Grace A. Dow Memorial Library

Library Board Meeting

Wednesday, July 17, 2002


PRESENT:    Melissa Barnard, Stu Bush, Eric Gardner, Cherie Hutter, Judy Stein, Harvey Steinberg, JoAnn Wilkie


ALSO PRESENT:  Assistant Director Virginia McKane and Tracy Burton, Midland Issues


I.       Call to Order


         The July 17, 2002 meeting of the Library Board was called to order at 7 p.m. by Hutter.


II.      Acceptance of Minutes


         Minutes of the June 19, 2002 meeting were approved as submitted. 


III.    Additions or Changes to the Agenda


         An update on the Friends of the Library was added to the agenda.


IV.    Public Comments


         There were no public comments.


V.     Director’s Report


         Barnard extended an invitation to the Board to attend the library’s annual staff in-service on Wednesday, August 21.  The speaker in the morning will cover communications in the workplace.  A representative from AAA will come in the afternoon to talk about reading maps.  The remainder of the day will address safety, wellness, and other informational items.  The in-service is mandatory for all staff.


Barnard updated the Board on the situation with the Friends of the Library and the Blake Foundation.  Barnard had spoken with Janis Bond, president of the Friends, who said the Friends have formally requested the Blake Foundation return the money to the Friends.  The Foundation has until July 29 to respond.  The Friends are prepared to turn the matter over to their attorney, Philip VanDam to seek legal action.  People are contacting Bond and saying good things; the whole atmosphere among Friends members is very positive.


         The Friends have scheduled a book sale for September 13, 14 and 15.  The Friends are also planning a Christmas sale.


         The following discussions relate to the director’s written report and comments from patrons:


         Regarding the comment of a DVD drop box, Barnard said that we will be allowing DVDs to be dropped in the book drop.  Locked security cases have been purchased for the DVD collection, which are much sturdier and we also hope this reduces our theft activity.  CD and books-on-tape cases are not sturdy enough to allow them to go through the book drop.  We will continue to look at cases that might help to give the CDs and cassettes more strength.  


         Barnard called the patron who was concerned about the new books being on Book Express for only two months.  Barnard explained that books are on Book Express for a minimum of six months, not two months.  The fiction books have been heavily circulated this summer.  Steinberg asked if lists of new books could be made available.  Barnard will ask staff if a list can be generated without having someone actually type it.  Hutter agreed that it would be nice to be able to scan a list.  Barnard said that we do put our New and Notable lists on the website.


         Stein asked about the 5-minute parking spots.  Barnard wrote a note to the patron responding to the concern.  Extending the time is problematic and there has been some flexibility with the 5-minute restriction.


         Regarding the comment of the lack of parking during events at the Center for the Arts, Barnard responded that the library’s parking lot only goes to the end of the building.  It is difficult to monitor who is parking in the lots.  Hutter mentioned she appreciates the repainting of the arrows.


VI.    Old Business


a.      Coffee Bar

         Barnard has contacted three additional managers/owners of coffee bars, two in Saginaw and one in Bay City.  Unfortunately, being the month of July, Barnard has only been able to leave messages.  Barnard hopes to be able to talk with larger businesses (Starbucks, etc.) and see what their response is.


b.      Question of the Month

         The Board discussed possible questions for August and September.  It was decided to wait until September and ask what types of events people would be interested in attending at the library, for adults, teens, and children.  A list of possible programs or events will be available to choose from, as well as a space to fill in their own ideas.


c.      Reporting Committee – Wrap Up for 2001/2002 Annual Report

         Hutter reported that the presentation of the Board’s report to City Council went well.  Gardner said Council members asked enough questions that showed they were interested and very impressed with the report.  Hutter praised the committee for doing a wonderful job writing the report.  Barnard hopes to have a copy of the signed City Council resolution accepting the annual report available to distribute in September.  The annual report is on the library’s website.  The Board requested to view the tape of the report to Council; Barnard will arrange for the September meeting.


d.      Excellence Award

         The Board reviewed the letter being sent to community leaders asking for their support in nominating the library for the Library of Michigan Excellence Award.  Members also reviewed the draft of their submission to the selection panel for the award.  It was decided to incorporate pictures into the letter.    Letters to community leaders will be sent out right away and they will be given three weeks to respond.  A maximum of five letters of support can accompany the board’s nomination.  The committee will select the letters and report at the September meeting.


e.      Library Fines and Fees Ordinance

         No report.


f.       Children’s Internet Protection Act – Update

         Barnard reported that the U.S. Justice Department is appealing the court’s decision; the appeal was expected.  Barnard wanted the board to be aware that it is going back to court.


VII.      New Business


a.      Nominations and Elections for Chair and Vice Chair

         The board unanimously elected Cherie Hutter as Chair and Harvey Steinberg as Vice Chair.


b.      Meeting Schedule for 2003

         The board will meet the third Wednesday of each month at 7 p.m. except for August.


c.      USA Patriot Act

         Barnard reported that this Act is over 130 pages long.  Part of the Act refers to FBI officials coming into libraries with search warrants to view patron records.  To Barnard’s knowledge, no libraries in Michigan have been approached.  Before the search warrant is honored, staff need to inform the Director or Assistant Director, who will contact the City Attorney.


d.      Michigan Library Privacy Act

         With the USA Patriot Act in place, libraries must still keep the Library Privacy Act in mind.


         Barnard distributed forms that are available to parents who want access to their minor child’s library record.  A statement will be added to the library card application about privacy of children’s records, and parents must sign a form to gain access to the record.


VIII.  Board Comments


         Stein commented on Michigan E-Library and the recent change in obtaining access using your Michigan driver’s license.


         Barnard discussed a recent inquiry about a book on hold.  We owned two copies of this particular book, one of which was two months overdue.  When we have holds, the system doesn’t alert us if books that have holds on them are overdue.  We can now get lists that generate this information.  As a result of this inquiry, we did order additional copies.  The collection management committee is looking at Book Express as a hold issue.


         Hutter thanked the Board for their confidence in her and looks to accomplish great things as a Board again next year.


IX.    Adjournment


         The meeting of the Library Board adjourned at 8:50 p.m.  The next meeting will be Wednesday, September 18, 2002 at 7 p.m. in the Boardroom.