June 25, 2008

The Hennepin County Library Board met Wednesday, June 25, 2008 at Ridgedale Library.

Present: John Gibbs, Holly Guncheon, Roger Hale, Jill Joseph, Claudia Kelly, Kathleen Lamb, John Pacheco, and David Pratt
Hennepin County Staff: Kim Battern, Bill Berg, Jerry J. Blue, Carrie Brunsberg, Helen Burke, Ginger Bush, Erin Callahan, Sharon Charles, Jane Eastwood, Paula Fox, Heather Grinsell, Trudy Hanus, Natalie Hart, JoEllen Haugo, John How, Tracy Hvezda, Kate Ketcham, Lois Lenroot-Ernt, Karen Levinson, Marilyn Lustig, Michael McConnell, Janet Mills, Nancy Palmer, Renee Perrault, Linda Pinnell, Deb Reierson, Guthema Roba, Saad Samatar, Gail Mueller Schultz, Margaret Schuster, Char Sohlberg, Lois Thompson, Nancy Thornbury, Ali Turner, Marilyn Turner, Dee Tvedt, Ardis Wiley, Betsy Williams, and Gretchen Wronka
Public: Carolyn Bacon, Lynn DeVore, Anita S. Duckor, Jane Johnson, Cheryl Luger, and Sue Mackert

Library Board Secretary John Pacheco called the Hennepin County Library Board meeting of June 25, 2008 to order at 5:10 p.m. and welcomed attendees.

Hennepin County Library Capital Projects Senior Planning Analyst John How introduced himself to the Library Board and staff in attendance.

David Pratt made a motion to approve the agenda which was seconded by Jill Joseph. Motion was approved.

Holly Guncheon made a motion to approve the minutes of the May 28, 2008 Library Board meeting which was seconded by Jill Joseph. Motion was approved.

2008 Hennepin County Library Employee Recognition Awards: Deputy Library Director Lois Thompson
Library staff nominated by their peers won awards in three county-wide categories: Employee Engagement to the Building One Library Team for the positive, collaborative tone they set in planning tours to visit other libraries and acquaint staff with new colleagues. Diversity in Action to the Faces of Africa Training Team whose staff training program generated enthusiasm for learning about other cultures and resulted in an increased awareness of diverse customers and colleagues. Community Engagement to Dee Tvedt who has worked to provide residents with opportunities to become involved in crime prevention to strengthen the community. Staff in each category was introduced and received recognition certificates from the Library Board.

Library Services Usage Statistics: Resource Services Director Sharon Charles
In 2007, 16.2 million books, CDs, and DVDs were borrowed from libraries in Hennepin County (an average of about 16 books per resident which is twice the national average). Other uses such as books and audio-visual material online are not reflected in circulation statistics. Technology has changed the way people use library resources because of a change in the resources themselves. Libraries opening and closing impact usage statistics and 2007 decreases in suburban libraries reflect a full year of operation of the reopened Minneapolis Central Library. Other challenges were outlined that include how much money is available to spend on the collection. Board discussion followed and background on the collection budget was provided along with business trends.

  • Deputy Library Director Lois Thompson announced library card registration has been simplified and effective July 15 customers in all 41 libraries may register and immediately receive their cards.
  • An update on eight active capital projects included the closure of the Plymouth Library May 31 and noted business increases in nearby libraries. Ms. Thompson also explained the process for getting local input that is all inclusive is being developed for neighborhoods and communities where library projects are planned.
  • A summary of the County Board Briefing of June 24 on the Library merger was provided. Board discussion followed and Roger Hale requested information about the Minneapolis Central Library Parking Ramp at the July 23 Board meeting.
2009 Operating Budget Request: Lois Thompson
The framework for developing the 2009 Operation Budget request, operating budget request overview, and proposed reductions were summarized. The focus is on essential library services recognizing there will be reductions in some programs and services as well as modifications to how service is delivered. Library closures or reduction in hours were not considered. Our commitment is to customer service, the strategy and approach is to serve the most people in the best way possible. The 2009 Operating Budget request overview outlined the required expenditures resulting in an approximate $2.5 million shortage. Proposed reductions across all library divisions include services and positions, identifying areas that can be consolidated, redundancies to be eliminated, and operational efficiencies. Efforts will be made to find different, more efficient ways to serve customers impacted by the proposals such as grants and other funding sources. Board discussion followed. Feedback included identifying areas where increases in the budget are needed such as the collection and other economic-related programs. Suggestions from the Board are to be sent to Lois Thompson or Char Sohlberg and will be shared with all Board members. Further discussion is planned at the July 23 Library Board meeting.

Mission and Vision Discussion: Organizational Consultant Carolyn Bacon
Draft Mission statements were read based on the Board feedback provided at the May Board Meeting. Additional feedback was provided and suggested changes will be incorporated. Two draft Vision statements were also reviewed and Ms. Bacon will provide new drafts at a future Library Board meeting for further review.

Library Foundation and Friends of the Minneapolis Public Library Update: Carolyn Bacon
At the request of Secretary John Pacheco, Ms. Bacon provided an update on the status of the agreement to consolidate the two groups into one support group for Hennepin County Library by June 30. Ms. Bacon has facilitated a number of sessions with the steering committee with representatives from both entities. Both groups are working together to achieve the goal of one support group. A final agreement, however, has not been reached. In reference to an offer from the Library Board to offer to help the process prompted Board discussion regarding the level of detail in an agreement. After Board discussion Committee Chair John Gibbs recognized the June 30 date as an aspirational goal and suggested in the interest of the community a consolidated support group be achieved in 2008. Committee member Holly Guncheon added the June 30 date would have allowed a consolidated fundraising effort to the community in the fall. Mr. Gibbs will reconvene the Library Board Committee on the Foundation/Friends with new member Patricia Izek and report back to the full Library Board.

Claudia Kelly made a motion to accept the donations, seconded by Holly Guncheon and the motion passed.

John Pacheco will address the use of Library Board committees at the July meeting.
David Pratt reported the Athenaeum Committee met and provided a summary of the meeting and distributed the Athenaeum's quarterly newsletter. The Committee meets again in August and he will keep the Board up to date.

There being no further business, Roger Hale made a motion to adjourn the Library Board meeting of June 25, 2008 at 6:31 p.m., seconded by Holly Guncheon and the motion passed. The next meeting is scheduled for July 23, 2008 at North Regional Library, 1315 Lowry Avenue North, Minneapolis.


John Pacheco, Secretary