2008 Minutes

Board of Trustees Meeting held January 28, 2008

Call to Order

The Board of Trustees meeting was called to order at 4:03 on Monday, January 28th at the CEFLS, 33 Oak Street, Plattsburgh, NY, by Cerise Oberman, President. 

Roll Call

Present: Lauren Choate, Nancy Church (4:04); Chris deGrandpre; Lynn Dufort, Nancy Howard; Richard Kibben; Virginia LaPointe, Cerise Oberman; Barbara Stowe(4:06); Neil Surprenant (4:19); Maria Tirone

Staff Present: Ewa Jankowska, Director; Michael Spofford; Julie Wever, and Sue Cotter 

Others present: Stanley Ransom, Director of the Plattsburgh Public Library; Francie Fairchild, CEFDA; and Fred Smith.

Agenda

Cerise Oberman stated that she would like entertain a motion to amend the agenda. Richard Kibben made the motion. It was seconded by Chris de Grandpre. Motion passed unanimously.

The following amendments were recommended by Cerise Oberman: Swear in the 2008 CEFLS officers following approval of the agenda, move number eleven, “Survey results”, to New Business, add CEF Bylaws to New Business, add Check Signing Resolution to New Business, add Summer Reading Grant to New Business, add Central Library Contract wording change to New Business, and wording change for Member Library Contracts. The Finance Manager/Account Clerk discussion is to be moved to Executive Session

Nancy Howard moved approval of the amended agenda. The motion was seconded by Barbara Stowe. Motion passed unanimously.

Excused Absences

Nancy Howard moved that Charles Racette and David Reuther be excused from this meeting. The motion was seconded by Virginia LaPointe. Motion passed unanimously.

Swearing in of Officers and Trustee

Cerise Oberman swore in Barbara Stowe as Vice President for 2008. Barbara Stowe then swore in Cerise Oberman as President for 2008. 

Cerise Oberman swore in Chris deGrandpre as Treasurer for 2008, Nancy Church as Secretary for 2008, and Richard Kibben to renew his term as Trustee and as Member-at-Large for 2008. 

Approval of Minutes

Richard Kibben moved approval of the November 26, 2007 Minutes. The motion was seconded by Lynn Dufort. The motion passed unanimously 

Financial Report

Lauren Choate moved approval of Abstract dated November 26, 2007. The motion was seconded by Virginia LaPointe. Motion carried unanimously.

Nancy Howard moved approval of Abstract dated December 10, 2007. The motion was seconded by Lynn Dufort. Motion carried unanimously.

Lynn Dufort moved approval of Manual Check dated December 18, 2007. The motion was seconded by Richard Kibben. Motion passed unanimously.

Lynn Dufort moved approval of Abstract dated December 26, 2007. The motion was seconded by Chris de Grandpre. Motion carried unanimously.

Nancy Howard moved approval of Abstract dated January 8, 2008. The motion was seconded by Chris de Grandpre. Motion passed unanimously.

Public Comment Period:

None

President’s Remarks:

Cerise Oberman reported:
-  The request for donations from the trustees at the end of the year has resulted in some very generous donations. We are close to one hundred percent participation, and have taken in $1,450.00 to date. It is a wonderful goal to have met and she hopes it will continue in subsequent years.
-  Cerise asked for the Executive Committee to stay after the meeting to set meeting dates 2008.
-  Contributions of $10.00 towards the “Sunshine Fund” were requested from the board members. The money is to be given to Michael Spofford until it is needed.

Director’s Report

Ewa Jankowska reported:
-  Ewa urged the board members to take a look at the CEFLS website http://www.cefls.org/. The first page has been changed and there are many more to come. The original site originally contained mostly graphics, making it very difficult to make any changes. It also incorporates a “style sheet”, allowing the font, color, etc. to be the same on every page.
-  Later in the meeting when discussing new business we will look at the Central Library Contract for 2008. She would like to report that she attended the last PPL board meeting to inquire as to their thoughts about having one of their trustees attend each CEFLS board meeting and one of the CEFLS trustees attend each PPL board meeting. It was agreed that this section should be omitted since they are open meetings, anyone can attend if they would like to, and both Stan and Ewa try to attend them.
-  There are two items included on Governor Spitzer’s budget that are of interest to us. The first is $3,000,000 for the systems. The lobby efforts will be for an additional $5,000,000. The other item included in the budget, which affects member libraries, is $14,000,000 in construction money.
-  She has spent hours with the Clinton County Civil Service regarding the vacancy created by Kathie LaBombard’s retirement. She had asked if the job description for the position could be updated because the way it could be advertised was very generic, and Civil Service requested that she update all four positions, i.e., Librarian I, Librarian II, Librarian III, and Librarian IV. She is hoping the job description will be edited by the end of the week so that we can begin advertising. The position must be advertised with the Civil Service title, not as a Youth Services Librarian. She tried to include everything we could possibly want in the revised job descriptions.
-  The Summer Reading Grant is something we apply for every year and will be brought up under New Business. It is a pass through grant that gives each member library $100. In Kathie’s absence, Julie has taken over filing for this particular grant.
-  She is not ready to give the board the statistics for the Annual Report. There is a survey for the Member Libraries posted on-line until February 8th. When we submit the Annual Report to the State Library it is both qualitative and quantitative.
-  She has had a very productive meeting with the bookmobile staff. They would really like to go back to a three week schedule. An analysis has been prepared for the Executive Board to review. It has been determined that it would cost about $2,700 per year to institute the three week schedule. She asked the board to consider this request. It was suggested that the question be brought up in regular session, but Cerise felt that there was not yet enough information and that the Executive Committee could raise questions to be answered prior to it being presented to the full board. 
-  Legislative Day is on March 11th. Ewa will be going the day before for PULISDO. Elizabeth Rogers and Stan Ransom will be going in the Equinox. There is room for three more passengers. 
-  Ewa is hoping to set up appointments with Assemblywoman Teresa Skyward, Assemblywoman Janet Dupery, and Senator Elizabeth O’C. Little prior to Lobby Day. She asked if any of the board members would be interested in joining her. Nancy Church expressed an interest depending on when the meeting was scheduled.
-  Facebook is an on-line social group. The only thing that is required to sign up is an email address. Jesse Feiler has set up a closed group for trustees. The idea is that after the trustee’s training, participants will have a forum to exchange ideas and ask questions. There is another closed group set up library directors. Currently Ewa is still on it, but once it gets going she plans to withdraw. A third open group has been set up for CEFLS. She is trying to put some on interesting links for members of the group to look at. An official invitation has been sent to library directors and trustees to join Facebook.

Plattsburgh Public Library (PPL) Report

Stanley Ransom reported:
-  Stan re-iterated that it is very important to visit our local legislators.
-  PPL has had some changes in staff. Carol, the Adult Services Librarian, has moved back to her home town of Rochester. Caleb Moshier from the Buffalo Graduate Library School has been appointed to the position and will be starting on February 4th.
-  Circulation was up 4,510 in 2007 to a total of 134,077. People seem to be reading more, as well as taking out more audio books.
-  PPL is starting a newsletter that will be mailed out with the city electric bills in order to save postage. 
-  One of Stan’s goals this year is to renovate the second floor of the library. He would like to see more groups using the room as a meeting space.

CEFDA Report
-  A summary of the January 14th meeting held at CEF can be found in the board member folders.
-  The next meeting will be held on April 14th at the Ausable Forks Library.

Committee Reports

Executive Committee:
Cerise Oberman reported:
-  The Executive Committee met in December. Discussion items will come up later in this meeting.
Finance
Chris deGrandpre reported:
-  The CEF Library System Finance Committee met at 4:00 p.m. on Tuesday January 15, 2008. Members of the Finance Committee present were Cerise Oberman, Lauren Choate, Maria Tyrone and Chris de Grandpré along with Library System Director, Ewa Jankowska, and Principal Account Clerk, Michael Spofford. The meeting lasted one hour and thirty minutes. Two Agenda Items were discussed: The 2008 Budget and a possible change in the Library System’s banking designation.

-  The Finance Committee reviewed the final version of the proposed 2008 budget to be presented to the Trustees at today’s meeting. The Trustees approved a preliminary 2008 budget August 20, 2007 in order for the Library System to submit a tentative Fiscal Plan to the Clinton, Essex & Franklin County Legislatures in early September of 2007 to meet the Counties’ various budget deadlines. Four months have passed since approval of the Preliminary Budget and we still do not know how much state aid will be available in support of the 2008 Library System’s fiscal plan. This is not unexpected. During the interim, a few budget items have been clarified and dollar amounts changed as needed and without significant impact on the overall budget. The Finance Committee recommends the use of some unexpended funds from the 2007 year to be used as revenue to balance the budget for 2008. Further, we recommend funding be included in the 2008 budget for contingencies or emergencies. Should additional state aid be forthcoming it is possible that the Library System may want to consider amending the 2008 Budget allowing for more services. The reverse could be the case if state funding were scaled back. The recommendation to be made today is our best estimate for the needs of the Library System at this point in time. Motion was made by Chris de Grandpre and seconded by Lynn Dufort. Motion passed unanimously.

-  Recommend a Funded Reserve-Contingency be established and incorporated as a line item in the 2008 budget effective January 28, 2008. The motion was made by Chris de Grandpre to accept, and seconded by Nancy Church. Motion passed unanimously.

-  Recommend the sum of $93,769.52, available after the close of the 2007 fiscal year ending December 31, 2007, be moved from the Undesignated Unrestricted Fund Balance to the newly established Designated Unrestricted Board Reserve-Contingency to balance the 2008 budget. Motion was made by Chris de Grandpre, and seconded by Lynn Dufort. Motion passed unanimously.

-  It is unknown at this time how much State Aid may be forthcoming in support of the revenue side of the 2008 budget. The recommended budget for 2008 reflects a decrease in state aid in the amount of $145,656.72. With adoption of a State Budget hopefully some or all of this aid will be restored.

-  Recommend approval of the 2008 Budget in the amount of $1,103,059.17. The anticipated 2008 CEF Budget including Grants for 2008 is estimated to be $1,258,054.11. Motion made by Chris de Grandpre and seconded by Lynn Dufort. Motion passed unanimously. 

-  Ewa and Michael are in conversation with a number of local banks to discern which banking institution CEFLS plans to do business with in the future. Among the issues associated with this review are: The sweep on funds over a specified amount on deposit in various CEFLS accounts, bank fees, interest rates available on funds deposited in money market accounts, CD Rates, etc. Hopefully we will have a recommendation for the Trustees at the February Meeting.

-  I would like to thank Ewa and Michael, the membership of the Finance Committee along with the CEFLS Staff for their hard work in preparing the 2008 Budget Plan.

Nominating Committee
Nancy Howard reported:
-  Nancy made a motion to recommend Lisa M. Newton as a candidate for a trustee to represent Clinton County. The motion was seconded by Lynn Dufort. Motion passed unanimously. Her name and resume will be forwarded to the Clinton County Legislature for appointment.
-  There is still a vacancy for a representative from Essex County.

Personnel Committee
Barbara Stowe reported:
-  The committee is working on formalizing the Director’s evaluation process.

Development Committee:
Nancy Church reported:
-  She reported that donations to CEFLS cannot be made via credit card. Richard Kibben suggested the possibility of using Paypal.

Communications
-  Sue Cotter read a thank you letter from Fred Smith thanking the board for their retirement gift.

Old Business
Nancy Church distributed a summary of the survey project administered by her students. The topic of the survey was the Bookmobile, and the member libraries were asked a series of questions to determine accessibility, service, role of the Bookmobile, programs offered, etc. The summary discusses the results and then makes recommendations. The advertising class may follow up on this and create an ad campaign.

