January 18, 2011
The Gwinnett County Public Library Board of Trustees held its regularly scheduled meeting on January 18, 2011 at the Five Forks Branch. Present were Board members Phyllis Oxendine-Chair, Phillip Saxton-Vice Chair, Babs Wagoner-Secretary and Betty Atkinson-Treasurer. Administrative staff members present were Nancy Stanbery-Kellam-Executive Director, Liz Forster-Deputy Director, Jane Walters-Business Services Director, Barbara Spruill-Branch Services Director, Deb George-Materials Management Director, Michael Casey-Information Technology Director and Pamela Covington-Administrative Assistant. Other administrative staff were also in attendance. Phyllis called the meeting to order at 6:30 PM.
Introduction of New Board Member
Phyllis introduced new Board member Betty Atkinson. Betty was nominated by John Heard, District 4 Commissioner, to serve on the Library Board through 2014. The experience Betty brings to the Board includes a successful career with the Georgia Department of Labor and community involvement including participation in Senior Leadership Gwinnett. Betty is a member of two book clubs and a huge library supporter.
Board of Trustees Election of Officers
Motion by Wagoner to elect Phyllis Oxendine as Chair, seconded by Atkinson, unanimous. Motion by Wagoner to elect Phillip Saxton as Vice Chair, seconded by Atkinson, unanimous. Motion by Saxton to elect Babs Wagoner as Secretary, seconded by Atkinson, unanimous. Phyllis Oxendine-Board Chair appointment Betty Atkinson as Treasurer.
Report from Nancy Stanbery-Kellam
March Board Meeting
Nancy reported since the Five Forks Branch is an election location for Gwinnett County, the meeting room will be closed on Monday evening, March 14 while poll workers set up for a March 15 special election. The Monday, March 14, 2011, Board of Trustees Meeting will be held at the Suwanee Branch.
Library Closed Due to Weather
The library was closed Monday through Thursday last week due to inclement weather. All branches opened on Friday with extended hours to provide customers the opportunity to visit. The telephone reference operators handled 250 calls within the first hour the service was opened Friday and received over 660 calls during the day. While the Library was closed, customers utilized the on-line service to reserve materials. One branch received over 900 requests.
Gwinnett County CY2011 Budget
On January 4, 2011, the Gwinnett County Board of Commissioners approved the County’s calendar year budget which included a 15% reduction in Library funding. The 2011 Library subsidy is $2.8 million less than last year. Clearly this will have an impact on the services the Library provides the community. The decision on the funding finally gives the Library a clearer picture on what is available to work with in this calendar year. Over the past 18 months, the Library has made numerous cuts in operations and continues to increase efficiencies in staffing and technology. This streamlining of operations is the administrative staff’s norm and not just a temporary reaction to a short fall in funding. The FY2012 budget process will strive for a balanced budget in FY2013. Administrative staff will inform the Board at the March 14 meeting of the progress made on the FY2012 budget process. Administrative staff also hope to have a better idea of what service reductions will be needed and when implementation will begin.
Phyllis stressed no branch closings should be considered by administrative staff and all branches should operate on an equal basis. All Board members agreed with Phyllis. Board members also discussed possible furlough days in place of layoffs. Phyllis stated before staff layoffs are considered, the budget should be cut to the bone.
Author Steve Berry
Due to inclement weather, the Steve Berry author event was rescheduled from January 15 to Saturday, February 26. The event will be held at 7:00 PM at the Norcross Cultural Arts and Community Center. Mr. Berry is the New York Times bestselling author of ten novels including his newest hit, The Emperors Tomb. The event is free and open to the public.
Lunch and Author Event
The Library, in partnership with Garden Plaza, William Morrow/Harper Collins Publishers and the Penguin Group Inc., will present a complimentary luncheon and book discussion with three New York Times bestselling authors: Mary Jane Clark, Lynn Cullen and Karen White. The event will be held at the Garden Plaza in Lawrenceville on January 20 at 12:00 PM.
Key to the Arts & Culture
On February 1, the Library will be adding The Wren’s Nest Museum to the Library’s Key to the Arts & Culture free museum pass program. Library cardholders can checkout a one-week free admission pass for a family of four to the Hudgens Center for the Arts, the Southeastern Railway Museum and The Wren’s Nest Museum. The Library and The Wren’s Nest Museum will celebrate the launch of the new partnership on Tuesday, February 22 at 7:00 PM at the Five Forks Branch with a free performance by world renowned storyteller and puppeteer Akbar Imhotep. Mr. Imhotep will be introduced by the great-great-great grandson of Joel Chandler Harris, Executive Director of the museum, Lain Shakespeare. Copies of Joe Chandler Harris’ books will be awarded to some lucky guests.
On January 8, the Norcross Branch hosted the Univision Program Festival Musicale with 101 attendees. The program was extremely successful.
eBook Readers/Digital Downloads
The library has 30 new Barnes and Noble Nook eReaders available for customer checkout. Two eReaders will be available at each branch beginning in February. The digital downloads page received an average of 400-500 hits per day from 9/22 to 12/24. On 12/25 it spiked increasing almost 500%. This can be attributed to the popularity of eBook readers as holiday gifts. While traffic has slowed, it remains to be above pre-holiday levels. eBook readers are very popular and continue to grow in use.
