Meeting Minutes - December 17, 2009

The Chairperson, Colleen Van Auken, called the meeting to order at 7:32PM
Present: K. Schulz, M. Siegrist, D. Turner, C. Van Auken
Absent: J. Fausone, G. Snow
Also Present: E. Davis, K. Gladden

Call to Audience

No comments (R. Havenstein-Coughlin, A. Heidemann, L. Papa, S. Rzetelny)

Approval of Agenda

The agenda was approved as presented

Approval of Minutes

Minutes of the November 19th Meeting were approved as presented


Formal and handwritten letters of thanks from Marybeth Levine of the Detroit Area Diaper Bank; the library’s participation in the diaper drive helped the Diaper Bank exceed its collection goal.

Report of the Library Director

As part of the December 9 Fine Amnesty Day, Laurie Golden ran a contest for the most creative excuse for not returning library items on time. The winner, Kris Raghunathan, received a library tote bag, Secondhand Prose gift certificate, and a library office kit for his excuse: "After I borrowed this book from the library, I remembered my mother teaching, Neither a borrower nor a lender be – so I just kept the book."

Investment information from the Canton Community Foundation was shared. It contained only the CCF’s rate of return and did not include a comparison to the library’s rate of return on our current endowment. Joan Noricks confirmed to the Director that no organization has ever pulled their assets from the CCF, and that six (6) non-profit organizations (including the library) were considering creating new endowment funds with them at this time, as well as a number of other organizations in a "maturing phase." Gail Bell will do an analysis comparing the library's rate of return to CCF's for a fuller discussion at the January meeting.

By the end of November, the library had exceeded its total circulation for 2008; it is expected that the two millionth checkout will occur before the end of December. The patron involved will receive a canvas bag; L. Golden will prepare a press release.

The library is a recipient of a Great Stories Club grant. This reading and discussion program is aimed at under-served and troubled teen populations through books that are relevant to their lives. The grant will pay for the books for three book discussions; the teens will then be able to keep them. Teen librarian Anna Slaughter is working with an English teacher at Starkweather (the PCCS alternative high school). The ultimate goal of the program is to encourage the teens to take control of their lives by embracing the power of reading.

The twice-weekly tutoring sessions by NHS students is so successful that it is already being expanded. Demand is high for weekend sessions. While that is dependent on the availability of NHS students, other activities will be offered as well.

E. Davis shared a copy of the redesigned January/February issue of Connections, which features a front page article on Mango Languages, the online language tutoring system which replaces Rosetta Stone in the library database collections. (Rosetta Stone has basically pulled out of the library market.) R. Havenstein-Coughlin and Ophelia Lo were responsible for finding Mango Languages which has proven to be very popular, with 46 sessions already in November, even though it has only just been added to the database collections. Yet another language program will be added next week: PowerSpeak from the Gale Group.

Trustee Schulz asked how many NHS students were offering tutoring services and whether they were receiving any recognition for doing so. A. Heidemann said that, while several hundred were interested, space is a problem, so the library is starting with a just a few. Tutoring is a part of the students’ NHS obligations and goes toward their total service hours.

Old Business

RFID Tagging Services – Backstage Library Works will finish up the tagging project on Friday (December 18), well ahead of schedule. They have only a skeleton crew to process returns; all shelf collections have been tagged. L. Papa said that as of December 16th 296,000 items had been tagged. At a cost of $55,000 plus the original deposit of $85,000, he said it looked as if the project could come in around $20,000 under the anticipated cost. The Director thanked the board for approving the expenditure, as staff could not have accomplished the project ourselves in such a short time frame. Chair Van Auken added that it probably cut down on disruption as well, as a lot of resources would have been unavailable to patrons had staff performed the tagging.

Discussion of Advertising Inserts in Connections – E. Davis reported that L. Golden followed up with Advantage Marketing and has been told that the H-Cards can be sold in person, online, or both. The library would sell them in the Copy Center, where a number of other items are already being sold, instead of at the Checkout Desk, where employees would be too busy. Of the card’s $25.00 cost, the $12.50 which comes to the library would be tax-deductible (the library would have to send documentation to Advantage Marketing, who would then prepare an acknowledgement and a receipt to the purchasers.) Canton Township just approved sale of the cards by Canton Leisure Services and they should be up and running within 30-60 days, so the library could wait to get feedback from Leisure Services, if the board wished. The board agreed that it would be a good idea to proceed with the venture immediately; E. Davis said that she would instruct L. Golden to proceed in the matter.

