06.27.19 – SC Meeting Minutes
SYSTEM COUNCIL MINUTES
BERGEN COUNTY COOPERATIVE LIBRARY SYSTEM
Hasbrouck Heights Public Library
June 27, 2019
PRESIDING: Kurt Hadeler, Mahwah
NOT PRESENT: Demarest, Fairview, Old Tappan, River Edge and Rutherford
Sign-in sheet is attached to the minutes in the BCCLS office
1. Call to Order
Kurt Hadeler called the meeting to order at 9:40 am. He asked everyone, including guests, to sign in and pick up their name tags. The new reusable magnetic name tags should be returned at the end of the meeting. Attendance is taken from the sign-in sheets. He reminded everyone to stand and introduce themselves when speaking so the minutes can be accurately recorded. He welcomed the BCCLS scholarship winners who are here today to receive their awards. He also welcomed Dave Marino, Waldwick, and trustee representative on the BCCLS Executive Board. Sally Diaz, Norwood, is the other trustee representative on the BCCLS Executive Board, but she was unable to attend the meeting. He announced that Edna Ortega will be retiring after 47 years in Demarest and we all wish her the best. Bobbie Protono is now the Acting Director at Elmwood Park and will be overseeing the library construction project. He thanked Mimi Hui for hosting today’s meeting.
2. Minutes of Previous Meeting – March 14, 2019
It was MOVED BY: John Arthur Seconded by: Christine Hartigan
to approve the minutes with the correction: Stephanie Bellucci noted that Holly Schepisi is an assemblywoman not a freeholder.
All in favor.
3. Public Portion
4. BCCS Scholarship Winners
Kurt Hadeler asked the directors in attendance who received BCCLS scholarships to stand up and a significant number stood up.
John Trause and Becky Karpoff, co-chairs, presented 10 scholarship recipients with their awards:
- Paul Brennan (Wood-Ridge) – Patricia Anne Loughnane Memorial Scholarship
- Valerie Coughlin (Montclair) – Anne McGill Memorial Scholarship
- Deborah Davidowitz (Upper Saddle River) – Arlene Sahraie Scholarship
- Erin Douglas (Upper Saddle River) – BCCLS Scholarship
- Michelle Ferreira (Hackensack) – BCCLS Scholarship
- Elizabeth Gheduzzi (Montvale) – Robert W. White Memorial Scholarship
- Gavin Godbolt (Hackensack) – BCCLS Trustee Scholarship
- Cheryl Locastro (Bloomfield) – Michele Reutty Scholarship
- Leanne Ly (Edgewater) – Mary Lou Abrams Memorial Scholarship
- Riley McArthur (Wyckoff and Mahwah) – BCCLS Trustee Scholarship
Holly Belli, Linda Corona, Peter Coyl, Tara Franzetti, Laura Leonard, Kathleen McGrail, Margaret Mellett, and Paul Shaver spoke about the recipients.
Mary Joyce Doyle Scholarships are awarded to assist the winners in completing their library and information studies. John Trause was pleased to report that BCCLS has given out $166,500 in scholarships to date.
John Trause, co-chair, thanked the rest of the Scholarship Committee: Chris Hartigan (East Rutherford), Wendy Hollis (Hawthorne), Cindy Greenwald (Hillsdale), Caitlin Hull (Maywood), Sai Rao (North Bergen) and Betty Ralph (Paramus Trustee) for their hard work in selecting this year’s winners.
Becky Karpoff thanked everyone for funding the scholarship fund personally or through their Friends Group. John Trause also urged everyone to attend the Friends Breakfast on Tuesday, October 22. The Friends Breakfast is the single largest fundraiser for the scholarship fund. Ellen O’Keefe announced that New York Times best-selling author Jane Green will be the guest speaker at the breakfast. Look for an e-mail on August 1.
5. Treasurer’s Report
Kurt Hadeler thanked Sai Rao for serving as Treasurer for the first six months of the year. She stepped down so she could focus on the construction of her library branch/community center. Stephanie Bellucci was asked to serve as the Treasurer for the remainder of the year. She is a member of the Finance Committee and she thanked Sai Rao and Samantha McCoy, past Treasurer, for their help. She noted that there was a large batch of checks deposited on May 24 due to the delay in mail being forward when the office relocated, the jump in “check” numbers is actually the reference number assigned to the ACH payments made by Citibank, and that the scholarship awards will be deducted from the scholarship account shortly. The Delivery Report will be refined to include more details going forward. Samantha McCoy asked about the difference between the expenses and Capital Expenses listed on the Delivery Report and Dave Hanson explained that Capital Expenses were 1-time expenses and the expenses listed above the Capital Expenses were ongoing delivery expenses. She also asked about the interest generated on the NJ Cash Management account in May ($1,997.67). Lastly, Stephanie Bellucci mentioned that the auditor from Dorfman, Abrams & Music gave a thorough explanation of the audit at the special Executive Board meeting on June 6. There were no further questions about her report.
