Library Commission Minutes - January 20, 2004

SAN FRANCISCO PUBLIC LIBRARY COMMISSION (as approved February, 19, 2004) Minutes of the regular meeting of Tuesday, January 20, 2004. The San Francisco Public Library Commission held a regular meeting on Thursday, January 20, 2004, in the Koret Auditorium, Main Library. Vice President Steiman called the meeting to order at 4:07pm. The following members were noted present: Commissioners Bautista, Chin, Coulter, Steiman, and Strobin. Commissioners Higueras and Streets were excused. Agenda Items: 1) Public Comment 2) Interior Design Standards Presentation 3) Approval of Minutes of Oct. 16, 2003 6) Bond Program Budget Review 4) Approval of the Minutes of Nov. 13, 2003 5) Approval of the Minutes of Nov. 20, 2003 6) Approval of the Minutes of Special Joint Recreations & Park and Library Commissions Meeting of Nov. 20, 2003 7) Bond Program Manager's Report 9) Friends Capital Campaign Update Report 10) ADJOURNMENT APPENDIX A -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- AGENDA ITEM #1 PUBLIC COMMENT Public comment on AGENDA ITEM #1 PUBLIC COMMENT An anonymous member of the public commented that the minutes report on the Wall of Library Heroes lacked many important details of the discussion. This individual welcomed the New Business proposal for a discussion of the Prop. E (Library Preservation Fund 1994), commenting that efforts to direct expenditures of these funds to non-library uses were political. Mr. Peter Warfield commented that it was unfortunate that these minutes were so old and expressed the hope that the Commissioners do a better job of keeping up with past meeting minutes. Mr. Warfield also said that the Minutes had not been available prior to the meeting. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- AGENDA ITEM #2 INTERIOR DESIGN STANDARDS PRESENTATION City Librarian Susan Hildreth introduced discussion of the proposed Interior Design Standards for the Branch Library Improvement Program (BLIP), noting that the presentation was the result of 6 months hard work by the Library's Interior Design consultants Kwan Henmi in close cooperation with Donna Corbeil, Library Chief of Branches, and many branch library staff members. Additionally, it was reported that after gathering initial staff comments, Ms. Corbeil had convened a staff task force to work closely with the consultants and other branch library staff to refine and improve recommendations for the proposed standards. Ms. Hildreth then introduced Ms. Sylvia Kwan, the lead consultant, and design consultant Marie Fisher, and called attention to signage work contributed by Kate Keating Associates. The City Librarian called particular attention to and lauded the hard work provided and important contributions made by Mike White, the ergonomic specialist, who was unable to attend the meeting. Ms. Kwan presented an extensive overview (copy attached) of the background research and extensive branch library staff involvement that formed the basis for developing the design standards and guidelines for what would be an every evolving project. The goals were described as: to maintain flexibility; meet ergonomic and Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) requirements; and to be compatible for use with the entire range of branch library architectural styles from the early "Carnegie" and "WPA" (Works Progress Administration) buildings to the contemporary new buildings. Ms. Kwan noted that the proposed standards were based in current industry "best practices" and guided by the need to meet ergonomic standards, be practical and aesthetically appropriate, and be durable. Ms. Kwan noted that more than 100 branch library staff had participated in two sessions reviewing the proposed design standards. Regarding signage, it was reported that all would be modular and interchangeable as needed. Ms. Kwan concluded by pointing out that the proposed standards were to be viewed as a living evolving document designed to provide a guide in meeting needs identified by librarians and library staff. Ms. Hildreth noted that binders containing the Design Standards proposal were available at the rear of the auditorium and at the Library Commission Office. Public comment on AGENDA ITEM #2 INTERIOR DESIGN STANDARDS PRESENTATION An anonymous member of the public commented that there were no explanatory documents listed for this item on the agenda and those provided consisted of a limited an amount of information. This person suggested that given what this person felt were previous bad experiences with interior design flaws in libraries; it was unfortunate that opportunity to critically review these documents was not possible prior to the discussion. Mr. Peter Warfield commented that he had attempted to obtain information concerning explanatory materials for this item earlier in the day but had been unable to do so. Mr. Warfield commented that he thought these to be very important documents and that the summaries provided did not provide enough specifics. Mr. Warfield also questioned the continuing role of the consultants: what had it cost; what were any ongoing costs; and what additional overall costs were involved? Mr. Warfield also