05.21.20 – SC Meeting Minutes
SYSTEM COUNCIL MINUTES
BERGEN COUNTY COOPERATIVE LIBRARY SYSTEM
May 21, 2020
Stephanie Bellucci, Cliffside Park
Attendance sheet is attached to the minutes in the BCCLS office
- Call to Order and Moment of Silence
Stephanie Bellucci called the virtual meeting to order at 10:35 am. Prior to calling the meeting to order, she reminded everyone to mute their mics if they are not speaking, to identify themselves when speaking and to wait to speak until the Public Portion, Membership Hearing or when comments are requested. She asked that the motion be clearly stated and to identify who made the motion and who seconded it. This will help to ensure that there is a clear record on the recording and in the minutes.
She asked for a moment of silence for Maria LaBadia, Director of Nutley, for those lost in our communities to Covid-19 and for those in the armed forces who have given their lives.
- Minutes of Previous Meeting – December 19, 2019
It was MOVED BY: Kurt Hadeler Seconded by: Laura Leonard
to approve the minutes as written. All in favor. Motion carried.
- Public Portion
- President’s Report
Stephanie Bellucci’s report was previously shared with the membership. Since she also provided a President’s Report for the Executive Board meeting the week before, there was not much new information to report. Additions were italicized. She was disappointed that BCCLS delivery service did not win the NJLA 2020 Service Award, but was proud of the service. She is planning a virtual committee chairs meeting during the first week of June; details to follow soon. There were no questions about her report.
- Executive Director’s Report
Dave Hanson’s report was previously shared with the membership. Most of his report was also covered at the Executive Board meeting. He noted that budget preparation has started with a review of the various insurance plans. He is working on plans to reopen the office and has been involved with LLNJ’s TOPCATS committee which is providing guidance to help libraries reopen across the state. There were no questions about his report.
- Committee Reports
Any committee news that was time sensitive was included in the packet for the Executive Board meeting in May. The following verbal updates were given at this meeting:
• Joseph Emery, co-chair of the Tech Committee, explained that the committee is reviewing mobile self-check apps which will allows patrons to use an app on their phones to check out materials. The self-check app will be recommended to be a BCCLS service and there will be a Q&A session next week. Laura Leonard thanked the committee for their hard work.
• Ellen O’Keefe, co-chair of the Friends Committee, sadly reported that the Friends Breakfast would not be held this year due to the pandemic.
- Old Business
- New Business
a. Northern New Jersey Advocacy Initiative with Four Consortia Document – VOTE
Dave Hanson reported that the Executive Directors and a representative from the 4 consortia in Northern New Jersey have been meeting to discuss an advocacy initiative to show elected officials how libraries can play an important role in the recovery of New Jersey. A draft of the document, Libraries Boost Recovery, was approved by the Executive Board and has been shared with the state library organizations: LLNJ, NJSL and NJLA and they have been
supportive. Sarah Lester, BCCLS representative, said that she was proud to be a part of this team and it was a great opportunity to work with the other consortia.
It was MOVED BY: Ellen O’Keefe Seconded by: Nancy Greene
to approve this document as presented.
A discussion followed concerning the tone and the content in the letter. There was also concern about the communications with NJLA and other state organizations, and if BCCLS was working in coordination with them. It was suggested that the vote be tabled until the other consortia have provided their comments to the committee and the document has been finalized.
Ellen O’Keefe made a friendly amendment to table this until the membership has further opportunity to explore all revisions.
Stephanie Bellucci asked that Dave Hanson provide the other consortium’s comments in his report back to the membership. Their preliminary feedback was very positive. Other consortia and county library systems are also interested in joining the effort.
Ellen O’Keefe withdrew her motion to accept the document drafted by the four consortia in Northern New Jersey at this time. All in favor. Motion carried.
b. Advocacy Letter – Advocacy Committee – VOTE
Stephanie Bellucci thanked the Advocacy Committee for their work on drafting this letter. This letter was also approved by the Executive Board for presentation to System Council.
It was MOVED BY: Daragh O’Connor Seconded by: Mary Jo Jennings
to accept the advocacy letter as presented.
A discussion followed about the purpose of the letter, the content, who is sending it and to whom. What is the action? Is the vote for BCCLS to send it to all elected officials or for libraries to use it individually? John Arthur, chair of the Advocacy Committee, explained that the letter can be used as a template for libraries to advocate for support. Stephanie Bellucci suggested approving the letter to be used as a template. This is a great start to frame advocacy efforts at the local and state levels. Kurt Hadeler noted that a motion is not needed then and Daragh O’Connor removed his motion and thanked the committee for a well-crafted letter.
c. Policies & Procedures – Recommendation – VOTE
Chris Doto, co-chair, introduced the new recommended changes which were approved by the Executive Board in February and May. A discussion followed about reciprocal borrowing statistics and the definition of special access.
