Birmingham Public Library Board Minutes
November 18, 2010
East Lake Library
Meeting Called By
Gwendolyn B. Guster Welch, President
Type of Meeting
Regular Board Meeting
Trustees: Gwendolyn B. Guster Welch, President; Judge Shanta' Craig Owens, Vice-President, Gwendolyn R. Amamoo, Georgia Morgan Blair, Reverend Anthony Johnson, Patricia Rumore, Samuel Rumore, Dora Sims
Call To Order
- Meeting called to order by Judge Owens.
- The invocation was given by Mrs. Blair.
- Mrs. Blair moved the approval of the agenda. Mrs. Welch added presentation to the agenda after public voices.
- Mrs. Blair moved the approval of the consent agenda. Mrs. Sims seconded the motion, which carried unanimously.
- The board recognized the 25 BPL employees who have accepted the early retirement package offered by the City. They were presented with a certificate of recognition.
- Big News! The Donation Campaign has exceeded its goal of $20,000. This second phase will encourage people to make gifts to the library in honor of individuals for the holiday season. The fliers for this will be distributed today at the board meeting.
Buildings, Facilities and Projects Update
- East Lake Branch opens today. This has been a very difficult process requiring many hours of staff time with many problems every step of the way.
- Titusville reopened with new carpet, freshly painted walls, tile repaired, and more. Please, go by and see how beautiful it is.
Finance and Budget Update
- A copy of the Library Fund Budget and a copy of the October City Budget Report are provided in the board packet. Please, let me know if you have any questions.
- The annual audit of the library is complete and will be presented to the board in December.
City Retirement Incentive Plan
- Most of my time for the past few weeks has been taken up by issues raised by the retirement of 25 long-time employees on December 3. I met with the Mayor’s staff on November 17 and submitted the plan approved by the library board on November 15. In preparing to defend our library, we have done a lot of thinking and writing and the result is that we have a much better idea of our institutional history and an understanding of all we do. Frankly, it is staggering that so few can produce so much. I am convinced that it is the system of managing as a team of professionals—the Director, the two Associate Directors, and the ten Coordinators--that have made us the success we are and has greatly expanded our capacity to serve our public, the citizens of Birmingham. As I have said before, I am gravely concerned that we will be able to continue at the present level of service without these key positions. We will certainly do our best to move this library system forward no matter what comes and no matter how difficult. We have been talking lately of how we survived years of hiring freezes but it occurred to me that we did so with a Director, two Associate Directors, and ten Coordinators in place who did whatever it took to keep this institution moving. It will be much more difficult with a reduced leadership team.
- Neighborhood branches including Wylam, Ensley, North Avondale, Woodlawn, and Powderly will close at 5:00 p.m. from November 22 though January 7. East Ensley and Inglenook will be open from 1:00-5:00 p.m. instead of 2:00-6:00 p.m. during this period. A press release will go out later today with the new hours.
- Staff has begun assembling the equipment and making final plans for implementing the Central Library computer cluster which will consolidate all public PCs in the East Building in one location in order to facilitate better management of the public’s use of computers. This area will be managed and staffed by the Regional Library Computer Center which will consolidate all public PCs in the Central Library. This will be a Public Service department.
Gifts and Grants Received (September 23-October 20):
- The donation campaign, BPL Campaign 2010, has exceeded its goal of $20,000.
- The “Donate Now” button on our Web page is extremely easy to use. We would like for all board members to make a donation to this drive. The amount is not important but having all board members support the campaign is.
Current and Upcoming Events
- Overdue charge amnesty has been a success.
The second Bards & Brews: Poetry Slam/Beer Tasting was a huge success. The next one will be on January 7 at the Central Library at 6:30. (Attendees must be 18 or over and IDs will be checked.)
Be sure to check the BPL Blog at http://bplolinenews.blogspot.com/ to keep up with all the activities going on at this library. You can subscribe and have any updates sent to your email if you have not already done so.
SCHEDULE FOR RETIREMENT CELEBRATIONS THE WEEK OF NOVEMBER 29
Tuesday, November 30, 8:00 a.m. - 10:00 a.m. Western Region at Five Points West Branch-Ginger Guthrie (FPW), Maxine Matthews (Ensley--although moved to another region, will celebrate with Western area,) Sandra Robinson (FPW), and Venedia Wallace (FPW)
Wednesday, December 1, 8:00 A.M. - 10:00 A.M. Eastern Region at Springville Road Branch- Rochelle Sides-Renda (SR), Russell Bransby (SR), Ellen Lawrence (SR), and Marilyn Sessions (SR)
Thursday, December 2, 8:00 A.M. - 10:00 A.M. Southern Region at Avondale Branch- Margaret Hoehn (AV)
Friday, December 3, 8:00 A.M. - 10:00 A.M. Central Library-Pam Lyons, Janet Burg, Hope Cooper, Debbie Dahlin, Audrey Faush, Shirley Gibson, Frank Golden, Rosemary Mosley, Shirley Nichols, Becky Scarborough, David Scarborough, Phil Teague, Pat Thomas, Mae Thompson, Yolanda Valentin, and Linda Wilson
- Mrs. Welch thanked Pam Lyons for her years of service and hard work at the library. She also thanked Angela Hall for her time at the library.
- Mrs. Sims congratulated Pam Lyons on her retirement.
- Mrs. Amamoo congratulated Pam Lyons on her retirement and thanked director, Renee Blalock for her hard work. She also thanked Angela Hall for her work.
- Mrs. Allen thanked the Five Points West staff, especially Virginia Guthrie for their hard work. She also thanked all retirees for their commitment and hard work to the Library
- Mrs. Blair thanked all retirees for their hard work.