Board of Trustees Meeting Minutes
Motion by Saxton to approve the November 8, 2010 Meeting Minutes as distributed, seconded by Atkinson, unanimous.
Financial Statement – December 31, 2010
Jane discussed the Financial Statement of Revenues, Expenditures and Changes in Fund Balance – Actual and Budget for the six months ended December 31, 2010.
FY2011 Budget Adjustment – County Revenue
On January 4, 2011, the Gwinnett County Board of Commissioners approved the County’s 2011 calendar year budget. Included in this budget is the $16,118,068 Library subsidy for the 2011 calendar year. The 2011 subsidy is $2,844,365 less than the prior year subsidy from the County. The County revenue line will be adjusted to the actual amount the Library will be receiving from the County for the remaining six months of the fiscal year. The adjustment will be a $1,422,182 decrease to Local Revenue and an increase to the amount of Fund Balance required to balance the budget. Motion by Saxton to decrease the local revenue budget $1,422,182 and increase the amount of fund balance required to balance the budget, seconded by Wagoner, unanimous.
CY2011 Compensation Plan
The County 2011 annual compensation plan does not include increases for county employees for the calendar year. Since the Library depends on the County for the majority of its funding, the Library has historically mirrored the County’s annual compensation plan. There will be no increase for Library employees for calendar year 2011. This includes: Pay for Performance, Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA) and Longevity. Board members expressed their thanks to staff for the excellent customer service provided to customers, and stated their disappointment that County funding does not provide for salary increases again this year. Motion by Wagoner to adopt the 2011 Library Compensation Plan effective January 1, 2011, which includes no Pay for Performance, no COLA and no Longevity Pay, seconded by Saxton, unanimous.
Each year the Board is asked to reaffirm the Current Practices which are the Library’s standard operating procedures. Motion by Saxton to approve/reaffirm the Current Practices, seconded by Atkinson, unanimous.
Financial Policy – Library Fund Balance
Jane discussed the Library Fund Balance Financial Policy. The Governmental Accounting Standards Board (GASB) has issued Statement 54, Fund Balance Reporting and Governmental Fund Type Definition. The objective of this statement is to bring clarity and consistency to the reporting of the fund balance on the financial statements. (The fund balance refers to the difference between the assets and liabilities in the governmental funds balance sheet.) Implementation of this statement is effective for the Library’s 2011 fiscal year. The Library’s three main governmental funds are the General Fund, Capital Projects Fund and the Special Revenue Fund and each of these may have a fund balance at the end of each fiscal year. These fund balances will now have specific classifications that adhere to GASB #54. The classifications depict the relative strength of the constraints that control how specific amounts can be spent. Restricted, Committed, Assigned and Unassigned are the most common classifications that the Library will use on the financial statements. Motion by Saxton to approve the Financial Policy – Fund Balance effective July 1, 2010, seconded by Wagoner, unanimous. Motion by Saxton to approve classifying the 7/1/2010 Capital Projects (replacement fund) fund balance of $1,832,479 as committed to the specific purpose of replacing library assets, seconded by Atkinson, unanimous. Motion by Saxton to approve authorization for the Library Executive Director to assign fund balance for specific purposes that are neither restricted nor committed, seconded by Wagoner, unanimous.
Recommendation of Telecommunications Contract
The Library’s current service contract for Dedicated Internet Access will expire June 30, 2011. To be eligible for E-Rate support in FY12, the Library’s specifications were posted on the School and Libraries Division’s website for a period not less than 28 days to ensure a competitive bidding process. The Library received three responses. Staff recommends that the bid be awarded to the highest scoring vendor, XO Communications. The Library anticipates annual cost savings to equal $36,384. The annual contract costs are $48,460 and the contract term is three years with options to terminate every 12 months without financial penalty. Motion by Atkinson to approve awarding Dedicated Internet Access Service to XO Communications, seconded by Saxton, unanimous.
Materials Replacement Costs Policy: Library staff would like to add replacement costs for the E-Reader Kits and the Park/Historic Site Passes and subsequently merge this policy into the Materials Guidelines. Lost or Damaged Materials Policy: Library staff would like to add the words, ‘annually by the staff to keep pace with changing prices and formats’ and omit the words, ‘at least every three years, and is presented for Library Board approval if changes are needed’. This revision negates the need for the separate Materials Replacement Costs Policy and it could be removed from the current list of policies. Motion by Saxton to make revisions to the materials Replacement Costs Policy and the Lost or Damaged Materials Policy with a February 1, 2011 implementation date, seconded by Atkinson, unanimous.
Motion by Saxton to adjourn the business meeting at 7:10 PM, seconded by Wagoner, unanimous.
Minutes submitted by Pamela Covington for Babs Wagoner, Board Secretary.