Adopted October 2017

Section 1: Name

The name for this group will be the Wisconsin Project for Automated Library Systems (WISPALS) Library Consortium.

Section 2: Purpose

The WISPALS Library Consortium (“Consortium”) provides member libraries shared access to a library automation system, technology, and instructional resources, including electronic resources, databases, and other related materials at reduced costs. It promotes the exchange of knowledge, skills and best practices for libraries. The Consortium also serves as a liaison between local, state and national library organizations and vendors.

Section 3: Membership

Application for membership is open to any Wisconsin academic library’s parent institution. Acceptance as members requires a simple majority of voting members of the WISPALS Executive Committee and the Consortium Board of Directors.

Duties of Membership

Members of the Consortium will share equally (1) all initial and ongoing costs associated with Consortium operations including purchase, operation, and maintenance of a shared library automation system and (2) liability and expenses for defense of actions brought against the Consortium. Each member institution shall be entitled to representation on the Consortium Board of Directors and the WISPALS Executive Committee. Each Member will notify the Chair of the Consortium Board of Directors and WISPALS Executive Committee of any changes to the designated representative serving on the Governance bodies.

Each Member must agree to the terms of the WISPALS Operating Agreement.

Members who fail to abide by the terms of the WISPALS Operating Agreement can be suspended from any WISPALS services or activities or be subject to membership termination upon a majority vote of the Consortium Board of Directors.

Section 4: Governance

The Consortium is governed by the Consortium Board of Directors and the WISPALS Executive Committee.

Consortium Board of Directors

The Consortium Board of Directors, consisting of the president or chief officer or his/her designee from each member institution, will act on all matters relating to the Consortium as requested by the WISPALS Executive Committee. Each Member shall have one vote. The Consortium Board of Directors will also serve in an advisory role when required. The Consortium Board of Directors will receive annual reports about the activities of the Consortium.

The Consortium Board of Directors will elect one of its members as Chair for a term to be defined by the Board.

WISPALS Executive Committee

The Executive Committee shall consist of the administrator overseeing the member library or a designee and will have one vote on all matters within the purview of the WISPALS Executive Committee. The Executive Committee will oversee the ongoing operations of the Consortium and its services, prepare the budget, create and review the strategic plan, provide direction to and act on recommendations of Consortium contractors, evaluate performance provided by contractors, and make recommendations to the Consortium Board of Directors.

The WISPALS Executive Committee shall annually elect one of its members as Chair.  The Chair must be a member of the Executive Committee, and has full voting rights on all matters of business.

Duties of the Chair:

  1. Moderate the meetings of the WISPALS Executive Committee. The Chair will appoint another member to be Chair if unable to moderate a meeting.
  2. Provide direction to the Consortium contractors.
  3. Represent the Consortium to other agencies, groups, or organizations.
  4. Serve on the Performance Evaluation Committee.


The WISPALS Executive Committee will meet monthly via an agreed-to telecommunications platform except for the month in which it meets face-to-face for an annual meeting. The location of this meeting rotates between member libraries alphabetically by the first letter of the institution’s name. A quorum shall consist of a simple majority of voting members. Meeting minutes shall be compiled and distributed by the Consortium contractors.

Section 5: Users Councils/Committees

The Executive Committee may create Users Councils or Committees consisting of library staff members from member libraries. These groups may be organized based on library functions or interests. The groups may make recommendations to the WISPALS Executive Committee, plan workshops, or share information on topics of mutual interest. Each User Council or Committee may elect a chair for a one-year term.

Performance Evaluation Committee:

The Consortium Performance Evaluation Committee solicits feedback from member libraries regarding the services provided by Consortium contractors, measures the performance of the Consortium as a whole, and plans activities and strategies to improve the Consortium.  The Committee shares this information with the contractors and creates performance improvement plans as needed. The Committee is comprised of the Chair and other WISPALS Executive Committee Members who volunteer their service.

Section 6: Consortium Contractors

The WISPALS Executive Committee may authorize the contracting of qualified specialists to ensure the smooth and effective operations of the Consortium.

Such contracted services may include, but are not limited to:

  1. Consortium Management
  2. Integrated Library System Support (ILS)
  3. Cooperative Purchasing
  4. Fiscal Agency

Section 7: Budget Development and Fiscal Operation

A budget for the operation of the Consortium shall be submitted by the WISPALS Executive Committee to the Consortium Board of Directors for review by January 1 of each year, to take effect on July 1. The budget shall include all operational costs for the Consortium with the understanding that all costs shall be borne equally by each Member library.

Section 8: Confidential Information

In the course of business, due to shared technologies and integrated operations, each Member may be provided with access to confidential information.  All Member libraries agree to use the same degree of care to protect this information as they would use to safeguard their own information of like nature, including any information that would constitute Education Records as defined by the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (20 U.S.C. § 1232g) and the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act Regulations (34 CFR Part 99). Directory information is defined by each Member institution’s FERPA policy.

Section 9: Amendments to Bylaws

Changes to the Consortium’s Bylaws can be made upon simple majority of both the WISPALS Executive Committee and the Consortium Board of Directors.  Revised bylaws must be distributed at least 10 days prior to a body taking action.