Grace A. Dow Memorial Library

Library Board


Wednesday, August 21, 2013 7 p.m.

City Hall Council Chambers


      I.                        Roll Call

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


PRESENT: Melissa Barnard, Maxine Brink, Michael Burhans, Lucille Cronin, Sarah Galt, Laura Peterson, Debra Hayes, Steve Markey


ALSO PRESENT: Ron Beacom, Manager of MCTV and Library Communications; Roberta VanHolstyn, Technical Secretary.


   II.                        Welcome New Board Member

Debra Hayes was introduced as the new Library Board Member.


 III.                        Acceptance of June 19, 2013 Meeting Minutes

Motion made by Brink to accept minutes, seconded by Galt.  Motion approved.


IV.                        Additions or Changes to the Agenda



   V.                        Public Comments



VI.                        Directors Report

Barnard highlighted the resumption of Sunday hours beginning September 8th from the Director’s Report.  The library will be open from 1- 5 p.m.


Ron Beacom presented information about AT&T U-verse.  In an effort to reach a wider audience, access channels are now offered on both Charter and AT&T U-verse.  U-verse customers will go to channel 99, or to the program guide to access the four MCTV channels: MGTV 96 government access, MGTV 97 message board; MPS 98 Midland Public Schools; and MCTV 99 Community Voices. 


Laura Peterson mentioned her enjoyment of the Midland Daily News articles written by youth.  Barnard noted that Steven Markey invited two of his students to submit articles. The most recent article in the paper was written by one of the library Volunteens.  


VII.                        Patron Comments and Suggestions


1.      Time limits on the youth computers would help kids who wait over half-hour and still don’t get a turn.  Hinting aloud to parents doesn’t always help.

Youth Services Librarians will assist patrons with the use of the game computers in the children’s area.

2.      I think you’re doing a wonderful job.

3.      Does the library plan to subscribe to Hoopla and if not, why not.

This service is not financially feasible at this time.



1.      Paperbacks are not user friendly; too high up.

The size of the paperback collection requires the top shelf to be used.  Step stools are available or staff can assist patrons.


VIII.                        Library Board Annual Report

Cronin discussed the draft copy of the Annual Report and indicated the report was in a format similar to the strategic plan.  Galt suggested clarifying the wording under each goal by changing the second sentence to better reflect the goal and the action taken.  Galt appreciated the continuity of the goal and the follow-through format.  A motion was made by Galt, seconded by Brink to approve the Annual Report with the change requested.  Motion carried.  Cronin will make the changes and forward to Barnard who will submit it to City Council. Appreciation was expressed for the work done on the report.


IX.                        Library Board Annual Dates 2014

The proposed Library Board 2014 meeting schedule was discussed.  Brink moved, seconded by Peterson, that the meeting dates be accepted as presented.  Motion carried.


  X.                        Library Renovations Update

The library renovation project is moving forward.  Remer Plumbing, Heating and Air Conditioning will be installing the air conditioning and updating the heating system.  Minimal disruption to library services is expected.


EnvisionWare will be providing the RFID tags, and software and hardware for the new self checkout.  The process of tagging the materials in the collection is scheduled to begin in September. 


Interior improvement bids are being reviewed.  City Council will receive a resolution recommending a contractor at their September 9th meeting.  This project includes new carpeting throughout the building, and remodeling and expanding restrooms in the auditorium and lounge. 


A complete redesign of the lobby will be done as well.  The project is expected to take 45-60 days to complete.  There will be a re-routing of patrons and a relocation of the checkout area during this time. 


Sections of the building may be closed during the renovation.  It is the intention to keep the library open during renovations as much as feasible.  The earliest start date would be October. 


Cronin asked if there would be any shutdown of the heating and cooling systems during the renovation process.  The installation of the air conditioning equipment will be done over a four day period due to the large equipment needed to remove and place the cooling equipment.  The time of year is optimal for this installation and will hopefully minimize any discomfort.


Cronin suggested a renovation campaign logo to encourage patrons to be flexible throughout the renovation process similar to the parking lot campaign of last year.  There is planning underway for communications in regard to the renovation.


Galt questioned whether there would be a “bank line” system in the new checkout area.  The design of the checkout area will lend itself to a natural progression to the checkout stations. 


Burhans questioned how long the RFID tags on the materials will last.  They should last indefinitely.


A new gate count device will be installed and the gates will be located closer to the doors.  There will now be three doors to enter and exit the building; one being handicap accessible.  To meet building codes, the replacement doors will swing out and will help with climate control in the entry area.


Markey asked about accepting debit and credit cards at the self-checkouts.  Card acceptance will be available at the self checkout stations.  In addition, money can be put on account and library cards can be used to pay fines, movie rental, hold fees, and other charges.



XI.                        2013-2014 Strategic Plan Update

To complete the report on the communication actions in the 2012-13 strategic plan,  Beacom presented the result of surveys taken at major library programs this past fiscal year and its effect on library publicity plans. In summary, adults (mid 40’s and older) primarily get library program information through the Midland Daily News, word of mouth and Library Connection newsletter.  Young adults, teen, and parents of young children rely more on Facebook, the website, and word of mouth for information.  The library needs to use all avenues of communication to reach a wide range of ages and interests.


Galt posed two scenarios: people who heard about a program but didn’t attend, and people who didn’t attend and didn’t hear about it, and how the library can best reach those who have not heard.  Beacom explained that the staff has been targeting specific audiences not just general broadcast.


Steve Markey remarked that the pole banner on Eastman Road advertising the Discovery Depot was effective in bringing his children in.  The library has purchased and used generic banners to advertise Friends book sales, the summer reading program, and MCTV channels. Other banners that can be reused are planned.


A new magazine called “Tridge Life” that is delivered to some city residents, has asked the library to contribute articles.   Beacom has provided information as requested since this is a free source of promotion for the library.  Galt asked if a copy could be put in the library for patrons.  There is not a subscription option.  Use of donated copies will be considered.


The library continues to provide columns for the Midland Daily News op-ed page approximately every three weeks using various contributors including staff, Board members and others.  There is positive feedback on these articles.


The process to develop a new strategic plan will begin with a Team meeting on Tuesday, August 27th.  


The team will consist of:

Library Board Members Cronin, Galt, and Hayes

Library Supervisors Barnard, Suszek, Schultz, and Williams

Ron Beacom, Manager of MCTV/Library Communications Manager

Adult Reference Librarian

Youth Services Librarian

Facilitator Lee Rouse from Omni-Tech


The Library Board and the community will be asked for their input.  Focus groups, surveys, and interviews will be some of the methods used.  This plan will be more comprehensive than the previous plan because of changes in the community, in library services, and the way people connect with the library.  Updates on the plan will be given at Board meetings.  The strategic plan is scheduled to be completed by the end of the year. 


XII.                        Announcements



XIII.                        Adjournment

Brink moved to adjourn.  Peterson seconded.  Motion carried.  Meeting adjourned at 7:53 p.m.  Next meeting date is October 16, 2013.