May 8, 2013

Minutes of the regular meeting of the Board of Trustees of the Skokie Public Library held in the Skokie Public Library Board Room, Wednesday, May 8, 2013.

CALL TO ORDER

John Graham, President, called the meeting to order at 7:28 p.m.

Members present: John Graham, President; Diana Hunter, Vice President/President Emerita; Karen Parrilli, Secretary; Susan Greer; Jonathan H. Maks, MD; Mark Prosperi; and Carolyn A. Anthony, Director.

Member absent: Zelda Rich.

Guest present: Paul Steinbrecher, Architect, Interactive Design Architects.

Staff present: Barbara A. Kozlowski, Associate Director for Public Services; Jessi Schulte, Young Adult Librarian; Gail Shaw, System Administrator/Website Development Coordinator (arrived at 8:50 p.m.).

APPROVAL OF THE MINUTES OF THE REGULAR MEETING OF APRIL 10, 2013

Mrs. Hunter made a motion, seconded by Mrs. Parrilli, to approve the minutes of the regular meeting of April 10, 2013, subject to additions and/or corrections. There being no corrections, the minutes were approved and placed on file.

CONSENT AGENDA (Financial Statement; Circulation Report; Library Use Statistics; Report(s) from Department Head(s); Correspondence; Personnel)

Mr. Graham finds the departmental reports very informative.

Mrs. Parrilli made a motion, seconded by Mr. Prosperi:

MOTION:       THAT THE SKOKIE PUBLIC LIBRARY BOARD OF TRUSTEES APPROVE THE FINANCIAL STATEMENT, SUBJECT TO AUDIT, AND THAT THE FOLLOWING CONSENT AGENDA ITEMS BE PLACED ON FILE:

1.      CIRCULATION REPORT

2.      LIBRARY USE STATISTICS

3.      REPORT(S) FROM DEPARTMENT HEAD(S)

4.      CORRESPONDENCE: LETTER FROM ANNE CRAIG, DIRECTOR, ILLINOIS STATE LIBRARY, TO CAROLYN ANTHONY DATED APRIL 18, 2013 RE SKOKIE PUBLIC LIBRARY PARTICIPATION IN EDGE INITIATIVE

5.      PERSONNEL: TERMINATIONS: JANET GARCIA, PART-TIME SECURITY GUARD, MAINTENANCE DEPARTMENT, EFFECTIVE APRIL 10, 2013; MEGAN ROSOL, PART-TIME LIBRARIAN, ADULT SERVICES DEPARTMENT, EFFECTIVE MAY 18, 2013; HIRES: RICHARD LUBOFF, PART-TIME SECURITY GUARD, MAINTENANCE DEPARTMENT, EFFECTIVE APRIL 29, 2013; CHRIS BREITENBACH, PART-TIME LIBRARIAN, ADULT SERVICES DEPARTMENT, EFFECTIVE MAY 23, 2013.

The motion passed unanimously.

YEAR-TO-DATE BUDGETARY STATUS

The Year-to-Date Budgetary Status was noted and placed on file.

FINANCIAL STATUS / ANALYSIS OF GENERAL OPERATING FUND FOR THE SEVEN FISCAL YEARS

A motion was made by Mrs. Hunter, seconded by Mrs. Parrilli:

MOTION:       THAT THE SKOKIE PUBLIC LIBRARY BOARD OF TRUSTEES ACCEPT THE FINANCIAL STATUS / ANALYSIS OF GENERAL OPERATING FUND FOR THE SEVEN FISCAL YEARS AS PRESENTED.

The roll call vote for approval was unanimous.

BILLS

A motion was made by Mrs. Hunter, seconded by Mr. Prosperi:

MOTION:       THAT THE SKOKIE PUBLIC LIBRARY BOARD OF TRUSTEES APPROVE THE BILLS, SUBJECT TO AUDIT.

The roll call vote for approval was unanimous.

