Grace A. Dow Memorial Library

Library Board Minutes

Wednesday, November 17, 2004

City Hall Council Chambers


I. Roll Call Stein called the meeting to order at 7 p.m.


PRESENT: Melissa Barnard, Maxine Brink, Stu Bush, Eric Gardner, Ann Heard, Cherie Hutter, Fred Johnson, Judy Stein


ALSO PRESENT: Virginia McKane, Assistant Director; Greg Wasserman, Midland Issues


II. Acceptance of Minutes


Minutes of the October 20, 2004 meeting were approved as submitted.


III. Additions or Changes to the Agenda


There were no additions or changes to the agenda.


IV. Public Comments


There were no public comments.


V. Director's Report


Barnard reported that gathering of statistics from the new computer system is still being worked on.


The launching of Lowell Thomas' book Silent Heroes was held Thursday, November 11 (Veteran's Day). Thomas interviewed and wrote stories of service people in the Midland area who served in various wars. After a brief presentation, Thomas signed copies of the book.


McKane reported on the Battle of the Books Kickoff that was held Saturday, November 13 with guest speaker Roland Smith. Over 400 people attended the kickoff sessions. There are 20 books on this year's Battle list.


Barnard reported that the library will be the focus of MGTV City in 15 in December. Wendy Krause in the technical processing department will be featured. There will also be a segment on the building's 50th anniversary.


Barnard reported that the City is still accepting calls for roundtables November 30-December 3. Interested individuals can call the City Manager's office or register on-line. (Roundtables have been rescheduled for January 10-13, 2005.)



In reading through the director's written report, Stein said she didn't realize that library staff present book talks to local organizations. Barnard replied groups can contact the library to make arrangements.


VI. Patron Compliments and Concerns


Barnard read and discussed each compliment and concern received in the last month.


VII. Old Business


a. Board/Community Communications

Brink's article will be featured in the January/February 2005 issue of The Library Connection. The Board discussed other ways to communicate with the public through the newsletter and website. Hutter motioned to have the board/community communications for next year focus on issues, such as questions that come up from the public on the comment forms.


b. State Librarian's Excellence Award

The Board discussed the fact that the library did not win the State Librarian's Excellence Award this year. Barnard said that the top five libraries selected by a panel were forwarded to the state librarian who then made the final decision of Portage District Library. Of the 34 submissions, GADML was in the top five. Barnard will check on getting information on the nomination materials submitted by the winning library.


The item of State Librarian's Excellence Award will be put on the May 2005 library board agenda.


c. Teen Room Update

McKane reported that the room is open; however, most of the furniture for the room has not yet arrived. Plans are being made with the Friends of the Library and Rebecca Hastings for the grand opening of the teen room. Gardner asked how the Friends of the Library will be recognized for their contribution. McKane replied that a plaque is being designed.


VIII. New Business

Staff Retirement Resolution/Letter

Gardner read a letter he wrote to Joyce Fisher for her retirement. The letter will be a gift to her from the library board.


IX. Board Comments


Heard reported that she had sent an email to Midland High staff to let them know of the databases that are available on-line through the library's website. She immediately received comments from staff that looked at the databases right away and were pleased.


Heard passed along a comment about overdue materials and receiving notices during the grace period. Barnard responded that people receive overdue notices by phone, email or print. If people were notified during the grace period, there would be a lot more notices sent, which would cost more. A lot of people take advantage of the grace period and don't need notices sent to them. Second notices and bills are always mailed.


Stein said someone asked her why the fiction material is not all shelved together. Barnard replied that the way fiction material is shelved is determined by the library staff based on how the community uses the collection. Barnard noted that the Youth Services department shelve their titles entirely different from Adult Services.


Hutter commented that she came in looking for something. She is usually independent in her searches but needed assistance and found the Reference Desk staff to be very helpful.


With no critical items to be covered in December, Stein motioned to cancel the December 15 meeting of the Library Board. Motion passed.


X. Adjournment


The meeting of the Library Board adjourned at 8:15 p.m. The next meeting of the Library Board is scheduled for Wednesday, January 19, 2005 at 7 p.m. in Council Chambers at City Hall.