April 24, 2008 Library Board Minutes


APRIL 24, 2008




President Deborah Herbert called the meeting to order at 6:01 p.m.



Board Members Present: James E. Best, Teressa T. Delph, Darrell J. Durham, Deborah A. Herbert, Theodore R. Kolman, Lawrence S. Sanders, George H. Sewell

Director:  Ishwar Laxminarayan (excused) Elaine Piper, Public Services Administrator

Administrators Present:  Vicki Baldwin, Jim Delaney, Mike Way

Others Present:  Donna Smith, Administrative Secretary.  Public attendance sign sheet attached to official minutes.  Joyce Betz, Lorraine Butchart, Meredith Haugen, and Amy Sayles were present as well.


Consent Calendar:  Moved by Teressa Delph, supported by James Best, that the consent calendar be approved as presented, inclusive of the Gifts and Donations and Personnel Actions.  Motion carried unanimously.


Public Forum:  The meeting was opened for public comment.  There were no comments at this time.


Current Bills:  Moved by James Best, supported by Teressa Delph, that the Board approve the current unaudited bills for March 2008. Motion carried.  Lawrence Sanders asked Vicki if the library is affected in any way as a result of the increasing gas prices.  She distributed a utility cost comparison by month from 2004 through 2008 system wide and broke out Concord’s because of the two-building use and larger building.  Mike Way explained that the library will be purchasing gas for the van and truck from JTA to save on fuel costs.  JTA will charge just $0.05 per gallon over their cost which will save us upwards of $0.35 per gallon. 


Financial Reports: Moved by George Sewell, supported by James Best, that the Board approve the unaudited financial reports and fund reports for January and February 2008.  Motion carried. Ted Kolman questioned the reporting of the property tax receivables and if the figure should be reduced by the actual amount received. Vicki responded that this was the 2007 figure and had just received the 2008 number.  She could report the actual coming in, but the auditor has her adjust it on a yearly basis.  This will be discussed at the next Finance meeting.


Committee Reports:

Facilities Committee: Darrell Durham reported that the Facilities Committee met on April 3.   Topics included bids for the Springport roof, Meijer coffee kiosk, and operation costs by branch.  Minutes of that meeting are on file in the Board packet.  The next Facilities Committee meeting is scheduled for Thursday, May 1, 2008 at 4:00 pm.  Darrell added that we may not need to have a meeting in May so it may be canceled.


Finance Committee:  James Best reported that the Finance Committee has not met yet. The next Finance Committee meeting will be Tuesday, May 15, 2008 at 1:00 pm. 


Personnel Committee:  Teressa Delph reported that the Personnel Committee did not meet in April.  The next meeting is May 22, 2008 at 4:00 p.m.


Director’s Report and Activities:  Elaine Piper reported for Ishwar that we had a very successful Big Read conclusion on March 28 with the author, Louis Urrea.  Amy Sayles added that there was a “standing room only” crowd at the Granary.  Deborah Herbert introduced the author at the conclusion.  Deborah added that Amy did a great job with the program and deserves many thanks. 


Elaine stated that the library held another successful event when the grand opening and ribbon cutting for the new Early Learning Center took place on April 12.  Many families attended the event.  Refreshments were served; Dean Weber was recognized for his efforts and a wall of donors was displayed for recognition. Nancy Robertson, State Librarian, was in attendance.


Elizabeth Berg will be here for Word Wise May 16 and 17 with a reception from 6 – 8 p.m. on Friday.  Elaine added that Saturday, Elizabeth will be the keynote speaker at the luncheon.


The mobile planetarium was very successful.  Elaine stated that we collaborated with three schools, Flora List, Hanover, and Grass Lake, with a total of over 1,000 kids participating.  This was a science and astronomy theater-in-the-round so was too large to put in any of our facilities.  Pictures will be included in the next Board packet.