DIRECTOR’S REPORT

USAGE----Circulation in April was down less than 1%, with small increases in book circulation in the Library, small decreases in audiovisual media, and decreases on the Bookmobile. eBook circulation was up sharply, but continues to be a slight factor in total circulation. Reciprocal Borrowing is up to 7% of circulation. Total information requests were down as was computer use, while reference requests were up almost 30% for the month. Laptop check-outs were up 60% as more people borrow the equipment to use in study rooms or elsewhere on the second floor. The Gate Count was up nearly one percent. Database use was up almost 38% from last April, led by hits to OverDrive for eBooks. Youth database use is also up, presumably due to increased use from school students. The number of unique persons logging in was up 6% for the month and 14.5% for the year so there are a number of new users of online databases. Online business resources such as Factiva and Hoover’s also showed increases.

LSTA GRANT TO ILLINOIS----The Institute of Museum and Library Services notified the Illinois State Library that the LSTA allotment through the Grants to States Program will be $5,333,615. for the year beginning July 1, 2013. This allotment is more than one million dollars less than the State Library received four years ago in FY 2010. Due to sequestration, IMLS experienced a cut of about $12 million. The funds are used by the State Library for statewide initiatives and library services as outlined in Illinois’ Long Range Plan for the Use of LSTA Funds, approved in 2012.

OAKTON STREET WORK----Oakton Street work is at maximum disruption currently with both the entrance to the east drive and the entrance/exit from the west parking lot onto Oakton blocked since early Tuesday morning. Both should have new surfaces and be open to the public again by Monday, May 6. Meanwhile, all traffic is coming into the Library through Park. We lost trees along Oakton, but several were ash and would have to have been cut down anyway. Re-landscaping will occur in the fall when all the street work on Oakton has been completed.

ROOF LEAKS-----For the most part, we escaped problems from all the heavy rain in April. However we did experience two roof leaks in the west building near the DVDs. Fortunately, the leaks were discovered before any damage occurred to library materials and repairs were covered by the roof warranty.

FOOD FOR FINES----Food for Fines was conducted again during National Library Week to benefit the Niles Township Food Pantry. While we may conduct food drives again, we have decided not to substitute the collection in lieu of fines. People brought in expired or unacceptable donations and it became unpleasant when staff refused to take them.

ARTISTIC DISCOVERY-----Artistic Discovery, the national program to showcase high school art talent by Congressional District held its annual show of area high school top-rated art at the Library again this past month. Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky came to the Library for a reception as she does each year, staying to be photographed with each young artist and their artwork. Ra Joy, Director of Arts Alliance Illinois, was also in attendance.

LINKIN MEETING----The Directors of the LINKin libraries (now seven participants including Naperville and soon to add Waukegan and Elmhurst) met with representatives from Innovative Interfaces and Dee Brennan and Jane Plass of RAILS about possibilities for extended resource sharing in RAILS. Dee indicated that RAILS would be spending an additional one million dollars in the coming year on services such as consulting and continuing education which have been in demand. She also indicated that RAILS intends to implement a contract with Baker & Taylor for eBooks that would be open to all system libraries.

SUPER SENIOR VOLUNTEER-----Marlene Feibel, a volunteer who organizes the postings in the job and career area, was nominated by the Library and recognized at a luncheon at the North Shore Senior Center in Northfield in April.

LETTER FROM THE BIRMINGHAM  JAIL---- Mrs. Anthony participated as a reader in a read-out on the 50th anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King’s Letter from the Birmingham Jail, held at ALA in Chicago. The Birmingham Public Library started the idea and more than 200 locations around the country held readings in commemoration of the anniversary. Two men who had met and, in one case, worked with Dr. King, spoke at the event.

MARY MINOW ON COPYRIGHT----Mrs. Anthony attended a presentation on copyright in the digital era by attorney and librarian Mary Minow, the Follett Professor at Dominican University. Key points were that anything original that one posts online is automatically copyright, while social sharing and re-posting violates copyright. She called for a revision of the copyright law. In subsequent discussion, others suggested that it might be more problematic to open the law up to change than to limp along with current conditions.