It was MOVED BY: Gerry McMahon Seconded by: Terrie McColl
to accept the Treasurer’s Report for audit.
All in favor.
6. President’s Report
Kurt Hadeler’s report was previously shared with the membership. There were no questions about his report.
7. Executive Director’s Report
David Hanson’s report was previously shared with the membership. He and many of the directors recently attended LLNJ’s annual membership meeting. He shared the BCCLS office workplan which will be available on the website going forward. Lastly, he mentioned a bug when Overdrive migrated BCCLS over from CloudLibrary in May 2018. It incorrectly allowed access to extra copies of content which is being fixed by Overdrive.
8. Committee Reports
Quarterly written committee reports were included in the meeting packet. Lori Quinn, Election Committee chair, reminded everyone that the 3-year terms of Kurt Hadeler, Jennifer Breuer and Mimi Hui will be expiring at the end of this year. Directors who are interested in running for a 3-year term should look for a link and provide a short bio to the Election Committee by Tuesday, September 3 so their names can be included on the slate.
9. Old Business
Dave Hanson mentioned that there have been some growing pains with the new delivery service: 2 drivers resigned, the smaller rented vans did not have the capacity for forward sorting which created a backlog of 700 bins in the warehouse. Box trucks are now being used so there will be room for forward sorting and the BCCLS office staff have been helping to sort the backload. If the libraries do not have any bins, they can use cardboard boxes, but not shopping bags since the shopping bags cannot be stacked.
- Stephanie Bellucci asked about the rental vans. Dave Hanson advised that they are smaller and they did not allow for forward sorting; BCCLS vans will be arriving at the end of August.
- Amy Babcock-Landry asked when another supply of bins will arrive (end of August).
- Ellen O’Keefe asked if the BCCLS office will be sending an e-mail about packing boxes and sorting by Route and Stop when possible (Yes).
- Margaret Mellett was concerned about the cost of the van rental expenses, warehouse conditions, the welfare of the drivers since the original plan called for 6 drivers/routes rather than 5 drivers/routes and relying on the BCCLS office to go above and beyond to help. She also asked possible sorter positions. (Dave Hanson explained that forward sorting will be a huge help as 45-55% of the items will not come off the truck; they will be sorted by the drivers throughout the day into bins for stops on the same route. BCCLS saved about $11,000-$12,000 with state contract pricing and the breakeven point is 6 months of van rental. There is consideration of a temporary 6th route during the summer. Five routes were the best option for price sensitivity and sustainability going forward. The original plan called for substitute drivers and they can be used as sorters as needed.)
- Kathleen McGrail noted the items in transit jumped from 32,000 to 45,000 and asked if the older items are in the bins in the warehouse. She noted that turnaround times have varied from 21 hours to 9 days. (Dave Hanson advised that the older items are in the warehouse. He expects the system and forward sorting to start working and the warehouse to be under control by next Friday.) She offered to help sort materials and asked if sorting was being done on Saturdays (Dave Hanson replied that the drivers would incur additional overtime and some of them have second jobs).
- Lina Podles offered to pick up her library’s materials from the warehouse. (Dave Hanson asked her to contact Christine Zeni to make the arrangements).
10. New Business
a. Policies & Procedures – Recommended Changes
Jennifer Breuer and Amanda Eigen, co-chairs, introduced the new recommended changes highlighted in blue:
- Lend & Send > Delivery
- Lend & Send > Loan Periods
- Fines and Bills > Lost Items > Unpaid Lost Items
- Fines and Bills > Four-Month Bill > Collecting on Four-Month Bills
- Fines and Bills > Four-Month Bill > Refunds
- Collection Development > Replacement Cost
The changes in red were approved at the March System Council. Kathleen McGrail asked for clarification about #2 Sorting and organizing bins to help the drivers. Maplewood and Wyckoff are packing their bins vertically and in order by stop. Ellen O’Keefe asked about the request to pack bins in numerical order by route and suggested that it be amended to say that it is preferable. The World Language Collection Development Policy and eBCCLS Collection Development Policy were provided by their respective committees. The purpose is to protect BCCLS against any challenges of world language or eContent purchased by BCCLS. The creation of two new shelf locations was recommended: mobile and over sized.
