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  • Board Meeting


    New York State Association of Library Boards

    Minutes of the Directors' Meeting

    September 8, 2001

    Albany, New York


    The meeting was called to order at 9:10 a.m. at the Best Western Sovereign Hotel, 1228 Western Avenue, Albany, New York by President Norm Jacknis.


    Directors present: N. Jacknis, N. Simaitis, M. Thompson, R. Strauss, E. Field, J. Hurley, D. Krogmann, S. Patton, A. Smith, B. Taber, and B.Wells. J. Rosen arrived during the lunch break and D. Krogmann left at noon.  G. Manitzas, M. O'Hanlon and M. Robertson were excused.  Association Manager, Karen Dyer was also present.  Carol Anne Desch, Coordinator of Statewide Library Services, joined us at 10:45 a.m., and NYLA Council representative Jim Mancuso arrived during lunch.



    A motion to approve the minutes of May 4, 2001 was made by E. Field, seconded by A. Smith; unanimous.


    A motion to approve the minutes of the Organizational Meeting of May 5, 2001 was made by N. Simaitis, seconded by E. Field; unanimous.


    Treasurer's Report

    Treasurer D. Strauss distributed a 2002 Budget proposal which included a review of our budget for the last five years. The amount of $225 will be added to the Trustee Handbook line under Expenses to cover the purchase of handbooks for distribution at the Trustee Institute.  After making the proposed changes, Dick will present the budget for adoption at the October meeting.


    Dick also distributed two investment proposals, one from PaineWebber, the second from New England Financial, Regy Thorpe and Associates.  He would like to have a third proposal available before making a recommendation.  Board members were asked to

    e-mail possible contacts to Dick.


    A motion to empower Treasurer Dick Strauss to contact Fleet Bank to invest Operating Funds in an interest bearing account was made by B. Wells, seconded by A. Smith; unanimous.


    A motion to empower Treasurer Dick Strauss to research, evaluate and make a recommendation to the Board at our next meeting regarding an investment proposal was made by B. Taber, seconded by A. Smith; unanimous.


    A Profit and Loss Statement dated September 7, 2001 was also distributed.


    Communications (on file at the NYSALB office)

    An e-mail from Susan Keitel, Executive Director of NYLA, requested financial support of NYLA's efforts for Lobby Day, March 19, 2002.  We agreed that any contribution should come from next years budget.  Her e-mail further asked if NYSALB would be interested in helping to fund the printing of information to be used to help library trustees act as advocates for New Century Libraries.  We agreed to discuss this with Jim Mancuso following lunch.


    A letter from Barbara Peer, NYLA Office Assistant, requested payment of Conference Registration for Parry Teasdale.  We reviewed and discussed the correspondence she enclosed. 


    Page -2-


    A motion to remit $90, half of the requested amount, to NYLA was made by N. Simaitis, seconded by S. Patton. Motion was carried with D. Krogmann voting nay.


    A telephone request from Nancy Reuss, Division of the Budget, asked for our opinion of the library bills which would allow  (names to be added)   to be eligible for funding through the State Dormitory Authority.  A motion to support this bill and to recommend that all public and free association libraries be included was made by S. Patton, seconded by B. Taber, unanimous.


    A letter from Mary Jo Ketchum reviewed her contact with the architectural firm of Tom Petrowski who expressed interest in advertising on the back cover of the Membership Directory.  Karen Dyer was asked to check to see if postage rates could be affected if paid advertising was included in the directory.  She will also contact Tom Petrowski to see if he is still interested in advertising.  Prior to the October meeting, the Executive Committee will decide whether or not to include advertising on the directory.


    A letter from Mary Jo Ketchum reviewed suggestions for future board consideration.

    Orientation material will be presented at the October meeting.  Karen located an old brochure which can be brought up to date.  We also discussed the need for advocacy groups, public relations and legislative action.


    At Norm's request, Davis Crippen has agreed to be our representative to NYLA Council.


    A note of thanks was received from the family of Fran Peterson for expressions of sympathy.


    A short recess was taken from 10:30 to 10:45a.m.  We were joined by Carol Ann Desch.


    Committee Reports


    Trustee Institute

    Committee Chair N. Simaitis reviewed the evaluations and distributed a summary of the recommendations from the 2001 Institute.  Next years' Trustee Institute is scheduled for Friday, May 3 and Saturday, May 4, 2002 at the Holiday Inn Turf, Wolf Road, AlbanyNew York.  Room cost will be $99, an increase of five dollars. 