PLA BOARD AND NATIONAL LEGISLATIVE DAY----Mrs. Anthony was away May 6-8 in Washington, D.C. for the spring PLA Board meeting and ALA’s National Library Legislative Day. She gave a talk at the dinner hosted by ILA each year on her goals as incoming PLA President and how they relate to telling our story in Washington.

EGYPT TRIP----Plans for Mrs. Anthony’s trip to Egypt to speak about library services have been finalized with the U.S. Embassy in Cairo. Mrs. Anthony will travel May 31 and return to the U.S. June 9. She will give several presentations on library programming and involvement in professional associations as well as a workshop on strategic planning in locations in Cairo and Alexandria. Translation services will be provided. There will be stories to tell at the June Board meeting.

APPROVAL OF REDEVELOPMENT OF THE TEEN AREA

In March, Mrs. Anthony presented the Board with a proposal for enclosing the Teen area with KI walls and the matter was tabled pending the presentation of information about the full extent of the project. Quotations have been obtained for other components of the redevelopment project. Architect Paul Steinbrecher brought presentation boards to show the various components and finishes so that the Board can visualize the space. Teen Librarian Jessi Schulte introduced the project.

This project has been in a development phase since Fall 2010, when a survey was distributed to high school students asking what would make the Teen area more appealing. Responses included: a bigger space, computers and a printer, music, food, and being able to talk without disrupting people outside the Teen area. Since that time, Jessi Schulte has worked with a Teen Advisory Group to further flesh out ideas for the space. The following paragraphs are her observations on what she would like to accomplish in the area in order to better serve the teens.

The newly envisioned teen space is the culmination of over a year of best practices, research, library tours, and teen advisory group participation. It is an exciting opportunity to fulfill our service goals and cash in on the incredible wealth of our teen population. The high school students who currently use the Library are incredibly academically motivated, and are often found on the second floor quietly studying. They are “super-users” who have heavily bought into the Library’s traditional role. However, we all know that the role of libraries is changing. For teens to benefit from the Library’s new role as a community space for the exchange and engagement of ideas, we must provide them with the resources that are specific to their developmental and educational needs.

Today’s teens learn through collaborative, experiential work. They are socially and educationally peer-driven and practical. Providing hands-on learning experiences for their cohort is essential for their development as learners and for the Library’s continued usefulness as a place for them to learn. The new teen corner will allow for a safe, peers-only space where they can gather and create. The room is specifically designed to provide program, presentation, and gallery space. When not used as an event and maker’s space, it is designed to be a collaborative study zone and lounge. Here teens can work in groups without disturbing their neighbors (or being disturbed by them,) and take advantage of technologies that make interactive engagement and experiential learning possible.

A necessary prerequisite to the development of a flexible, collaborative space is to enclose the area. Because the Teen area is part of the space that was added on in 2002, it will be relatively easy to enclose the space by adding KI pre-constructed walls to two sides of the room. The wall on the east side facing the Readers Services Department will be glass, retaining the open feel of the space. The wall on the north side facing the stacks will be solid. The glass wall on the east side, visibility through the south courtyard, and a security dome with images displayed at the Readers Services Desk will be used to monitor the space.

KI walls were used in the new Business Center and to create five additional study rooms on the second floor. They are as effective as masonry walls in containing sound. The carpeting in the area is worn and rippled and needs to be replaced anyway. The proposed cork flooring is as easy to maintain as wood and additionally will help to absorb sound.

Mrs. Anthony distributed a rough floor plan of the space which was augmented by Mr. Steinbrecher’s presentation boards; KI’s proposal for the walls, to which we have added $1,080. for a white board surface on the interior of the north wall; cork flooring from Vortex; electrical work by Corrigan and Freres, HVAC work by NorthTown to ensure adequate air flow and temperature control in the space, and a furniture allowance for equipping the space. The only costs not included are for computers, to be provided within the Technology budget line.

