September 11, 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, September 11, 2013.
John Graham, President, called the meeting to order at 7:30 p.m.
Members present: John Graham, President; Diana Hunter, Vice President/President Emerita; Karen Parrilli, Secretary; Susan Greer; Jonathan H. Maks, MD; Mark Prosperi; Zelda Rich (arrived at 7:53 p.m.); and Carolyn A. Anthony, Director.
Staff present: Barbara Kozlowski, Associate Director for Public Services.
Visitors present: David Smith, Kingdom Hall-Jehovah’s Witnesses, 6730 Beckwith Road, Morton Grove, IL; Steven Turner, Jehovah’s Witnesses, 4572 N. Elston Avenue, Chicago, IL; Dr. Irwin Rich, 9360 Skokie Boulevard, Skokie, IL (arrived at 7:53 p.m.)
APPROVAL OF THE MINUTES OF THE REGULAR AND CLOSED MEETINGS OF AUGUST 14, 2013
Mrs. Hunter made a motion, seconded by Mrs. Parrilli, to approve the minutes of the regular and closed meetings of August 14, 2013, subject to additions and/or corrections. There being no corrections, the minutes were approved and placed on file.
Mr. Graham asked the Board to move the regular order of business so that Comments from Visitors could be first. The Board agreed.
COMMENTS FROM VISITORS
Mr. Smith and Mr. Turner from Jehovah’s Witnesses asked for permission to set up their mobile information cart on Library property and inside the Library; they referenced their mission on the website, jw.org/info. Mr. Graham explained the Library’s no soliciting policy and would not deviate from the policy nor take it under advisement at this time. Mrs. Anthony was asked to provide the Library’s policy in writing. Mrs. Greer left the meeting at 7:40 p.m. Brief discussion followed and Mr. Smith and Mr. Turner left the meeting at 7:41 p.m.
CONSENT AGENDA (Financial Statements; Circulation Report; Library Use Statistics; Report(s) from Department Head(s); Program Statistics 1st Quarter F.Y. 2013-2014; Correspondence; Gift; Personnel)
Mrs. Parrilli made a motion, seconded by Mrs. Hunter:
MOTION: THAT THE SKOKIE PUBLIC LIBRARY BOARD OF TRUSTEES APPROVE THE FINANCIAL STATEMENTS, 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. PROGRAM STATISTICS 1ST QUARTER F.Y. 2013-2014
5. CORRESPONDENCE: LETTER FROM SUSAN BENTON, PRESIDENT AND CEO, URBAN LIBRARIES COUNCIL TO THE HONORABLE GEORGE VAN DUSEN, MAYOR, VILLAGE OF SKOKIE, DATED AUGUST 6, 2013 RE 2013 TOP INNOVATOR
6. GIFT: $20. FROM MANYA MALAMANT IN MEMORY OF BERNICE FAINTUCH
7. PERSONNEL: TERMINATIONS: NATALIE KADDATZ, PART-TIME CIRCULATION CLERK, CIRCULATION DEPARTMENT, EFFECTIVE AUGUST 12, 2013; KEVIN TOOMEY, PART-TIME TECHNOLOGY ASSISTANT, ADULT SERVICES DEPARTMENT, EFFECTIVE AUGUST 26, 2013; ANNIE TILLMANN, PART-TIME TECHNOLOGY ASSISTANT, ADULT SERVICES DEPARTMENT, EFFECTIVE SEPTEMBER 6, 2013; HIRES: MARY ANN TOPPING, PART-TIME CIRCULATION CLERK, CIRCULATION DEPARTMENT, EFFECTIVE AUGUST 27, 2013; ADNANA MAKAREVIC, PART-TIME TECHNOLOGY ASSISTANT, ADULT SERVICES DEPARTMENT, EFFECTIVE SEPTEMBER 3, 2013; RETIREMENT: ELIZABETH RESS, FULL-TIME ACCOUNTS PAYABLE AND PURCHASING CLERK, ADMINISTRATION, EFFECTIVE SEPTEMBER 30, 2013.