Elaine added that this month has held a lot of sadness for the library as we lost Pam Burt, a Carnegie Circ employee for 19 years.  Donna Smith’s mother and Sandy Cagle’s mother-in-law both passed away also followed by Bonnie Bortell, a 37 year former employee.  Elaine read the proclamations that will be presented to Pam’s and Bonnie’s families.


George Sewell asked why Concord, Napoleon and Springport were all down and has been consistently for the last few months.  Elaine stated that she talked with Karen, Concord Branch, who said they were very busy, but not as many check out books – they use the computers, read magazines, and see the programs.  Henrietta’s numbers are up because of out of county fees.  Fuel costs could be a contributing factor to the out county branch’s circulation figures.


Meredith Haugen was present to speak about the Parma Branch.  She has been the branch manager for 5 of her eight years of service.  Branch staff includes Brittany Sussex, Page, and Chris Saddler, Library Assistant.  Their Friends group is actively supportive.  Adult programs include jewelry and card making classes, author visits.  The branch partners with the village for the Parma Day Fall Festival as well as the elementary school.  The book sale netted about $500 at a quarter per book.  The branch hosts many children’s programs including Polar Science, fall and spring story times, summer reading, Paul McCormack, story tellers, musicians, puppet shows, programs for teens.


Old Business:  The Big Read: Amy reviewed the Big Read above.   


Poetry Contest:  Donna Smith reported that the poetry award ceremony is Monday, April 28 at 6:00 pm at the 1st United Methodist Church.  All board members are invited to attend.  Mary Ann Sewell and Pat Beffel volunteered to sell poetry booklets.  Representative Mike Simpson was invited to speak and hand out awards. He will also be sending congratulatory letters to the winners.


Other:  No other business was reported.

New Business:   Learning 2.0:  Joyce Betz showed a presentation on Learning 2.0, a training program that will teach our staff how to interact with and utilize social networking tools on the Internet for social awareness, professional networking, patron interaction and personal networking.  This will provide 20 hours of training for each staff.


Staff Development Day, July 29:  Moved by James Best, supported by Lawrence Sanders, that the Board approves closing the Carnegie, Eastern, Meijer, Brooklyn, and Henrietta branches on Tuesday, July 29, 2008 to allow all employees to attend Staff Development Day.  A full agenda will be provided at a later date.  Motion carried.


New and Revised Service Policies:  Jim Delaney explained the reason behind adopting these policies and indicated that he has worked with the schools to provide a policy that would mirror expected behaviors stating that what is unacceptable in school is also unacceptable in the public library.  The policies were presented to and approved by our attorney.  Moved by George Sewell, supported by James Best, that the Board adopt the Code of Conduct, Weapons, and Inspection policies as presented.  Motion carried.


Jim Delaney added that he is working on a Non-smoking Policy that will be presented to the Facilities Committee for review and recommendation to the Board for adoption soon.  This policy prohibits smoking on library grounds at all facilities for the comfort of our patrons and grounds upkeep.


Springport Roof Bids:  Mike Way reviewed all bids to ensure they met all requirements for replacement of Springport’s roof. Moved by Lawrence Sanders, supported by George Sewell, that the Board accepts Ace Roofing’s proposal to remove old shingles, install ½” insulation board, a rubber membrane and completely re-roof for the amount of $3,780.00.  The funds will be taken from the Replacement Reserve Fund.  Motion carried.


Senate Budget Hearing, May 1:  Deborah Herbert stated that Ishwar would be attending this budget hearing and has asked board members call Donna Smith if you want to attend. 


Woodlands Library Cooperative:  Lawrence Sanders reported that the co-ops are struggling state wide and will be making a bid to the state librarian to ensure that funds will be available to keep them operational. 


Other: No other new business.


Communications:  Deborah Herbert stated that several communications were included in the packet as well as the articles that Elaine Piper passed around.


Public Forum:  The meeting was opened for public comment.  There were no comments at this time.


Moved by Lawrence Sanders, supported by George Sewell, that the meeting be adjourned at 7:17 p.m.  Motion carried unanimously.


Respectfully submitted,



James E. Best