wanted to know the names of the library staff members involved in this project. Ms. Sue Cauthen commented that the print used in the documents was difficult to read and suggested using a larger typeface in future. Commission discussion of AGENDA ITEM #2 INTERIOR DESIGN STANDARDS PRESENTATION In response to a question from Commissioner Bautista, the Friends’ role in fundraising for branch library FF&E (furniture, fixtures, & equipment), and how budgets for each branch were configured was spelled out. In response to a question by Vice President Steiman, Ms. Hildreth discussed how the flexibility built into the proposed standards provided for a wide array of possible choices to be available among each of the three types of branch libraries, allowing for each branch to be distinctive. The City Librarian noted that there would be opportunities for the public to view suggested color palettes for use in branch libraries, but that the Excelsior Branch was the only one that had been prepared so far. In response to Commissioner Chin and Vice President Steiman's query concerning the durability and design safety features of some of the proposed types of chair designs, Ms. Kwan and Ms. Fisher pointed out that only well-tried existing design lines from well-established manufacturers were included in the Interior Design Standards. Commissioner Bautista observed that the Commission should trust the judgment of branch staff to best know their needs. Ms. Hildreth noted that both librarians and clerical staff had been involved in developing the standards. In response to questions by Commissioner Strobin concerning the adjustability of shelving and what kinds of fabrics were being considered for Teen areas, Ms. Kwan noted that the shelving was designed to be flexible and that all fabrics were carefully evaluated from existing well testing fabric lines known for durability. In response to a query by Commissioner Chin, it was noted that rest room design was a responsibility of each building’s architect. In response a question by Vice President Steiman, Ms. Kwan noted that as a result of staff requests, countertops were surfaced with materials made from recycled currency that were warm to the touch. She noted these surfaces were durable and easily repaired. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- AGENDA ITEM #3 APPROVAL OF THE MINUTES OF OCT. 16, 2003 Public comment on AGENDA ITEM #3 APPROVAL OF THE MINUTES OF OCT. 16, 2003 An anonymous member of the public suggested that changes called for in the approval of the September meeting minutes had not been made and commented that a reference to comments made by Supervisor Peskin regarding a possible location for the North Beach Branch were inaccurately attributed. Mr. Peter Warfield found that there was a great need for improvement in theses Minutes calling attention to what he believed to be serious omissions in RFID related remarks attributed to Mr. Esteves, regarding the impact of changes in the proposed Mission Bay Branch, and regarding his comments on the Gift Policy. Commission discussion of AGENDA ITEM #3 APPROVAL OF THE MINUTES OF OCT. 16, 2003 Vice President Steiman requested that the Secretary review the meeting’s tape concerning the reference to Supervisor Peskin. MOTION:Commissioner Bautista seconded Commissioner Strobin for approval of the Minutes of the regular Commission meeting of October 16, 2003 with any needed clarification of a comment attributed to Supervisor Peskin and deletion of a misplaced word. ACTION: AYE 5-0 (Bautista, Chin, Coulter, Steiman, and Strobin) Vice President Steiman announced that she would next take up Agenda Item #8, the Bond Program Budget Review in order to accommodate community members from the Parkside neighborhood in attendance who wished to offer comment and to recognize Supervisor Ma. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- AGENDA ITEM #6 BOND PROGRAM BUDGET REVIEW (taken up 4th) The City Librarian recognized Supervisor Fiona Ma in attendance at the meeting and thanked her for her support for the Library. The City Librarian reviewed the previous Library Commission discussions and original proposals for the renovation of the Parkside Branch Library, and presented an overview of the Board of Supervisors’ action to set aside $500,000 from the Library's Budget Reserve for branch library improvements. Ms. Hildreth then outlined a proposed revision of the Branch Library Improvement Program (BLIP) design proposal for the Parkside Branch to allow for its expansion. Ms. Hildreth pointed out that this was a somewhat unique case, where an expansion beyond what had been originally planned was merited. Ms. Hildreth outlined how money could be transferred from funds identified for relocation and moving expenses in the Branch Library Improvement Program (BLIP) budget to the Parkside Branch Budget. The City Librarian noted that the project timeline would change with West Portal moving up so as to be renovated and reopened by 2006 before Parkside was closed for its renovation and expansion. Supervisor Fiona Ma thanked Ms. Hildreth for all of her hard work in responding to the community's needs. Supervisor Ma noted that with the expansion of nearby