January 2021 Library Board Minutes

January 24, 2021 5:46 pm Published by

Board of Trustees Regular Session Wednesday, January 20, 2021

Present: Vicki Matsumori, Sage Fitch, Kirsten Woodbury, Ali Lyddall, Dustin Lewis, Nick Skene, Brent Gardner

Excused:

Others: Kim Fong, Murray Library Director; Julia Pehrson, Murray Library Assistant Director; Brittney Casad, Murray Library Staff

1. Call to Order:

Chairman Lewis called the meeting to order at 5:30 p.m.

2. Approval of Minutes:   

The minutes for the November 2020 meeting were approved, as written, on a motion made by Ali Lyddall and seconded by Vicki Matsumori. Voting was unanimous in favor. 

3. Public Comment:  

None

4. Financial Reports: 

50% of the year has lapsed and everything is on budget. Chairman Lewis asked if the library will be receiving any more money from the CARES Act. Director Fong replied that there are still some projects pending that will use CARES funds. Chairman Lewis also inquired if property tax collection was successful in Murray City. Director Fong replied that about 91% has been collected. Chairman Lewis commented that it looked like some more grant money will be coming from the state. Director Fong answered that she just received the paperwork earlier this week, so the money should be coming in soon. Chairman Lewis asked if it had already been decided what to spend the grant funds on and the answer was no as the funds can be used for a wide range of things. A motion to receive and file the financial report was made by Vice Chairman Fitch and seconded by Nick Skene. Voting was unanimous in favor. 

5. Board Reports: 

Chairman Lewis stated that he had spoken with the person who runs the library program for the state prison system and she had commented that she is in desperate need for book donations. Chairman Lewis asked what Murray Library does with book donations or weeded items and if those could be given to other libraries. Director Fong replied that most donated and weeded items go on the book sale shelves. Those funds go to the Friends of the Library, which then helps with programming events. She added that some of the DVDs are sold (at book sale price) to Beaver Library as they do not have an AV budget. Items that do not sell usually go to DI, so they could be given to another library. It is just transporting them to another system that can become an issue. Chairman Lewis suggested chatting with Director Fong about this later since she used to be the librarian at the Salt Lake County Jail. 

6. Director’s Reports:

Director Fong shared a presentation and a handout on the reopening steps and benchmarks for libraries in Utah as well as a handout on the REALM test results for various library items. She stated that there is currently a 6-day quarantine in place for library materials due to the results of the REALM studies. Director Fong commented that CARES funds will be used to work on a project with a technology solution product called Open + which is made by the same company that makes the self-checkout kiosks. This product will regulate the entrance to the library according to the set capacity level. In this way, if the library is already at capacity, the door will lock and will not let anyone in unless they already have a reservation. If the patron has a reservation, then they will swipe their card and the door will open for them. It will also have after-hours lockers that patrons can gain access to with their library card. Director Fong commented that there have been some issues getting all of the parts ordered, so it will not be in place for another month or so. 

Chairman Lewis asked how patrons will know why the door is locked. Director Fong replied that there will be an electric sign that will explain that. Ali Lyddall asked if it is known what the capacity number will be once moderate transmission levels are reached. Director Fong replied that she has seen various formulas for figuring that out, but she would rather just wait to see what is recommended when that level is actually attained. Vice Chairman Fitch asked if face masks will still be required and enforced when low or moderate transmission levels are reached and the answer was yes. 

7. Old Business:

Director Fong stated that the hotspots cannot be filtered in the way that is needed to legally lend them to minors. Thus, what was voted on last meeting to only lend to adults will stay in the circulation policy. 

8. New Business: 

8.1 Reinstate Late Fees:

Director Fong stated that temporary circulation policies had been adopted during the pandemic that eliminated fines, but regular due dates and automatic renewals have been in place since July of 2020. There have been problems with items not coming back in a timely manner. This especially creates problems for other patrons who have the item on hold. Due to this, she proposes to reinstate the regular fine policies with some additional leniency included. 

Assistant Director Pehrson added that the goal is for nothing to go to a lost status while it is sitting in a quarantine bin. Therefore, additional days to the time between overdue and lost status will be included. There will also be a grace period before fines are actually placed on the patron’s account. Vice Chairman Fitch asked how many notifications get sent to patrons between checkout and lost status. Assistant Director Pehrson replied that there are typically about 5 notices sent to the patron before it goes to lost status. She also added that a patron still has 3 months after the last lost notice to return the item and only pay a $5 fine instead of the full replacement cost. 

Director Fong commented that there are currently 220 items that are marked overdue/lost that have a hold on them. That is 220 people waiting for items that are not getting them because the items have not been returned in a timely manner. Ali Lyddall asked if there is data from before the pandemic on the number of holds on lost/overdue items. Director Fong answered yes and it is worse now. Vice Chairman Fitch asked if communication about renewals and due dates could be improved. Director Fong replied that notifications do get sent out every time the items autorenew and when items are coming due soon. Vicki Matsumori made a motion to reinstate the late fine policy to the way it was pre-COVID-19. This was seconded by Brent Gardner and voting was unanimous in favor.  

8.2 Staff Day Early Closure: 

Director Fong stated that in past years the library has been closed early on a day, usually in the summer, for staff training and appreciation. There is also usually a holiday party. Neither of those things happened this past year due to the pandemic. She is proposing that the library be closed at 3:30 pm on February 2nd for staff activities (via zoom) and a box lunch. Vice Chairman Fitch made a motion to close the library early on Feb 2nd for staff training and activities. Brent Gardner seconded this and voting was unanimous in favor. 

9. Adjournment: 

A motion to adjourn was made by Kirsten Woodbury and seconded by Ali Lyddall. Voting was unanimous in favor. The meeting was adjourned at 6:33 p.m. 

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