New Business
-  A copy of the Board of Trustees Bylaws with changes highlighted can be found in the trustee folders. Cerise asked that the trustees review this document prior to the meeting in February, at which time the changes will be voted on.
-  Barbara Stowe read aloud a resolution listing the approved check signers on both the general and payroll accounts at Key Bank. They are Cerise Oberman, Barbara Stowe, Chris de Grandpre, Richard Kibben, and Ewa Jankowska. Manual checks over one thousand dollars require two signatures. Neil Surprenant moved to accept the resolution. The motion was seconded by Nancy Church. Motion passed unanimously.
-  There is a summary of the Summer Reading grant in the trustee folders. Virginia LaPointe made a motion to accept the application. The motion was seconded by Neil Surprenant. Motion passed unanimously.

Executive Session
Richard Kibben moved for adjournment to Executive Session at 6:05. The motion was seconded by Virginia LaPointe. Motion passed unanimously. Purpose of the session was negotiations.

Maria Tirone made a motion to come out Executive Session at 6:15. The motion was seconded by Nancy Howard.

Barbara Stowe made a motion to increase the salary of the Senior Account Clerk by $3,000 each year for the next three years, beginning in 2008 and continuing through 2010, for a total increase of $9,000. The motion was seconded by Lynn Dufort. Motion passed unanimously.

Next Meeting
The next meeting will be Monday, February 25th at 4:00 at the CEFLS.

Adjournment
The meeting adjourned at 6:20. 

Respectfully submitted,


Nancy Church
Secretary

 Minutes for Board of Trustees Meeting 
Held March 31, 2008


Call to Order

The Board of Trustees meeting was called to order at 4:00 on Monday, March 31st at the CEFLS, 33 Oak Street, Plattsburgh, NY, by Cerise Oberman, President.

Roll Call

Present:  Lauren Choate, Nancy Church (4:10), Chris de Grandpré, Lynn Dufort, Nancy Howard, Richard Kibben, Virginia LaPointe, Cerise Oberman, David Reuther (4:07), and Barbara Stowe.

Staff Present:  Ewa Jankowska, Director; Michael Spofford, Betsy Brooks, Elizabeth Rogers, Susan Rohde.

Others Present:  Stanley Ransom, Director of Plattsburgh Public Library; Francie Fairchild, CEFDA; Fred Smith.

Approval of Agenda
Cerise Oberman recommended that the following items be added to the Agenda:  

  •     after Approval of Agenda:  swearing in of new trustee, Lisa Newton
  •     under Finance Committee:  set of recommendations carried over from February 19th
  •     under Nominating Committee:  potential nominee
  •     under New Business:
  •    review Gates Foundation grant application
  •    review CEFLS Annual Report

Lynn Dufort moved that the agenda be approved with the suggested changes.  The motion was seconded by Richard Kibben.  Motion passed unanimously.

Excused Absences

Lynn Dufort moved that Neil Surprenant and Maria Tirone be excused from this meeting.  The motion was seconded by Nancy Howard.  Motion passed unanimously.

Swearing in of Trustee

Cerise Oberman swore in Lisa M. Newton as Trustee.  Cerise instructed Lisa to sign the statement after the meeting, to be witnessed by Lynn Dufort.

Approval of Minutes

Lauren Choate moved approval of January 28, 2008 Minutes as written.  The motion was seconded by Lynn Dufort.  Motion passed unanimously.

Financial Report

Lynn Dufort moved approval of Abstract dated January 22, 2008.  The motion was seconded by Virginia LaPointe.  Motion carried unanimously.

Richard Kibben moved approval of Abstract dated February 4, 2008.  The motion was seconded by Chris de Grandpré.  Motion carried unanimously.

Lynn Dufort moved approval of Abstract dated February 19, 2008.  The motion was seconded by Nancy Howard.  Motion carried unanimously.

Lynn Dufort moved approval of Abstract dated March 4, 2008.  The motion was seconded by Nancy Howard.  Motion carried unanimously.

Lynn Dufort moved approval of Abstract dated March 18, 2008.  The motion was seconded by Virginia LaPointe.  Motion carried unanimously.

Trustee Nancy Howard asked if there is any competition for Baker & Taylor.  Elizabeth Rogers responded that there are two other jobbers (Brodart and Ingram), but we use Baker & Taylor because they provide a 40% discount.

Public Comment Period
None.

President’s Remarks
Cerise Oberman:

  • thanked the trustees, former trustees, Ewa Jankowska, and (later in the meeting) Betsy Brooks for visiting our State Legislators
  • expressed disappointment that the February Board meeting had to be cancelled for lack of a quorum and announced that, at the suggestion of one of the trustees, she would ask the Executive Committee at their April meeting to revisit the policy of having 11 meetings per year
  • welcomed Lisa Newton and thanked Susan Rohde for attending

Director’s Report
Ewa Jankowska reported:

  • Ewa will discontinue the use of her Blackberry to reply to Board emails, as it has proved unreliable.
  • Interviews for the open Youth Services Librarian position have been scheduled for April, and the search period has been extended to April 15th in the hopes of increasing the number of candidates.  In the meantime, Julie Wever and Karen Batchelder have been filling in as needed.
  • CEF received funding approval from the  NY State Library for the Summer Reading Program.  We will be hiring a consultant to jump-start it.
  • Ewa attended the Public Library Association Conference last week in Minneapolis, where she learned about Overdrive, a vendor for downloadable audio books.  She spoke with Steve Bolton (head of the North Country Library System) about a joint order, and they are optimistic about getting subscriptions for both library systems for the price of one.  Beginning June/July, the Overdrive audio books will be downloadable to iPods.
  • Ewa, along with other NNYLN representatives (Steve Bolton from NCLS, school library directors, etc.), attended a Regent’s Regional Forum whose purpose was to evaluate the NY State Education Department.  Ewa asked that anyone seeing Jim Dawson, the organizer of the event, should thank him for taking the unusual step of inviting library representatives to such a meeting.
  • The class on Mold Treatment has received 50% funding from NNYLN.
  • News has come in that Camp Gabriels, one of the correctional facilities we serve, will remain open.
  • Ewa attended the Mooers Library Board meeting and was pleased with their work on a collection development policy.  
  • Crown Point and Ellenburg Depot Libraries have had their provisional charters extended.
  • The service area for Keene Valley Library has been redefined.
  • Ewa commended Betsy Brooks and Julie Wever for writing the two grant applications that are on today’s agenda.
  • We are applying for a Kiwanis grant to provide funding for materials for “Tell Me a Story”, a program serving 0-5-year-olds.
  • Trustee training workshops will be conducted by Jesse Feiler on Saturday, April 12th in Keene Valley and Saturday, April 19th in Malone, 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.  His workshops have been well received in the past, and CEF Trustees are welcome to attend.
  • There were no questions about Ewa’s report, but Cerise Oberman had a question about some figures in Betsy Brooks’ report and expressed an interest in having Betsy meet with the Trustees at some point to explain how the statistics should be interpreted.  She also thanked Betsy for participating in the trip to Albany to visit State Legislators

PPL Report
Stanley Ransom reported:

  • PPL received 350 copies of 2008 Women of Distinction in New York State, an annual NYS Senate publication promoted by Sen. Betty Little in honor of Women’s History Month.  The Trustees are welcome to pick up a copy at PPL, and PPL will be sharing copies with CEF member libraries.
  • At the PPL Board meeting on March 25th, some of the following issues were covered:
  • PPL will be promoting Turn-off-TV Week (April 21-27), encouraging any activities other than TV-watching, including visiting a public library.  The dates are, appropriately enough, two weeks after National Library Week.
  • There has been a request to increase the number of copies of the library newsletter, which gets mailed with the local electric bill, from 8,000 to 10,000.
  • Stan has participated in meetings to prepare for the Quadricentennial Lake Champlain celebration beginning on July 12th and continuing through the year.  Stan would like to see libraries along the lake represented in the celebration, and PPL is applying for grants now.
  • PPL has intensified their publicity efforts, attempting to get into the newspaper once a week with articles and/or photographs.  Responsibility for publicity has primarily fallen to Stan, but other staff members are also helping (Colleen Pelletier, Karen Ricketson, etc.).  In response to a question from Nancy Howard, Stan said that the Press Republican welcomes their photographs.  Cerise congratulated Stan on the success of his publicity efforts.
  • PPL is planning on a variety of programs, such as the addition of games (chess, checkers, Chinese checkers, cards, table shuffleboard, etc.) to the Teen Room to attract more teenagers to the library.

CEFDA Report
Francie Fairchild reported that the next CEFDA meeting will be held on April 14th at AuSable Forks.

Committee Reports

Executive Committee
Cerise Oberman reported that the Executive Committee will be meeting on April 7 and asked that Trustees notify her or any committee member about issues they would like addressed at that meeting.

Finance Committee
Chris de Grandpré reported:

  • The Board needs to consider the proposed authorization for a line of credit, included in the March packet, to help cover expenses until State funding comes in.
  • The Board needs to consider the proposed budget amendments, included in the February packet, which would increase some budget code amounts while decreasing others, leaving the bottom line intact.

Lynn Dufort moved approval of the proposed Resolution Authorizing the Issuance of Line of Credit.  The motion was seconded by Lauren Choate.  Motion passed unanimously.  Cerise Oberman thanked Michael Spofford for his efforts in finding the best interest rate.

Nancy Church moved approval of the budget changes.  The motion was seconded by Barbara Stowe.  Motion passed unanimously.

Nominating Committee
Nancy Howard reported:

  • Frances Filshie has been suggested by Assemblywoman Teresa Sayward as a candidate to fill the CEFLS Board vacancy from Essex County.
  • After the Essex County opening is filled, there will be no further vacancies.
  • Nancy read aloud from Ms. Filshie’s resume, after which copies of the resume were circulated to the members present for review.

Nancy Howard moved that Frances Filshie be nominated for the Board vacancy from Essex County.  The motion was seconded by Lynn Dufort.  Motion passed unanimously.

Cerise thanked Nancy for her work and mentioned:

  • We will need a nomination letter sent to the Essex County Board of Supervisors.
  • We will need suggestions by Board members due to go off the Board at the end of this year about possible replacements.

Personnel Committee
Barbara Stowe mentioned the Director evaluation form, and Cerise said that it will be addressed at the April Board meeting.

Advocacy Committee
Lynn Dufort stated that there was nothing new to report.

Development Committee
Nancy Church asked about acknowledgement letters to recent donors, and Ewa Jankowska confirmed that they had been sent.

Nancy reported that no book memorials had been received recently and suggested that contacts be made with funeral homes, attorneys, etc.

Lisa Newton offered to join the Development Committee, and Cerise replied that official approval will have to wait until the April Board meeting.

Communications
Susan Rohde summarized a letter from State Senator Betty Little discussing the Patron Grant Program.  The program consists of a $2,500 allocation for each library in Little’s district and $10,000 for a “delivery service program”.  It is assumed that the delivery service program refers to our van service, but that has yet to be clarified.

Old Business
Cerise Oberman asked for a motion to approve the amended by-laws distributed in the January packet.  Richard Kibben moved that the new by-laws be accepted.  The motion was seconded by Barbara Stowe.  Motion passed unanimously.

New Business

  • Conflict of Interest Statement
  • Cerise Oberman reported that the idea of a Conflict of Interest statement had been brought to the attention of the Executive Council by Ewa Jankowska, where it was enthusiastically received, for use not only by the CEF Board but as a model for member libraries.
  • Barbara Stowe moved that the statement enclosed in the March packet be signed by each Board member.  The motion was seconded by Lynn Dufort.  Motion passed unanimously.
  • The members present each signed a Conflict of Interest statement before leaving the meeting.
  • Grants
1.    2008 LSTA Service Improvement Grant
Ewa Jankowska described the proposed “Seniors in the Drivers’ Seat” program, whose goal would be to increase the skills and comfort level of seniors using the internet.  CEFLS proposes to hire a consultant from Clinton Community College to conduct workshops at several member libraries (“training the trainers”) and recruit teenage volunteers to follow up with the senior participants, possibly as part of a community service or computer club project.
Virginia LaPointe moved to submit the LSTA Service Improvement Grant application.  The motion was seconded by Nancy Church.  Motion passed unanimously.