L. Golden is still working with Advantage Marketing re: the advertising inserts and what they will look like.

Deliver Director’s Performance Evaluation and discuss establishing Director’s Evaluation Committee for 2010 – The Director was given her performance evaluation. Chair Van Auken said that she had discussed with E. Davis her desire to devise a more formal process, involving goals and objectives, for the director’s 2010 performance evaluation. Trustee Turner volunteered to head a sub-committee to formulate a formal process, including periodic assessments and forms. Trustee Turner proposed looking at the documentation at the February 2010 meeting; he and the sub-committee will work closely with E. Davis and S. Rzetelny.

2010 Library Closings Calendar – move Staff In-Service from November 12 to November 5 or 19 – The Michigan Library Association’s annual conference (the major conference staff will attend in 2010, as all out-of-state conference travel has been cut from the budget) has been moved from October to November and will conflict with the date originally chosen for the Staff In-Service Day. E. Davis requested that the Staff In-Service closing date be changed to November 19 to accommodate staff who will be attending the MLA conference.

D. Turner moved and M. Siegrist supported a motion to change the 2010 In-Service Day closing to November 19th. The motion passed unanimously 09/12-17-1.

New Business

Vote Confirming December 4 Email Approval of Amnesty Day on December 9, 2009 – 3700 items were returned and $400.00 in fines waived. The day was successful in getting long overdue items returned so that they could be tagged by the Backstage workers.

D. Turner moved and K. Schulz supported a motion to confirm the December 4 email approval of Amnesty Day on December 9, 2009. The motion passed unanimously 09/12-17-2.

Vote on TLN Plan of Service Revision – CPL’s library cooperative, The Library Network (TLN), is required to have a plan of service and by-laws on file with the state; they have not revised them in a long time. The impetus for the changes stems from membership’s concern over continuing viability of TLN, in light of the current economy and continuing declines in state revenue sharing. Shared-system libraries have paid capital costs for future system upgrades, over and above current operating costs; the changes to the Plan of Service are to segregate those monies from the monies paid in by other TLN member libraries and to protect those assets for the shared-system members In addition, TLN’s legal counsel advised changes in language to clarify the document and to bring it into compliance with current laws, practices, and standards. As TLN is a member-driven organization, it requires the approval of the governing bodies of each member organization to implement the revision.

K. Schulz moved and D. Turner supported a motion to approve the TLN Plan of Service Revision. The motion passed unanimously 09/12-17-3.

4th Quarter Budget Amendments –Library property tax revenue is above estimates, having received an unexpected $300,000 from Wayne County for delinquent property taxes. In all other categories (interest, miscellaneous and contributions), revenue is down.

Although the budget had conservatively been estimated at $5.8 million dollars, it is actually (roughly) 6 million dollars largely due to the additional County check. Expenditures for capital outlay and supplies show an increase due to actual allocation of funds previously approved for RFID conversion project (tags and equipment).

Spending by departments was down and department heads were applauded for their frugality in difficult circumstances. Utility expenses were also down.

The monies remaining in the RFID budget are to pay Backstage Library Works for the tagging project.

E. Davis said that thanks to careful budget monitoring by department heads and the infusion of County funds, barring a disaster, it appears that the library will not need a fund balance transfer for the RFID conversion project and may actually transfer a small amount into the fund balance at the end of 2009. An end-of-the-year budget amendment may appear on the January 2010 agenda to accurately allocate actual expenditures. She then explained the mechanism by which the RFID expenditures were allocated to the 2009 budget, since it is a multi-year project, spanning both 2009/2010, and had not been included in the original budget.

M. Siegrist moved and K. Schulz supported a motion to approve the 4th Quarter Budget Amendments. The motion passed unanimously 09/12-17-4.

Nomination of Officers for 2010 – Discussion was held. Official nomination and election will be at the January 2010 meeting. All officers may hold their current positions for two years and are eligible to run again. Chair Van Auken will gauge interest in current officers returning for a second year.

Call to Audience

No comments


The meeting was adjourned at 8:04 PM
Colleen Van Auken – Board Chairperson