The motion passed unanimously.
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.
USAGE----Circulation in August was down nearly 3% from last year, although the circulation of digital eBooks to adults more than doubled from August 2012. Between all the road work on Oakton and the Bookmobile’s generator problems, it is not surprising that use dropped a bit last month. The door count was down by nearly 13%. Reciprocal borrowing, Reference requests, and use of self-check were all up in August. Database use was also up by 13% for the month, with an increase of 15% in the number of individuals who logged on. The pattern of decreases in building use indicators and increases in virtual use may suggest that the virtual option is helpful when people are thwarted in physical use of the Library. The Library’s website recorded 41,765 visits from outside the Library in August, while 13,150 visits to the catalog were made from outside the Library.
EAV FOR SKOKIE-----In preparation for submission of the Per Capita Grant application, we received the latest statement of equalized assessed valuation for Skokie from Cook County. The value was down $200,000,000. from last year to $2,361,606,436.
CAPITAL NEEDS----The State is conducting an inventory of capital needs in libraries and other public buildings and would like a submission of needed work by October 25. Mrs. Anthony will work with staff to identify possible upcoming projects. Board input to the report is welcome.
BOOKMOBILE PROBLEMS----The Bookmobile had generator problems in August and early September. It seems that the heat is at least a contributing factor. A new radiator was ordered and installed and the Bookmobile returned to service the afternoon of September 5. Long-time Bookmobile Librarian Phil Carlsen has been out with an extended illness. Staff and patrons all wish him well. We also thank the other Bookmobile staff who have rallied to keep operations going.
COLLECTION----The last VHS videotapes have been withdrawn from the collection. Collection Development Manager Teri Room has streamlined the selection process for materials, involving fewer staff to expedite ordering and free the staff up for programming, community work, and other projects.
Mrs. Hunter suggested the withdrawn videotapes be sent to the William Leonard Library in Robbins.
EDGE INITIATIVE----The Library is participating in the pilot of the Edge Initiative, a project of the Urban Libraries Council, PLA and others, with support from the Gates Foundation. The Edge initiative is intended to provide a tool for technology assessment, planning, continuous improvement, and resource allocation. Virtual Services Coordinator Toby Greenwalt and Head of Technical Services Chris Lazaris led the Library’s assessment this summer. The process helps to pull together activity in different departments, reflecting not just an inventory of equipment, but the ways in which the technology is used, how training is provided for staff and community members, and the difference that access to the technology makes in the lives of community members. Areas of growth for Skokie Public Library include: determining the level of Internet access to homes in Skokie and gathering information about the technology needs in the community, assisting people in accessing eGovernment resources, providing instruction regularly in using the Internet for navigating health and wellness resources, improved data on the number of wireless sessions conducted in the Library, and ensuring the Library website is compliant with disability standards. A strength of the tool is that it is not for comparison purposes, but for goal-setting by individual libraries.
Mrs. Anthony distributed Emergency Preparedness bookmarks from the Skokie Fire Department.
Mrs. Greer returned to the meeting at 7:45 p.m.
DEPUTY DIRECTOR----Richard Kong has been hired as the new Deputy Director and will start in mid-October.
CENSUS OF ADULT PATRON ACTIVITY
For some months now, Adult public services staff have been engaged in roving, that is leaving the service desk to walk around the department to see what is happening and who may need help. Since being a “third space” is a prominent role for the public library in recent years, many people come to the Library to spend time without necessarily interacting with a librarian or checking out library material. By roving, librarians can get a better idea of who is in the department and what they are doing.
