Summer 2012

The Trustee communicates issues affecting libraries and library services. Once a library and systems join LTA, all their trustees automatically receive this quarterly publication published by LTA. To learn more about membership in LTA, Click Here.

From the Editor's Desk

by Adria Ripka

Summer 2012 issue of Trustee

Smorgasbord: a meal of a variety of dishes served buffet style from which one is allowed to choose as many as one wishes.

I had an excellent drive to and from the 2012 Trustee Institute held on Long Island at the beginning of May. By the time I got to my destination, I had my editorial for this edition of the Trustee written! What a great feeling of accomplishment I had. Now that we are at, or near, mid-Summer, a couple of other items have come to the fore causing me to rethink my format. So, I'm presenting several items in my comments and you may choose those of most interest to you. Hence, a smorgasbord.

1. Reaching our voting supporters: do we reach all our potential supporters when we have a proposition coming up for vote? Yes, we spin a positive picture to our patrons but do we encourage those who are not property owners to vote? Our funding is usually represented as a percentage of a home owner's property tax; but, at least in my school district, qualified voters do NOT need to be property owners. Do the residents in our nearby apartment complexes realize they, too, can have a say in library proposals and school budgets? Those complexes house much of our low-income, senior and new resident populations. Some patron education may be in order before the next proposition comes to a vote.

2. Privatization: As with many services presently provided by public employees, libraries are a target for privatization and are being pictured as "failing and a burden to taxpayers."  Failing?!?!? Well-used computer labs, tutoring support, public programs with good attendance, circulation up; that's what is happening at my library. The article in my CSEA Workforce newsletter really sent my blood pressure up. The only thing failing is funding support for libraries. You can find more information at

3. IRS 990 Form: I'm calmer about this item. My director informed my board that each trustee is now required to receive a copy of the annual IRS 990 form. We've always had access to the submitted form. I just wanted you to be aware that you will be receiving a copy from now on.

4. Name change at American Library Association: You may be aware that the ALA had a division for Friends and for Trustees. Within the past year or so, they merged those groups into a division called ALTAFF. The name has been changed, again, to" United for Libraries: the Association of Library Trustees, Advocates, Friends and Foundations". Find out more at:

That's all the food for thought at this seating. Look through the rest of the Trustee for a summary of the 2012 Institute and for updates on our website. Our blog at will be active soon. That will be the best place to discuss the first two items I presented. Items 3 and 4 are just information. Items 1 and 2 can't be ignored.

Have an excellent Summer!

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