    Nancy asked which format for Saturday we preferred.  The consensus was to return to presenting two programs during each morning session, followed by a speaker after lunch.  Topics that new trustees need to know include budget and legal responsibilities.  Other topics discussed were advocacy, public relations and becoming a library district.  Strategic planning on topics including keeping up with technology, a disaster plan and developing a financial plan were also suggested.  In addition, we discussed inviting candidates for governor to attend as Saturday's luncheon speakers.  The future of libraries could also be a luncheon topic.


    We will investigate possibilities for providing video conferencing, video tape available on our web site or phone access by dialing an 800 number (similar to a conference call).


    We need to ask about the conference call capability at the hotel in addition to seeing if Verizon would be willing to donate conference call availability.  We may also arrange for someone from the State Library to assist with video taping of the sessions.




    Page -3-


    Velma Moore Award

    Committee Chair B. Taber distributed copies of nomination information for the nine nominees in addition to a written report.  Bill explained that the committee discussed the idea of a moratorium for considering past NYSALB directors for the Award.  He also recommended that nominees be kept on file for future consideration.


    The committee unanimously recommended Joseph Eisner, trustee, Plainview - Old Bethpage Public Library as the recipient of the Velma Moore Award for 2001.


    A motion to accept the recommendation of the committee was made by E. Field, seconded by S. Patton; unanimous.


    A motion to authorize the committee to keep for consideration all nominations not selected on file for two years, and to consider nominations of previous NYSALB directors two years after their retirement from the board, was made by B. Taber, seconded by S. Patton; unanimous.


    Note:  This information needs to be added to the Statement of Criteria for the award.


    The committee will also select a new award for presentation because of the expense of the

    present award.



    A membership analysis, statistics, and a list of library system membership dated September 8, 2001, were distributed.  Committee Chair D. Strauss explained that the key to membership was mailing letters in December.  We discussed how to reach long-standing non-members.  Possibly a one-on-one contact at the local system level may be the best approach.  Board members would like a list of non-members for their respective systems.



    E. Field, Committee Chair, reported that the deadline for the Fall issue is Monday, September 10.  He has received an article from Susan Keitel, Executive Director of NYLA, about the state convention, and an article from Senator Hugh Farley about his personal use of the library.



    Norm reported that Mary Berman, Chair of the NYLA Legislation Committee, knows M. Robertson, our Committee Chair.  We hope this will facilitate future legislative efforts.



    Committee Chair T. Thompson reported the following board members will be eligible for re-election at the Annual Meeting in May, 2002:  George Manitzas - third term, N. Simaitis - second term, B. Taber - third term, T. Thompson - third term.  A. Smith is ineligible for re-election because she no longer serves as a library trustee. 


    Old Business



    New Business

    We received an inquiry from a school district library about how to change the terms of office for a trustee.  This depends on the library's charter.  The library board needs to contact the State Education Department and notify the library system regarding a change. 



    Page -4-


    A question was raised about a donation in recognition of Fran Peterson, past NYSALB director.  T. Thompson read from the minutes of March 10, 2001, a motion to contribute $100 to the Lindenhurst Memorial Library in recognition of Fran's service to this organization.  The motion was unanimously passed.  Karen was asked to be sure this donation was sent.



    Carol Anne Desch began a discussion about the New Century Libraries legislative proposal.  The second year of the proposal calls for trustee training, and she asked us for suggestions.  Ideas included direct mileage compensation to conferences, subsidizing the cost of video conferencing or other technology, and a series of training videos available through inter-library loan.  The State could offer a monetary incentive award to a library for board members who attend training.


    We asked how many new trustees there are in New YorkState.  We also discussed the problem of motivation and how to avoid making the job of a trustee more onerous.


    The State report will be asking a question about trustee training.


    A recess for lunch was taken from 12 to 12:45p.m.  D. Krogmann left, and J. Rosen and J. Mancuso arrived.


    Guests continued

    Carol reviewed the efforts on behalf of New Century Libraries, including a letter to the governor from the President and Chief Executive Officer of HSBC Bank USA, and the distribution of advocacy tool kits for patron use to each public library outlet by NYLA.  This distribution was privately funded by an outside organization.  Each tool kit included a letter to the director, brochures and bookmarks.  Jerry Nichols, Director of the Suffolk Library System, is making additional materials available at cost. 


    We also learned that Liz Lane and Fred Smith at the State Library are retiring.  The Division of Library Development will be undergoing office renovation.


    NYSALB received a gift of a New Century Libraries poster from the State Library and NYLA which was accepted with gratitude and will be displayed at our association office.