2.    2008 Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation Opportunity Online Hardware Grant
Ewa Jankowska explained that the grant provides funding for both public-access computers and training in computer advocacy (to press for the purchase of public-access computers).  Stan Ransom, Betsy Brooks, and Julie Wever will be attending the advocacy training workshop, and CEFLS will need to host online advocacy training.  Member libraries will need to provide a 25% grant match.  Two of our libraries will not be participating:  Lake Placid because of the match requirement and Keene Valley because the economic status of its service area disqualifies it.


Ewa Jankowska mentioned that the grant pays a 7% administrative fee.  

Nancy Howard moved to submit the Gates Foundation grant application.  The motion was seconded by Virginia LaPointe.  Motion passed unanimously.


  • 2007 CEFLS Annual Report
    • Michael Spofford mentioned that annual reports had been submitted to the State not only by CEFLS but by all its member libraries.
    • Nancy Howard moved that the 2007 CEFLS Annual Report be approved.  The motion was seconded by Lynn Dufort.  Motion passed unanimously.
  • Bookmobile Drop/Add Policy
    • Cerise Oberman suggested that since the drop/add guidelines had only been sent to members of the Executive Council, discussion by the Board should be postponed until all the Board members had had a chance to review the document.  She proposed that copies be mailed out and the issue taken up at the next Board meeting.
  • Bookmobile Committee
    • A new Bookmobile Committee has been proposed by the Executive Council so that the Bookmobile will have a constituent base on the Board of Trustees.  The precise charge would be crafted by committee members if the creation of this committee should be approved by the Board.
    • Discussion included remarks about:
    • -    the high visibility of the Bookmobile in the community
    • -    the importance of good communication between the Board and staff
    • -    the importance of not micromanaging the Bookmobile, keeping the focus on policy issues rather than day-to-day operations
    • -    the possibility of having a single liaison rather than a full committee
    • Lauren Choate moved to create an ad hoc committee, to be re-evaluated after a period of time to determine if the committee should be made permanent.  Lynn Dufort seconded the motion, specifying a 6-month evaluation period, a friendly amendment which Lauren accepted.  Motion passed unanimously.
    • Lynn offered to serve on the committee, and Cerise asked that any other Board members interested in serving please let her know of their interest.

Executive Session

Nancy Church moved to adjourn for Executive Session at 5:22 p.m.  The motion was seconded by Lynn Dufort.  Motion passed unanimously.

Virginia LaPointe moved to come out of Executive Session at 5:50 p.m.  The motion was seconded by David Reuther.  Motion passed unanimously.

No recommendations were brought from the Executive Council to the Board.

Next Meeting
The next meeting will be held Monday, April 28th at 4:00 at the CEFLS.

Adjournment
Cerise Oberman adjourned the meeting at 5:50 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,


Nancy Church
Secretary

Minutes for Board of Trustees Meeting 
Held April 28, 2008


Call to Order

The Board of Trustees meeting was called to order at 4:00 on Monday, April 28th at the CEFLS, 33 Oak Street, Plattsburgh, NY, by Barbara Stowe, Vice President.

Roll Call

Present:  Nancy Church (4:02), Chris de Grandpré, Lynn Dufort, Richard Kibben, Virginia LaPointe, Lisa Newton (4:05), Charles Racette, Barbara Stowe, and Neil Surprenant.
Staff Present:  Ewa Jankowska, Director; Michael Spofford, Betsy Brooks, Susan Rohde.
Others Present:  Colleen Pelletier, Plattsburgh Public Library; Francie Fairchild, CEFDA; Fred Smith.

Approval of Excused Absences

Nancy Church moved that Lauren Choate, Nancy Howard, Cerise Oberman, and Maria Tirone be excused from this meeting.  The motion was seconded by Lynn Dufort.  Motion passed unanimously.  David Reuther had communicated that he would be arriving late but in the end was unable to attend.

Approval of Agenda

Lynn Dufort moved that the agenda be approved.  The motion was seconded by Richard Kibben.  Motion passed unanimously.

Approval of Minutes

Lynn Dufort moved approval of March 31, 2008 Minutes as written.  The motion was seconded by Richard Kibben.  Motion passed unanimously.

Financial Report

Lynn Dufort moved approval of Abstract dated March 31, 2008.  The motion was seconded by Richard Kibben.  Motion carried unanimously.

Lynn Dufort moved approval of Abstract dated April 15, 2008.  The motion was seconded by Richard Kibben.  Motion carried unanimously.

Public Comment Period

None.

President’s Remarks

Barbara Stowe (VP):

  • Reported that Cerise Oberman was away on business.
  • Reported that Frances Filshie has been appointed to the CEFLS Board by the Essex County Board of Supervisors.  She was unable to attend this meeting but will be coming to the next.
  • Asked if all the trustees have signed a Conflict of Interest statement.  Michael Spofford reported that everyone except Maria Tirone have submitted one.

Director’s Report

Ewa Jankowska reported:

  • Librarian II Youth Services Vacancy - Ewa requested the creation of a Librarian I position rather than trying to fill the current Librarian II vacancy.  Ewa and the CEF staff arrived at this suggestion because of the following considerations:
    • None of the 5 candidates interviewed for the Librarian II position was suitable.
    • Someone fresh out of library school might be more up-to-date with new technologies.
    • An entry-level librarian might be more easily trained to the specific needs of CEFLS.
    • The salary of an entry-level librarian would be lower.
    • The current CEF staff would be able to handle the 2008 Summer Reading Program.
    • Alan Gibson, Director of Civil Service, said there would be no problem creating the new position while still maintaining the option of filling the Librarian II position at some future time.
  • Administrative Assistant - SueAnn Cotter submitted a letter of resignation.  Candidates for a permanent replacement must be chosen from the existing Civil Service list.
  • Audio Books - CEF’s current subscription for downloadable audio books will expire in June.  Ewa has been looking into another system, OverDrive, and has spoken with Steve Bolton, Director of the North Country Library System, about sharing the subscription cost.  Since CEF has fewer member libraries (30 to NCLS’s 60), CEF would contribute 1/3 ($6,000) of the annual subscription.  However, even with a shared subscription and a one-time $7,500 “gift” from OverDrive toward the purchase of titles, CEF could only afford the new service if member libraries shared the cost of purchasing titles (approximately $25 each).
    • The advantages of OverDrive are (1) extensive, up-to-date holdings, (2) compatibility with new technologies, (3) ease of use (books downloadable by chapter), and (4) widespread use by other library systems.  The disadvantages are (1) the expense, (2) the fact that a book license allows only one patron at a time to “borrow” a book, and (3) lending time is limited to 3 weeks, unless the book is burned onto a CD.
    • NCLS has yet to come to a decision.  Ewa considers it important to continue offering a downloadable book service, but without NCLS’s participation, OverDrive would be beyond our financial reach. 
  • Trustee Forums - The two Trustee Forums held in April, one in Keene Valley and one in Malone, were very well-received, and Ewa hopes to continue the program, possibly using an occasional paid consultant to address special topics such as fund¬raising.
  • Direct Access - The Keene Valley Library Board President proposes to charge patrons (by credit card) for using the library’s wireless internet service for their personal laptops.  Ewa will attend the Keene Valley Board meeting on May 8th to discuss the Direct Access contracts signed by the member libraries to assure equal access to services to all patrons across the 3-county system.  The CEF Board does have authority over Direct Access issues.
  • Trustee Manuals - Manuals are being prepared for new Board members, and an updated Table of Contents will be distributed to current members.  Ewa mentioned that some of the manual updates are distributed as part of the monthly Board packets (e.g., service priorities, meeting minutes, annual report, etc.).  Richard Kibben asked that items in the packets that belong in the manual be flagged as such.
  • State “E-Senior Grant” - CEF has received a two-year LST grant for a “Seniors in the Driver’s Seat” program to help seniors improve their internet skills.  The funding (a little over $6,000) will be used to pay someone to train trainers and develop a training module to post on the CEF website.
  • One of the program sites is the Chateaugay Library, which will be relocating in early summer from a room in the Town Hall to a remodeled building.  At the same time, Chateaugay has been selected as a site for a pilot CBN Connect project providing free broadband service.  Chateaugay will also be a recipient of a Gates Foundation hardware grant which will provide public-access computers and peripherals.
  • PPL Report - Colleen Pelletier reported on: 
    • ReferenceUSA
    • PPL offers an online business and consumer database, ReferenceUSA, to all walk-in patrons and to PPL cardholders for home use.  Features include career searches, product searches, demographic information, etc.  The advantage of this service over a browser search engine is that the information is derived from a broader reference base and is verified and kept updated.
    • The $1,600 annual fee is currently covered by PPL’s Tillson Endowment Fund.  If it were to be funded as a CEFLS service by the NYS CBA, it would be available to all member libraries and to all patrons from their home computers.
    • PPL will be scheduling an online tutorial (“webinar”) about the system and will be inviting the Chamber of Commerce to notify their members.  CEF Trustees who would like to participate from their home computers should notify Ewa.
    • PPL plans to use ReferenceUSA to conduct a library fundraiser, using the database to search for potential donors and then citing the database service as a reason to make a contribution.
    • Gates Foundation advocacy conference
    • Colleen Pelletier, Stan Ransom, and Harold Brohinsky (PPL Trustee) attended the Gates conference “Turning the Page” and found it quite useful, learning about advocacy strategies for promoting the use of computers in libraries.
    • Library card issues
    • Residents in the CEF region should obtain their library card from their local library, but they can use that card at any of the CEF libraries.  Part-time residents, such as college students, are eligible for library cards.

CEFDA Report

Francie Fairchild reported that the CEFDA meeting held on April 28th at AuSable Forks was attended by 11 library directors and 3 representatives from CEF (Ewa Jankowska, Karen Batchelder, and Elizabeth Rogers).  The group discussed ideas from the Gates Foundation conference, for Summer funding, for the Summer Reading Program, and for the Lake Champlain Quadricentennial celebration.

Committee Reports

Executive Committee
Barbara Stowe reported:

  • The Committee deliberated about eliminating one of the winter Board meetings and decided against it because of the unpredictability of the weather.
  • The Committee will look at the goals that Ewa submitted and will bring them to the next Board meeting for approval.

Finance Committee
Chris de Grandpré:

  • Asked about the line of credit.  Michael Spofford reported that the paperwork is currently in the hands of the CEF lawyer for final processing.
  • Reported that State aid figures are still not available.
  • Stated that the Finance Committee will not meet again until there is further news about the line of credit and State aid.

Nominating Committee
Lynn Dufort reported that the Committee has already begun looking for a replacement for Maria Tirone, the trustee from Franklin County who has moved out of the area.  They are hoping she might be able to suggest someone who, like herself, works in the prison system, since this is a population that CEF serves.

Personnel Committee
Barbara Stowe stated that personnel issues will be discussed at the Executive Session.

Advocacy Committee
Lynn Dufort stated that there was nothing new to report.

Bookmobile Committee
Lynn Dufort asked to meet with the other committee members as well as Julie Wever and Ewa on Tuesday, May 27th at 3:30, a half-hour before next month’s Board meeting.  

Development Committee
Nancy Church stated that there was nothing new to report.

Communications
Susan Rohde reported that there were no communications this month.

Old Business

  • Bookmobile Stop-Drop-Add Policy
    • A copy of the suggested changes to the Bookmobile Policy has been included in the Trustee folders distributed at today’s meeting.  Discussion and action will take place after members have had a chance to review the document.
  • Tunnel connecting CEF with PPL
    • Richard Kibben asked if there had been any follow-through on last year’s decision to take photographs of the tunnel on an ongoing basis.  Ewa reported that Sue Cotter had been assigned the responsibility of taking photos and that she would try to locate the files.  Michael Spofford said that photos had been taken in the winter and offered to take additional photos if desired.

