06.07.18 – Special EB Meeting Minutes

06.07.18 – Special EB Meeting Minutes

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Franklin Lakes Public Library

June 7, 2018

PRESIDING:                 Kurt Hadeler                              Mahwah 

PRESENT:                    Cindy Czesak                            BCCLS

Christine Hartigan                      East Rutherford

Gerry McMahon                        Franklin Lakes

Ruth Springer                            Garfield

Jennifer Breuer                          Glen Ridge

Mimi Hui                                   Hasbrouck Heights

Matthew Latham                        Leonia

Sai Rao                                    North Bergen

Laura Rifkin                              Washington Township

Samantha McCoy                      West Caldwell

NOT PRESENT:            Nancy Kirby                              Roseland

ALSO PRESENT:         Darlene Swistock                      Recorder of Minutes

GUESTS:                      Patricia Durso                           Allendale

                                     Eric Lozauskas                          BCCLS

                                     Holly Belli                                  Bloomfield

                                     Stephanie Bellucci                     Cliffside Park

                                     Ellen O’Keefe                            Glen Rock

                                     Monica Smith                            Hawthorne

                                     Amy Babcock-Landry                Livingston

                                     Terrie McColl                            New Milford

                                     John Trause                              Oradell

                                     Len LoPinto                              Paramus

 1.  Call to Order

Kurt Hadeler called the meeting to order at 9:40 am.  The original purpose of this special meeting was to discuss the Personnel Committee’s recommendation to engage a personnel consultant to review BCCLS’ benefits package.  Several other time sensitive items were added to the agenda:  LLNJ financial situation, delivery, the Executive Director Search Committee recommendation and the billing structure for eContent. 

2.  Public Portion


3.  LLNJ – Discussion of budget, funding and implications for delivery

This was discussed at length during the Delivery Task Force meeting earlier this week.  The LLNJ budget has a new line item and asks members to cost share $200,000, but there is no plan in place to assess these funds and their cost share delivery task force does not meet until the fall.  LLNJ has been flat funded for 8 years or more and using the reserves when the regions were combined.  LLNJ was aware that TForce had been losing money for years.  A discussion followed:  Hopefully the LLNJ Town Hall on Friday will answer some of the questions.  It is hard to support a budget increase without any details that does not show any cuts.  NJSL has been flat funded since 2003.  Lobbying for new money takes time and isn’t realistic for 2019.  The priority for NJLA has been to restore per capita state aid so asking for funds for delivery is a mixed message for legislators.  If BCCLS handles delivery on its own, it provides LLNJ with a $500,000 lifeline, although LLNJ might prefer that BCCLS pays for delivery through LLNJ rather than paying its own vendor.  All libraries in NJ need to look at all LLNJ services, not just delivery.  NJ State Library provides:  Talking Book and Braille Center, Jersey Clicks (databases), Jersey Connect (technology) and Jersey Cat while LLNJ provides delivery which is a $1.8MM line in the NJSL budget.  If BCCLS leaves LLNJ, the only service it loses is delivery.  BCCLS will makes its decision about delivery after System Council in October.  If LLNJ folds, the State Library would need to take on delivery.  

Should we change BCCLS’ by-laws so its members are not required to be a member of the statewide library network?  BCCLS patrons expect resource sharing and BCCLS needs to spend the money to maintain the service level patrons expect.  If LLNJ asks for a cost sharing of $200,000 this year, what about next year, is this viable?  Some directors stated they are willing to pay for delivery; although they have no money to spare, they will find it somewhere since this is so important.  The LLNJ cost sharing task force consists of a 3 members (consortia – LMXAC, a small library and a school library).  There is concern about relying on LLNJ’s budget with missing information and limited cuts.  We have not heard NJLA or the State Library’s position while BCCLS’ brand and creditability has been hurt by delivery issues.  There was concern that LLNJ did not set up an advocacy plan sooner and why the State Library is not stepping up; we pay taxes and deserve service.  In 2010, the funding crisis was statewide; in 2018, the crisis is in northern NJ since delivery is not as critical in South Jersey.  It is easier to ask to restore funding than to ask for more funding.  The State Library cannot legally do advocacy.  Requests to legislators vary, but to restore per capital funding was the priority.  There was also concern that LLNJ did not check market pricing when issuing the RFP.  Many member libraries plan to participate in the LLNJ Town Hall and Business Meeting and someone needs to ask about the allocation for the $200,000 cost share so other people in the state are also informed.  It was suggested that the BCCLS Executive Board share these concerns with the membership to give them the information they need to make an informed decision. 

