Board considers request to add adult cart sales

Thursday, September 28, 2006

Adult book sale cart and transferring funds were the main topics of discussion at the Putnam County Public Library board meeting Wednesday night.

Director Alice Green-burg informed the board that the Friends of the Library wanted to add an adult book sale cart to the lobby. The group already has a children book sale cart, which earns anywhere between $120 to $200 a month.

Greenburg said that the circulation staff has taken to over stocking the cart because they take in the gifts and then they filter through the gifts to make sure they are age appropriate.

Several of the board members said they liked the idea, and the addition of adult book sale cart was approved 7-0.

The board then moved to the topic of transferring funds within the operating fund to help alleviate some pressure of having line items like office supplies, fuel, and postage dancing around the negative dollar line.

Greenburg asked the board where it thought the money should be transferred from.

President Dorothy Lukenbill asked why $1,300 was being added to the postage fund and why it was so under budgeted. Greenburg explained that she assumed when the library went Polaris, the email notifications would be up and running. Greenburg said she did not realize it (email notification) "would take a while to get that up and running, so it really hasn't had an impact yet."

Board member Becky Barham asked about the high expenses paid for the electrical bill. Greenburg explained that she contacted Duke Energy and they informed her that there was a spike in the fuel rider, a fuel surcharge, in the third quarter. Greenburg said that last year the library was in the negative with this charge so it was receiving credit, "but this year, it is an add on of 15 to 20 percent."

Greenburg did say that she increased the electricity budget for next year to $25,000, but she is not sure if that will be enough to cover it.

Board member Wes Wilson said, "Electricity is going to be the tough one to cover."

Accountant Mark Hammer told the board that through September its electric line item in the operating fund is up $6,442.

The board approved the resolution of transferring funds 7-0.

In other business, the board:

-- Learned that the modem for the satellite was replaced in the bookmobile and the warrantee was renewed as well.

-- Learned that email notification through Polaris is up and running. Greenburg explained that the patrons email addresses would be inputted into the system and automatic notices would be sent out if the patron has a hold, has overdue books, and when the books are almost due. Greenburg hopes the new system will cut back on postage costs.

-- Learned that focus groups for the long range planning is not getting the information out. Greenburg made the suggestion to try three new ideas. One would be to develop a written survey and get it out to users. Two would be having a series of coffees or after work refreshments and get feedback. Three would be discussions during staff inservice and board retreats. Board member Vicki Timm and Lukenbill agreed that these suggestions needed to go back to the committee that was set up.

-- Learned that Lynne Berry will be at the library at 2:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 2 to present her book "The Curious Demise of a Contrary Cat" to preschooler and their parents. Berry will be signing books, and any books she sells, she will give 20 percent of the sales back to the library.

-- Learned that the library will be a site for flu and pneumonia shots from 4-6 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 19.

The next regularly scheduled meeting is set for Wednesday, Oct. 25 at 6 p.m. in the Kiwanis Room at the library.

This meeting is open to the public.

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