Lincoln High School and the opening of the Dianne Feinstein (formerly Parkside) Elementary School, the need for library services in that neighborhood would continue to grow. Supervisor Ma concluded with a recommendation that the Library Commissioners approve the proposed expansion of the Parkside Branch Library. Public comment on AGENDA ITEM #6 BOND PROGRAM BUDGET REVIEW (taken up 4th) An anonymous member of the public commented that there was no explanatory document listed although one was presented. This person observed that there had been various explanations for restrictions on the use of Library Preservation Fund monies that had varied from situation to situation. Ms. Eileen Booken, Sunset /Parkside Education in Action Committee noted that neighborhood petitions submitted previously had shown that the neighborhood fully supported the proposed expansion and thanked the Commissioners for their cooperation in that effort. Ms. Nancy Wuerful, a Parkside civic leader, expressed her appreciation for the Library's cooperation with the neighborhood and noted that a recent visit to the Parkside Branch had reminded her of how important the programs offered in the branch were to the children of the neighborhood. Ms. Wuerful noted that an expanded branch could better serve the community and thanked Supervisor Ma for her support for the neighborhood’s wishes. Mrs. Susan Ryan, parent and Parkside resident, noted that her son, now a teen user, had been a regular branch user since he was small. Ms. Ryan called attention to the great need for more space for the community room as well as for books in the branch. Mr. Peter Warfield expressed satisfaction that the branch was expanding; but questioned how the expansion was being financed. Mr. Warfield also asked where the $500,000 had come from, and why funds needed to be shifted? Mr. Douglas Ryan, a teen user of the branch, expressed his gratitude that the Parkside Branch was being expanded noting that it would allow him more opportunity to read. Mr. Ryan requested that the Commissioners approve the proposed expansion. Commission discussion of AGENDA ITEM #6 BOND PROGRAM BUDGET REVIEW (taken up 4th) Commissioner Bautista found the proposed expansion of the Parkside Branch an excellent proposal, noting that there was a very great need for more room in this very busy branch. Commissioner Bautista also called attention to the strong neighborhood support for the expansion and noted that she wished even more could be done. Commissioner Coulter voiced support for the proposed expansion and asked if the Deputy City Attorney could comment on the funding process. Commissioner Coulter congratulated and commended the City Librarian, Deputy City Librarian and all of the Library staff involved for their extraordinary, tireless, and outstanding work in preparing and submitting five Cycle 3 Prop. 14 (State Library Bond) Applications. Ms. Hildreth refreshed the Commissioners’ memory concerning the circumstances of how a proposal by Supervisor Daley to transfer $1 million from the Library Preservation Fund’s Budget Reserve to the San Francisco Unified School District for its libraries had eventually resulted in a Board of Supervisor’s decision to allocate $500,000 for the Library to provide support for school libraries and $500,000 for branch libraries. The City Librarian noted that while the branch library funds were not earmarked for the Parkside Branch, it had been noted that this would be an appropriate use for these funds. Deputy City Attorney Catharine Barnes explained the limited circumstances that under the rubric of providing ancillary or alternative library services, and where Library Preservation Fund monies and Branch Library Improvement Bond - 2000 monies served specific overlapping purposes, and where the total amount was within the limited amount of funds allowable for such a purpose; it was permissible for the Library to use such funds for bricks and mortar purposes. The Deputy City Attorney noted that under the City Charter, the Board of Supervisors had authority to direct the Library Commission to allocate these funds. In response to a question by Commissioner Chin, Ms. Hildreth reported that there would be an extensive review of the Bond Program Budget next month. The City Librarian reiterated that this branch was, with the possible exception of the Western Addition Branch, the only branch library where an expansion beyond the original scope of the Bond Program was warranted. Responding to a comment by Vice President Steiman, the City Librarian cited library staff’s focus on and hard work to preserve Library Budget Reserves for library uses. In answer to expressions of concern from Commissioner Chin, Ms. Hildreth citing the Visitacion Valley Branch as example, reported that BLIP projects, reverted to their original scope, could be funded even if insufficient Prop. 14 monies for the proposed expanded versions did not become available. Vice President Steiman noting even though she was very concerned about the availability of funding, said that she would vote for the proposed expansion as a way of keeping these funds for Library use. Vice President Steiman then asked, noting that a member of the