Throughout the month of July, staff kept brief records of their observations at four times of day in the morning, early afternoon, late afternoon and evening. Making observations at consistent times yields more comparable results than random time samples. This experiment yielded some interesting results. On the second floor, 34% of patrons were observed to be young adults, 11% seniors and the remaining 55% adults neither young nor older. In Readers Services, 16% of patrons were observed to be young adults, 22% seniors and 62% adults. It is noteworthy that persons in the fiction area are somewhat older on average than those on the second floor. By activity, it was surprising to learn that 53% of persons on the second floor were observed using an electronic device (laptop computer, tablet or smart phone) as these observations did not include persons in the computer commons or computer lab. An equal number of persons (17%) were observed reading books and magazines. Five percent were engaged in conversation and 4% were looking in the stacks. Activity in Readers Services was quite different with 31% of people observed to be browsing, 24% reading books, and 24% using electronic devices. It is possible that the latter might also include persons reading eBooks or magazines in digital format. Also, 9% of people were engaged in conversation, the higher percentage consistent with the livelier, noisier activity of the first floor.
Observations by day and time of day showed Wednesday to be the busiest day and late afternoon the busiest time. Evening showed consistently lower use than the other times of day (occasionally higher than morning times) which would tend to indicate that there is not pent up demand for longer evening hours.
The Roving Census is part of our attempt to collect new data reflecting the changing roles of the public library. It should assist in the planning of staffing levels and other decisions related to resource allocation such as space planning and seating. It has been decided to repeat this study quarterly at seasonal intervals for one week at a time to see how use may differ at various times of the year.
Brief discussion followed.
APPROVAL OF ADOPTION OF TAX LEVY
Mrs. Anthony stated that at this meeting, the Board needs to adopt a tax levy for transmission to the Village of Skokie. The 2013 levy will be introduced as part of the Village’s Levy Ordinance in early December and acted on before the end of December. This levy will fund the Library’s 2014-2015 Fiscal Year.
The 2012 levy was $12,632,752.00, representing an increase of 1% over the 2011 levy of $12,507,675.00. Last month, Mrs. Anthony reported in some detail on the Library’s current standing in terms of revenue collections, the Reserve Fund, and expenses from the General Operating Fund for the past seven Fiscal Years.
The Library’s financial standing continues to be strong. Our cash position is unusually good for this time of the year because the property tax bills for the Fall were sent out so early again by Cook County.
As the Board agreed at the August meeting, Mrs. Anthony recommends a 2% increase in the levy for 2013, yielding anticipated revenue of $12,885,407., inclusive of funds for bond debt repayment. Board approval of the 2013 levy in the amount of $12,885,407. is requested.
A motion was made by Mrs. Parrilli, seconded by Mr. Prosperi:
MOTION: THAT THE SKOKIE PUBLIC LIBRARY BOARD OF TRUSTEES ADOPT AN OPERATING TAX LEVY IN THE AMOUNT OF $12,885,407.00 FOR THE YEAR 2013, REPRESENTING A 2% INCREASE OVER THE 2012 LEVY.
The roll call vote for approval was unanimous.
Mrs. Hunter asked if the bond debt can be prepaid. Mrs. Anthony said it could be prepaid but the Library refinanced recently with a low interest rate. The bond is due to be paid in full in 2020. Mrs. Anthony will provide more information at a future date regarding prepayment of the bond debt.
Dr. Irwin and Zelda Rich entered the meeting at 7:53 p.m.
APPROVAL OF RENEWAL OF MAINTENANCE FOR AUTOMATED MATERIALS HANDLING SYSTEM
The Library purchased and installed the Automated Materials Handling System for circulation returns in 2011. The first year, the system was under warranty and we prepaid the first year’s maintenance for 2012-2013 at a cost of $22,120. 3M has advised that it is time to renew maintenance on the system for the period from November 2013-October 2014 at a cost of $22,707.99.
There are both computer controls and multiple moving parts to the automated return and sorter system. Tobi Oberman, Head of Circulation Services, recommends and Mrs. Anthony concurs that a maintenance agreement for the Automated Materials Handling System is advisable.
