Grace A. Dow Memorial Library

Library Board


Wednesday, January 18, 2012 7 p.m.

City Hall Council Chambers


      I.                        Roll Call

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


PRESENT: Melissa Barnard, Maxine Brink, Lucille Cronin, Laura Peterson, Suzanne Phillips


ABSENT:  Michael Burhans, Sarah Galt


ALSO PRESENT: Wendy Shields, Technical Secretary; Ron Beacom, Manager of MCTV and Library Communications


   II.                        Acceptance of November 16, 2011 Meeting Minutes

Motion to accept minutes made by Phillips, seconded by Cronin.  Motion approved.


 III.                        Additions or Changes to the Agenda



IV.                        Public Comments



   V.                        Director’s Report

Barnard introduced Ron Beacom whose position now includes promoting the library though the newsletter, MGTV, press releases, ads, articles, website and facebook.  His new title is Manager of MCTV and Library Communications.  The adjustment in assignments is related to the loss of the Assistant Director position,


Barnard announced that the library has received $10,000 in funding to develop an Early Literacy Activity Center in the Youth Services area.  The following organizations awarded grants to the library in support of the project:  Midland Area Community Foundation, Midland Rotary Foundation, and Kiwassee Kiwanis Foundation.  The Friends of the Library donated to the project and private contributions were received.  This center is designed to complement story times for children 0-5 years that are currently held and help prepare children for school.  The center is expected to open in February.


Barnard explained that March programming will focus on The Reading Promise based on the book with the same title.  In the book, a father and daughter make a promise to read together every night for 100 days in a row.  The reading streak continues for 3,218 nights.  Our Reading Promise encourages the entire community to participate in a reading streak for the month of March.  A Celebration of Our Community of Readers will be held on Friday, March 23rd.  The Library is partnering with The Literacy Council of the Legacy Center for Community Success on this program.  Phillips complimented the staff on this idea and inquired about a list of nursing homes where people can go read.  Cronin suggested connecting with Senior Services to develop a list of people who would like to be read to.  Barnard responded that the staff will look into this possibility.


VI.                        Patron Comments and Suggestions


1.      At least two hours allowed for computer use if not too busy.

Based on the use of the computers, extending the time is not recommended.   Laptops are available for check out with the first hour free and $2.50 each additional hour.

2.      I would like to see the library have ebooks.

This service will be available by the end of January.

3.      I was wondering why nobody has installed the coupon bar from coupon websites so everybody can have the opportunity to print off valuable coupons from the web.  It is simple, free and easy to use.

Our policy is not to download individual programs on the public computers.  The computers are set up to provide basic computer services to the diverse audience that we serve.  We do not have the resources to download and monitor the numerous specific programs that would be requested.


1.      You need to clean the CDs when they are returned.  More than once, I’ve had to clean them because they had fingerprints and food on them.

Cleaning every CD that is returned is not feasible because of staff time involved.  CDs would unavailable for periods of time.  Patrons are encouraged to let us know if the condition of a CD needs to be addressed.


VII.                        Library Board Vacancy

Barnard reported that there are three applicants for the vacant Library Board position.  This position will continue the term vacated in the fall.  Two City Council members will interview the applicants and present their recommendation to the entire City Council who will then appoint the new Library Board member.  Barnard anticipates that the position will be filled in March.


VIII.                        Mideastern Michigan Library Cooperative Board Report – Cronin

Cronin reported that the MMLC Board met on Thursday, January 12, 2012.    The following business items were addressed:  a clean audit was presented, a revised advocacy plan was adopted, plan of service revision is in process and the Technology Plan final report was presented.  A copy of the revised advocacy plan will be included in the next Board packet. 


Barnard mentioned that the May meeting is the joint advisory council and board dinner meeting in Grand Blanc.  Board members are invited to attend and more information will be forthcoming.






IX.                        2011-2012 Strategic Plan

The plan was reviewed, noting items that actions have been taken.


a)      Building/Infrastructure

Goal:  Address needed repairs and renovations

Staff – The entrance to the public parking lot has been resurfaced.  Hopefully the rest of the parking lot will be addressed this year.


b)      Staff Development

Goal:  Ensure that staff has needed technology skills

Staff – The staff survey has been completed and training needs are being identified.

Goal:  Identify opportunities for staff to learn more about early literacy and its impact on library programming

Staff – Youth Services staff is researching early literacy and making plans to attend workshops on this topic.


c)      Funding

Goal:  Evaluate income sources

Staff – The Library Work Group is reviewing fines and fees


d)     Programming

Goal:  Review emerging trends and respond to changing demographics

Staff – The staff gathered and reviewed 2010 Census information.

Board – Phillips met with staff to discuss the 2010 Census information and the impact on library services and programs.  She presented an overview of the information at the Board meeting.  Primarily the focus was on age with increases in the population of those 55 and older.  Though there was a decrease in the youth population, no changes are anticipated in the youth programming offered at the library.  Literacy development remains a critical role for the library.  The library will continue to review and evaluate services and programs for adults 55 and older.


Peterson requested information on the circulation of large print materials, wondering if there is an increase in use with the increase in the older population.  Cronin requested information on poverty levels by age to determine if there are any trends.  Information will be provided at the next Board meeting


Goal: Expand early literacy services

Staff – Funding is in place for the Early Literacy Activity Center and materials are being ordered.





e)      Technology and Resources

Goal:  Utilize technology to improve access to resources

Staff –Several apps are available to patrons including: BookMyne, Gale Databases and Mango Languages.  Popular eBooks compatible with the Kindle, Nook and other eReaders will be available the week of January 23rd.


f)       Marketing

Goal: Promote the library to the community by increasing awareness of the library to achieve sustained usage of the library and attendance at library events.

Staff – A committee of librarians is working on the list of brainstorming ideas developed by the Board to increase circulation of materials for adults including inclusion in the Senior Services newsletter, Midland Daily News column, Grab and Go book display, and end panel book displays.  Beacom has made arrangements for staff to provide a library article to the Midland Daily News twice a month.


A letter written by Peterson appeared in the Midland Daily News. Cronin will prepare a letter to be sent to Midland Daily News in the next couple of weeks.


   X.                        Announcements

Brink commended Phillips on her report on the 2010 Census.


Phillips mentioned that the next Friends of the Library Used Book Sale is February 10-12, 2012. 


Cronin inquired about the statistics under review.  Barnard responded that staff is working with Valley Library Consortium to determine accurate statistics.  Cronin requested that reference questions statistics be included.  Barnard explained that reference questions are counted for one week per month and the annual total is extrapolated from those counts.


XI.                        Adjournment

Peterson moved to adjourn.  Phillips seconded.  Motion approved.  Meeting adjourned at

8:05 p.m.