- Birmingham Public Library Board Minutes
- Call To Order
- Public Voices
- Approval of Agenda
- Approval of Consent Agenda
- Terry Oglesby, City Architect
- Veronica Merritt,City Attorney
- Operational Items Requiring Board Approval
- Committee Reports
- Unfinished Business
- New Business
- Director's Report for January 2018
- Submitted By
Birmingham Public Library Board Minutes
January 9, 2018
Central Library Boardroom
Meeting Called By
Georgia Morgan Blair, President
Type of Meeting
Regular Board Meeting
Trustees: Georgia Morgan Blair, President; James A. Sullivan, Vice-President; The Honorable Scott Vowell, Parliamentarian; Gwendolyn R. Amamoo; Willie S. Davis, III; Eunice Johnson Rogers; Dora U. Sims; Gwendolyn B. Guster Welch
Call To Order
- James Sullivan called the meeting to order. Dora Sims gave the invocation.
- Georgia Morgan Blair entered and presided over the meeting.
- There were no public voices.
- There were no presentations.
Approval of Agenda
- Gwendolyn Guster Welch moved to approve the agenda. Dora Sims seconded the motion, and it was approved.
Approval of Consent Agenda
- Gwendolyn Guster Welch moved to include the 2018 board meeting schedule to the consent agenda and approval of the consent agenda. Dora Sims seconded the motion, and the motion carried.
Terry Oglesby, City Architect
- Terry Oglesby will follow up on work that needs to be performed on the Pratt City library broken gas line. Otis Elevator came to look at the Central escalators for cost comparison information. Oglesby reported on several Trane upgrade projects throughout the system including work the Linn Henley roof and projected work on the Central crosswalk.
- Sandra Lee asked for an update on Southside library’s HVAC since they are currently without heat. Department of Public Works has been notified. Oglesby reported the work is scheduled for March 1 and will follow up to check the status. Council shared that Administration has received several customer inquiries and complaints regarding heating at Pratt City. Space heaters have been provided, but the concern is overloading the capacity. Lee reported half the building is heated and the other part of the building’s gas line is shut off.
- The Central staircase design by Creig Hoskins, Studio 2H Design Architecture is moving ahead. Judge Scott Vowell asked if there is anything the board can do to help move it along. Oglesby said it should be ready to bid out by the end of the month.
- Oglesby thanked Sandi for continuing to communicate issues related to the Trane work to Public Works. Oglesby will make a request to move up the scheduled repair time for Southside’s HVAC.
Veronica Merritt,City Attorney
- Attorney Veronica Merritt stated on record that board should go into executive session to discuss pending litigation. Gwendolyn B. Guster Welch moved to enter into executive session. Gwendolyn Amamoo seconded the motion, and it was approved.
- The board exited from executive session. Judge Scott Vowell moved to authorize the city attorney’s office to continue its investigation into the matter of vending machines in various branches and provide management a report on or before the next board meeting. Eunice Johnson Rogers seconded the motion, and it was approved.
Operational Items Requiring Board Approval
- There were no questions about the finance reports.
BPL Holiday Working Schedule
- Floyd Council confirmed Smithfield library employees would be relocated to other locations during the Magic City Classic weekend.
Library Staffing Discussion
- Floyd Council reported there are currently 25 vacant positions, 17 part-time and 8 full-time. Council recommended referral to the Personnel Committee concerning management proposals to convert existing positions into new positions.
- Dora Sims moved to accept the operational items as presented. Willie Davis III seconded the motion, and it was approved.
- Georgia Morgan Blair appointed members to the Nominating Committee: Dora Sims, Chair; James Sullivan, and Gwendolyn Amamoo to meet at the earliest convenience prior to the next board meeting.
- Dora Sims asked all board members to submit their recommendations for president and vice president.
- Gwendolyn Amamoo asked why security was not present during the board meeting. Karyn Davis West answered there are a number of staff out due to illness and another guard had a personal issue arise before the meeting.
- Floyd Council requested the board’s approval to pay the annual membership fee for his invitation to the University of Alabama College of Communication and Information Science Board of Visitors. Gwendolyn B. Guster Welch moved to approve the payment of the fee. Eunice Johnson Rogers seconded the motion, and it was approved.
- Floyd Council discussed having a draft of a memorandum of understanding with the Dannon Project by the next board meeting. James Sullivan requested the board engage and involve the Young Professionals in more library programs. Council will pick up the task of looking at where other M.O.U.s need to be put in place.
- There was no new business.
Director's Report for January 2018
- Dora Sims asked the basis for the denial of grants throughout 2017. Olivia Alison reported that denial of grants can be for many reasons including the library may ask to extend a project which an organization does not want to continue. Some responses include there is not enough funding in the category of the request for that year. Another response is that there are many grant requests received, and they are unable to fulfill all of them. Council is in discussion with Kimberly Richardson regarding her offer to provide in-kind grant training for Development and other library staff. Council will work with the Development department by attaching goals to strategic initiatives. Grant funding efforts will need to be attached to good, sustainable programs, and the position of community engagement manager would allow the library to follow that strategy. Welch stated there is a huge difference between programs and activities.
- Floyd Council reported that staff morale during the transition seems to be in good condition. Adjustment of library hours and request to adjust hours that close for lunch will be referred to the appropriate committee. Council requested to refer the bag check policy to the Policy Committee for review.
- The most important priorities Administration has been working on since the city’s budget approval on December 12 centers around right-sizing the library’s 2018 budget, falling in line with Council’s one year plan. The seven upgraded positions have been approved and are in Lawson.
- Council reported there is a major shift approaching in management at city hall. In the organizational structure shared by the city, the library is listed under venues. Council is also working on getting updated email software for some of the staff to receive communication from city hall. Council is preparing on beginning the next fiscal year’s budget process. Sandra Lee and the coordinators are working on an internal facilities master survey in preparation for the upcoming budget process. Mr. Council and Lee will look at the strategic plan and assess what has been accomplished and will provide updates to the committees and board.
- The city has a new communication initiative coming out called One Voice to streamline city communication to citizens. All staff will be asked to use a signature in their email with elements of One Voice. The city is planning to provide comprehensive customer service training.
- Council received a request from the Budget Office because they were confused about whether the board objected to BPL providing a copy of the financial audit. Council said it was communicated that staff was withholding the audit. Gwendolyn B. Guster Welch moved that copies of all audits should be sent to the City of Birmingham. Gwendolyn Amamoo seconded the motion, and it was approved.
- Council and Damein Baity worked on a project removing the former signatories off the bank account and adding staff. The current list of signatories includes Council, Baity, Lee, and Davis-West.
- Council announced Danny Dorroh retired and his position will be replaced with an accountant position and the other positions move forward with being filled.
- Council requested to forward the Eastwood library lease discussion to the Long-Range Planning Committee.
- Welch asked if there was $500,000 in the Board of Education line item in the last budget. Baity asked the previous administration at the city if the library could use the funds to fill holes in the library’s budget. Welch challenged staff to move the fund off that line item next time. Council is in communication with the mayor’s executive team to attempt to get clarity.
- Gwendolyn B. Guster Welch stated there is a need for cameras in the Ensley library parking lot due to two recent robberies and car thefts during the day. A security officer in a separate incident was assaulted. Welch expressed the need to protect staff. Council said Councilor Tyson is in the process of finding funds to have armed police or support for the libraries.
- Gwendolyn Guster Welch thanked Council for opening the doors of the library and providing coffee in the morning for the homeless patrons before business hours. Welch gave a small donation towards the cost of coffee for the patrons. Council thanked Welch.
Floyd Council, Secretary