A summary of project components and costs is as follows:

Demountable Partition by KI:

Previously submitted quotation of 3/1/13:            $14,783.08

            Additional charge for white board

            At interior face of north wall                      $1,080.00

            Total                                                                                    $15,863.08

Cork Flooring by Vortex quotation of 5/1/13:

            Option A----Full floor cork; 1051 sq. ft.                               $26,427.73

Electrical Work by Corrigan quotation of 4/30/13:

            Teen Area                                              $16,400.00

            Youth and Parent Area                             $1,200.00               

            Total                                                                                    $17,600.00

HVAC from North Town Mechanical                         

            Air Conditioner and related work            $11,867.00            $11,867.00

Furniture from KI

            Tables, chairs, and other                         $35,300.00            $35,300.00

Total Proposed Project Expense:                                                $107,057.81

After lengthy discussion about the security/monitoring of the proposed area, sound-proofing of the planned walls, use of the teen area, and a number of other issues, a motion was made by Mrs. Parrilli, seconded by Dr. Maks:

MOTION:       THAT THE SKOKIE PUBLIC LIBRARY BOARD OF TRUSTEES ACCEPT THE VARIOUS PROPOSALS FOR REDEVELOPMENT OF THE TEEN AREA FOR A TOTAL AMOUNT OF $107,057.81 AS FOLLOWS:

1.      KI:

a.       DEMOUNTABLE PARTITION           $14,783.08

b.      WHITE BOARD                                     $1,080.00

2.      VORTEX (CARPETING):

a.       OPTION A; FULL CORK FLOOR      $26,427.73

3.      CORRIGAN & FRERES (ELECTRICAL):

a.       TEEN AREA                                         $16,400.00

b.      YOUTH AND PARENT AREA              $1,200.00

4.      NORTHTOWN MECHANICAL (HVAC):                  

a.       AIR CONDITIONER, ETC                  $11,867.00

5.      KI:

a.       TABLES, CHAIRS, OTHER                 $35,300.00

The roll was called: Dr. Maks—yes; Mrs. Greer—yes; Mrs. Parrilli—yes; Mrs. Hunter—abstain; Mr. Prosperi—yes; Mr. Graham—yes. The motion passed.

The Board thanked Ms. Schulte and Mr. Steinbrecher for their presentations. Both left the meeting at 8:50 p.m.

APPROVAL OF LIBRARY WEBSITE REDEVELOPMENT PROPOSAL

Gail Shaw entered the meeting at 8:50 p.m.

In the seven years since Skokie Public Library last redesigned its website, user behavior and expectations have changed dramatically. Users are no longer content with receiving static content published on site pages, but now look forward to interacting with sites to contribute and share their Library experiences.

It is time to redevelop our functional, but outdated, Library site to take full advantage of available social media options and site design technologies that have changed the landscape of the web. So about a year ago we convened a Library project team to carefully analyze our current sites and provide direction for a ground-up redevelopment effort.

It was clear from the start that we would need to contract with an outside firm to help us realize the design and functional requirements of the new site, and the project team worked very hard to produce a Request for Information – Statement of Interest (RFI) document. The RFI was submitted to three web development firms for proposals in mid-March of this year. These firms were identified as those with significant experience in developing client sites using our preferred environment of a Django platform with Python programming. We also knew that we wanted a firm that would work collaboratively with our Library web programmer and we built into the RFI clear division of work criteria.

Of the three firms asked to submit proposals, one did not respond at all; one responded with great concerns about working collaboratively with us; and one, Imaginary Landscape, responded with great enthusiasm and interest, providing us with a thorough overview of their Chicago-based company and impressive project profiles. We interviewed Managing Partner Brian Moloney and Senior Project Manager Jenny Chidlow in April and received a very favorable impression of their capabilities. Imaginary Landscape has now submitted the official proposal.

The web development project ahead is very ambitious as can be seen from the following list of some of the planned features and functions:

·        Content management system (CMS) allowing staff to contribute and moderate site content based on role and permission assignments.

·        Content type templates for a homepage, blog posts submissions, comments by authenticated users; bibliographic entity lists highlighting items in our collection; and staff and user reviews and annotations.

·        Gateways for targeted audiences such as adults, teens, kids, and businesses.

·        Personalized user experiences with authentication (by last name and barcode) to provide profile editing capabilities and social integration with Facebook and Goodreads.

