Library Trustees Meeting
March 3, 2009
Medway Public Library
Meena Jain, Vice Chair
William Roberts, Secretary
Wendy Rowe, Chair
Margaret Perkins, Assistant to Director, Medway Library
Dennis Crowley, Selectman
Richard Dunne, Selectman and our Library liason
Andy Espinosa, Selectman
John Foresto, Selectman
Suzanne Kennedy, Town Administrator
Glenn Trindade, Chairman of the Board of Selectman
Jeff Nutting, Town Administrator
Felicia Oti, Library Director
Ken Wiedemann, Chairman of their Board of Library Directors
Cindy Dobrzynski, member of their Board of Library Directors
Motion to approve the agenda: MAC1, MJ2, unanimous
Motion to approve February's minutes after a fix to the meeting date: MAC1, MJ2, passed unanimously
There were so many they deserve their own heading.
Jeff Nutting presented the proposal. In brief it is that the two library's share Franklin's Library Director. The hope is that this would be but a first step towards greater cooperation. If it works, we might look to sharing a Children's Librarian and more.
Medway would contract for 16 hours of their Director's time.
Many people, including Jeff Nutting, Felicia Oti, Glen Trindade, Suzanne Kennedy, Ken Wiedemann, and Rich Dunne, spoke on the need to change the way local government operates given the ever increasing cost pressures and the obvious inability to get more blood from the revenue stone. Regionalizing services (as Franklin and Medway are looking to do in the recreation and parks area) is a sensible way to spread costs while maintaining services.
Medway Library Trustees MaryAnn and Wendy spoke about our concerns:
The Library needs a Director come July to regain certification. However we were not looking to pay at the scale Franklin pays their Director. We would be looking for a qualified but entry level person willing to be our part time director at the low end of the generally accepted pay scale. It happens that we have such a person on hand.
We cannot give up any of our current staff as we need them to maintain hours. So for us to agree to this, we would need to see some extra money (to be determined by dickering between Medway and Franklin officials) in our budget.
This money wouldn't be too great. On the order of $32,000 and the Selectmen present felt that this would be quite doable and well worth it in view of the hope for future savings.
No one thought that the present proposal would endanger certification. Given the current fiscal crisis, waivers are expected to fountain out of Boston and shower down on the Commonwealth's cities, towns and hamlets, one will be able to pick them up off the sidewalk. Just to be sure (Wendy is worried the waivers still won't cover hours open which would affect us in FY11 not FY10 anyway) Wendy is going to double-check with the relevant state parties.
The Medway Selectmen and Suzanne left for a budget meeting. Jeff and Felicia lingered to discuss the proposal further.
Felicia's suggestions of what she thinks are sensible things for her to do for us include:
Medway Library Trustees would need to approve any changes to these and be involved in the planning.
We (or our Assistant to the Director to be precise) would manage our staff and perform the financial and salary tasks.
They invited one and all to attend their next Library Board Of Director's meeting which is always the 4th Monday (the Secretary has a calendar and it informs him that this is the 23rd this month).
After their departure there was some further discussion amongst the Trustees and Margaret.
Also given budget pressure, these special things (databases and museum passes) are the first to go.
Again we presume so but are a bit wary. Wendy was told by Dianne Carty back when we were losing certification that a Library Director does not need to be full time, just needs to work enough hours to get the job done.
There was much use of a marital analogy: we need to be on the ready for a quicky divorce given the slightest whiff of trouble. Also there's the need for a good solid pre-nuptial agreement.
The Library Trustees unanimously agreed that it will be worth having Medway contract with Franklin for 16hrs/week Library Director time if:
Wendy will talk more with Felicia to make sure we have a clear understanding and matched expectations as to her role in Medway, and she will also work with the MBLC to make sure we understand very clearly what we'll have to do to make sure Medway gets and stays recertified.
Wendy has emailed a draft.
She is in no danger of being overwhelmed by suggestions from the Trustees. She would more than welcome any at all.
Motion to approve Town Report as drafted by Wendy with the inclusion of such comments as are sent before Friday: WLR1, CR2. passed unanimously.
Postponed till next month
Also postponed till next month after a rather desultory conversation
Motion to adjourn (9), MAC1, CR2, passed unanimously
Official Board of Selectmen minutes of tonight's meeting are available here.
A tape of this Trustee Meeting with the Selectmen was made and a transcript is available here.