New Business

  • Revised Committee Assignments
    • The revised committee assignments were included in this month’s Board packet.  Since that mailing, Fran Filshie has been assigned to the Bookmobile and Health Plan Committees.
  •  CEFLS Librarian I position
    • Ewa explained that this entry-level position, requiring an MLS but no professional experience, would serve CEFLS’s Youth Services, most likely under the supervision of Julie Wever, a Librarian III.  She hoped to find someone with a good familiarity with new technologies, including online social networking tools.
    • Lynn Dufort moved that a CEFLS Librarian I position be created.  The motion was seconded by Neil Surprenant.  Motion carried unanimously.

Executive Session

Chris de Grandpré moved to adjourn for Executive Session at 4:55 p.m.  The motion was seconded by Nancy Church.  Motion passed unanimously.

At 5:15 p.m. the full Board reconvened.  Four recommendations were brought from the Executive Council to the Board:

  • To accept SueAnn Cotter’s letter of resignation dated 4/23/08, effective immediately
    • Lynn Dufort moved that her resignation be accepted.  The motion was seconded by Neil Surprenant.  Motion carried unanimously.
  • To increase the Director’s salary by 4%, retroactive to 1/1/07
    • Lynn Dufort moved that the raise be approved.  The motion was seconded by Lisa Newton.  Motion carried unanimously.
  • To accept the proposed Director’s evaluation form
    • Lynn Dufort moved that the evaluation form “Performance Criteria for Evaluation of Director of CEFLS” be used by the CEFLS Board.  The motion was seconded by Chris de Grandpré.  Motion carried unanimously.
  • To accept the proposed Director’s evaluation procedure
    • Lisa Newton moved that the proposed evaluation procedure be used by the CEFLS Board.  The motion was seconded by Richard Kibben.  Motion carried unanimously.

Next Meeting
The next meeting will be held Tuesday, May 27th at 4:00 at CEFLS.

Adjournment
Barbara Stowe adjourned the meeting at 5:20 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,



Nancy Church
Secretary

Minutes for Board of Trustees Meeting 
Held May 27, 2008

Call to Order

The Board of Trustees meeting was called to order at 4:00on Tuesday, May 27th at the CEFLS,33 Oak Street, Plattsburgh,NY, by Cerise Oberman, President.

Roll Call

Present:  Nancy Church (4:02), Chris de Grandpré, Nancy Howard, Richard Kibben, Lisa Newton, Cerise Oberman, Barbara Stowe, and Neil Surprenant.
Staff Present:  Ewa Jankowska, Director; Michael Spofford, Betsy Brooks, Susan Rohde.
Others Present:  Colleen Pelletier,Plattsburgh Public Library.

Absences

Lauren Choate, Lynn Dufort, Virginia LaPointe, and David Reuther had sent word that they would be unable to attend.  Charles Racette was also absent.  No vote was taken to approve the absences.

Approval of Agenda

Neil Surprenant moved that the agenda be approved.  The motion was seconded by Lisa Newton.  Motion passed unanimously.

Swearing In

Frances H. Filshie was sworn in as the new CEFLS Board Trustee from Essex County.  Her signature was notarized by Jamie Parrotte.

Approval of Minutes

Barbara Stowe moved approval of April 28, 2008 Minutes as written.  The motion was seconded by Richard Kibben.  Motion passed unanimously.

Financial Report

Approval of Abstracts & Manual Check Run

Richard Kibben moved approval of Abstract dated April 28, 2008.  The motion was seconded by Chris de Grandpré.  Motion carried unanimously.

Neil Surprenant moved approval of Abstract dated May 16, 2008.  The motion was seconded by Chris de Grandpré.  Motion carried unanimously.

Neil Surprenant moved approval of Manual Check Run dated April 29, 2008.  The motion was seconded by Lisa Newton.  Motion carried unanimously.

Financial Training

In response to a comment by Nancy Howard, Cerise Oberman asked that the CEF staff prepare a brief presentation about CEF financials, to be given at the next Board meeting.

Richard Kibben commented that he has found it instructive to go through the stack of actual checks written by CEF over the course of a month.

Public Comment Period

Colleen Pelletier stated that she was standing in for PPL Director Stan Ransom at the CEF Board meeting as Stan’s presence was needed at the concurrent PPL Board meeting.

President’s Remarks

Cerise Oberman:

- Thanked Barbara Stowe for leading the April Board meeting.
- Read aloud the letter of resignation from Maria Tirone.
- Suggested that Board members look at the revised Committee List in this month’s Board packet to see which committees they have been assigned to.

Director’s Report

Ewa Jankowskareported on:

- State Aid

Although the amount of State Aid is still not known, CEFLS submitted its 2008 budget application today in compliance with the state deadline.  The figures are tentative, based on the budget approved by the Board, with a few reallocations made in order to show the county that county funds would be put toward specific services the county wants to support. 

Before the application was submitted, it was sent to the chair of the Finance Committee, Chris de Grandpré, for his review, but the brief window between the day the form was made public and the day it was due did not allow time to submit it to the Board.  The Board is asked to review the application (distributed at today’s meeting) and be prepared to vote on it at the June meeting.

- Bookmobile

Fuel expenses for the Bookmobile have risen alarmingly, and Ewa has asked Michael Spofford to monitor the costs.

- Server Room

Ewa commended Betsy Brooks for the “fantastic job” she has done with the server room project.  The room has been remodeled (repainted, refloored, and rewired) with funding from a State Construction grant and two Member Item grants – one from Senator Betty Little and one from Assembly­woman Teresa Sayward.  Four new servers have been installed, two of which are already in operation and the remaining two (the catalog and circulation servers) will be operating by Thursday.

Ewa expressed her gratitude to Betsy Brooks and Julie Wever for writing the grant applica­tions and to Betsy for steering the project through to its completion.  She also thanked Michael Spofford for participating in the system training along with Betsy, thus giving us a back-up in case Betsy is unavailable.

- Member Library Contracts

Ewa is happy to report that all the member libraries have signed their annual contracts except the Dodge Library in West Chazy, which is expected to sign soon.

- Downloadable Audio Books

Ewa is waiting to hear back from the North Country Library System and the CEF member libraries about their willingness to share the expenses (subscription fee and book costs) for a new vendor, OverDrive.  Renewal with the current vendor is not an option because, amongst other issues, it was only affordable this year through a grant.

Ewa is looking particularly to the larger member libraries to contribute, but to date, Malone is the only library which has made an (informal) offer to contribute ($1,500-2,000).

- Administrative Assistant

Ewa asked for Board approval to raise the upper salary offer for an Administrative Assistant to $30,000.  In response to a question about funding, she said that funds are available because Kathy LaBombard’s position has been vacant for several months and a decision has been made to replace her with a Librarian I rather than a Librarian III.  In response to a question about local salary levels, Ewa said that the County’s lower figure for an Administrative Assistant is $32,000.

Neil Surprenant moved to raise the upper salary offer for an Administrative Assistant to $30,000.  The motion was seconded by Chris de Grandpré.  Motion carried unanimously.

PPL Report

Colleen Pelletier reported on:

- Summer Reading Program
The PPL Summer Reading Program is on track to start in July.  Karen Ricketson has scheduled a number of speakers, including a ventriloquist.

- ReferenceUSA
Colleen and Stan Ransom will be meeting this Thursday with Ewa Jankowska, Betsy Brooks, and Elizabeth Rogers to discuss funding options to make ReferenceUSA available to all member libraries.  Colleen has asked but not yet heard back from the Chamber of Commerce about the possibility of their funding this until the next subscription renewal in January 2009.

- Collection Rearrangements
The non-fiction collection is going to be shifted toward the north wall.  As a first step, the oversize books will be weeded, and some will be integrated into the main collection.

CEFDA Report

There was no news from CEFDA, which has not met since the last Board meeting.

Committee Reports

Executive Committee

Nothing to report.

Finance Committee

Chris de Grandpré reported:

- State Aid
The Finance Committee is waiting for the 2008 State Aid figures to be released before holding a meeting.  The committee will need to establish criteria to decide on 2008 priorities in case of funding reductions or increases.

- Line of Credit
The Line of Credit that was arranged to tide us over until the arrival of State Aid has so far not been needed, as there is still a balance of $120,000 in our bank account.  The decision to use a Line of Credit instead of a Revenue Anticipation Note (used in 2006) was based on the fact that in 2007, a Line of Credit proved to be a less costly approach.

Nominating Committee

Nancy Howard  has spoken to the Director of the Akwesasne Library about finding a replacement for Maria Tirone.  She remarked that it would be helpful if Maria Tirone could recommend a colleague, as correctional institutions are part of the community that CEF serves.

Personnel Committee

Barbara Stowe said there was nothing to report.

Advocacy Committee

Ewa Jankowska reported that a number of useful ideas for publicizing the Bookmobile were gained from an advertizing project presented to the CEF staff by a SUNY student group.  Nancy Howard suggested that CEF attempt to get some newspaper publicity about the student project, and Nancy Church suggested that a letter to the editor might be a good approach.

Bookmobile Committee

The committee has not yet met.

Development Committee

Nancy Church asked if Susan Rohde might compile a mailing list of local professionals (lawyers, funeral homes, accountants, financial advisers, etc.) who might recommend library donations to their clients.  Colleen Pelletier suggested using ReferenceUSA as a search tool.

Nancy stated that the donation card needed to be redesigned, deleting the credit card option.

For the “Donate a Book” campaign, Lisa Newton suggested approaching local book discussion groups.

Communications

Susan Rohde reported that there were no communications this month.

Old Business

- Bookmobile Policies
Cerise Oberman postponed the discussion about Bookmobile policies until the June meeting because of Lynn Dufort’s absence.

- Director’s Goals
Cerise asked that Board members review the Director’s goals, which were distributed at today’s meeting.  Cerise stressed the importance of this document, as it will form the basis for the Director’s evaluation.  Discussion of the goals will take place at the June meeting. 

New Business

- Teleconferencing
Neil Surprenant proposed that the Board consider the use of teleconferencing at Board meetings to help members who live at a distance from Plattsburgh.  In the discussion which followed, the following points were made:

  • Teleconferencing requires specific technology:  a good speaker phone (“bat”) at the CEF headquarters and a system for coordinating calls from remote sites.  Richard Kibben offered to look into a free teleconferencing service used successfully by another local organization.

  • Teleconferencing could potentially allow better attendance, especially during bad weather.

  • With rising gas prices, the trip to Plattsburgh for members who live far away has become more of a burden.

  • -Since face-to-face contact is important, teleconferencing should not be used at every meeting.

- Venue Rotation

Frances Filshie asked if Board meetings could be held at other sites over the course of the year, possibly at a more central location.  Cerise responded that although rotating the venue is a good way for Board members to see member libraries, experience has shown that it is difficult to get a quorum at other sites.  Richard Kibben suggested the Saranac Lake library for the next meeting and called the library to confirm its availability.

The Board voted to hold the June meeting at the Saranac Lake Free Library. 

Executive Session

At 4:52 p.m. Nancy Howard moved to adjourn for Executive Session for the purpose of discussing personnel issues.  The motion was seconded by Barbara Stowe.  Motion passed unanimously.

At 5:15 p.m. the full Board reconvened.

Neil Surprenant moved to have the Director’s raise retroactive to October 1, 2007, thus amending a previous Board decision.  The motion was seconded by Chris de Grandpré.  Motion carried unanimously.

Next Board Meeting

The next meeting will be held Monday, June 23rd at4:00 at Saranac Lake Free Library, 109 Main Street.

Adjournment

Cerise Oberman adjourned the meeting at 5:17 p.m.

 

Respectfully submitted,

Nancy Church
Secretary

Minutes for Board of Trustees Meeting
Held July 14, 2008

Call to Order

The Board of Trustees meeting was called to order at 4:00on Monday, July 14th at the CEFLS,33 Oak Street, Plattsburgh,NY, by Cerise Oberman, President.

Roll Call

Present:  Nancy Church, Chris de Grandpré, Lynn Dufort, Frances Filshie, Richard Kibben, Lisa Newton, Cerise Oberman, Charles Racette, Barbara Stowe, and Neil Surprenant (4:04).
Staff Present:  Ewa Jankowska, Director; Michael Spofford, Betsy Brooks, Susan Rohde.
Others Present:  Stanley Ransom,Plattsburgh Public Library;  Frances Fairchild, CEFDA.

