Board Minutes May 2016


May 19, 2016

The Board of Trustees of Barry-Lawrence Regional Library met for their monthly meeting on Thursday, May 19, 2016 at the Pierce City Branch Library.  Present were:  Ann Hall, Gina McIlrath, Marilyn Carey, Jan Vaughn, Felicity Nesbitt, Director Gina Milburn, Administrative Assistant Joyce Frazier, IT Manager J.J. Goulbourne and guests Rhonda Duff and Janea Coker.  Absent were Julie Vaughn and Charles Peiter.  The meeting was called to order by President Ann Hall.  


Minutes:  April 21, 2016 meeting minutes were reviewed.  Motion made by M. Carey to approve the minutes with no changes or corrections, second by Jan Vaughn.  All members present voted in the affirmative.  Motion carried.

Financial Report:  Director Milburn reviewed the April 2016 financial report and discussion followed.  We are up slightly in tax collections as compared to last year.  In April 2015 we collected $1,337,699 compared to this April 2016 with $1,379,372.  Tax collections are our most reliable source of income and have remained fairly flat over the last few years, especially considering rising costs in expenditures (like utilities).  Our next most reliable source of income is SRC donations, state funding, fines, fees, and sales.  These funds fluctuate from year to year making it hard to estimate numbers, especially where state funding is concerned.  As a result of these fluctuations we collected less in these areas than last year.   In 2015 we collected $121,815 compared to this April 2016 with $96,076.  Our third and final source of income comes from E-rate, donations, and grant funding.  While all of these provide us with income, they are the most unreliable.  Donations dramatically fluctuate from year to year and are dependent upon whomever chooses to donate to the library.  Grant funds are a blessing and a curse. All require some kind of matching funds, most often at least a 25% match.  This means we have to expend funds in order to receive funds.  And, where E-rate refunds (for telephone services) used to be a reliable source of income it is now being phased out.  Over the next couple of years we will see a significant decrease in the refunds until they go away completely.  These wild fluctuations can be seen in a comparison with last year.  In 2015 we received $127,275 compared to this year (2016) with $73,954.16.  We are working to toe the line in expenditures through the end of the year.  We have expended almost $86,000 more than this time last year.  In April 2015 our expenditures totaled $1,254,708 compared to $1,340,153 this year (April 2016).  We still have 2 more months left in the current budget year and still have to pay for the new roof and repairs at the Aurora Branch.   Motion made by Jan Vaughn, second by G. McIlrath to approve the financial report.  All members present voted in the affirmative.  Motion carried.

Circulation Statistics:  Director Milburn reviewed the April statistics and the 3rd Quarter statistical report.  In April, Mt. Vernon continued to lead the way in circulation (6,756), with Cassville (6,063) and Monett (5,978) following behind. E-material circulation is up with 1,863 checkouts compared to April 2015 at 1,457.    Our computers were used 3,746 times with an additional 759 uses of WiFi.  In April the branches provided 259 programs with a total of 6,683 participants. 

Technology Report:  IT Manager Goulbourne briefly reviewed the technology report. 
• Conducted 6 presentations at the Mt. Vernon High School for the freshmen, juniors, and seniors on Cyber Safety.  A total of 121 students were in attendance.
• Installation of the new 48 port gigabit network switch and WAP for Monett/Regional Office was completed.
• Both Shell Knob and Eagle Rock are in the process of having their Internet speeds bumped from 1.5 to 3 mbps.
• The library has been awarded $15,491 for the 2016 Technology Ladder Grant.  The library has to contribute $5,658 (25%) for a total of $21,149.  Funds from the grant will be used to purchase 20 desktop computers, 20 LCD monitors and 5 black and white LasterJet printers.  We have approximately 38 aging computers and monitors as well as 5 public printers that are in dire need of replacement.  The other 18 units will be replaced at a later date when another grant becomes available.  Per the terms of the grant and our purchasing policy we put these items out for bid with bids due to the Regional Office on Wednesday, May 18.  We received three bids from MDC ($21,149), PC Solutions ($21,300), and SHI ($22,182).  IT Manager Goulbourne recommended that we use the local company, MDC.  After discussion, F. Nesbitt made a motion to award the bid to MDC, second by G. McIlrath.  All members present voted in the affirmative.  Motion carried.
• New gigabit network switch and WAP for Eagle Rock and Marionville were installed.
• New gigabit switch for Shell Knob was installed along with a security camera system with DVR (due to security issues).
• Six new HP LaserJet printers were purchased at a cost of $99 each to replace aging circulation printers at 6 branch locations.
• Internet feed at Miller was upgraded to 3 megs (from 1.5).
• Internet feed at Marionville was upgraded to 5 megs (from 3).
• Two WAP’s and high speed switch for Cassville was installed.
• New gigabit switch and SAP was installed at Aurora.
• Conducted a presentation at Mid-America Dental/Hearing for approximately 21 employees as part of their professional development program.
• Lee Ann conducted 6 computer basics programs at several branch locations with a total of 47 attendees.
• Computer #5 at Cassville was replaced due to network issues.  The replacement computer was the last spare that the IT Department had.
• On Friday, May 20th another presentation will be conducted in Mt. Vernon for the other 20 employees of Mid-American Dental/Hearing.

Motion made by M. Carey to approve the Technology Report, second by Jan Vaughn.  All members present voted in the affirmative.  Motion carried.

Director’s Report:

Staff Changes: 
Monett:  Kathryn Robinson resigned her custodial position at the Monett Branch effective May 27, 2016.  She will continue to clean at the Pierce City and Miller Branch locations.  We are working to find another custodian or custodial service for the Monett Branch.

SRC Temporary Library Assistant:  Interviews for the grant funded temporary library assistant will take place Thursday afternoon.  We hope to get this position filled and in place before the Summer Reading Program begins.  We originally planned to use grant funds to hire two temporary library positions to help with SRC, a library assistant and a library clerk.  After reviewing when and where we would need these positions we decided that we didn’t need two.  Since these are grant funded positions we asked for an amendment to our original request.  Our amendment request was granted and the funds will instead be used to purchase additional materials (books, cds, and dvds) for the collection. 

Maintenance:  The old section of the Aurora Branch Library finally has a new roof.  Cox Roofing completed the project the last week of April.  Cox Roofing came back this week and cleaned out most of the debris that dropped onto the suspended ceiling.  Jim Williams (Cassville) and Jerry Toothman (Aurora) replaced all the damaged ceiling tiles Wednesday.  All that is left to be done is to have the ductwork cleaned and to repair the wall damage in the Children’s Area.

Weeding Update:  The weeding project has been completed at the Monett Branch.  Pierce City is next.

Branch Evaluations:  Joyce Frazier and Director Milburn visited all the branch locations this week and completed the first round of branch evaluations.  Everything looks to be in okay shape.

Lisa Peterson Trust:  Long time Cassville Branch customer, supporter, and volunteer, Lisa Peterson, passed away on June 9, 2015. We received word in late April 2016 that the Barry-Lawrence Regional Library (Cassville Branch) will be the recipient of one-half of the Peterson Family Charitable Trust

Motion made by M. Carey to accept the Director’s Report, second by J. Vaughn.  All members present voted in the affirmative.  Motion carried.