It was MOVED BY: Christine Hartigan Seconded by: Michael Bannick
to accept the changes to the policies and procedures as presented.
All in favor.
b. Policies & Procedures – Introduction of Unified Loan Periods
Kurt Hadeler explained the process: the committee will take today’s feedback into consideration and present their final recommendation to the Executive Board in August and their recommendation will be brought back to System Council for a vote. It is expected to be budget neutral. John Trause asked if a vote can be taken in September if everyone is ready. Since many boards do not meet in July or August, Kurt Hadeler explained that there will be a formal introduction in September so directors can report back to their boards in September and get guidance prior to the formal vote in October.
Samantha McCoy, sub-committee chair, gave a detailed PowerPoint presentation and Jennifer Breuer will also e-mail the presentation to the membership. If approved by membership, the target date for promoting unified loan periods is February 14, 2020. The goal is to remove inequities for patrons who do not have on-line access.
- Dave Franz asked to take a straw poll and most directors were interested in unified loan periods.
- Ellen O’Keefe asked about 3-day DVDs and if patrons need to return them to the owning library. (DVDs under 7 days cannot be loaned via request through delivery, but they can be returned to the home library via delivery. Chris Doto noted that has been in the policy for years.)
- Mike Bannick asked about text messages for patrons with items that can be renewed and those that cannot be renewed. (The text messages do not list the items due for auto renewals for privacy reasons.)
- Kurt Hadeler asked if eBook loan periods could be brought in-line with their physical equivalent (Margaret O’Keefe indicated this was an option; auto-renewals are not available for eBooks.)
- Margaret Mellett mentioned that text messages appear to contradict each other and patrons should check their accounts.
- Mary Kirsch asked about patrons without tech access not knowing if their items were renewed. (Amanda Eigan talked about educating patrons and letting them know that items would be auto renewed if there were no holds, libraries can flag patrons without access and those patrons can still call to renew.)
- Kathleen McGrail commented that this will be nice for patrons and it helps staff if the library closes early and they will not need to process a lot of renewal requests the next day.
- Laura Leonard asked if individual library templates needed to be changed to comply with policy. (Yes.)
- Ann McCarthy suggested that auto renew text messages indicating the everything is ok be skipped and only messages to look at your account should be sent. (Jennifer Breuer said they will look into customizable text messages.)
- John Arthur suggested that including the number of items that are due soon would help patrons determine how many items need action.
- Linda Corona asked about bulk changes to record sets. (Samantha McCoy advised that training will be offered. Kurt Hadeler asked that questions be emailed to the committee.)
- Margaret O’Keefe asked about the ability to choose the short option of unified loan periods.
c. Strategic Plan Update
Chelsea Coleman, chair, gave a detailed presentation of the Strategic Plan which was also included in the meeting packet. There will be a 1-page double-sided document that can be handed out to stakeholders. Please forward questions and comments to Chelsea Coleman by July 31. The committee continues to meet monthly and work on the Strategic Plan. Kurt Hadeler thanked the committee for their herculean effort.
d. Bergen County Grant Recommendation
Dave Hanson’s white paper was included in the meeting packet. Kurt Hadeler explained that the review of the grant usage came up when BCCLS delivery was approved in last year’s budget. The membership wanted to provide its own delivery service, but was concerned about price, especially for the smaller libraries. Most libraries have moved away from a net lending formula and the formula is not as relevant today. Dave Hanson noted that libraries usually lend twice as much as they borrow, but the formula is not correlated as 50% of the grant goes to libraries that are in the top 25% of borrowers. The number of scarce items in library collections is the biggest factor in determining net lending. Small Group Meetings were conducted to discuss how to best utilize the grant which is given to support library services in Bergen County. This year’s grant will be distributed in the second half of 2019; each Bergen County library will receive $1,000 and there will be a vote how to distribute the remaining funds. There are 2 factors in the funding mechanism: 1/3 mill and funding which is actually 70/30 and not 60/40.
- Peter Coyl asked about the reference to 53% of grant monies (those libraries receive 53% of the grant money) and 50% of grant monies (those libraries receive 50% of the grant money). 25% of the top borrowers receive 53% of the grant money.
- Ann McCarthy asked for clarification of the timing of the vote and allocation of the grant. (Dave Hanson explained that the membership voted to distribute $1,000 to each of the 62 libraries in Bergen County so that amount must be distributed; the vote will be how to distribute the remaining $88,000.)