Approval of Absences

Richard Kibben moved that Lauren Choate, Nancy Howard, Virginia LaPointe, and David Reuther be excused from this meeting.  The motion was seconded by Lynn Dufort.  Motion passed unanimously.

Approval of Agenda

Nancy Church moved that the agenda be approved.  The motion was seconded by Barbara Stowe.  Motion passed unanimously.

Approval of Minutes

Lynn Dufort moved approval of May 27, 2008 Minutes as written.  The motion was seconded by Richard Kibben.  Motion passed unanimously.

Financial Report

Approval of Abstracts & Manual EFT (Electronic Fund Transfer)

Richard Kibben moved approval of Abstract dated May 27, 2008.  The motion was seconded by Lynn Dufort.  Motion carried unanimously.

Lynn Dufort moved approval of Abstract dated June 11, 2008.  The motion was seconded by Charles Racette.  Motion carried unanimously.

Lynn Dufort moved approval of Abstract dated June 23, 2008.  The motion was seconded by Lisa Newton.  Motion carried unanimously.

Lynn Dufort moved approval of Manual EFT dated June 6, 2008.  The motion was seconded by Barbara Stowe.  Motion carried unanimously.

Public Comment Period
None.

President’s Remarks

Cerise Oberman:-
- Thanked Richard Kibben for making arrangements to hold the June Board meeting at the Saranac Lake Library, even though it failed to transpire.
- Stated she will speak to the Executive Committee about the issue of the number of Board meetings per year.  She noted that a balance needs to be found between the burden on Board members vs. the need to take care of Board business.
-  Stated that the budget presentation to be given by Ewa Jankowska and Michael Spofford will be held at the August Board meeting.

Director’s Report

Ewa Jankowskareported on:

State Aid
Ewa and Michael compiled the 2008 Library Aid Chart (included in today’s folders) from information found on the website of the NY State Library, Division of Library Development.

Budget allocations to state agencies that were approved during Gov. Spitzer’s tenure were reduced by 2% under Gov. Patterson.  Gov. Patterson predicts that next year’s cuts will be more substantial.

The impact on CEFLS is a loss of $23,118.  Ewa and Michael will meet with the Finance Committee to discuss how the budget can be adjusted to absorb the loss.

Liaison from State Library, Division of Library Development
A new state library consultant, Karen Balsen, visited CEFLS on July 9, 2008.  She met with Ewa and the CEFLS librarians and toured the facility.

Correctional Facilities
The ten correctional facilities we serve have signed the annual contract (“Authentication of Annual Negotiations”) as a result of a meeting held with facility representatives on June 27. 

The representatives expressed appreciation for the services we provide, including the lease plan we arranged with McNaughton Publishing.  Ewa was also able to arrange for 100 free books-on-tape (10 per facility) through a BBC Audio contact person she met at the Public Library Association Conference last Spring.

Downloadable Audio Books
Through a conference call involving Ewa, Betsy Brooks, Elizabeth Rogers, and Julie Wever, CEFLS was able to get a 50% discount on a renewal subscription to NetLibrary.  Funds contributed by some of the larger member libraries (Plattsburgh, Saranac Lake, Keene Valley, Lake Placid, and Malone) will allow CEFLS to use funds originally budgeted for the subscription to purchase additional books on CD, which have become quite popular.

Central Book Aid Selection Committee
A new Central Book Aid Selection Committee has been formed to allow input from member libraries on the selection of non-fiction books and databases purchased with NYS funds received by CEFLS for the Central Library (PPL).  The committee consists of PPL staff, member library directors, and CEFLS staff .  The purchases will be accessible to all residents of the tri-county area, as required by law.

Computer Back-Ups
Ewa and Michael Spofford attended a Records Retention Seminar, which highlighted the need for the safe storage of computer back-ups.  Ewa plans to draw up a formal back-up procedure but in the meantime has arranged to have our back-up tapes stored on a monthly basis at the Clinton County Government Center.  The tapes contain library data for the entire CEFLS region as well as server system files.

Job Vacancies
There are currently two vacant positions at CEFLS:  Administrative Assistant and Librarian I for Youth Services.  Interviews for Administrative Assistant are underway, with names drawn from the Civil Service list as required.  Several people on the list have declined, so the process continues.

Server Room
The work on the new server room has been completed, including the installation of sound-proofing.

Grants

-  Broadband Connection

Member libraries who would benefit from a broadband grant are unable to apply because they would not be able to sustain the monthly fees over the long term, as required by the grant guidelines.

-  Construction

CEFLS is looking into a construction grant to cover the installation of a safety railing along the raised platform in the garage.  Cost estimates have been requested.

Nancy Church suggested that CEFLS solicit donations of books-on-tape from private individuals.  Ewa said she has discussed the issue with Julie Wever, since books-on-tape are in demand not only at the prisons but by a number of Bookmobile patrons, and they may submit a letter to the Press-Republican requesting donations.  Cerise Oberman cautioned that donated books-on-tape would not be completely “free” since they would need to be listened to before being placed in circulation.

PPL Report

Stan Ransom reported:

- The summer issue of the PPL newsletter, Plattsburgh Public Library Highlights, went out in July.
-   PPL is working on a new brochure describing the library’s services.
-  PPL’s Catch the Reading Bug summer reading program has really “caught on” – about 180 children have signed up.  Karen Pillsworth, a storyteller, conducted a program last week, and Steve Charney, a ventriloquist, will be performing next week.
- Renovation of the PPL auditorium is about to begin, using a $7,000 grant from the State (thanks to Senator Little) for the purchase of chairs and carpeting, paint purchased by the Friends of the Library, and labor supplied by inmates from the Altona Correctional Facility.
- Patron Appreciation Day will be held at the AuSable Chasm Pavilion on Sunday, August 24th.  The event is free, with donations of food, games, and activities from various local organizations.

CEFDA Report

Frances Fairchild reported that the June meeting was cancelled because the member libraries are busy with summer programs.  The group will meet in September.

Committee Reports

Executive Committee

Cerise Oberman stated that the Executive Committee would meet briefly after the Board meeting today.

Finance Committee

Chris de Grandpré reported on:

- 2008 Budget
The Finance Committee will be meeting to discuss revisions to the 2008 CEFLS budget in light of the reduction in State Aid.

- Union Negotiations
The tentative agreement reached with the CSEA will be discussed at the Executive Session.

- Cash Flow
Michael Spofford reported that we drew $12,000 against the Line of Credit last week.  He expects our State Aid to arrive within a month or two.

- Annual Audit
Michael reported that the annual independent audit will be conducted this week and should be completed by the end of the week.

- 2009 Budget
Michael reported that a tentative budget for 2009 is due in September for the three County governments.

Nominating Committee

Nancy Howard was absent, but Lynn Dufort reported that progress has been made in the search for a candidate from Franklin County.  Chief Jim Ransom from Akwesasne has expressed interest but feels he does not have the time.  However, he has recommended his “sub-chief”, a Ms. Jacobson, who is quite interested in education and was pleased to be asked.  The Nominating Committee hopes to be able to propose a candidate at the next Board meeting.

Personnel Committee

Barbara Stowe said there was nothing to report.

Advocacy Committee

Lynn Dufort said the Advocacy report would be included with the Bookmobile report.

Development Committee

Nancy Church spoke of the letter campaign, stating that she would like to wait until a new Administrative Assistant is hired to help compile a mailing list of local professionals (lawyers, funeral homes, accountants, financial advisers, etc.).  The purpose would be to encourage these professionals to encourage their clients to include library donations in their wills.

Bookmobile Committee

Three members of the Bookmobile Committee met with Ewa Jankowska and Julie Wever immediately prior to today’s Board meeting.  Lynn Dufort reported on:

- Drop/Add Policy
The Bookmobile Committee recommended that the Board approve the Drop/Add Policy, including the updates proposed in the Spring of 2008, as it exceeds national recommendations and contains clear measurables.  Frances Filshie moved approval of the updated Policy.  The motion was seconded by Neil Surprenant.


After considerable discussion, an amended motion was made by Frances Filshie and seconded by Neil Surprenant, incorporating the following Board suggestions:

1)      The last line on p. 1 should be shortened, deleting the phrase “and are not served by a member library”.

2)      A clearly-defined procedure for making changes to the Policy should be added to the document.

3)      The parenthetical phrase on p. 3, item #4 should be deleted.

The motion carried unanimously.

Cerise asked Ewa to draft a policy change procedure.

- 3-Week vs. 4-Week Schedule
The Bookmobile Committee recommended that the scheduling issue be referred to the Finance Committee to determine if a 3-week schedule is affordable.  Lynn Dufort moved approval of the recommendation.  The motion was seconded by Barbara Stowe.  Motion carried unanimously.

- Bookmobile as Advocacy Tool

  • The Bookmobile Committee recommended that the Bookmobile be used as its own advocacy tool, parking it in front of government offices where legislative meetings are about to be held and thus giving the legislators first-hand exposure to its capabilities.  The visits should be scheduled prior to, rather than on the same day as, budget voting.

  • It was suggested that the campaign begin at the county level and, if successful, be expanded to municipalities.

Communications

Susan Rohde reported that there were no communications this month.

Ewa reported that her letter to the Press-Republican thanking the SUNY marketing class for their Bookmobile project was finally published.

Old Business

- Annual State Application for State Aid
Lynn Dufort moved approval of the Annual State Application for State Aid.  The motion was seconded by Chris de Grandpré.  Motion carried unanimously.

Executive Session

At 5:00 p.m. Neil Surprenant moved to adjourn for Executive Session for the purpose of discussing the CEFLS Director’s Goals and the CSEA contract negotiations.  The motion was seconded by Frances Filshie.  Motion passed unanimously.

At 5:30 p.m. the full Board reconvened.

New Business

- Director’s Goals
Barbara Stowe moved approval of the Director’s Goals as written.  The motion was seconded by Lynn Dufort.  Motion carried unanimously.

- CSEA Contract
Chris de Grandpré moved approval of the CSEA Union Agreement for January 1, 2008 to December 31, 2010.  The motion was seconded by Neil Surprenant.  Motion carried unanimously.

Chris de Grandpré added that the parties still need to sign the document.

Cerise Oberman thanked the contract negotiation team.

Next Board Meeting

The next meeting will be held Monday, August 25th at4:00 at CEFLS .

Adjournment

Cerise Oberman adjourned the meeting at 5:40 p.m.

 

Respectfully submitted,

Nancy Church
Secretary

Minutes for Board of Trustees Meeting 
Held August 25, 2008

Call to Order
The Board of Trustees meeting was called to order at 4:03 on August, 25th at the CEFLS, 33 Oak Street, Plattsburgh, NY, by Cerise Oberman, President.

Roll Call
Present:  Lauren Choate, Nancy Church (4:08), Chris de Grandpré, Lynn Dufort, Frances Filshie, Richard Kibben, Virginia LaPointe, Lisa Newton, Cerise Oberman, Barbara Stowe, and Neil Surprenant.

Staff Present: Ewa Jankowska, Director;Michael Spofford, Betsy Brooks, and Elizabeth Rogers.

Others Present:  Stanley Ransom,PlattsburghPublic Library; Frances Fairchild, CEFDA.

Approval of Absences
Lynn Dufort moved that Nancy Howard and Charles Racette be excused from this meeting.  The motion was seconded by Virginia LaPointe.  Motion passed unanimously.

Approval of Agenda
Neil Surprenant moved that the agenda be approved.  The motion was seconded by Frances Filshie.  Motion passed unanimously.

Approval of Minutes
Chris deGrandpré moved approval of July 14, 2008 Minutes as written.  The motion was seconded by Richard Kibben.  Motion passed unanimously.

Financial Report

Approval of Abstracts & Manual EFT (Electronic Fund Transfer)
Richard Kibben moved approval of Abstract dated July 9, 2008.  The motion was seconded by Neil Surprenant.  Motion carried unanimously.

