Library Board minutes - June 27, 2018

The public is welcome at all library board meetings

The Hennepin County Library Board met Wednesday, June 27, 2018, Minneapolis Central Library, Doty Board Room.


Present: Adja K. Kaba Ann, Caitlin Cahill, Chris Damsgard, Tim Dolan, Rahfat Hussain, Sheila Letscher, Margaret Ligon, Samuel Neisen, and Erin Vrieze Daniels.

Hennepin County Staff: Director Lois Langer Thompson, Johannah Genett, Lois Lenroot-Ernt, Janet Mills, Emily O’Connor, Nancy Palmer, Thomas Rupp, Laurie Schuelein, Tracy Thompson, Ali Turner, and Karen Westwood.

Public: Lilli Sprintz

Call to order

Vice President Erin Vrieze Daniels called the Hennepin County Library Board meeting of June 27, 2018, to order at 5:01 p.m., and welcomed all in attendance.

Approval of agenda

Sheila Letscher made a motion to approve the agenda; seconded by Margy Ligon. Motion passed.

Consent items

Margy Ligon made a motion to approve the meeting minutes of May 9, 2018, and accept donations; seconded by Caitlin Cahill. Motion passed.

Public comment

Lilli Sprintz, read accolades for St. Louis Park Library and library staff. Vice President Vrieze Daniels and the Library Board thanked Ms. Sprintz for coming.

President’s report


Library Board members interested in attending a conference in the second half of 2018 should reach out to President Blauvelt.

Vice President Vrieze Daniels summarized the June 6 Executive Committee meeting discussion and encouraged Board members to attend on August 8 for a facilitated discussion on future Library Board dialogue topics.

Sam Neisen made a motion to approve the proposed 2018 updated Library Board schedule; seconded by Sheila Letscher. Motion passed.

2019 budget

2019 – 2023 Capital Improvement Plan (CIP), Johannah Genett

Johannah Genett, Resource Services Division Manager, provided an overview of the 2019 – 2023 Capital Improvement Plan, including upcoming projects, underway and completed projects, and capital framework priorities.

Library Board members asked for projections on upcoming new building projects, historic building status financing opportunities, and opportunities for temporary spaces when libraries are closed.

2019 Operating Budget, Nancy Palmer

Nancy Palmer, Budget & Finance Division Manager, walked through the 2019 operating budget request, including four addback packages: operating costs for Southeast Library, replacement of reductions to the Collections budget, additional staffed hours at Southeast Library, and additional staffed hours in existing buildings.

Library Board members engaged in a discussion of the operating budget including fine revenue, operating hours considerations, budget strategies, the Collections budget, use of fund balance, and comparisons to other county departments.

Director Thompson shared the budget schedule and will update the Board regularly.

Chris Damsgard made a motion to recommend the 2019 Operating budget request to the County Board; seconded by Tim Dolan. Motion passed.

Director’s report

Library, Community and County Updates

Capital Projects

  • A County Board briefing on the new Southdale Library was held last month Board direction is to continue to plan for north portion of lot. The next community meeting will be held on September 22. Library Board members engaged in a discussion on the history of the site, the reason for the recommended plan, and next steps.
  • The most recent Eden Prairie building project community engagement meeting was the final review of plans with the community; library closing is planned for December 2019 for approximately 10 months.
  • The next Southeast Library building project community engagement meeting will be held on July 25 at Southeast Library after regular business hours.

Friends of Hennepin County Library

  • The Sioux Chef event on June 18 was a success.
  • FHCL is applying for up to $100,000 LSTA grant for community embedded library service to support the Native American Cultural Corridor near Franklin Library in Minneapolis and the Latino community near Oxboro Library in Bloomington.

Library update

  • Years of Service event celebrating employees with major milestone anniversaries was a success. Director Thompson thanked Tim Dolan, Rahfat Hussain, and Sheila Letscher for attending.
  • Director Thompson attended the Youth Congress meeting on Minneapolis youth and discussed how to better connect with students for library jobs.
  • Chris Hewitt of the Star Tribune interviewed Director Thompson on unique aspects of libraries today. He will be following up with Kate Coleman, Social Worker at Minneapolis Central Library, on library service to patrons experiencing homelessness.
  • Library Services staff have been holding “Heart of our Work” conversations across all 41 libraries. The conversations have been a chance for staff to talk about their community, the heart of their work, their challenges, and the strengths that staff bring.
  • Red Blue pilot program was a success at Augsburg Library.
  • The Library is to co-host the Hennepin University Partnership (HUP) mixer Disparities in Education with Human Services Education. There is potential for grants to research impact of library services on reducing educational disparities.

Upcoming Conferences

  • The Library Journal Design Institute will be held at Minneapolis Central on September 21.
  • The 2018 ULC annual forum will be held in Baltimore, Maryland.
  • The Minnesota Library Association annual meeting will be held in October. Margy Ligon asked about Library Board member’s roles in campaigns. Director Thompson will send information to Board members. Vice President Vrieze Daniels requested an ALA update from any board member who attended. Adja K. Kaba Ann shared it was a wonderful experience and she looks forward to giving a full report at the next meeting.

Library board policies

First Read, Lois Lenroot-Ernt

Lois Lenroot-Ernt conducted a first read of four policies Commissioned Public Art, Donation, Library Bill of Rights, Patron Data Privacy Act.

Sheila Letscher made a motion to move the four policies to the September consent agenda for a second read, seconded by Adja K. Kaba Ann. Motion passed.

Committee reports


Unfinished business


New business

Vice President Vrieze Daniels enjoyed an art class at Augsburg Park Library, she encouraged board members to check out the many programs the Library is offering.


There being no further business, Adja K. Kaba Ann made a motion to adjourn the meeting at 6:33 p.m.; seconded by Rahfat Hussain. Motion passed. The next meeting of the Hennepin County Library Board will be held at 5:00 p.m., Wednesday, September 26, Ridgedale Library, Robert H. Rohlf Meeting Room, 12601 Ridgedale Drive, Minnetonka, MN 55305.

- Adja K. Kaba, Secretary