PCPL board decides bookmobile for sale

Monday, May 1, 2006

A for-sale sign could soon be on the old Putnam County Public Library Bookmobile, as PCPL board members have voted to sell the portable library.

The decision came after local firefighters had requested in January that the board donate the vehicle to be transformed into a mobile command center for use at fires and other emergency sites.

Board member Vicki Timm led the committee which made the recommendation to sell the old bookmobile

"We talked about the request, but we felt like we had made an investment, and we should try to sell it and not just give a resource away," she said.

A new bookmobile was purchased for the library in July, 2005. However, numerous mechanical problems led library officials to hold on to the old vehicle for use as a back-up.

At the meeting, bookmobile librarian Jane Glier reported that while major concerns, such as buckling shelves had been fixed under the bookmobile's warranty, some problems continue.

"There are still a few glitches," she said.

In her report on library activities, PCPL Director Alice Greenburg said bookmobile circulation had dropped due to missed stops because of mechanical problems with the new vehicle.

Board members agreed that while PCPL staff should be able to rely totally on the new bookmobile now, they would keep an eye on the situation while the sale is advertised.

Library board president Drew Brattain said PCPL finances also played into the decision not to donate the old bookmobile.

"I don't know what the vehicle is worth, but I know we are in need of funds," he said.

All board members present voted in favor of selling the old bookmobile. Board member Dorothy Lukenbill was not at the meeting.

"We have a responsibility to our taxpayers," PCPL Board member Ken Heeke said. "This is an asset and we need to get something out of it."

Meanwhile, at the meeting, board members Drew Brattain, Glen Gill, Ken Heeke, Rebecca Barham, Bonnie M. Nealon and Vicki Timm:

-- Learned from financial adviser Mark Hammer that the library has spent 67.07 percent of the budget with two thirds of the year left to go.

"We are really right on target to spend the entire budget," Hammer said.

Some board members expressed concern as to whether payroll would be met for May.

However, Greenburg said she expected a payment from the County Adjusted Gross Income Tax early in the month.

"It'll be tight, but we'll be okay," Greenburg said.

-- Approved changes to library policies on human resources, capital assets, board by-laws and the circulation policy.

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