    Jim Mancuso, our representative from NYLA, discussed the need for more interaction between NYLA and NYSALB.  He asked about our level of involvement at Lobby Day.


    We agreed that it is important to present a united front, and that a negative impact could result from not participating in Lobby Day.  However, it is also as important to visit legislators at home.


    In Albany, meetings with staff members on the budget, especially from the Speaker of the Assembly, the Majority Leader of the Senate and the Governor's Office continue to be necessary.  Thank you notes for past support continue to be important.


    Jim asked if NYSALB was willing to work with NYLA to produce a brochure about New Century Libraries for use by trustees.  We discussed how this brochure could be used to help trustees discuss New Century Libraries with editorial boards, Chambers of Commerce, Rotary, in weekly newspapers, and on local cable television.



    Page -5-


    Committee reports (continued)


    Twenty years ago New York State ranked first in funding for library service.  This level of funding has steadily declined, and today one million residents do not have library service.  More than half of New York State's libraries are funded at below the $20 per capita level.


    It was suggested that the brochure contain a succinct description of New Century Libraries, how this proposal will benefit local libraries and what trustees can do.


    Jim suggested that 3,000 copies of the brochure will be printed.


    Annual Conference

    NYSALB will be sponsoring two programs on Saturday, October 20, 2001 during the NYLA Conference.  From 8:30 to 9:45a.m. Jim Farrell and David Krogmann will present "How to Become a Library District", and from 10:30 to 11:45 a.m. a panel including Jeff Cannell, Albany Public Library; Carol Sheffer, Queens Borough Public Library; Lindsay Ruth, Geneva Free Library and Ann O'Donnell, Plattsburgh Public Library will discuss "Making Libraries More Inviting."


    We need to hold a board meeting following the Conference Farewell Luncheon.  If Judy Rosen, Committee Chair, is unable to arrange a meeting room at the Albany Public Library, Karen offered the use of the conference room at Carr Public Affairs.


    Carol Desch and Jim Mancuso left at 1:50 p.m.


    New Business (continued)

    We reviewed our committee structure and agreed to the following:

                Budget, Planning and Finance: Dick Strauss (Chair), Joan Hurley, Audrey Smith


                Education will include two sub-committees: Trustee Institute, chaired by Nancy Simaitis, and NYLA Annual Conference, chaired by Judy Rosen. Other members include David Krogmann, Marcella O'Hanlon, Audrey Smith and Bill Taber.


                Legislation and Policy: this committee will continue to be responsible for state and federal legislation and policy issues.  It will include the Freedom of Information Committee responsibility to inform the board of any problems or cases involving freedom of  information and to recommend trustee action or response when required.  The Legislation and Policy Committee is assuming the work of the Committee on Library Development: to work with the Division of Library Development and to keep NYSALB informed on projects, and to recommend ways in which NYSALB can ensure trustee participation in the conferences, committees and initiatives that will be undertaken by the State Education Department and others.  Mable Robertson (Chair), Sam Patton and Bob Wells.


                Membership: Dick Strauss (Chair) and Joan Hurley.


                Nominating - this committee will assume the responsibility of the Advisory Council Coordinators to stimulate trustee interest, support and action by encouraging nominations from local libraries as well as systems of qualified representatives to form an advisory corps.  Tina Thompson (Chair), George Manitzas, Mable Robertson and Dick Strauss.


                Newsletter: Ed Field (Chair), Marcella O'Hanlon and George Manitzas



    Page -6-


                Public Relations:  Marcella O'Hanlon (Chair), Ed Field, David Krogmann and Bill Taber


                Velma Moore:  Bill Taber (Chair), Ed Field, Nancy Simaitis, Tina Thompson.


                Executive:  Norm Jacknis, Nancy Simaitis, Judy Rosen, Dick Strauss and Tina Thompson.


    A motion to adopt the committee changes and appointments for the 2001 - 2002 year was made by E. Field, seconded by B. Taber; unanimous.


    We asked Karen to submit a proposal for public relations and advocacy at our January meeting.


    Ed will contact Jim Mancuso regarding the proposed brochure and its cost.


    At our October meeting we will discuss the orientation material for new board members, the proposed New Century Libraries brochure, and update the Velma Moore criteria.


    A motion to adjourn at 2:40 p.m was made by D. Strauss, seconded by J. Rosen; unanimous.


    Respectfully submitted,


    Tina Thompson, Secretary


    Future meeting dates:

    Saturday, October 20, 2001 following the NYLA Conference

    Saturday, January 19, 2002

    Saturday, March 16, 2002

    Friday, May 3 and Saturday, May 4, 2002 - Trustee Institute

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