It was MOVED BY: Chris Doto Seconded by: Ellen O’Keefe
to approve the changes as presented with the exception of special access under Patrons > Residency. All in favor. Motion carried.
d. Personnel Manual – BCCLS Office – VOTE
The Personnel Committee had requested changes to the Personnel Manual which were not reflected in the document that was included in the meeting packet. The Personnel Manual will be presented for approval at the next System Council.
e. BCCS Scholarship Winners
Stephanie Bellucci thanked John Trause and Becky Karpoff, co-chairs, and Darlene Swistock for their hard work on behalf of the Scholarship Committee. Kurt Hadeler asked about the ability to award scholarships going forward in light of the Friends Breakfast being cancelled this year. John Trause advised that, due to the committee’s planning, scholarship awards can be presented at the current rates for the next few years. Terrie McColl mentioned that the Scholarship and Finance Committees will meet later in the year to discuss the awards and guidelines. Scholarships were awarded to 7 applicants who were accepted at ALA accredited library schools who either live or work in a BCCLS community and it is hoped that they will work in a public library for 2 years after completion of their MLS degree.
The list of winners was included in the meeting packet:
• Gladys Cepeda (Hackensack) – Robert W. White Memorial Scholarship
• Deborah Davidowitz (Upper Saddle River) – Patricia Anne Loughnane Memorial Scholarship
• Maureen Herman (Hasbrouck Heights) – Arlene Sahraie Scholarship
• Cheryl Locastro (Bloomfield) – Michelle Reutty Scholarship
• Ashley Loria (Ridgewood) – Anne Sullivan McGill Memorial Scholarship
• Kristie Murru (Bergenfield) – Brian DeSantis Memorial Scholarship
• Tammy Valentine (New Bridge Center School, River Edge) – Mary Lou Abrams Memorial Scholarship
She congratulated the winners and noted that the scholarship awards will be especially appreciated during these difficult times. As soon as the awards can be presented, the Scholarship Committee will do so. In the meantime, the list of winners was posted on the BCCLS website and they were featured in Cobalt.
f. Library Re-openings – Safely Opening & Operating Task Force (SOOT)
Peter Coyl, chair, advised that the task force has been working hard to compile recommendations the libraries can adopt to aid in their reopenings. He will be sharing a draft of their recommendations with directors and asked for their comments. The Executive Board
will be asked to approve these guidelines and then they will move to System Council for approval.
g. Payroll Protection Plan
Stephanie Bellucci reported that Judah Hamer advised that NJLA applied for this grant and suggested that BCCLS apply as well. As a result, BCCLS received $200,600 to be used for payroll. Stephanie Bellucci thanked Dave Hanson and Christina Park for their work on the application.
h. Four Month Bills
The Executive Board agreed that libraries should hold off assessing fines and sending bills until libraries have reopened.
- Membership Hearing
• Peter Coyl mentioned that if BCCLS will be adopting a hand-held self-checkout app, he suggested that the Policies & Procedures Committee continue the conversation about uniform bar code placement. Stephanie Bellucci mentioned that this is a good opportunity for
committees to work together. She will discuss committee collaboration further at the quarterly committee chairs meeting in June.
• Stephanie Bellucci also mentioned that LAMP is hosting 2 Community Circle meetings for directors every Friday.
• John Trause asked Stephanie Bellucci to welcome our new directors. She recognized Erin Hughes (Carlstadt) and Diane Sweatlock (River Vale). In addition, there are 3 acting/interim directors: Kevin Neary (Elmwood Park), Kiran Patel (Nutley) and Susan Kowalski (Wallington).
• Omar Khan shared the sad news that the president of his board of trustees passed away from Covid-19. He served on his board since 1992 and will be sorely missed. Stephanie Bellucci mentioned that losses can also be acknowledged at the BCCLS Scholarship & Awards event.
- Next Meeting
System Council: Thursday, 6/18/20 at 9:30 am – Livingston (TBD)
Stephanie Bellucci advised that most likely the meeting will be virtual and it may start later than
It was MOVED by: Mary Jo Jennings Seconded by: Michael Banick
To adjourn at 12:21 pm. All in favor.