- Mary DiSanza asked about the amount of the distribution; Dave Hanson advised that each Bergen County library will receive a minimum of $1,000 per the membership vote last fall. The amounts listed in his white paper include the $1,000 that each Bergen County library will receive from the grant.
- Len LoPinto provided a written response to Dave Hanson’s white paper. He stated that his board does not want to feel that they are subsidizing other towns and they may need to restrict lending to out-of-town patrons if net lending is discontinued. He also noted that the single bib records (a result of their foreign language collection) add to the quality of their collection and other libraries may not have the space or money for their own foreign language collections. He noted that 77 of their single bib records did not circulate while the other items circulated an average of 10 times.
- John Trause, in terms of history, mentioned that the grant was used for delivery in the past and Terrie McColl stated that was before the state took over delivery.
- Ruth Rando also provided a written response to Dave Hanson’s white paper. She pointed out that her library purchases materials with the grant money and shares them immediately which helps the consortium.
- Kathleen McGrail commented that some libraries do not benefit from the grant and lend eContent freely without restrictions. Check-in processes vary and some libraries check in materials earlier so their items are available for circulation sooner. Last month, less than 20% of her library’s Advantage Plus collection circulated with her patrons; they buy based on the holds list. She asked why only physical items are considered.
- John Arthur asked if the membership could accept the proposal as presented.
It was MOVED BY: John Arthur Seconded by: Linda Corona
To end the debate
All in favor with a few opposed, the ayes have it.
It was MOVED BY: John Arthur Seconded by: Peter Coyl
To accept the proposal as drafted by the Executive Director.
Another discussion followed:
- Paul Shaver would like to hear more information about how an even split of the grant will help us to ask for more money going forward.
- Gerry McMahon suggested the grant be equally distributed among all Bergen County libraries. She advised that 27 of the 62 Bergen County libraries would get more under an even split and proposed a friendly amendment to divide the entire $150,000 grant evenly so that each library in Bergen County would receive $2,419.35. John Arthur accepted the friendly amendment.
- Patricia Durso asked if the original $1,000 was now included in the $2,419.35 (Yes).
- Len LoPinto asked which libraries will be voting and Kurt Hadeler explained that nothing in the by-laws restricts the voting.
- Dave Franz mentioned the importance of reporting to the county how the grant was used and to show that libraries are still relevant to their communities.
- John Arthur suggested assembling a group to create marketing materials to help to ask for more money and to create brochures showing how the money was spent.
- Ellen O’Keefe likes being able to say that all Bergen County libraries are able to use the Bergen County grant and should report how it was used.
- Linda Corona originally mentioned highlighting to the county that BCCLS took on delivery and the grant was earmarked for delivery.
- Catherine Dodwell suggested that if the grant was applied to delivery, it should be reported that way and noted on the vans.
- Paul Shaver talked about putting money towards delivery this year and then thinking about other creative ways to use the grant going forward.
- Kurt Hadeler reminded everyone that the motion is to divide the grant equally among 62 libraries in Bergen County and not to use the entire grant for delivery. Directors have the discretion to use the grant however they wish.
It was MOVED BY: Ellen O’Keefe Seconded by: Laura Rifkin
To end the discussion.
A voice vote was taken and the Bergen County grant will be split equally among the 62 libraries in Bergen County and each library will receive $2,419.35: Yes (46), No (11), Abstain (9), Absent (11).
e. BCCLS Staffing Plan
Dave Hanson’s staffing plan was included in the meeting packet. Peter Havel asked if the discussion could be tabled and Kurt Hadeler explained that it was time sensitive.
The membership went into closed session at 12:46 pm.
The membership returned to open session at 1:12 pm.
It was MOVED BY: Matt Latham Seconded by: Amy Babcock-Landry
To accept the staffing plan presented by the Executive Director.
No further discussion.
All in favor.
11. Membership Hearing
- John Trause mentioned that Darlene Swistock, BCCLS liaison, is also part of the Scholarship Committee and he thanked her for being a key member of the committee.
- Kurt Hadeler mentioned that the Mahwah town council will be voting tonight on a resolution to put a referendum before the voters to seek a millage increase under the Johnson Legislation.
12. Next MeetingSystem Council: Thursday, 9/19/19 at 9:30 am – Wyckoff
It was MOVED by: Jennifer Breuer Seconded by: Chris Doto
To adjourn at 1:16 am. All in favor.