Board of Supervisors was attending the meeting, that she carry back word to her colleagues, "that the library reserve was there because we know we will never get any more money from the City, and we (the Commissioners) wanted to be sure to be able to fulfill the commitment for expanded library hours made in Prop. E." Vice President Steiman observed that was a very bad precedent to remove reserve funds this way, but that she was glad that Supervisor Ma had found this way to preserve the funds for the Library. MOTION: Commissioner Bautista, seconded by Commissioner Strobin, for approval of the proposed reallocation of funds in the budget to permit the expansion of the Parkside branch Library. ACTION: AYE 5-0 (Bautista, Chin, Coulter, Steiman, and Streets) -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- AGENDA ITEM #4 APPROVAL OF THE MINUTES OF NOV. 13, 2003 (taken up 5th) Public comment on AGENDA ITEM #4 APPROVAL OF THE MINUTES OF NOV. 13, 2003 (taken up 5th) An anonymous member of the public suggested that these minutes lacked the required Public Comment Summary statements and cited inaccuracies and omissions in the reported discussions of the Prop. 14 Applications. Mr. Peter Warfield commented that these Minutes left out important discussions and criticized references to the various application forms and selected attachments as the Prop. 14 Applications in the text. Mr. Warfield also noted his comments concerning the lack of opportunity to review explanatory materials in advance and some cited comments by the City Librarian were not included in the draft text Commission discussion of AGENDA ITEM #4 APPROVAL OF THE MINUTES OF NOV. 13, 2003 (taken up 5th) Commissioner Chin again urged that the Minutes be brief. The Deputy City Attorney noted that the Minutes reporting of detail exceeded the requirements of the law. MOTION: Commissioner Bautista seconded Commissioner Chin by for approval of the Minutes of the special Commission meeting of November 13, 2003. ACTION: AYE 5-0 (Bautista, Chin, Coulter, Steiman, and Strobin). -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- AGENDA ITEM #5 APPROVAL OF THE MINUTES OF NOV. 20, 2003 (taken up 6th) Public comment on AGENDA ITEM #5 APPROVAL OF THE MINUTES OF NOV. 20, 2003 (taken up 6th) An anonymous member of the public observed that there were a number of issues with these minutes, commenting that correction of inaccuracies cited by members of the public was not being done. This person then discussed a handout that that they had distributed to the Commissioners, noting their handout had not been included in the attachments to the Minutes, and that the Minutes were often unreadable. Mr. Peter Warfield commented that he had never requested verbatim minutes but that he had requested corrections of what he found to be inaccuracies and that he felt that public comment was not accurately being summarized as required. Mr. Warfield commented that his analysis of the Richmond Branch Prop. 14 Application and a related report of a conference call with the State Bond evaluators about the application was not reported. Commission discussion of AGENDA ITEM #5 APPROVAL OF THE MINUTES OF NOV. 20, 2003 (taken up 6th) MOTION: Commissioner Chin, seconded Commissioner Strobin by for approval of the Minutes of the regular Commission meeting of November 20, 2003 ACTION: AYE 5-0 (Bautista, Chin, Coulter, Steiman, and Strobin). -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- AGENDA ITEM #6 APPROVAL OF THE MINUTES OF SPECIAL JOINT RECREATION & PARK AND Library COMMISSIONS MEETING OF NOV. 20, 2003 (taken up 6th) Public comment AGENDA ITEM #6 APPROVAL OF THE MINUTES OF SPECIAL JOINT RECREATION & PARK AND Library COMMISSIONS MEETING OF NOV. 20, 2003 (taken up 6th) Mr. Peter Warfield requested clarification of a public comment attributed to him to indicate that both the Parkside and North Beach Branch Libraries could potentially increase in size if they were relocated outside park property. Commission discussion of AGENDA ITEM #6 APPROVAL OF THE MINUTES OF SPECIAL JOINT RECREATION & PARK AND Library COMMISSIONS MEETING OF NOV. 20, 2003 (taken up 6th) MOTION: Commissioner Chin, seconded Commissioner Strobin, for approval of the Minutes of the Special Joint Recreation & Park and Library Commissions meeting of November 20, 2003. ACTION: AYE 5-0 (Bautista, Chin, Coulter, Steiman, and Strobin). -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- AGENDA ITEM #7 BOND PROGRAM MANAGER’S REPORT In the absence of Branch Library Improvement Program Manager Marilyn Thompson Deputy City Librarian Paul Underwood presented her usual reports, (copy attached). Public comment on AGENDA ITEM #7 BOND PROGRAM MANAGER’S REPORT An anonymous member of the public commented that the BLIP Manager’s Report handouts were all but unreadable, but expressed appreciation for the update on the Library's Prop. 14 (State Library Bond Act) Applications. This person commented that they believed that the crucial question had not been asked, noting that this cycle was for the smallest amount of money with the largest number of applications. This person suggested that only the smallest percentage of applications would be successful. Mr. