Library Board

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

7 p.m.

City Hall Council Chambers



 Soules called the meeting to order at 7 p.m.


PRESENT:               Melissa Barnard, Maxine Brink, Stu Bush, Sarah Galt,

                                 Kathleen Kinnish, Norm Neher, Marilyn Soules, Judy Stein


ALSO PRESENT:   Virginia McKane; John Palen, Midland Issues; Cathy Nelson Price, Midland Daily News



Minutes approved as submitted.



Soules added the Mideastern Library Cooperative Board Report to Old Business.






In addition to the report, Barnard announced that the Library Board agenda packet is available on the city’s website.  It is posted by 5 p.m. the Friday before the meeting.


Soules commended the cooperative efforts between the Midland Public Schools and the library.  Neher added his thanks and looks forward to a very productive relationship.


Board members noted the upcoming “Be a Tourist in Your Town” event and the Great Michigan Read.  The collaborations with other organizations were also highlighted.


Kinnish asked about the response to the Playaways.  Response has been very favorable with many checked out.  Playaways for adults have been ordered and should be available soon.



         Signed Compliments and Concerns:


1.      I was a bit surprised today when turning in 3 videos that were 3 days late that the charge was $9.  I believe the $1 a day late fee is a bit excessive considering it only cost $1.25 each to rent.  Please revisit the late fee for videos.

Proposed revisions to the Library Fines and Fees Ordinance will be discussed at the October 17th Library Board meeting.


2.      I recently traveled through Midland on a bicycle tour and was able to use the library’s Internet connection to stay in contact with my family while traveling.  I also had a chance to browse the genealogy collection, which has moved to a nice location since my last visit.  You have a wonderful library and thank you very much for extending the privilege of Internet use to me during my visit.

3.      It would be wonderful if you offered the Toddler Time in the evening for working parents.

                   In the past, evening Toddler Time attendance has been too low to continue offering.

4.      I would like a wired connection because of the lack of money I have to get a new wireless card.  If you would connect at least half of the open ports that would be a great help.

                                 In order to provide wireless access throughout the building, ports have been used for access points. 

5.      I was shocked that your computers only let each person on for an hour.  This makes it almost impossible to complete any type of research project.  I also came to the library to work on my medical school applications but your computer won’t let me load anything from a flash drive!!  Right now your computer systems cannot be used for any real research/application work rather just “surfing” the Internet! This makes it impossible to work. Coming from a school (MSU) with computer labs that let you use the computer for hours, work on word, excel and load documents etc. I have to say I am extremely disappointed with the quality of your computer systems.

                  Since we have a limited number of public computers, we have had to institute a one-hour per day time limit. We feel that this allows more equitable use of the equipment.

6.      Thank you to everyone who orchestrated the Harry Potter Game Finale.  What a wonderful event for the kids (and adults as well) the scavenger hunt was awesome and the crafts were great.  Well thought out day.

7.      In early August we came to the library looking for a book on CD for an upcoming vacation.  A helpful librarian at the children’s reference desk made some suggestions including, “The Trumpet of the Swan” We picked that one and my children (ages 5, 8, 10) loved it.  We listened to it twice.  We really appreciated the help and the suggestion.  Thank you.


Unsigned Compliments and Concerns:


1.      Wondering why the “New Book Shelves For Large Print” no longer has a large amount of books.  Lately seems depleted!

                                    With the end of the budget year, purchases slow down. 

2.      Please update Internet to flash 8.  I have to go to Bay City to get this service.

                                    Has been updated.

3.      Can you place Purell by computers for checking holdings and maybe stools for the 3 taller counter machines and Purell at check out desk too.

                                    Restrooms are available for patrons needing to wash their hands.  Placing hand sanitizers around the library is not practical.  Stools are difficult for many to use.  There are two catalog computers on lower tables with chairs.



Additional Compliments and Concerns

Four positive comments about the Pre-Overdue Notification, three signed.

Five comments about the re-modeled bathrooms, only one signed.  Positive comments with two suggestions on improving the lighting in the women’s bathroom.



a.       Board/Community Communications

Soules opened the discussion on whether the Board wants to continue the “Did You Know” articles in the Library Connection. In the past, the Board has contributed personal library experience articles for the Nov/Dec 2003 through Jan/Feb 2005 issues, and “Frequently Asked Question” articles in the March/April 2005 though Nov/Dec 2006 issues. The “Did You Know” articles began in the Jan/Feb 2007 issue. The Board agreed that it wants to continue a presence in the newsletter.  It was suggested that articles could be more flexible depending on current concerns.  Moving forward, Stein will contribute an article on several Board goals for the Jan/Feb 2008 and Bush will continue with the remaining goals in the March/April issue.


Barnard updated the Board on the Lincoln Township postcard mailing.  From the time of the mailing to mid-September, forty-three new cards were issued to township residents. In order to put this number in perspective, Barnard will provide a comparison on how many new cards were issued during the previous year in same time frame if those numbers are available. 


b.      Board Annual Report Committee – Bush, Heard, Kinnish

2007-2008 Goals Approval

Bush moved to accept the goals submitted, Brink seconded.  Motion passed.  The goals will be added to the previously approved Library Board Annual Report for 2006-2007.  The report will be submitted to City Council at their October 1, 2007 regular meeting.  The Board agreed to have the report placed on the consent agenda rather than presenting it at the meeting.


c.       Mideastern Library Cooperative Report – Bush

At the September 13th Cooperative Board meeting the main issue was the state budget with the proposed 50% cut to state aid to libraries.  Since no agreement has been reached on state aid public library funding, the Cooperative Board approved a budget reflecting a 50% reduction in state aid.  Another item discussed was the State Librarian’s proposed plan to consolidate the cooperatives.



a.       Fines and Fees Ordinance Revision

Barnard presented the staff recommendations for revisions to the ordinance. There have been no increases since 1996.  The Board agreed that videos should remain as new releases for six months rather than one year.  This change will be made.   Discussion will continue about the discretion of the Library Director to waive or reduce video charges. A public hearing will be held at the next Library Board meeting on Wednesday, October 17th, 7 p.m. in Council Chambers, City Hall. 


b.      Library Statistical Report, 2006-2007

Barnard reviewed the report submitted to the Board on library usage in 2006-2007. 


c.       Library Goals, 2008-2009 Fiscal Year

Barnard explained the change in the format for the city’s 2008-2009 budget.  The Library Board has been asked to submit goals for consideration in the 2008-2009 budget process.  The following goals were developed:


1.      Increase the availability of computers and computer instruction in the library.

2.      Seek community partnerships in order to share costs and to better meet the needs of the community.

3.      Fund new opportunities for youth programs.

4.      Fully utilize the resources of the Mideastern Michigan Library Cooperative and the Library of Michigan.

5.      Continue to participate in the Public Spaces initiative.


Brink moved to approve the 2008-2009 goals, Kinnish seconded.  Motion passes.



Soules reminded members of the upcoming Friends used book sale in October. Friends of the Library membership forms are available on their website.


Galt requested that the 2007-2008 Board goals be included on the agenda for the October meeting to discuss how the Board will accomplish and prioritize their goals.



         Brink moved to adjourn.  Stein seconded.  Meeting adjourned at 9:40 p.m.