Nancy Church moved approval of Abstract dated July 21, 2008.  The motion was seconded by Frances Filshie.  Motion carried unanimously.

Barbara Stowe moved approval of Abstract dated August 5, 2008.  The motion was seconded by Lynn Dufort.  Motion carried unanimously.

Lauren Choate moved approval of Manual EFT (Electronic Funds Transfer) dated July 9, 2008.  The motion was seconded by Lisa Newton.  Motion carried unanimously.

Lynn Dufort moved approval of Manual EFT dated July 20, 2008.  The motion was seconded by Nancy Church.  Motion carried unanimously.

Public Comment Period
None.

President’s Remarks
Cerise Oberman stated:

-  Final copies of approved By-Laws were in your folders today.

-  Announced that David Reuther has resigned from the Board of Trustees due to conflicts with his schedule and health. His letter of resignation was read out and Cerise accepted his resignation.

-  Status on vacant Board of Trustee positions – Nancy Howard will work to fill these positions.  If any Board Members have recommendations for their counties, please forward them to her.

-   Essex County, David Reuther’s position – David suggested some names.

-   Essex County, Virginia LaPointe’s term is up but she is eligible for reappointment.

-   Clinton County, Charles Racette has served for 10 years and is not eligible for reappointment.

-   Franklin County, still searching for a replacement for Maria Tirone.

-   Franklin County, Nancy Howard’s term is up but she is eligible for reappointment.

-  Discussion occurred on the definition of a quorum in the By-Laws under Article VIII #10.  Dr. Church requested the following amendment, “membership is defined as number of filled seats on the Board.” Neil Surprenant seconded the motion and amendment was passed unanimously. At the next Board Meeting a new set of By-Laws will be distributed.

- New York State continues to be in deep financial trouble and the funding in not looking good this year and may look even worse in 2009. We might be looking at deep financial cuts.

Director’s Report
Ewa Jankowska reported on:

-  State Aid – Ewa stated that at this time she could not get information from the State Library about the exact amount of 2008 remaining aid. CEFLS received Basic Aid, which used to be $751,000.00, cut by 2% making it $734,000.00. We are still awaiting the news about remaining State aid for Coordinated Outreach, Correctional Institutions and County Jail.   We cannot get further information whether these amounts will be cut 6%.  Ewa was trying to get a clearer understanding from the State Library if the cut will be in addition to the 2% (totaling 8%) or if the 2% was included in the 6% cut.   An additional cut of 6% on the Aid to be received would amount to approximately $39,483.00.  If the cut totals 8%, it would constitute an additional cut of $6,000.00. We will hopefully be able to balance the budget this year since we had two positions not filled for most of the year.

-  New Website – Thanks to the grant received from Betty Little and Teresa Sayward we have installed new servers for the Horizon Integrated Library System. The grant enabled us to purchase an additional module for a separate children’s catalog and to configure compatibility with mobile phones and other hand held devices. Thank you letters have been sent to both Betty Little and Teresa Sayward.


-   Construction Grant – Julie has been working very hard on this grant but only 4 member libraries filed their applications, meaning about $260,000.00 has to be returned to the State.  The lack of applications could be due to extensive paperwork and a matching funds requirement.
-  2009 budget – needs to be approved and then CEFLS will be writing letters requesting these funds in the upcoming 2009 budget year.  
-  Memorial fund – CEFLS will be receiving over $500.00 in memory of Marion Elliott from Fort Covington. Ewa is hoping this will start a trend, since patrons will notice the book plates and realize books last longer than flowers. 
-  Asking for approval of the Broadband Grant. The Board was briefed about this during the prior meeting. This grant is for Member Libraries to get high speed internet access to be available in their area.
-  Job Vacancy for Librarian I position will be discussed during the Finance Committee report.
- Job Vacancy for Administrative Assistant – CEFLS feels that we have a good candidate that is not currently on the Civil Service list. We are asking Civil service to approve this candidate pending the exam that she has to take that will be offered by the County in two years.

PPL Report
Stan Ransom reported:

 -  Has been very busy this summer – circulation increased anywhere from 20 to 45%
-  The Summer Reading Program had122 children read at least 5 books and there were lots of other successful programs, the favorite being the ventriloquist. 
 -   Thanks to Julie Wever for help with the Public Library Construction Grant writing.
 -  Received a letter from Senator Little stating PPL will receive $7,000.00, but we have not yet received a form and have no further information on this member item.
 - Altona Correctional Facility is arriving on the 2nd of September to repaint the auditorium.  Renovations were done in 2003 but only updated the basement and first floor. The goal now is to make the auditorium more accessible and to be used by the public. We are hoping to receive grant funding to purchase 100 chairs, as the auditorium is rated for 100 people.
 - Other funding: $1,000.00 from QuadraCentennial Grant to purchase Software, $500.00 from Stewart’s Shops for the purchase of Children’s Books, and funding from Community Bank, NA for a Public Info Brochure.
 -  New color copier was recently installed, staff training occurred a few days earlier.

CEFDA Report

Frances Fairchild reported that the next meeting will be held on Monday, September 22nd at PPL. They will discuss a new program for non-fiction books and databases that will be bought with State funds and will be used by all Member Libraries. The Committee feels that the library directors need more information on this program.

Committee Reports

Executive Committee
Cerise Oberman stated that the Executive Committee meet briefly after the July meeting.

Finance Committee
Chris de Grandpré reported on:

 -  2008 Budget
The Budget was reviewed since some State Aid is being received, though a number is not yet known. Discussion occurred on the revised budget (Amendment 3), which was presented to the Trustees. Ewa clarified some of the figures on this revision, and noted several cuts were made, and as of now the budget is balanced. The Librarian I position was discussed, which brought about a lengthy discussion on health insurance and prompted further investigation by the Health Insurance Committee on finding a more cost effective program while still providing the same coverage.

 A motion was made by Chris de Grandpré to not fill the Librarian I position in 2008 and leave it out of the preliminary 2009 budget, it was seconded by Lynn Dufort. Motion carried unanimously.

 A motion was made by Chris de Grandpré to approve the 2008 Budget Amendment 3 with the removal of the last 4 months salary and benefits for the Librarian I position, and a number will be made available at the next meeting. Lynn Dufort seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.

 -  2009 Budget
The Committee reviewed and prepared a preliminary 2009 Budget, noting it was not balanced. An approved budget is needed for Ewa to bring to the counties.

 A motion was made by Chris de Grandpré to direct Administration to propose a balanced 2009 budget to include a 2% reduction in the Basic Aid. Lynn Dufort seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.

 A motion was made by Lynn Dufort to ask the counties for a 5% increase in funding. Lisa Newton seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.

 -  Bookmobile Schedule
Research was done on looking into changing the current Bookmobile Schedule to 3 weeks. Recommendation was to leave it as a 4 week schedule since 3 weeks will cause an increase in money and to revisit the issue again in 6 months.

 -  Independent audit of January 1, 2007 to December 31, 2007
Report was not available, but will be made available at the next meeting.

 - Solicitation of independent auditing services for the next fiscal year
To be done by administration.

Nominating Committee
Nancy Howard was absent, but Lynn Dufort reported that Nancy is compiling a list of potential candidates. There are several issues in Franklin County, especially in the Akwesasne region. Hopefully some names will be available by the next meeting.

Personnel Committee
Barbara Stowe said there was nothing to report.

Advocacy Committee
Lynn Dufort said there was nothing to report.

Development Committee
Nancy Church revisited the mailing list for the letter campaign. She will await the arrival of the new Administrative Assistant for help in the mailing, and further questioned if the mailing list is on the Administrative Assistant’s computer already. Nancy also brought the idea of soliciting oil companies for gas donations for the Bookmobile, and asked if the donor cards had a line for Bookmobile donations.

Bookmobile Committee
Neil Surprenant reported:

 - Bookmobile as Advocacy Tool

The Bookmobile Committee recommended that the Bookmobile be used as its own advocacy tool last meeting, parking it in front of government offices where legislative meetings are about to be held and thus giving the legislators first-hand exposure to its capabilities. 

Franklin County Legislatures did not like this idea as they felt it would interfere with their busy schedules.

Communications
Michael Spofford said that there was nothing to report.

Old Business
There was no old business to discuss.

New Business

 -  Construction Grant
4 Member Libraries applied (Chateauguay Memorial Library, Peru Free Library, PPL and Westport Library Association); Nancy Church moved to approve the grant. The motion was seconded by Lynn Dufort. Motion carried unanimously.

  -  Broadband Access Grant 
Nancy Church moved to approve the grant, Lynn Dufort seconded the motion. Motion carried    unanimously.

Executive Session
At 5:55 p.m. Virginia LaPoint moved to adjourn for Executive Session to discuss personal issues. The motion was seconded by Lisa Newton. Motion passed unanimously.

At 6:02 p.m. the full Board reconvened. Nancy Church made a motion to give the Principal Account Clerk a 3.25% raise retroactive to January 1, 2008. Motion was seconded by Lynn Dufort and the motion was carried unanimously.

 

Next Board Meeting
The next meeting will be held Monday, September 22nd at 4:00 at Saranac Lake Free Library.

Adjournment
Cerise Oberman adjourned the meeting at 6:04 p.m.

 

Respectfully submitted,
Nancy Church
Secretary

Minutes for Board of Trustees Meeting
Held September 24, 2008

Call to Order
The Board of Trustees meeting was called to order at 4:08 on September 22nd at the Saranac Lake Free Library, 109 Main Street, Saranac Lake, NY, by Cerise Oberman, President.

Roll Call
Present:  Nancy Church (4:10), Chris de Grandpré (4:10), Lynn Dufort, Frances Filshie, Richard Kibben, Nancy Howard, Cerise Oberman, Charles Racette, Barbara Stowe and Neil Surprenant.

Staff Present: Ewa Jankowska, Director;Michael Spofford, and Kate Williams.

Others Present:  Betsy Whitefield, Saranac Lake Free Library and Frederick Smith, past CEFLS Board member.

Approval of Absences
Lynn Dufort moved that Lauren Choate, Virginia LaPointe and Lisa Newton be excused from this meeting.  The motion was seconded by Neil Surprenant.  Motion passed unanimously.

Approval of Agenda
Barbara Stowe moved that the agenda be approved.  The motion was seconded by Lynn Dufort.  Motion passed unanimously.

Approval of Minutes
Lynn Dufort moved approval of August 25, 2008 Minutes as written.  The motion was seconded by Richard Kibben.  Motion passed unanimously.

Financial Report

Approval of Abstracts 
Richard Kibben moved approval of Abstract dated August 18, 2008.  The motion was seconded by Frances Filshie.  Motion carried unanimously.

Richard Kibben moved approval of Abstract dated September 2, 2008.  The motion was seconded by Charles Racette.  Motion carried unanimously.

Public Comment Period
None.

 

President’s Remarks
Cerise Oberman thanked the Trustees for finally having a meeting occur outside of Plattsburgh. And  thanked  Richard Kibben for suggesting Saranac Lake.

Director’s Report
Ewa Jankowska reported on:

- Budget Requests
Each county was sent an application asking for a 5% increase in the budget. The application was followed by a meeting with each of the county’s managers (a copy of the budget application for each county was given to the Trustee representing that county).

- Franklin County
She has asked at their Budget Hearing for an additional 1% increase (equal to an additional $153.00) with hopes that the other counties will be encouraged to award the requested amount.

- Essex County & Clinton County Budget Hearings
Essex County has been scheduled for September 30th, Richard Kibben plans to attend, and Barbara Stowe will join as well if her schedule allows.

Ewa will attend the Clinton County Budget Hearing as soon as a date is set.

-The Bookmobile Circulation is up 13%

-Just in the past week, we received $450.00 in donations in the memory of Mary Leggett.

-Chateauguay Memorial Library 
Saturday, October 11th is their Grand Opening. This library will be part of the CBN Connect broadband pilot project and one of our sites for teaching both seniors and farmers to use the internet.

