Minutes of the Regular Meeting of April 2, 2009


(As approved at the Regular Meeting of May 7, 2009)


The San Francisco Public Library Commission held a regular meeting on Thursday, April 2, 2009, in the Koret Auditorium, Main Library.


The meeting was called to order at 4:36 pm. 


Commissioners present: Del Portillo, Gomez, Harris, and Munson.


Commissioner excused:  Lee


Commissioner Chin arrived at 4:43 pm.


Commissioner Kane arrived at 4:43 pm.




An anonymous citizen said there are dangers of privatization.  He said when problems arise there are efforts to disclose private influence. He said there has always been a lack of accountability in the public private partnership.


Peter Warfield said the Rules Committee this morning appointed a representative to the Bay Area Library Information System (BALIS) Advisory Board.  He said the café has been closed for some time and there is solicitation for bids for running the café.  He suggested that the cafe space might be used for some type of book purpose.  He said there has been very little progress in the posting in bathrooms about the maintenance in the bathrooms.  




Luis Herrera, City Librarian, said on April 1, 2009 the Revenue Bonds

closed successfully.  He said staff will come back at the next meeting with more details.  He said the Library Journal, the premier publication for the profession, has identified the Movers and Shakers for this year.  He said he is very pleased to announce that Jill Bourne, Deputy City Librarian, and Brian Bannon, Chief of Branches are two of the Movers and Shakers this year.  He said they are recognized for their community building leadership and leadership in the Green libraries movement.


Jill Bourne, Deputy City Librarian, gave part 3 of the Trends in Library Use Report including Overall Use Trends, Programs and Outreach and Information and Digital Resources.  She said Programs and Outreach include programs for children and teens, outreach to children and teens, programs for adults and bookmobiles.  She said Information/Digital Resources include web hits, homework help via and public computers.


Toni Bernardi, Chief of Children and Youth Services, reported on some upcoming highlights.  She said Dia de los Niños/ Dia de Los Libros is coming up on Sunday, April 26th at Dolores Park from 1-4 pm.  She said the celebration of children, families and reading was established by author Pat Mora who will also be speaking at the 13th Annual Effie Lee Morris Lecture on June 2, 2009 at 6:00 pm.  She said the Summer Reading 2009 program themes for children’s and teen programs reflect the Library’s Green Stacks Initiative  She said the themes are “Read It and Green It” and “Cool It! Green Teen Summer Read.”


Luis Herrera, City Librarian said the Commission passed a resolution to support a Fee Amnesty Program.


Jill Bourne, Deputy City Librarian said the Fee Amnesty Program will be heard by the Board of Supervisors’ Budget and Finance Committee on April 8 and heard by the full Board on April 14.  She said because there was a slight schedule change due to the Board meetings the dates proposed for the amnesty program are now May 3 – 16, 2009. 


Marcia Schneider, Chief of Communications, Collections and Adult Services said they are preparing promotional and marketing materials to promote the Fee Amnesty Program.  She said they wanted to inject a little humor this year.  She showed Public Service Announcements from Beth Lisick and Josh Kornbluth.  She said they will be using “What’s your Excuse” as a tag line and they will be soliciting stories about why people did not return their material on time.  She said they will also be capitalizing on the Bay Area wide Free2 campaign using the phrase “Free2return.”  She said they will be doing a press release and will be doing posters and bookmarks.  She said they will run ads in community newspapers and use social networking sites to promote the amnesty program. 


Luis Herrera, City Librarian said that a Privacy Study was done by the Library and one of the recommendations was to do a brochure on patron privacy issues.  He said they had distributed the Patron Privacy Frequently Asked Questions pamphlet and they have updated the information on the Library’s website.


Marcia Schneider, Chief of Communications, Collections and Adult Services said upcoming programs include “Cracks in the Asphalt, Community Gardens of San Francisco; Compost and Climate Change Connection, What Happens After the Green Cart; Cool Cuisine, Taking the Bite Out of Global Warming; the Farallon Islands, Past, Present and Future; and the North Pole was Here all part of the Green Stacks program series.  She said current exhibits include: Under a Full Moon, 30 years of the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence, from March 20 – May 7 in the Third Floor Hormel Gay and Lesbian Center; Louis Braille, Celebrating 200 Years of Braille, from March 7 – April 20 on the Larkin Street Bridge near the Library for the Blind and Print Disabled; and House of NAT, Fashion Tips from the Schmulowitz Collection of Wit & Humor from April 1 – May 31 in the Sixth Floor, Skylight Gallery.   


