2019 Proposals for Voting

2019 Voting Proposals: Member Criteria and Fee Model

Introduced in person at the 2018 Member Meeting held October 30 in Rosemont, IL, the two proposals outlined below will go before members for a vote in early 2019. The HathiTrust Bylaws state that the Board of Governors propose and the Members dispose, or vote, on issues related to the annual budget and fees; and the formula or the criteria for eligibility for membership. (Section 7, Bylaws of HathiTrust).

Details on the proposed Membership Criteria and Fee Model Changes (with NEW Sample Fee/Tier Analysis) can be found in the proposal PDFs linked below.  

2019 Voting Proposals: Member Criteria and Fee Model

1)  A proposal to formally define the criteria for membership.  Membership Criteria Proposal

The Bylaws, approved in 2012, require that members approve the criteria for membership in HathiTrust, but this has not been completed.  Recent review of the membership strategy largely confirmed the practice for accepting members. The formal statement in the proposal clarifies the criteria for membership in clear and explicit language, especially regarding state university systems. Going forward, all state university system members will be assessed a public domain fee for each R1 institution in their system.  The approval of the criteria will not affect the status of existing memberships or current membership agreements, but will guide our future work. 

2) A proposal to modify the public domain element of our fee model.   Fee Model Change Proposal

Under this proposal, HathiTrust would adjust only the public domain element of the fee model.  Currently all members pay the same amount to support costs associated with the portion of the HathiTrust collection in the public domain.  In 2019 that would be $9,275 USD. If approved, beginning in 2020, there will be three tiers of members based on each member's annual total expenditures.  Libraries with the largest budgets (tier 3) would pay a larger public domain fee, while libraries with the smallest budgets (tier 1) would pay a lower public domain fee.  Tier 2 libraries include the majority of members and this model would have little or no effect on their fees. The fees for 2019 are not affected by this proposal. All members receive the same services and status regardless of tier.

NEW: HathiTrust Fee Model Change: Preliminary Tier/Fee Analysis

Recording of Fee Model Change Presentation


The vote will run from February 4 through February 25, 2019.   An electronic ballot will be sent to official member representatives for their vote. Votes will be calculated following the weighted voting model in use since the 2011 Constitutional Convention:

  • Votes are weighted by calculating the square root of the volumes contributed and dollars spent.
  • Minimum vote weights will be rounded up to a value of one (1) so that no institution has a vote with a weight of less than one.*

Voting weights will be calculated using data current as of December 31, 2018.


Questions about the process or qualifications may be directed to Melissa Stewart at

More information about the weighted voting model can be found here:

This page will be updated with additional material as it becomes available.