PPL Report
Nothing to report.

CEFDA Report
Frances Fairchild was not able to attend, however Kate Williams mentioned the following:

- CEFDA met on September 22nd at PPL and discussed Youth Services since there is no Youth Services Librarian at CEF. Member directors were asked to decide the most important youth services that they would like to see CEF provide.

-  Ewa also mentioned that discussion occurred on a possible purchase of new databases on car repair, small engine repair, and home repairs and as well as an online encyclopedia.

Committee Reports

Executive Committee
Cerise Oberman stated there was nothing to report.

Finance Committee
Chris de Grandpré reported on:

-Audit Report
Overall a very good audit – but briefly mentioned that the audit company would like to see a reduction in the amount of end-of-year journal entries that they need to make. However, there is understanding that some entries require technical assistance and the reduction may never reach zero.

 A motion was made by Chris de Grandpré to approve the independent audit of the fiscal year dated 1/1/07 – 12/31/2007, it was seconded by Nancy Church. Motion carried unanimously.

-  Quotes are needed for a new independent audit service.

-  Finalize the 2009 Budget by November
CEF staff needs to receive the rest of the 2008 numbers to successful complete the 2009 budget.

Nominating Committee
Nancy Howard mentioned:

-  Franklin County
Still need to find 2 Trustees, the previous ones that were considered are no longer interested. The Tupper Lake Library provided 3 names for potentials, and she met with each of them, but each was concerned with travel.

 Discussion also took place on conference calls, and further investigation is needed on whether a video conference call can be used for motions as a phone based conference does permit motions. A time change was also mentioned, and shall be followed up with a survey to the current members on the Board to find a more suitable time.

-  Essex County
Charles “Kip” Thompson’s bio was presented and Nancy felt he would make a great Trustee. A motion was made by Neil Surprenant to approve the nomination of Charles Thompson and to send a letter to the Essex County Manager. Barbara Stowe seconded the motion and the motion carried unanimously.  

-  Virginia LaPointe
She is having some health issues, and has recommended one individual to take over her position.

Personnel Committee
Barbara Stowe said there was nothing to report.

Advocacy Committee
Lynn Dufort said there was nothing to report.

Development Committee
Nancy Church mentioned she would like to meet with the new Administrative Assistant to work on the letter campaign. The donation card will need to be redone and have the credit card part taken out.

Bookmobile Committee
Neil Surprenant said there was nothing to report.

Communications
Kate Williams said there was nothing to report.

Old Business
Michael Spofford made Part I of his presentation on the Finances of CEFLS to the Board, which covered Purchase Orders and Accounts Payable procedures.

New Business
-  Recycling

Nancy Howard mentioned libraries recycle everyday with books being reused by different individuals. Could we further work on this theme to promote “going green”?

Charles Racette suggested having a speaker come to one of the libraries and promote/discuss recycling.

Executive Session
There was no Executive Session.

 Next Board Meeting
The next meeting will be held Monday October 27th at 4 p.m. at CEFLS.

Adjournment
Cerise Oberman adjourned the meeting at 5:13 p.m. 

Respectfully submitted,
Nancy Church
Secretary

Minutes for Board of Trustees Meeting
Held October 27, 2008

Call to Order
The Board of Trustees meeting was called to order at 4:04 p.m. on October 27th, 2008 at the CEFLS Board Room, 33 Oak Street, Plattsburgh, by Cerise Oberman, President.

Roll Call

Present: Nancy Church (4:06), Chris de Grandpré, Lynn Dufort, Frances Filshie, Richard Kibben, Lisa Newton, Cerise Oberman, Barbara Stowe, and Neil Surprenant (4:10).

Staff Present: Ewa Jankowska, Director; Michael Spofford, Betsy Brooks, Elizabeth Rogers, and Kate Williams.

Others Present: Stan Ransom, PPL and Frances Fairchild, CEFDA.

Excused Absences
Lynn Dufort moved that Lauren Choate, Nancy Howard, Virginia LaPointe, and Charles Racette be excused from this meeting. The motion was seconded by Richard Kibben and passed unanimously.

Approval of Agenda
Frances Filshie moved that the agenda be approved. The motion was seconded by Lynn Dufort and passed unanimously.

Approval of Minutes
Lynn Dufort moved approval of the September 22nd, 2008 Minutes as written. The motion was seconded by Frances Filshie and passed unanimously.

Financial Report

Approval of Abstracts
Frances Filshie moved approval of Abstract dated September 16th, 2008. The motion was seconded by Richard Kibben.  Motion passed unanimously.

 Richard Kibben moved approval of Abstract dated September 30th, 2008. The motion was seconded by Lynn Dufort. Motion passed unanimously.

 Nancy Church moved approval of Abstract dated October 15th, 2008. The motion was seconded by Lisa Newton. Motion passed unanimously.

Public Comment Period
None.

President’s Remarks
-Cerise Oberman reported that the Essex County Board of Supervisors has approved Charles “Kip” Thompson as a CEFLS board member and hopefully he will be joining us for our November meeting. Kip has a strong financial background that should be valuable to the Board. 
-Cerise also thanked the entire board for their responses to the survey that was sent out regarding the date, time, and venue of the Board meetings. A full report on the answers to the survey will be covered under Old Business. 
-Nancy Howard was not able to attend the meeting today, but she does continue to work diligently to fill the vacancies that currently exist on the board.

Director’s Report
Ewa Jankowska reported:

-Attached to her written report is a summary that was prepared by Julie Wever on the summer reading program. This program saw an increase of 53% compared to last year, and Julie is doing a wonderful job on this program. 
-There is still no further news on the budget from the state or the counties. 
-Michael and Ewa will be heading down to Albany on November 18th to lobby for library aid. This will be coordinated with the New York State Library and she hopes that not only library staff will be attending but patrons as well. 
-Ewa, Julie, Elizabeth and Betsy will all be attending the NYLA Conference this year in Saratoga. They are hoping to receive some information on advocacy and what the priorities are this year for all New York State Libraries. 
-She currently has two scheduled meetings with local area legislators, Teresa Sayward and Janet Duprey. Kate is working on setting up a meeting with Betty Little as well. The dates and times of these meetings will be sent to the Board to see if any of the trustees are interested in attending as well. 
-CEFLS with PPL and the Central Book Aid have purchased three databases; small engine repair, auto repair, and home repair. These will be available online and accessible to anyone with a library card. Betsy will be putting some information on the databases on the CEFLS website.

PPL Report
-Stan Ransom reported that PPL has presented the budget to the Common Council with an increase of only 1.2%, but this figure does not include negotiated raises. PPL is still waiting to hear more on this, but has so far been denied opening on Sundays and hiring any new staff. 
-PPL is pleased with the new auditorium on the 2nd floor. It has been painted and carpeted, and thanks to the Betty Little grant, there are now 100 chairs for use. PPL does not charge a fee to use the room, nor do they allow those using the room to charge an entry fee to attendees. PPL has also received a new laptop computer from funds made available through the Gates Grant, which completes the audio/visual system in the auditorium. Those who use the space will now be able present PowerPoint programs.
- PPL is just finishing up the Friends Book Sale, which has currently brought in $900.00. 
-Tax Forms will be now made available at the PPL. USPS has given PPL several racks to hold the various tax forms. 
-Next year we will celebrate the 400th anniversary of Samuel de Champlain’s first voyage on Lake Champlain. The city has not done much, but has appointed a chairperson for the event, Jennifer Lafontaine. She is eager to get the city involved and really promote the event.

CEFDA Report
Frances Fairchild reported that CEFDA will meet at Chateaugay Public Library on November 17th.  

Committee Reports

Executive Committee
-Cerise Oberman reported that the Executive Committee has met and received an update from Ewa on the budget and how the meeting went in Essex County that she, Michael Spofford, and Richard Kibben attended. 
-The committee also decided to put out a survey to the Board regarding meeting times, date and venue, which has already been completed.
-The committee discussed the need to get a legal opinion on whether or not the Board can use phone conferencing for completing board business. This was prompted by a difference of opinion among Board members regarding the validity of conference calling for conducting Board business; this issue will be discussed under Old Business.
-The committee also asked Ewa to get a legal opinion on establishing maternity leave. 
-The next Executive Committee meeting date is unknown, as there is a need to change the date. Cerise will get in touch with the Executive Committee to establish a date.

Finance Committee
Chris de Grandpré reported that the next finance committee meeting will be on November 10th at 10 a.m., and any final changes to the 2009 budget will be completed. Hopefully the committee will have more information on the 2008 aid as well and be able to present a budget to the Board for the November meeting.

Nominating Committee
Cerise Oberman stated that Nancy Howard apologizes for not being able to be at the meeting. Nancy does continue to work on filling the vacancies that currently exist. There are members who will be rotating off the Board in December, including Chuck Racette in Clinton County.

Personnel Committee
Barbara Stowe had nothing to report.

Advocacy Committee
Lynn Dufort reported that discussion has occurred on sending letters to the Governor’s office and the legislator’s office. However, there has been no further push from the committee. The committee feels that what is being done by CEF currently is the best approach.

Ewa noted that the push should not be made until after the NYLA Conference to see what the priorities are. Ewa also stated that the most important thing that should be stressed is that CEFLS services a large geographic area, but it does not have a large per capita ratio.

Development Committee
-Nancy Church reported that Kate is doing a wonderful job on revising the donation card that was previously used. The credit card information was taken off, but Nancy wondered whether or not a local bank would be able process the credit card payments for free. Kate is also adding to the list of donors to send the card & letter to. A proper tax deductible letter is needed as a thank you letter to donors. 
-Nancy is working on the letter to send to the donors that will be enclosed with the card. This year, more than one card should be sent to the donors to encourage asking their customers to designate CEFLS as a memorial/donation.
-  The annual Board donation will also be coming up. The Board members are able to designate the type of books and/or what their funds shall be used for.
-  Nancy mentioned solicitation of the new gas station in Plattsburgh, MapleFields. She will send a letter to them shortly. Nancy also brought up trying to get Target involved, Ewa mentioned that Julie is currently working on a letter to Target to help fund the Take a Bite Out of Books program.

Bookmobile Committee
Lynn Dufort asked the question if the Bookmobile Committee was still needed as the problem that they were working on has been addressed. Clarification will be made as if the committee was a temporary 1 year appointment, or an ad-hoc committee.

Communications
Kate Williams had nothing to report.

 Old Business

-  A Resolution for Section 41j is needed. In our signed contract, we have adopted 41j, which details the allowance of unused sick leave credits. New York State & Local Retirement System is requesting a resolution by the Board to make it official.

Section 41-j allows the application of up to 165 days for additional service credit at the time of retirement. The retirees will be permitted to take 41j, take the buyout option, or use both.  However, this time cannot be used before the date of retirement, as it will be considered used time. The  

yearly cost for Section 41j is $482, and will follow the State’s calendar year (April 1st – March 31st).  Clarification is needed as if the amount is prorated since CEFLS is adopting Section 41j in November as opposed to the start of the state’s year.

“BE IT RESOLVED, that the Clinton-Essex-Franklin Library System does hereby elect to provide the additional pension benefits of Section 41-j of the Retirement and Social Security Law as presently or hereafter amended.

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that the effective date of such shall be the first date of November 2008.”

The motion was made to accept the Resolution by Chris de Grandpré, and seconded by Neil Surprenant. The motion passed unanimously.

-  The results of the trustees survey on meeting day and time confirmed that Monday remains the day of choice and 4:00 remains the time of choice.  There was unanimity among the trustees for holding board meetings three times a year at difference CEF libraries.

Cerise brought up the possibility of changing the time during DST (Daylight Savings Time). There were conflicts for some board members, and the possibility was dropped. Cerise also mentioned that specific months should be set for the movement of the Board meetings, and it came to a consensus that April, July and September shall be the three months. The libraries will be on a rotating basis, so all libraries that want to hold a Board meeting will be able to.

A question of excused absences for far trips was brought up; however, every Board member will have to try the best to make it.