Public Comment


An anonymous citizen said the report on Trends in Library Use was fascinating because the presenter gave credit to the increase in hours even though the increase was not done willingly.  He said statistics on library computer use did not include internal use of the computers. 


Peter Warfield said from his perspective the statistics presented under web hits are similar to a glance at the spine of a book. He asked if there is other information available like how long people spend on the website.  He said with respect to fee amnesty, libraries do not need fines.  He said fines deter usage and deter the return of materials.  He said the Library should make the amnesty permanent and include LINK+ fines in the amnesty. 


Commission Discussion


President Gomez said congratulations to Brian Bannon and Jill Bourne on being recognized by the Library Journal as two of this year’s Movers and Shakers. 


Commissioner Munson said it is appropriate to track hits on the website and that is one of the standards that is used for measuring the success of a website.


Commissioner Del Portillo said she always knew Brian and Jill were great.  She said outreach on the amnesty program is very important and in the Latino community radio makes the difference.


Commissioner Kane said congratulations to Brian and Jill on their recognition by the Library Journal.  He said he did look at the numbers for computer use and he said library use did go up a little bit but he said the biggest increase was for remote users.  He said he thinks that would be in part because laptop users bring in their own laptops to the library.  He said there seems to always be a wait to use the library’s computers.     


Jill Bourne, Deputy City Librarian, said in response to questions from Commissioner Kane that the benefit to the library the last time they did an amnesty program was about 5 to 1 for the cost of the returned books compared to lost fines.  She said the cost for the outreach for the amnesty program is being handled by the Library’s Media Services unit within their existing budget. 


Luis Herrera said the programs put on by the Library are funded by a combination of money from the Friends and the Library’s operational budget.


President Gomez asked about the bookmobiles.


Jill Bourne said there are three bookmobile programs, the Children’s Bookmobile; the Library on Wheels for senior services and the Branch Library Improvement Program, which currently has three bookmobiles.    




There was no Friends Report at this meeting.




There was no Labor Union Report at this meeting.




Public Comment


An anonymous citizen said the Minutes are even worse than before.  He said the anonymous citizen’s comments under public comment on page 1 were not complete and accurate.  He said under Election of Commission Officers his comments were intended to be ironic.  He said his comments about the Portola Branch on page 3 were completely skewed.


Peter Warfield said if the Commission Secretary is too busy to work on the Minutes because of Public Records Request perhaps there needs to be a new division of labor.  He said on page 2 under Election of Commission Officers, his remarks were not complete.  Under the City Librarian’s Report he said he had said the logging of the servicing of the bathrooms was not what it should be.  He said that should be added to the minutes.   He said his comments regarding Link+ were not complete.  He said on page 6 under Item 5 not all of his comments were represented.


MOTION:  by Commissioner Chin, seconded by Commissioner Munson to approve the minutes of March 5, 2009.


AYES: 6-0 (Chin, Del Portillo, Gomez, Harris, Kane, and Munson)







MOTION: by Commissioner Munson, seconded by Commissioner Del Portillo to adjourn the regular meeting of Thursday, March 5, 2009.


Public Comment


There was no public comment on this item.


AYES: 6-0 (Chin, Del Portillo, Gomez, Harris, Kane, and Munson).


The regular meeting of April 2, 2009, of the San Francisco Public Library Commission adjourned at 5:38 pm.


Please note:  Copies of commission minutes and handouts are available in the office of the secretary of the San Francisco Public Library Commission, 6th floor, Main Library, 100 Larkin Street, San Francisco, CA  94102-4733


Explanatory documents:  Copies of listed explanatory documents are available as follows:  (1) from the commission secretary/custodian of records, 6th floor, Main Library; (2) in the rear of Koret Auditorium immediately prior to, and during, the meeting; and (3), to the extent possible, on the Public Library’s website  Additional materials not listed as explanatory documents on this agenda, if any, that are distributed to library commissioners prior to or during the meeting in connection with any agenda item will be available to the public for inspection and copying in accordance with Government Code Section 54954.1 and Sunshine Ordinance Sections 67.9, 67.28(b), and 67.28(d).