Library Trustees Meeting Minutes – 1/12/21

Conducted on “Zoom”                           January 12, 2021                           

Present were: Gail Lahaise, Amy Howard, Kate Nerrie, Jean Kobeski, Susan Johnson, Jeanne Ramey, Tim Lester, Jane Malmberg, Peggy Pschirrer, Shirley Capron.  

The Meeting commenced at 4:30 p.m. with Amy doing a roll call of members present with a show of hands.    

Approval of Minutes:  Jeanne moved, Jean seconded, all approved (8-0) the November ’20 Minutes with a show of hands.  There was no meeting in December 2020. 

Treasurer’s Report:  Kate had e-mailed her report for Nov-Dec ’20.  She said we spent less money than received this past year, and that $421 donations were moved to the checking account, adding that extra funds from the Library Funds were moved into the Town Account as approved previously.   Amy said we should be thinking about spending funds to do something special when the Library reopens.   

Bills:  Jane e-mailed her “December ’20 Bills Report” to all.  Amy questioned newspapers.  Jane said the Library still receives the Sunday “New York Times,” the “Keene Sentinel” and the newly expanded “News Bank” subscription. 

Jeanne questioned the “New York Times” on line and Jane is to investigate it.  Jane said she can pause both the “Keene Sentinel” and “New York Times” (presumably for safety measures re patrons handling of the papers).  Jane said the magazines get quarantined, and that they circulate fairly well.  Presently, she is looking at renewals of them. 

Noting “Jennifer Burr,” Kate mentioned that she gets paid at the end of the year —  not for her labor time — but for what plants she purchased for the Library. 

Jeanne moved, Sue seconded, all approved with a show of hands, both the Treasurer’s and Bills Reports (8-0). 

Old Business:  Jane e-mailed her “2020 –2021 Library Budget Report” to all.  She said her salary does not change.  She asked for more money for staff because of work at the Branch and for a “Cost of living” increase.  There is a lowered mileage cost.  She added that nothing changed much and that there is a two and one-half % increase overall.  Tim inquired about recently retired Fran Moses’ salary.  Jane declared it is spread among other staff because of their adopting Fran’s work. 

She said the Income side lowered. Amy moved, Jeanne seconded, all approved with a show of hands (8-0). 

Jane e-mailed her “2020 Town Report” document to all.  It will be in the Town Report booklet for residents.  Amy and others complimented Jane re.  Jeanne asked if there could be more lines in it about Fran. 

Amy explained the two budgets, saying the Town Budget is tax payment funded for physical operation needs (re the building, etc.), while the Library budget is for general operation, i.e. purchasing of materials. etc.  

Branch:  Jane was complimented for her good reporting about the Branch in the Town Report.  She said 900 books were cataloged and that she goes there to organize books on shelves Fridays. All staff have pitched in to help, and that it was busy around the holidays.  Some staff are working extra hours to help get the Branch organized to open again. 

– People have inquired about plans to open, hoping that it will.  

– Tim inquired if he could help in getting the Branch to move forward, with cataloging.   Previously Amy had mentioned the clause in the Library’s  “Policies of Government” that declares Trustees cannot work as staff.  However in this case, similar to Trustees assisting temporarily with tasks during the Walpole Expansion project, there should be no problem re.  Re, Jane said if one does not intrude on regular staff’s work, it would be okay.  Jane does not think there would be any problem.  Jeanne also approved Tim’s volunteering to help.  

– Peg said the Selectmen met about the budget with a wish list that concerns electrical outlets at the Branch as there are only two now and that the Commissioners would pay for the plugs.  There will also be cost associated with cleaning up, and for replacing the rug, as the scatter rug was removed, and for new signage. Peggy said the Town will go back to the Commissioners to pay for some of the work done on the building (e.g. plugs).  The Select Board is to do it, and that it will be in the budget to be presented to the Town in March. Amy will draft a letter to the Commissioners re.  Peg said we are on safer ground if we have a lease. 

– Jeanne offered a table for the Branch – possibly for computers. 

– Jane feels it is unsafe to open for curbside service now, but to open when people can come in to celebrate opening.  She added we will not know if we will have money to staff it in March or May when it will hopefully open. 

New Business:  Jane e-mailed her “December and Y-T-D Stats” and her “Library Report 1-12-21” to all.  Because of COVID, Jane said operations are slower but people are coming in.  She said that a N.H. Library survey shows there are eleven Library Curbside services, and nine Libraries open in the State.  Sue questioned the proposed Contact Tracing in the Walpole Library.  Jane said staff are still doing it. 

– Jane gave an update on a new service.  Deliveries to homes started this month, and there has been one delivery already. She is anticipating more requests for delivery.  Jeanne said she would put up a sign at “Applewood” for book deliveries. Jane will give Jeanne a flier re. 

Operations:  Amy said she is up for re-election.   Jeanne and Carol’s position will be up for election this year. Tim, now replacing Fred’s position, needs to run for a one year seat as he was appointed to the Board and not elected by the Town. Amy and Peg explained the election process and terms.  Amy put a small article in the December “Clarion” re open Library Trustee positions.  Tim (assuming election this year), Gail and Jean are up for re-election in 2022 and Kathy, Shirley, and Sue in 2023, 

Building & Grounds:  Jane said there was a leak in the ceiling in her office.  Barry examined and repaired it.  Tim thinks it is in part of the new construction.  Jane is to clarify with Barry re. 

– It was mentioned that whoever takes care of the walkway is doing a great job. 

– Jane is working on replacing the light outside.  She called Houghton and is waiting to hear from him re. 

– The back door cannot be unlocked from the outside. There appears to be no key for it.  Gail said to check with Lil DeCoste as she may have one. 

Friends:  There are volunteers working with book donations at the ReUse Center.  Kate said the books should be weeded because of their disposition. After much discussion, Jane recommended sitting down with Carol Malnati of the Friends to discuss the situation.  

With no further business, Gail motioned to adjourn.  Sue seconded, all approved with a show of hands (8-0). 

Faithfully submitted, 

Shirley Capron, Secy. 

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