Grace A. Dow Memorial Library

Library Board


Wednesday, May 19, 2010 7 p.m.

City Hall Council Chambers



      I.                        Roll Call

Galt called the meeting to order at 7:00 p.m.


PRESENT: Melissa Barnard, Maxine Brink, Sarah Galt, Tami Johnson, Kathleen Kinnish, Norm Neher, Suzanne Phillips


ALSO PRESENT: Wendy Shields, Technical Secretary; Virginia McKane, Assistant Director; Nich Wolak, Midland Daily News Local Government Reporter


ABSENT:  Marilyn Soules


   II.                        Acceptance of April 21, 2010 Meeting Minutes

Motion to accept minutes made by Brink, seconded by Phillips.  Motion passed.


 III.                        Additions or Changes to the Agenda



IV.                        Public Comments



   V.                        Director’s Report

Barnard reminded the Board that the Library will be closed Monday, May 31st for Memorial Day.  Additionally, the Library will be closed on Sunday from May 30th – September 7th.  Sunday hours resume September 12th.


Barnard called the Board’s attention to the Summer Reading Brochure that was included in their packet.  Summer Reading Program information is also available on the Library’s website.  The Summer Reading Program begins Monday, June 7th.  McKane stated that a comprehensive calendar of all summer events at the Library is currently at the printer and will be available soon.  Johnson inquired about the status of the VolunTEEN program.  Teens interested in volunteering this summer can contact the Library for more information.


Johnson mentioned the Friends Used Book Sale coming up June 4th – 6th during the annual Alden B. Dow Museum Art Fair.  Neher asked if there was a cut-off point for donating books.  The Library takes book donations throughout the year.






VI.                        Patron Compliments and Concerns


1.      I come to the library at least once a week – sometimes twice a week with my children, 8, 6, and 4.  I really enjoy your children’s department.  We never leave empty handed from books, movies, coloring pictures to crafts.  We just want to say “Thank you”.  Your staff is always helpful.

2.      The library staff here is awesome!  My complaint is that with shortened hours the public is suffering!  It is understandable that in a tough economy budgets must be cut, however, would you cut literacy and the link to knowledge and education?  That’s absurd!  Has anyone even bothered to count the number of patrons who visit the library daily?  As a frequent patron, I can tell you there are many, many people.  Since opening later, patrons in excess of 20 line up in the mornings to be let in.  What kind of service cuts back on a healthy business?  Please consider adding more staff and opening for longer hours.  The public would benefit greatly from it!

In challenging budget times when expenditures are outpacing revenues, reductions are necessary.  The library now opens ½ hour later and closes ½ hour earlier.  We are open 66 hours per week including weekends.  Because the majority of library funding is from property taxes, increase usage at the library does not translate into increase revenues.





VII.                        Old Business

a.    Board/Community Communications

Galt mentioned that she continues to promote the MeLCat service.


                  b.   Mid-Michigan Library Cooperative Report

Barnard reported that she, Soules and McKane attended the joint annual meeting of the Cooperative on Thursday, May 13th.  At this meeting they were given updates about the Cooperative’s budget, shortfalls, facility concerns, and upcoming decisions.  The next meeting is scheduled for September.


c.       Library Board Goals Committee Reports


Goal 1:  Phillips, Neher

Postponed 2-10.


Goal 2:  Galt, Soules

No comments 


Goal 3:  Kinnish, Brink, Johnson

This goal has been completed.  Barnard reported that she has not received any information on the outcome.


d.   Library Board Annual Report Committee

Phillips, Galt and Johnson agreed to serve on the committee.  Galt will chair the committee.  Johnson volunteered to write on goal 3 since she served on that goal committee.  The Board’s annual report is submitted to City Council in the fall.  A draft of the report will be included in the August meeting Board packet.


e.    New Board Member Appointment Process

Barnard reported that there was one applicant for the open Library Board position.  At their May 24th   meeting, City council will decide on the interview process and schedule for the Board and Commission applicants. 


The Midland Public Schools representative, Laura Peterson, will complete her orientation at the same time as the new member.


     f.     City of Midland 2010-2011 Budget Schedule

The 2010-2011 budget is set for adoption at the May 24th City Council meeting.  If approved, reductions to the Library’s budget will include a $100,000 decrease in the materials budget, a $26,000 decrease in supplies and programming, and the loss of one full-time Library Assistant.


VIII.                        New Business

a.       Nominations Committee Appointment

This committee contacts fellow board members to see who is interested in serving as Chair and Vice Chair for the Library Board in the 2010-2011 fiscal year.  Brink announced that she is willing to be Vice-Chair.  Galt volunteered to present a slate of officers at the June meeting.


b.   Library Strategic Plan Review

Barnard reviewed the action items from the Library’s Strategic Plan that had been accomplished since the last strategic plan report to the Board. 


IX.                        Board Announcements

Brink announced that she has a Midland County Township Officials meeting on June 3rd.  Staff will provide handouts for Brink to distribute at the meeting.


Neher requested volunteers from the community to help box library books due to the closing of elementary schools.   Books not placed in other elementary schools will be sold in a book sale in late summer or early fall. 


Johnson reported that she enjoyed the geocaching program during Happenings ’10.  The program drew people into the Library and out to the City Forest.  There will be an article and picture of the GPS winner in the next Library Connection.


   X.                        Adjournment

Brink moved to adjourn.  Kinnish seconded.  Motion passed.  Meeting adjourned at 7:53p.m.