Board approval of the maintenance renewal for one year at $22,707.99 is requested.
After brief discussion, a motion was made by Mrs. Hunter, seconded by Dr. Maks:
MOTION: THAT THE SKOKIE PUBLIC LIBRARY BOARD OF TRUSTEES APPROVE THE RENEWAL OF THE MAINTENANCE FOR THE AUTOMATED MATERIALS HANDLING SYSTEM FOR ONE YEAR, NOVEMBER 2013-OCTOBER 2014, FROM 3M IN THE AMOUNT OF $22,707.99.
The roll call vote for approval was unanimous.
APPROVAL OF CONSULTANT FOR LIBRARY REORGANIZATION
After talking with different people and investigating recommendations, Mrs. Anthony has selected Paula Singer of The Singer Group as the consultant for our Library Reorganization. Paula Singer, PhD, is owner and President of The Singer Group, a management consulting firm she founded in 1983. She has particular expertise in compensation, organization development, strategic planning, and change management and has worked with clients in the public, private and non-profit sectors. Her methodology is highly interactive and collaborative. Prior to founding The Singer Group, Paula was Manager of Human Resources for a subsidiary of the Bendix Corporation, worked in the corporate HR Department of Commercial Credit Company, and served as Executive Director of a public sector union in Maryland.
Her doctorate is in Human and Organizational Systems from The Fielding Institute in Santa Barbara. She also has an MA in Organizational Development from The Fielding Institute as well as a Master of Administrative Sciences from The Johns Hopkins University. Her BS is in Industrial and Labor Relations from Cornell University. She is the author of several books including Developing a Compensation Plan for Your Library, Winning with Library Leadership: Enhancing Services with Connection, Contribution and Collaboration, and Succession Planning in the Library.
Her library clients include most of the library systems in Maryland, Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, District of Columbia Public Library, Durham Public Library, NC, Gwinnett County Public Library, GA, Johnson County Public Library, KS, Peoria Public Library, IL, Metropolitan NY Council of Libraries, Rochester Hills Public Library, MI, Sacramento Public Library, Tulsa City-County Public Library, OK, Iowa Library Association, Missouri Library Association, and the Public Library Association (PLA), among others. The Executive Director of the Eastern Oklahoma District Library System commented that, “The Singer Group is all about communicating with people; making sure everyone understands the process and how their input is needed and used. Since everyone contributes—everyone owns the outcome.”
Paula Singer has agreed to work with Skokie Public Library at a rate of $2,500. per day for an estimated four days. She is tentatively scheduled to come here for 1.5 days later this month. A second, shorter visit is anticipated. Other work will be completed electronically and by phone. Expenses for travel and hotel are in addition to her fees.
Board approval of the retention of Dr. Singer as an HR consultant to advise on the library organization and new classification is requested at an expense of up to $12,000.
Discussion followed. Mr. Prosperi asked for Mrs. Anthony’s questions/issues regarding the reorganization that will be presented to Dr. Singer. Mrs. Anthony will send this to the Board.
A motion was made by Mrs. Greer, seconded by Mrs. Rich:
MOTION: THAT THE SKOKIE PUBLIC LIBRARY BOARD OF TRUSTEES APPROVE RETAINING PAULA SINGER OF THE SINGER GROUP AS THE CONSULTANT TO ADVISE ON THE LIBRARY’S ORGANIZATION AND NEW CLASSIFICATION AT AN EXPENSE OF UP TO $12,000.
The motion passed unanimously.
APPROVAL OF DIRECTOR’S COMPENSATION
Mr. Graham stated this item was discussed at the August Board meeting.
A motion was made by Mrs. Hunter, seconded by Mrs. Parrilli:
MOTION: THAT THE SKOKIE PUBLIC LIBRARY BOARD OF TRUSTEES SET LIBRARY DIRECTOR CAROLYN ANTHONY’S SALARY AT $174,787.00. FOR 2013-2014, EFFECTIVE AS OF MRS. ANTHONY’S ANNIVERSARY DATE OF SEPTEMBER 19.