·        Single sign-on for Library patron account and database access.

·        Staff profiles accessible throughout the site allowing patrons to get to know Library staff; these profiles may include an image, brief biography, favorite books and films, blog posts, and classes presented.

·        Catalog record enhancements to include social media links and patron reviews.

Imaginary Landscape has proposed one-time costs for their project work of $57,400. We think this is a reasonable amount, and request that their proposal be approved by the Board of Trustees.

The firm is anticipating that work could begin in two to three weeks following receipt of a signed agreement, with an estimated completion time of eight to ten weeks from the start. Once Imaginary Landscape has delivered their portion of the web development framework, Library staff will need approximately two to three months to populate the site with content prior to launching the new site.

After brief discussion, Mrs. Greer made a motion, seconded by Mr. Prosperi:

MOTION:       THAT THE SKOKIE PUBLIC LIBRARY BOARD OF TRUSTEES APPROVE THE QUOTE FROM IMAGINARY LANDSCAPE FOR WEBSITE REDEVELOPMENT IN THE AMOUNT OF $57,400.00.

The roll call vote for approval was unanimous.

Mrs. Shaw left the meeting at 9:01 p.m.

END OF YEAR CASH POSITION

Mrs. Anthony stated that depending on adjustments made by the auditors, the Library should end the Fiscal Year just under $600,000. in excess revenues over expenditures. Irene Tam, Administrative Assistant for Accounting, has transferred $300,000. to the Reserve Fund as approved by the Board at the April meeting. The remaining amount of approximately $280,000. will be added to Working Cash.

With capital expense removed from other operating expenditures in the General Operating Fund, expenses in FY 2013 (unaudited) were $10,111,382. representing an increase of less than 1% over Operating expense, less capital, of $10,033,478. in FY 2012.

In unaudited figures, the Library has a total of $5,538,564. in the Reserve Fund for Sites and Buildings at the end of the Fiscal Year and $5,279,267. in the General Operating Fund. Note that the first tax bill for 2013 was for 55% of the 2012 taxes. Balances in the Bond Debt Fund, Fine Arts Fund, and Employees’ 125 Plan Fund are not included in the totals given.

The balance in the General Operating Fund is sufficient for six months of operation, with average monthly expenditures of $850,000. Mrs. Anthony does not anticipate a cash flow problem in the fall, even if the property tax bills are sent late. There are ample funds in the Reserve Fund to borrow on an interim basis if needed.

APPROVAL OF STRATEGIC PLAN 2013-2016

Mrs. Anthony reported that a Strategic Planning Committee, comprised of representatives of the Library Staff and Board, met five times from February-April. It was recognized that a new Strategic Plan will take the Library through a major transition. Changes in the reading habits of individuals, in the publishing industry, in people’s expectations of the Library, in technology and in the demographics of Skokie are all contributing to fundamental changes in library operations, services, and allocation of physical space.

For years, the Skokie Public Library was known for its outstanding reference collection, while only about 20% of those print materials remain. Ranges of bound periodicals have been withdrawn along with the multi-volumed printed indexes that pointed to articles on various topics. For more than two decades, circulation of materials in print and audiovisual formats continued to increase. With the trend to digital formats and use of eReaders, that pattern will not continue. Some suggest that public library collections will be largely digital within ten years. Perhaps all public libraries will have a shared collection in the Digital Public Library of America. Film formats will be streamed following the digital distribution of music which is already widespread.

While these changes will not be complete within three years, we are headed toward a time when public libraries may look very different than they do today, and the Strategic Planning Committee considered such questions as: What are the evolving roles for the public library? What services will the public need for their lifelong learning, information seeking and discovery? How can the library help people make sense of ever-increasing bits of information they are consuming? Will the library’s importance as a community center increase? What are the major concerns of the community in regard to issues such as economic development, work-force development, health, and immigrant integration and how might the library contribute to addressing those priorities?