Reduction in Branch Hours/Days:  After the April board meeting Joyce Frazier and Director Milburn set up two early morning mandatory staff meetings, one in Barry County and one in Lawrence County.  They felt that this was the best way to relay the board decisions about new branch hours and budget cuts (April meeting minutes) to the staff in person.  This gave everyone the same information at the same time and gave staff a chance to ask questions and/or express concerns.  Some concerns were raised about the small branches only being open three days a week and the days that were selected (Monday, Wednesday, and Friday).  The main concern centered around being open on Mondays rather than on Tuesdays.  Director Milburn and Joyce Frazier shared those concerns with the board.  Director Milburn also provided daily activity summary statistics for the past 6 months.  After a lengthy discussion, a motion was made by Jan Vaughn to leave the reduction of hours as is from the April Meeting (closed on Saturdays, large branches Monday – Friday 8:30-5:30, and small branches Monday, Wednesday, Friday 8:30-5:30) beginning August 1 for a period of 4 months, second by G. McIlrath.  All members present voted in the affirmative. 

Motion carried.  The board will review the reduction of hours in January 2017 and make any needed adjustments at that time.


EveryLibrary—Peter Bromberg (via conference call):  As promised at the April Board Meeting, Director Milburn set up a conference call with EveryLibrary.  EveryLibrary ( is the first and only national organization dedicated exclusively to political action at a local level to create, renew, and protect public funding for libraries of all types.  They are a nonprofit Political Action Committee chartered to work exclusively on local library ballot initiatives.  Peter Bromberg was our initial contact and is the Associate Director for Public Services at the Salt Lake County Library. He is on the board of directors for EveryLibrary.  Mr. Bromberg gave us a brief overview of what EveryLibrary does, how they can help us, and what steps we need to take before going back to ask our voters for a tax levy increase.  Highlights of the conversation included:
• EveryLibrary will help us set up a local political action committee.  They will train, coach and consult with the committee to run a Vote YES campaign.  They will also work with the library to simultaneously run an information only campaign.
• They do their work Pro Bono (free).
• They have helped run 36 campaigns and have won 27 of those.  Of the nine that they lost they went into knowing that they would more than likely lose.
• Encouraged us to do a listening tour to ask customers/staff 3 questions:  What did you hear about why the library tax levy failed?  Why do you personally think it failed?  What can we do differently to make it a success next time?  After the conference call he will e-mail Director Milburn instructions on how to proceed with the listening tour.
• Told us that we needed to get a strategic library and facilities plan in place before proceeding with the next tax levy increase bid. 
• They are willing to work with us and encouraged us to consider going back to the voters in November 2016 or April 2017.  Mr. Bromberg will e-mail Director Milburn with a funding election timeline for planning purposes.

After the phone call ended the board agreed that going out again in November 2016 would be too soon considering the planning steps that are necessary, such as creating a strategic plan.  Even if it passed in November we would not be able to collect the increase until December 2017.  So, we decided to wait until April 2017.  Director Milburn will follow up with Mr. Bromberg and report at the June meeting concerning the next steps to take.

Penny Dean Smith, Pierce City resident, asked to speak with the board and her request was granted.  Ms. Smith addressed the board about the upcoming cut in hours, specifically at the Pierce City Branch.  After discussion, Ms. Smith excited the meeting.

PLA Conference Presentation:  Janea Coker, Rhonda Duff, J.J. Goulbourne and Director Milburn all attended the PLA Conference in Denver in early April.  All shared about their experiences at the conference, what they learned, and what items they brought back from the exhibits.  All thanked the board for the opportunity to attend this national public library conference.

Summer Reading Club Update:  Janea Coker reviewed the upcoming program events for the Summer Reading Club.  Each board member received flyers for each branches programs in their packet this month.  Ms. Coker also shared the 15 second advertisement that will appear at the Monett Plaza 8 Movie Theater during the pre-movie advertisement period.  The ad will run throughout the summer before every movie that is shown.  We will have a similar ad that will run at the Palace Theater in Springfield.

Having no other business to discuss a motion to adjourn was made Jan Vaughn, second by M. Carey.  All members present voted in the affirmative.  Motion carried.  Meeting adjourned.

Respectfully submitted,

Joyce Frazier
Recording Secretary

The next Scheduled Board Meeting will be held at 9:00 a.m. on Thursday, June 23, 2016 at the Pierce City Branch Library.