The roll call vote for approval was unanimous.
APPROVAL OF CONSIDERATION OF USE OF ELECTRONIC BOARD PACKETS
As the Library has adopted eBooks and other digital formats, we have continued to rely on hard-copy printed Board packets. The packets each month are photocopied, collated and hand delivered to each Board member’s home.
The Board may want to consider moving to an electronic Board packet. There would be savings in printing and distribution of Board materials, and some other benefits would also accrue:
· Ability to easily refer to materials from a previous meeting
· Backfile of Board minutes re actions taken
· Resource material such as Board Bylaws and Policies readily at hand
· Ability to make last-minute changes to the agenda without having to reprint pages
Administrative Assistant Susan Dickens attended a webinar on the advantages of electronic Board packets and was convinced that the idea was worth the Board’s consideration. Initially, she looked at Boardbook which is software for use by Boards of cities, colleges, corporations, schools and nonprofits. The cost of Boardbook is $3,000. per year for set-up, training, use and support. The Gail Borden Library uses Boardbook.
Our LAN staff suggested that the Board might instead consider purchasing an iPad for each Board member. The initial estimated cost for ten iPads would be $7,470., but there would be no annual costs. A savings over Boardbook would be realized if the iPads were used for three or more years. Susan Dickens brought a sample to the meeting for the Board to view. It has folders for the levy, budget, strategic plan, policies, Board minutes, etc. In addition to the cost advantage, all Board members would have the same device, facilitating training and support.
Related to this, our attorneys at Robbins Schwartz recommend that public bodies establish their own rules prohibiting members from using their personal electronic devices and accounts during meetings or using them to discuss public business. In addition, public bodies are encouraged to provide/establish electronic devices and accounts for their members to use as the exclusive channel for discussing public business.
Mrs. Anthony recommends that the Board adopt the practice of using an electronic Board packet on Library-provided iPads. Mrs. Anthony also recommends that rules prohibiting use of personal electronic devices of Board meetings or for discussion of public business be adopted by the Board.
Discussion followed. Mrs. Hunter has concerns about using electronic Board packets in regard to the closed meeting minutes, citing the recent Edward Snowden events. Who would have access to the information on the iPads (only the Board, Director, recording secretary); no information goes via the Internet, Board packets and minutes are pushed out to the iPads using software that searches for the specific address of each iPad. All items placed on the iPads (minutes, Board packets, policies, etc.) are static PDF documents that cannot be changed.
A motion was made by Dr. Maks, seconded by Mr. Prosperi to table this issue until the October Board meeting. The motion passed unanimously.
APPROVAL OF EATING IN THE LIBRARY/HEALTHY VENDING MACHINES
In April, 2005, the Board approved a change in policy to allow covered beverages in the Library. With 8.5 years’ experience, there have been no problems with this policy. We vend hot and cold beverages for the public in the book sale area of Readers Services.
As public libraries increasingly become “third spaces” in the community where people can go to collaborate, work quietly, use computers, or attend a program, people spend a longer time in the Library on their visits. They expect to be able to have a snack during these extended visits. Many public libraries have cafes within the building. Others have vending machines with items such as granola bars or pretzels. Skokie Public Library is one of the few public libraries in the area that officially does not permit food.
By maintaining such a policy we, in effect, encourage patrons to surreptitiously consume snacks throughout the building. If we were to permit food and provide vending machines with snacks in the book sale area, people would be drawn to the area that has a tiled floor and tables for their snack break.
Mrs. Anthony distributed a proposal from HR Manager Beth Dostert for vending machines with healthy snacks for staff and the public. The company will not provide a machine solely for staff as it doesn’t pay to service it. Mrs. Anthony recommends that the Board consider a change in policy to allow the eating of snacks and other cold food items in the Library.