 4.  Delivery Task Force – Update

Stephanie Bellucci, chair, gave an update on the Delivery Task Force’s efforts.  They last met on Tuesday and will make a recommendation to the Executive Board which will be introduced at System Council in June and voted in October.  Each library would be billed a total of $6,250, in quarterly installments, and this would be an addendum to the budget.  BCCLS would try to purchase delivery supplies in 2017 to reduce delivery-related startup costs in 2018.  A discussion followed:  Did the task force consider hiring a consultant: Yes, a consultant would charge BCCLS $30,000 which was deemed not appropriate at this time.  RCLS offered BCCLS a tour and general guidance and NJLS has offered to share its books and routes to help BCCLS get started with its own delivery when the time comes.  BCCLS needs to decide if it will use a contractor to provide delivery or if it will manage delivery on its own.  What is the impact on BCCLS staffing?  Most of the work is already complete; additional staffing required at the BCCLS office would most likely be a part-time person to sort and pack Jersey Cat items.  Libraries would be able to contact the BCCLS delivery vendor directly with any issues.  Is NJLS the only vendor being considered?  When BCCLS urgently needed to find a delivery vendor in the spring, they were the best delivery model and were willing to share their information if BCCLS wanted to eventually handle delivery on its own.  The BCCLS attorney advised that BCCLS does not need to follow the municipal purchasing guidelines.  Will BCCLS ask for an RFP in October to solicit competition and then ask a consultant to review the responses?  BCCLS needs to plan for a consultant now if one is needed and there will be quotes to review.  There was concern that NJLS terminated their short-term contract in April and may do it again.  The Delivery Task Force will discuss the lack of trust in NJLS and the unknown factor in other companies.  The Task Force was thanked for their efforts and they will certainly do their due diligence regarding pricing and a contingency plan.  What is the cost for supplies?  Tote boxes with fold over tops would cost about $25,000-$30,000 for the membership.  It was suggested that greater transparency is needed:  the rest of the membership needs to hear this information and what has been discussed.  It was pointed out that the DTF agendas and minutes are available in the KB.  It is important for Directors to have information so they can explain the value of BCCLS delivery to their boards when the state also pays for delivery.  There will be webinars for trustees in the fall. 

5.  Personnel Committee – Recommendation

Laura Rifkin advised that the Personnel Committee asked 3 consultants for proposals to review the BCCLS benefits package.  They are waiting for the proposals and will make a formal recommendation to the Executive Board on July 25.

6.  Executive Director Search Committee – Negotiation with Executive Director

This will be discussed in closed session at the end of the meeting.

7.  Scholarship Committee – 2018 Award Winners

John Trause, chair, reported that the Scholarship Committee received 19 applications and conducted 9 interviews.  The list of scholarship winners was included in the packet.  Kurt Hadeler asked about awarding a scholarship to someone not currently employed at a BCCLS library.  This has done before and the candidate wants to return to a BCCLS library.  Sometimes it is difficult to find a full-time position in a public library.  These awards will be presented at System Council on June 28 in Hasbrouck Heights.  

It was MOVED BY:  Matthew Latham                 Seconded by:  Jennifer Breuer to accept the recommendations of the Scholarship Committee.  All in favor.  Motion carried.

eContent Billing Structure

Kurt Hadeler raised the issue of the eContent bill under the new billing formula.  When the new billing formula was passed in October of 2017, many libraries voiced concern that the bill for eContent was based on population served, rather than cardholders, and asked for this to be reviewed.  On his own, he compared the eContent billing structure based on population served and active card holders for libraries purchasing and sharing content.  The Billing Task Force originally based it on population served because that is how many vendors bill us.  Subsequent discussions indicated that billing based on current card holders might be a better metric.  He raised the idea that libraries be allowed to purchase their own local eContent for sharing that would reduce their eContent bill.  It would offset their purchasing commitment to the central eContent collection.  A discussion followed:  Can libraries decide how much to spend on eContent and then just pay towards the platform fee?  There is no platform fee.  Some libraries do not have the staff to make selections.  Cindy Czesak pointed out that Robert White would have said, “reciprocal loaning is not a substitute for collection development”, but it is for many libraries.  Individual eContent bought and shared would count towards collection.  BCCLS did not want to manage a central collection but had to because there were no other options after acquiring the BeAT eContent.  What is the impact of pay and courtesy card holders on population served?  There is no impact because they do not have access to eContent; only resident card holders do.  Locally purchased eContent offsets eContent on the BCCLS bill.  Kurt Hadeler suggested that the change to moving to active cardholders for billing and allowing locally purchased collections to reduce their BCCLS invoices be bundled together.  Patrons do not have priority on their library’s eContent if holds are not in place.  If items have a cost per circ, those items are not shared.  If BCCLS was a system, we could recommend centralized ordering, but since it is not, we need to consider the individual needs of all libraries and their budgets.  

It was MOVED BY:  Mimi Hui                            Seconded by:  Sai Rao to introduce this eContent billing structure to System Council in June.  All in favor.  Motion carried.

Executive Director Search Committee – Negotiation with Executive Director

It was MOVED BY:  Mimi Hui                            Seconded by:  Samantha McCoy to move to closed session at 11:32 am.  All in favor.  Motion carried.

It was MOVED BY:  Laura Rifkin                       Seconded by:  Christine Hartigan to return to open session at 12:19 pm.  All in favor.  Motion carried.

It was MOVED BY:  Jennifer Breuer                   Seconded by:  Gerry McMahon to accept the recommendations of the Executive Director Search Committee for latitude in negotiating the contract with the Executive Director.  All in favor.  Motion carried.

8.  Membership Hearing


9.  Next MeetingExecutive Board:  Wed 7/25/18 @ 9:30 am – New Milford

System Council:   Thu 6/28/18 @ 9:30 am – Hasbrouck Heights

 10.  Adjournment

It was MOVED by:  Kurt Hadeler                         Seconded by:  Matthew Latham

To adjourn at 12:22 pm.

Unanimously approved.

dms:  6/10/18