The following post comes from Diane Dimkoff, Director, Customer Services, Research Services (RD-DC).
What is the status of the current OCE copiers?
The maintenance contract with OCE has expired. The current copiers must be replaced quickly. Since copiers are used by fewer researchers, we believe there are sufficient working copiers to see us through until the new copiers are installed.
When are the current copiers in the research rooms at Archives I and Archives II going to be replaced?
The National Archives Trust Fund (NATF) is currently procuring new digital scanner/copiers to replace the copying machines we’ve used for the past five years. Federal acquisition regulations prevent NARA from talking publicly about the details of the procurement but there are a few matters on which we can communicate.
The procurement specifies that the copiers will be delivered within 30 days from the date of the awarding of the contract. Award should be made soon.
How did NARA determine what features the researchers want in new copiers?
The NATF, with the advice of the Customer Services Division, compiled a list of requirements based on our researchers’ input about features they like in copier machines. The list drove our market research , matching the requirements with the currently available copier technology. We also require that the equipment fit with a new debit card system.
Among the features that were listed as requirements are: software to create and save files as pdf, jpeg, and TIFF files; and a USB slot for use with a thumb drive. The bidders were also encouraged to provide the capacity to send files as e-mail using either the NARA wi-fi network or the researcher’s own hot-spot card. Of course, producing a paper copy of the documents is also required as is a first copy speed of no more than 7 seconds. Other features related to the number of 8.5”x14” paper drawers, ease of operation (intuitiveness of controls), a plain platen cover in place of the more common automated document feeder, and a series of annual service, parts, and maintenance contracts. Except for the Xerox copiers in Still Pictures, which are not being replaced at this time, all copiers now are digital.
What will the digital images cost?
For now, the cost will be the same as for paper-to-paper. However, the fee schedule is under review and while the paper and toner costs of paper copies is the smallest component of the fee for paper-to-paper self service copies, there is a difference.