A brochure regarding healthy vending machines from Fresh & Healthy was distributed. This is a cost-free program for the Library that is often referred to as a “Healthy Grocery Store”, intended to educate the community from junk food to natural and organic snack and drink options. As a means to do so, Fresh & Healthy provides brand-new, energy efficient, state-of-the-art (accepts debit/credit) vending machines fully stocked with only the top healthy snack and drink options. This is a completely hands-off system on the Library’s end, and the professional local operator will deliver and install, maintain and replenish the machine.
They have over 500 different products and dual-temperature controlled machines that are stocked with affordable healthy snacks and drinks. Some of the products include: Naked juices, Tazo teas, Vitamin Waters, organic milks, and Back to Nature juices. Some of the snack choices include: Clif Bars, Luna Bars, Pirates Booty, baked chips, Stacy’s pita chips, fruit cups and even fresh veggies. Items in the machine range from .75 cents to $3 and average cost will be $1.25.
Ms. Dostert recommends installing the machines in the book sale/eating area on the first floor and in the Staff Lounge on the third floor for the following reasons:
· They have a Location Agreement that offers flexibility on machine placement, which means that the Library is not locked into a contract. If this isn’t working or it isn’t being utilized enough to make it profitable for Fresh & Healthy, then they will remove the machines within 45 days. This will allow us to introduce this on a trial basis and we can re-evaluate in six months.
· Obesity rates across the country are astronomical and contribute significantly to the health care costs. This would allow us to offer healthy snacks and beverages to staff. In addition, as a library, one of our purposes is to help educate the public. These machines will educate the community on what healthy snacks and drinks are.
· To assist with keeping the Library clean we are able to choose the types of products that go into the machine, such as beverages that have re-sealable lids and snacks that are not overly messy. In addition, we can strengthen the signage in the public area to indicate that all food must be consumed in that area only.
· Each machine comes with profit sharing each month of 15% of the net coming back to Skokie Public Library.
Lengthy discussion followed regarding the furnishings in the building, parental control of children, the burden on staff/maintenance if eating were allowed, and food allergies.
Mrs. Greer made a motion, seconded by Mrs. Parrilli:
MOTION: THAT THE SKOKIE PUBLIC LIBRARY BOARD OF TRUSTEES APPROVE INSTALLING TWO HEALTHY VENDING MACHINES IN THE LIBRARY (ONE IN THE BOOK SALE/EATING AREA ON THE FIRST FLOOR AND ONE IN THE STAFF LOUNGE).
The roll was called: Dr. Maks—no; Mrs. Rich—no; Mrs. Greer—no; Mrs. Parrilli—no; Mrs. Hunter—no; Mr. Prosperi—no; Mr. Graham—no. The motion failed.
REVIEW OF MARKETING, PROMOTION AND COLLABORATION FOR PER CAPITA GRANT
For the 2014 Per Capita Grant application which is to be submitted by October 15, the State requires that the Board review Chapter 10 of the Standards for Illinois Public Libraries. Mrs. Anthony distributed a review of the Chapter, point by point, with commentary by Christie Robinson regarding the way(s) the Library addresses the standard. We clearly meet or exceed each standard.
Another section of the application asks for a description of “what the library is doing to position itself as a vital service to the community.” The Library provides physical and virtual service to all Skokie neighborhoods, including Bookmobile service 5 days per week. Extensive programming is offered for all ages with increasing emphasis on experiential learning. The Digital Media Lab and the Business Center have been developed to meet emerging needs. The Library also has study and meeting rooms for public use as well as desktop and laptop computers. Individual consultation is available on many topics. Programs in early literacy for very young children and adult/family literacy classes are offered. The Library has an extensive partnership network with local schools and community organizations. Barbara Kozlowski has enumerated some of these points which Mrs. Anthony distributed.
