March 18, 1998

Library Board members present: P. Baskin (chair), J. Cole, M. Jackson, D. Mueller, C. Walsh, B. Zaragoza.

Library staff and other staff: C. Brown, L. Engberg, D. Cramer, T. Bonner, E. Feinberg, J. Gegner, C. Ahrens, M. White (OBF).

Chair P. Baskin opened the meeting and first wanted to congratulate Jack Cole on his award as ALA Trustee of the Year.

Chair P. Baskin announced a requested agenda change: 1) move the first three items under New Business to immediately follow approval of the 1/21 minutes due to the staff in attendance to discuss the topics; 2) add an agenda item at the end of New Business: 1998 Nominating Process. Motion to make these changes was moved by M. Jackson, seconded by B. Zaragoza; motion passed.

Motion by Jack Cole to approve the January 21, 1998 meeting minutes; seconded by Marilyn Jackson; motion passed.


Bestseller Express
Charles Brown presented the background of the process to implement this program. Jeff Gegner reported that the main goal of this program was to improve customer service; secondary goal is to reduce the handling process (requiring additional work).

Discussion of the proposal by Library Board members.

Teresa Bonner displayed the logo designed for the Bestseller Express program (prepared by Juli Bratvold).

Dick Mueller moved acceptance of the Request for Board Action as prepared and distributed to the Library Board; Jack Cole seconded; motion passed unanimously and will be progressed to the March 25, 1998 full Board meeting.

Collection: 1997 Allocation vs. Actual Expenditures
David Cramer distributed a pie chart of 1997 collection expenditures, a comparison chart of 1997 collection dollars budgeted vs. expended, and another pie chart of the 1998 collection budget by type of material.

Collection: 1997 and 1998 Material Allocations
Elizabeth Feinberg reviewed the pie charts prepared by David Cramer. She made herself available to answer any philosophical questions from members of the Board.

[Jeff Gegner and Elizabeth Feinberg left the meeting.]


20-Year Capital Plan (DRAFT)
C. Brown reported on a recent meeting with Commissioner Opat about the HCL 20-year capital plan (as he requested). The document shared with the Library Board was prepared at the request of Comm. Opat.

*** Following discussion by Library Board and Mary White, it was determined that C. Brown will review the document with Sandy Vargas regarding the best course of action to relay the information to entire County Board. When relayed to County Board, need to include a note that Library Board was involved in the preparation of the report. Based on Technology Center date changes recently determined by staff, the report will be revised to reflect those new dates.


Revenue Generation Team II
Dick Mueller reviewed a couple of county-wide revenue projects; he is continuing to research other county departments for their revenue generation projects.


Readmobile Expansion
C. Brown presented background: at a meeting last year it was recommended that a staff team review Readmobile service. Outcome of that team is the "Van-based Library Service" document. The team recommended a van proposal rather than another readmobile/large vehicle. Discussion of the van proposal by Library Board members.

C. Brown reported that this proposal will be submitted to the Library Board for consideration along with other projects when planning future budget priorities.

D. Mueller recommended that mobile library services need to be integrated into the 20-Year Capital Plan.

T. Bonner reported that the Library Foundation has discussed the Readmobile and the van proposal; at this time no action needs to be taken.

Revenue Categories in Accounting System
D. Cramer distributed a listing of all current revenue categories with full explanations of what is included in each category.

Revenue Options
C. Brown is reviewing the fines generation for budget year 1999. Before investing time and effort in options, he needed to hear from individual Board members where they stand regarding library fines, he needs a sense of the entire Board.
P. Baskin--feels Library needs to get a sense of the County Board before Library proceeds with any plans.
C. Walsh--would not like to see an increase in children's fines.
J. Cole--no increase in children's fines; opposed to charging for closed days.
M. Jackson--echoes P. Baskin sentiment; County Board members have asked the Library to not raise children's fines during an election year. Recommends speaking with a couple of County Board members to find out the "climate." Staff does need to continually review fines and fees to monitor them.
D. Mueller--the Fines Policy has been delayed by Library Board in-action and he feels a decision needs to be made. Regarding charging fines for closed days--he wants no charges. Also, fines need to be consistent to help the public understand.
B. Zaragoza--agrees with P. Baskin on why go through a lot of work, etc., without County Board backing up front. Would like to see where low income populations are located in suburban Hennepin County--from demographic information. If HCL raises fines, how many people would actually be impacted?

B. Zaragoza asked for Charles Brown's opinion on fines: Charles reported that he has waffled both ways about children's fines. Does not see an increase in children's fines being supported by the County Board due to previous internal staff response to an increase.

M. Jackson asked that when staff reviews fines and fees they need to look closely at replacement costs--to make sure Library is charging enough for actual replacement.

1998 Nominating Process
While this portion of the meeting remained "open," due to the board-specific nature of the discussions to follow and the lateness of the hour, P. Baskin announced that Library staff were free to leave the meeting at this point if they would like. Only staff member Charles Brown remained.

P. Baskin explained that there had been a misunderstanding regarding the composition of the 1998 Nominating Committee and she apologized to Dick Mueller for not including him in the initial meeting. The corrected 1998 Nominating Committee scheduled a meeting for March 19, 1998, 4:00 p.m. at the home of Patti Baskin.

A discussion ensued regarding the role of the Library Board President as it related to the development of a slate of officers for the 1998 Library Board. A majority of the Board expressed concerns about internal relations and communication issues within the Board. Following extensive discussion around these matters, no agreed upon consensus or resolution was reached.

The meeting adjourned at approximately 7:05 p.m.