-  Legal counsel informed Ewa that telephone conference calls cannot count as a vote or as part of the quorum.

Mid Hudson Library System’s document on Open Meetings Law and the Freedom of Information Law contradicts what legal counsel has stated to Ewa. It states that a trustee may vote by phone, only if they are calling into a meeting. Videoconference is permitted, but the site must be open to the public.

Further clarification is still needed; a suggestion was brought up to seek an opinion from the Freedom of Information Office in Albany.

New Business
No new business.

Executive Session
At 4:58 p.m. Lynn Dufort moved to adjourn for Executive Session to discuss personnel issues. The motion was seconded by Lisa Newton. Motion passed unanimously.

Next Board Meeting
The next meeting will be held Monday, November 24 at 4 p.m. at CEFLS.

Adjournment
Cerise Oberman adjourned the meeting at 5:15 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,
Nancy Church, 
Secretary

Board of Trustees Meeting Held November 24, 2008
 MINUTES

Call to Order
The Board of Trustees meeting was called to order at 4:01 p.m. on November 24th, 2008 at the CEFLS Board Room, 33 Oak Street,Plattsburgh, by Cerise Oberman, President.

Roll Call
Present: Lauren Choate, Nancy Church (4:05), Chris de Grandpré, Nancy Howard, Richard Kibben, Lisa Newton, Cerise Oberman, Barbara Stowe, and Neil Surprenant (4:07).

Staff Present: Ewa Jankowska, Director; Michael Spofford, Betsy Brooks, and Kate Williams.

Others Present: Stan Ransom, PPL and Frances Fairchild, CEFDA.

Excused Absences
Lauren Choate moved that Lynn Dufort, Frances Filshie, Virginia LaPointe and Charles Racette be excused from this meeting. The motion was seconded by Nancy Howard and passed unanimously.

Approval of Agenda
Barbara Stowe moved that the agenda be approved. The motion was seconded by Nancy Howard, and passed unanimously.

Approval of Minutes
Barbara Stowe moved approval of the October 24th, 2008 Minutes as written. The motion was seconded by Richard Kibben and passed unanimously.

Financial Report
Approval of Abstracts

Richard Kibben moved approval of Abstract dated October 27th, 2008. The motion was seconded by Lisa Newton.  Motion passed unanimously.

Lauren Choate moved approval of Abstract dated November 10th, 2008. The motion was seconded by Nancy Howard. Motion passed unanimously.  

Public Comment Period
None.

President’s Remarks
Cerise pointed out several items in the meeting packets:

  • The pink colored sheet, prepared by Kate, lists each Trustee, their  county,  address, contact information,  date of resolution to appoint,  appointment term, and eligibility for reappointment. Cerise asked that Trustees check their information and let Kate know if any corrections are needed.  Cerise thanked Kate for pulling this useful information together.
  • Based on the information on the pink sheets, Chuck Racette and Nancy Howard’s terms expire at the end of December. Chuck is not eligible for reappointment, but Nancy Howard is. However, no one is clear on how the reappointment process is done. Ewa will be looking into the process and taking care of what needs to be done prior to December 31.
  • The second item brought to the Trustee’s attention was an organizational chart for CEFLS. This and the pink sheet are three-holed punched in order to be placed in your Trustee’s Manual. Under technical services a line was missing from Elizabeth to the staff underneath. It was unclear why there was no line, as the staff does report toElizabeth. A new organizational chart will be handed out at the next meeting.
  • At the last meeting there was discussion on evaluating the CEFLS Director. In your folder there is Ewa’s November 2008 document and this has been expanded to include a yearly self evaluation.
  • The process by which the Board will complete the evaluation is also in your folders. Hopefully we will schedule the discussion in January. Prior to the January meeting, the member library surveys will be sent out.

 

Director’s Report
Ewa Jankowska reported on:

  • CEFLS has heard from Mr. Daniel Palmer ofEssexCounty, which has approved the 5% increase. There is a 7 p.m.EssexCountybudget hearing tonight which Michael and Ewa will be attending. Ewa will thank them, but the 5% will still have to be approved by the legislature.
  • There has still been no news fromClintonorFranklinCounties. The budget hearing forClintonCountyis normally in the beginning of December and Ewa will try to contact Mike Zurlo to obtain a date.
  • Betsy Brooks, Sonia Long and Ewa attended a rally inAlbanyto oppose the Governor’s proposed cuts. There is still no decision on the remaining 2008 funding; the money continues to be held inAlbany. Ewa was told that the State Library is writing purchase orders for the money to be sent. Since we are unsure of what is to come, CEFLS will take a good look at the services we provide.
  • Ewa thanked Lauren for joining her for her meeting with Assemblywoman Teresa Sayward, and she thanked Richard for coming to theEssexCountybudget hearing with her.
  • Ewa has not been able to get an appointment with Senator Betty Little.
  • Ewa had an interview with Sara at Denton Publications on the budget cuts affecting the library.
  • A new substitute driver, Ken Carter, came aboard. Ken also has his CDL License, so we are sending him to all the proper CDL courses and making sure all the testing requirements are completed to comply with DOT regulations. 
  • Michael talked to the three counties regarding fuel for the bookmobile. The main question now is scheduling. The scheduling not only depends on the bookmobile schedule but also the hours that the county facilities are open. The fuel price is based on the State contract rate.  The Board expressed concern about whether the price might be higher on the State contract than at the regular pump.

PPL Report
Stan Ransom reported on:

  • PPL is spending their money as wisely as possible. There were some additional expenses that were faced this year.
  • PPL is working on a local history room with the help of two volunteers who are putting it in order.  Several items are being put in digital form so they can be used by anyone.
  • The PPL Board meets tomorrow; they will be finalizing negotiations with the union.
  • PPL has been hosting wonderful programs in their new auditorium.
  • On Monday 15,000 new color brochures about PPL services provides.

CEFDA Report
Frances Fairchild reported that the CEFDA meeting at Chateaugay Public Library was first postponed and then cancelled. The next meeting will be scheduled in the spring. 

Committee Reports
Executive Committee

  • Cerise Oberman reported that the next Executive Board meeting will be on December 15th at 4 p.m. at CEFLS. Please let Cerise or any member of the Executive Committee know of any topics/issues that need to be addressed.

Finance Committee

  • Chris de Grandpré reported the Finance Committee met on November 10th and reviewed the proposed budget.  However, since there is no firm word on the revenue for 2009 or the remaining 2008 revenue the Finance Committee is delaying a recommendation to the Board.

  • The State is forecasting a huge deficit for 2009, and Michael and Ewa are keeping a close eye on what the State is doing with the budget. Gov. Paterson plans to release his 2009 budget on December 15th.

  • A question arose regarding the remaining aid to be received and what would happen if CEFLS did not receive any more funds for 2008? The Finance Committee did touch on this during their meeting, and an exact figure is not known, but CEFLS still has money in the bank and will be able to make the December payroll.

  • The Committee is still looking at the independent audit reports that have been received, and a recommendation will most likely be made at the January meeting. Ewa noted that she would like to stay with the same company as they know what CEFLS does.

  • Short-Term Disability plans were reviewed per the provision in the current CSEA Union Contract. Three companies provided CEFLS quotes. The recommendation is to accept the bid from Gordon Pratt at a cost of $562.2 (to be paid one year in advance for 5 men and 9 women). The benefits follow State statutes (currently at a max of $170 a week and 26 week period, with no funds for the first week). A motion to accept the recommendation was made by Chris de Grandpre, and seconded by Neil Surprenant. Motion passed unanimously.

Nominating Committee

  • Nancy Howard proposed the following officers for 2009; President Richard Kibben; Vice President, Barbara Stowe; Secretary, Nancy Church; Treasurer, Chris de Grandpré; and Member at Large, Lynn Dufort. The motion was seconded by Neil Surprenant and passed unanimously. Cerise Oberman congratulated all officers, and the new officers will be sworn in at the start of the January meeting.

  • Nancy Howard mentioned that the search for theFranklinCountytrustee is still ongoing, and there may be another opening depending on what Virginia LaPointe would like to do.Nancywill continue to try to reachVirginia.  Michael Spofford mentioned that he has spoken withVirginiaand she is working on a list of potential replacements.

Personnel Committee

  • Barbara Stowe wondered what the format is for sending out the surveys to the member libraries for completing Ewa’s evaluation. A discussion ensued concerning whether the member libraries should be evaluating the director of CEFLS or the services received. The evaluation that was adopted from another library system and the survey that should be completed is on the services received, not on the Director of CEFLS.  The third bullet under number 3 should read “results from member library service surveys.

  • Member library surveys on the Plan of Services would be helpful for the Trustees’ evaluation; however they may not be available for the January meeting. Last year some responses were not received until February.

  • The self-evaluation form that was prepared by Ewa is in the packet; the evaluation form to be used by the Trustees is also in the packet.  The Trustees’ evaluation is intended to provide a structure for the upcoming evaluation discussion. The evaluation does not need to be filled out, however, if you will not be able to attend the January meeting, please send the completed form to Barbara Stowe, as this form will be the basis of the January discussion.

Advocacy Committee

  • Lynn Dufort was not at the meeting. Cerise mentioned that the Clinton County budget session is normally the first week of December.

  • Ewa stressed that legislators really want to see Board Members and library patrons, not library directors.

  • Nancy Howard mentioned that it would be useful to try to contact Sharon Henderson, one of Senator Betty Little’s aids, to try to arrange a meeting. Ewa informed everyone that John Hammond, Director of the Northern New York Library Systems, was also experiencing difficulty arranging a meeting with Senator Betty Little.

 

Development Committee

  • Nancy Church passed out a letter to the Board asking for their support in the annual Board Leadership Donation. The credit card information has been removed since CEFLS cannot process credit cards.  Nancystressed that full Board participation was being sought by December 31st –the amount of the gift matters less than 100% participation.

  • The letter to the Financial Advisors/Lawyers/Accountants was read out loud by Nancy Church and will be signed by her and sent in the next few days. Kate has worked on the old list and has added more names to it and is roughly around 100 names.

  • Lastly,Nancyhas developed a Fueling Literacy Program to help with the fuel costs of the bookmobile and the van. Kate will be developing a gas station list (both with diesel and regular). The Program has three different levels as noted on the flyer, and follow-up is needed. This Program is highly targeted and will be mailed.Nancywill also work on a press release to “kick-off” this Program as well. We will try to get this sent out by the end of the year.

Bookmobile Committee
Lynn Dufort was absent, but Ewa Jankowska mentioned there was nothing to report.

Communications
Kate Williams had nothing to report.

Old Business

  • Open Meeting Law – Videoconferencing is required to conduct a legal meeting. To this end, several possibilities were discussed:
    • Skype.  Skype is intended for one-on-one videoconferencing. This technology could work if only one Trustee is absent.  If more than one Trustee is absent Skype will not be a viable solution.
    • Betsy Brooks and Ewa will determine if CEFLS has the infrastructure in place to conduct videoconferencing. Some issues include the size of the conference room, the inability, without testing the system, if extension microphones are needed, and possible contention for bandwidth with member libraries.
    • A videoconferencing phone will be needed; it will cost around $500.00, but could be found for less on E-Bay.  If CEFLS does purchase equipment, it could always be used for other purposes as well.
    • The economic situation will need to be determined prior to making any purchases on videoconferencing equipment.

New Business

  • Variances – these are done every year for Dannemora and Beldon-Noble Libraries relative to their population. The motion was made by Lauren Choate and seconded by Nancy Church. Motion passed unanimously. 
  • We will be mailing Chuck Racette a small token of the Board’s appreciation for his service for the past 10 years on the Board.
  • Nancy Howard attended a conference and ran into Adirondack Correctional Librarian Susan Orlando who mentioned she would not be able to do her job without CEFLS.

Executive Session
No executive session held.

Next Board Meeting
The next meeting will be held in January, a date to be determined.

Adjournment
Cerise Oberman adjourned the meeting at 5:20 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,
Nancy J. Church, 
Secretary

 

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