Finally, the application asks for identification of promotional tools used by the Library. Christie Robinson has identified the following promotional vehicles: Quarterly print newsletter mailed to all households; local media outlets, print and electronic; three Facebook pages; Twitter; blogs, email marketing of programs; Tumblr; Flickr; YouTube; Pinterest; partnerships with local schools and other organizations.
A motion was made by Mrs. Hunter, seconded by Dr. Maks:
MOTION: THAT THE SKOKIE PUBLIC LIBRARY BOARD OF TRUSTEES ACCEPT ALL ITEMS AS PRESENTED IN THE REVIEW OF MARKETING, PROMOTION AND COLLABORATION FOR THE PER CAPITA GRANT.
The motion passed unanimously.
REACHING ACROSS ILLINOIS LIBRARY SYSTEM (RAILS)
Mrs. Parrilli reported on the highlights from the August 16, 2013, RAILS Board of Directors meeting held at the Geneva Service Center.
Treasurer’s Report: Jim Kregor reported that at the end of July 2013 (the first month of FY2014) the cash and investment balance amounted to $15.1 million, which represents nearly18 months of operating revenue.
Executive Director’s Report: Dee Brennan stated that as she and staff look to the future, there will be increases in staff in the areas of administration, outreach, and technology. With the grant ($889,685) for the eBook project, a trainer/coordinator will be hired, one for RAILS and one for the Heartland Library System. (Ms. Brennan’s reports and thoughts on the Strategic Plan, outsourcing, and serving the underserved can be found in her blog on the RAILS website.)
Illinois State Library Report: An ISL representative reported on next year’s budget for the state’s libraries. With most line items from the upcoming fiscal year budget remaining the same or reduced somewhat, the Public Library Per Capita grant was increased by $3,487,663 from last year’s budgeted amount of $11,972, 399.
Outsourcing Delivery and Sorting: After reviewing three bids for outsourcing sorting and delivery for the four routes from Burr Ridge Service Center, the Delivery Committee recommended accepting the proposal from Continental Transportation Services (CTS). The committee expressed confidence that member libraries and RAILS staff will see a significant savings in time and money. After review and approval of the contract for a two year pilot program, the committee expects outsourcing through CTS to start on November 1. During this experiment, delivery staff will be let go and vehicles will be used by other service centers. Representatives from the Burr Ridge sorting and delivery staff expressed their desire to submit a counter proposal in order to prove that delivery by current staff can be cost effective and more efficient than outsourcing. The owner of CTS spoke to the Board by beginning with a statement that if “doing delivery is done better internally, then do it internally.” She went on to argue that CTS, because of its logistics experience, state-of-the-art technology, and staff efficiency, can offer superior service and customer satisfaction. She also mentioned that CTS serves all of Illinois, as well as Wisconsin and Michigan, so they can serve the entire area of RAILS members efficiently.
With several Board members expressing their concern with not having enough data or “hard numbers,” the proposal for outsourcing delivery and sorting was postponed until more comprehensive information can be distributed to Board members.
The next RAILS meeting will be held September 27, 2013, at the New Lenox Public Library.
Mrs. Parrilli added that in the September 4 RAILS eNewsletter: “RAILS received a payment of $2,145,000 on August 29. This represents Live and Learn payments 4 and 5 ($1,072,500 each) of RAILS’ FY2013 Area and Per Capita Grant (July 2012 - June 2013). RAILS has now received $8,806,609.95, or 89.15% of our FY2013 APC Grant.”
The cost to outsource delivery services for all of RAILS is $2.5 million with CTS (Continental Transportation Services) of Michigan.
COMMENTS FROM TRUSTEES
Mrs. Hunter would like to see attendance statistics on Maker Master Challenge programs.
Mrs. Hunter would like statistics on the Business Center—how many people are using the Business Center and how many are connected with the Skokie Chamber.
At 8:38 p.m. a motion was made by Mr. Graham, seconded by Mrs. Rich to adjourn the regular meeting. The motion passed unanimously.
Karen Parrilli, Secretary