The Library has always been more than a collection center, but it is clear that some roles that have been less important will gain in prominence as they become primary vehicles for meeting community needs. To inform the process of selection of a new Vision, Mission, Values, Areas of Strategic Focus, and Goals, the Strategic Planning Committee conducted an environmental scan, reviewing demographic information from the 2010 U.S. Census and GIS and marketing data from CommunityConnect as well as hearing presentations from the Village Planning Supervisor Steve Marciani, District 219 Superintendent Dr. Nanciann Gatta, and English Language Learner Parent Center Director Corrie Wallace.

Some significant demographic developments were noted by the Strategic Planning Committee. The Skokie age distribution is the flattest in fifty years. The biggest growth sector from 2000-2010 was in the “Baby Boomers” from 46-65. There are significantly more 20-34 year olds in the community, most living at home with a parent. Dr. Gatta noted that one third of students graduating from District 219 stay in the community and attend Oakton Community College at least one year. The number of 65-80 year olds has declined and there are 1.38 children for every senior in Skokie. One third of households have a child under 18 while 34% of households have a senior (fewer living alone). A majority (54.4%) of children in public school speak one of 91 languages, the top two being Spanish and Assyrian.

The Director also invited about 45 people to a Community Conversation on the Future of the Public Library. Seventeen people engaged in thoughtful dialogue about changes in publishing and the ways information is accessed, their use of the Library and service expectations, and their own patterns of reading digitally, in print and through audio-books. Participants expressed appreciation for the Library as a source of information and activities for families, for access to computers, support for students, Summer Reading, the Bookmobile, and for assisting recent immigrants in adjusting to life in the U.S. and Skokie. Some liked conveniences such as audiobooks for use in commuting, being able to use a smart phone to access the catalog, downloading digital books, and reserving books and movies online. There were observations about the differences in the way younger people consume media eg. almost no one under 30 reads a print newspaper, but they consult online services. Sensitivity was expressed toward the cost of proposed Library service developments and the importance of the Library maintaining a position of authority and neutrality.

Another source of information for the Strategic Planning Committee is the Reading and Digital Use Survey conducted from mid-January to early March, 2013. This is the fourth annual survey the Library has completed. Participation was generally proportional to community demographics, with slightly higher participation by 30-49 year olds (including parents, as youth under 18 were under-represented). Most people read in print, as is also reflected in library circulation reports. However, about one third also read eBooks, slightly more than those who listen to audiobooks. (Downloadable audiobooks have a smaller, but growing, use). National reports of the popularity of tablets and eReaders are confirmed in our local survey.

Six subcomittees met and considered areas of emerging importance in library service including:

·        Access Services – This encompasses how people identify, find, and obtain needed information resources whether in person or remotely, physical or digital. How do people discover the electronic databases to which the Library subscribes? Self-published digital titles? Are the Library’s hours suited to the community? Does the Bookmobile provide sufficient access to those who have trouble getting to the Library?

·        21st Century Literacy and Training – Skills needed for success in the 21st century are varied including literacy in English, numeracy, and the ability to use information technology. Opportunities to create with technology and to engage in the use of social media are important as well as the ability to find and evaluate information. Skills in critical thinking and civic literacy contribute to people’s ability to live an independent and engaged life. How can the Library facilitate the continuous acquisition of skills central to lifelong learning for personal and career success?

·        Partnership and Group Work – The Library and its staff have only a portion of the resources required to address the broad needs of individuals and the community. To achieve goals and effect change, the Library needs to work with partners in education, business and throughout the community. Partnerships enable skills and resources to be leveraged. Working with groups offers an economy of scale and targeted access to people with similar needs. With whom should the Library be working? How can staff free up the time needed for successful partnership work? Do staff have the skills needed for this work?

·        Consulting Librarians – People faced with complex problems such as long-term unemployment, or people engaged in research involving information from the pre-digital era cannot simply enter a term on Google and find an answer. Even a request for the best recent titles on a topic is a challenge at a time when over 300,000 titles are published each year, many self-published or by independent presses. How can SPL Librarians most effectively use their expert searching skills and experience to help those who could benefit from them?

