Wednesday, 8 October 2008

All's quiet in the LAC front

Writing about LAC is a challenge these days. That's the way the government wants it. With the election in full swing there's an embargo on all but the most essential government announcements. That means not much more than basic releases from Statistics Canada, health warnings and routine weather forecasts and warnings.

At LAC the front page has been devoid of any change for some weeks. The most recent item under What's New at the website is dated 4 September.

Digging a bit deeper there are some LAC items, which I may have been previously overlooked, under Proactive Disclosure.

Under Contracts, on 1 April there is $1.2 million to Proquest for "other Professional Services" and seven contracts all dated 22 April for "Protection Services" to the Canadian Corps of Commissionaires for a total of $1.8 million.

Rather more intriguing is $1,102,475 on 29 April for "purchase of a collection of printed matter, including books, newspapers, pictures, manuscripts and forms" from Gilfillan Scott-Berning, a South African fine art dealer.

Proactive Disclosure under the heading travel this year includes three major international trips for Ian Wilson, Librarian and Archivist of Canada. These were to Israel, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Sweden, the UK and the UAE accounting for more than 2/3 of the total of $60K. However, two smaller trips, in June and July to Toronto and Waterloo, caught my eye as they include the phrase The Canada Project. Even though progress in digitization seems slow its encouraging to see this follow up on the Symons Lecture last February.

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