which examined the problems in some detail and outlined possible changes for SACO. The task group members have been aware of the strengths and weaknesses of the SACO program to this point in time both through study of these reports and our own experiences with participating in SACO, and are united in our desire to provide recommendations which will lead to a better SACO program. In this spirit we submit the following. Summary of Recommendations Briefly, the group recommends the following actions be taken. a. That a utility-based submission and distribution option be developed through both RLIN and OCLC by the leadership of the PCC in order to facilitate subject proposals for LCSH. The currently used web-form should also be improved to allow for entering data, saving and later submission, and the option of fax submission should also remain viable. Submission by mail is discouraged for reasons of both speed and safety. b. That a letter announcing the new option of SACO Membership be sent to all current SACO Participants to describe this opportunity and invite those interested to apply. Application would be a means for libraries to make an official commitment to support and become fuller partners in the SACO Program. The announcement should detail membership responsibilities and benefits such as acceptance of LCSH policies as outlined in the Subject Cataloging Manual, LCSH itself, and the SACO Contributors Manual; contributing at least 5 subjects or changes to subjects each year; special training opportunities and access to documentation to be developed, and access to use of the utilities as a mechanism of contribution and distribution. It should also point out that those libraries not choosing to become SACO Members at this time would continue to be appreciated as SACO Participants and be able to contribute proposals as they have in the past. c. That appropriate resources be allocated towards the training of SACO Members and towards expediting their proposals. One promising avenue for enhancing SACO members' skills would be to develop a web-based training program that could benefit all of us, including those who may not attend the ALA conferences where training programs are offered. d. That the SACO discussion list be employed to a greater extent than it has been for sharing and peer-consultation among SACO members. It will be up to the SACO members to continue to make this happen on an everyday basis through their participation in sharing interesting experiences and asking and answering questions related to their SACO work. e. That a provision be developed for the on-going update of the SACO Participants' Manual. This should be referred to the PCC Training Committee. The cooperation of various parts of the PCC will be needed for this plan to succeed, and the task group solicits energetic and positive responses to our recommendations for SACO Program development.