·        Programming – Programming has become an important part of lifelong learning for adults as well as for children. Individuals learn, not just by passively listening to a speaker, but by hands-on experience such as in video gaming and through opportunities to discuss issues and ideas from the Civil War to immigration policy. People may consume more information in isolation at their computer or tablet, but they make sense of that information through engagement with others. What is the Library’s role in civic engagement? How can the Library leverage its resources to maximize program offerings and the number of people participating?

·        Local Information – Within the foreseeable future, public libraries may draw on external resources such as the developing Digital Public Library of America for most of our collection needs. Broad, general resource bases miss local resources such as the local newspaper index and the files of the Skokie Historical Society. We already recognize the Library’s unique role in gathering the ongoing contemporary local information in SkokieNet. What other local information might be valuable to persons in this region and beyond if it were organized and digitized for access? Is there a role for the Library in encouraging writing and publishing by local persons?

Each subcommittee presented both an oral report to the Strategic Planning Committee as well as a written report. The written reports were provided in full to the Library Board. Some suggestions which came through quite strongly were for:

·        Library visibility and branding (need for graphic designer)

·        Importance of food to “library as 3rd place” role

·        Extension of Sunday hours to 9pm

·        Training and cross-training for staff

·        Welcome desk and assistance with direction-finding

·        Library’s role in skill development in technology, critical thinking, problem-solving, and other 21st Century skills

·        Personalization of service

·        Community involvement and cultivation of useful partnerships

·        Meeting people where they are

·        Need for outcomes and evaluation tools

·        Greater commitment to library programming

·        Local information as a way for the community to remain invested in the Library

·        Guidance in how to take on new projects without overextending

The Strategic Planning Committee also reviewed the ideas which were brain-stormed at Staff Day 2012 as mixed groups of staff met to consider changes which have occurred in Skokie and the wider world in recent years and the implications for the Library. Some thoughts that came up clearly were:

·        Meet people where they are—in the community and at their need and convenience

·        More and better use of volunteers

·        People’s need for tutorials and one-to-one assistance

·        Continue digital advance without losing personal touch

·        Focus on applied job skills

·        People staying longer at the Library and need food

·        Life skills classes

·        Opportunities for idea exchanges

·        Cross-training staff

·        Gear services to specific user groups

·        Consider bandwidth issues and free Internet in Skokie

Taking in all these ideas from various sources and reviewing them in light of current conditions in Skokie and the Library’s capacity to respond, the Strategic Planning Committee developed the following Vision (for the community and the Library’s role in it), Mission (drives the Library), Values (what is important to the Library), Strategic Focus Areas (opportunities for the Library to have maximum impact in the community), and Goals (guides for development of annual work objectives for the planning period).

The broad value areas of Providing Access, Fostering Learning, and Building Community outline the ways in which the Library can best serve the community. They also suggest ways to align staff efforts and allocate Library resources to achieve desired outcomes.

Mrs. Anthony asked for the Board’s approval of the Vision, Mission, Values, Strategic Focus, and Goals as prepared by the Strategic Planning Committee. Work objectives in line with the goals will be presented to the Board in June and a plan for organizational realignment will be presented to the Board in July.

Due to the late hour Strategic Planning will be put on the June agenda.

APPROVAL OF PUBLIC COMPUTER REPLACEMENT

Mark Kadzie, LAN Manager, asked for Board approval for the purchase of 25 Dell desktop computers, to be taken from the Library’s 2013-2014 technology budget line. The total amount of the purchase will be for $27,556.25.

Board approval for the purchase of 55 replacement computers was granted last month. These 25 computers will replace the remaining current public use computers.

In addition to taking advantage of Midwestern Higher Education Compact (MHEC) contract pricing, the end of Dell’s fiscal first quarter was leveraged to increase the per unit discount. The computers include high-end components (i7 processors and solid state drives) in order to future-proof them over their expected 5+ life. The quote also includes special stands to accommodate the shallow desktops and an extended warranty.

A motion was made by Mrs. Hunter, seconded by Mr. Prosperi:

MOTION:       THAT THE SKOKIE PUBLIC LIBRARY BOARD OF TRUSTEES APPROVE THE PURCHASE OF 25 DELL DESKTOP COMPUTERS TO BE TAKEN FROM THE LIBRARY’S 2013-2014 TECHNOLOGY BUDGET LINE IN THE AMOUNT OF $27,556.25.

The roll call vote for approval was unanimous.

eREADING UPDATE

The information was noted.

HEALTH INSURANCE

Mrs. Anthony distributed a memo and chart of premiums, including the Library’s share and Employee’s share, for the Board’s information. The Library’s budget line for Health Insurance as approved last month should be sufficient to cover the increase in the Library’s share of health insurance costs. With the increase to the Employee’s cost ranging from a low of $3.68 per month for HMO Employee only coverage to a high of $58.46 more per month for an Employee with Family Plan coverage in the Low Deductible PPO, many employees will be feeling the bite of increased health insurance costs. In spite of the 1.1% Cost of Labor increase staff will receive in May, take-home pay for many staff will be less due to the insurance increase.

Mrs. Anthony also wanted to alert the Board to be aware of new fees that are part of the Affordable Care Act. Staff are continuing to monitor the requirements of the ACA to be sure that we are in compliance regarding the maximum percentage of an employee’s salary to be paid for health insurance, provisions for part-time staff, and other conditions.

REACHING ACROSS ILLINOIS LIBRARY SYSTEM (RAILS)

Mrs. Parrilli reported on the RAILS Board of Directors meeting April 26, 2013 held at the Burr Ridge facility.

Treasurer’s Report: On April 22, RAILS received two Live & Learn payments, totaling $1,072,500 each. RAILS has now received $5,589,109.95, or 56.58% of its FY2013 (July 2012 - June 2013) Area Per Capita Grant award. Treasurer Jim Kregor stated that as of March 31, the fund balance remains strong at $13,900,000 which will fund 19 months of operation. He reported on the real estate closings subsequent to the sales of the Wheeling and Shorewood facilities. Net sales proceeds of $1,083,532.07 and $416,461.89, respectively, were received and deposited to RAILS’ Illinois Funds operating account. On April 15, RAILS then made a payment of $1,112,031.88 to Regions Bank to fully pay the mortgage debt of the East Peoria facility. The proceeds of the above sales exceeded the mortgage debt payoff amount by $387,962.08. Payoff of the East Peoria mortgage will eliminate $128,993 in loan payments, which makes RAILS debt free.

Plan of Service and System Area and Per Capita Grant Application: Executive Director Dee Brennan and Treasurer Jim Kregor presented the proposed budget for FY2014. They mentioned that it will be “slightly” less from last year, which will include a reserve of 12 months and a 3% salary increase. The proposed Plan of Service reflects more continuing education and consulting programs from money saved from fewer buildings to maintain. A finished document will be voted on by the Board at their May meeting.

Library Member Certification: All 441 public libraries completed the certification process. After the deadline of March 31, ISL allowed manual certification (by RAILS staff) for any libraries who still wished to be certified. As of April 26, the final count of libraries that finished the process after the manual certification was increased by 27 (4 academic libraries, 16 school libraries, and 7 special libraries). Per the Board document listing those libraries that did not complete the certification, it listed St. Peter Catholic School of Skokie because it “did not respond to RAILS & ISL request to complete certification process.” The Board voted on the suspension/cancelation of those school, academic, and special libraries (169 out of 1,576 members, subtracting the last-minute 27) that failed to follow through with the process.

Strategic Planning Process: Executive Director Brennan asked the Board to approve an initial timetable and planning components using the consultants from Nancy Bolt and Associates beginning in July. After it was clarified that money has been budgeted for this purpose, the motion carried.

Next meeting: May 24, 2013, at the Burr Ridge facility.

RAILS Finances report was noted.

The Board thanked Mrs. Parrilli for her report.

COMMENTS FROM TRUSTEES

There were no Comments from Trustees.

ADJOURNMENT

At 9:09 p.m. a motion was made by Mr. Graham, seconded by Mrs. Parrilli to adjourn the regular meeting. The motion passed unanimously.

__________________________________

            Karen Parrilli, Secretary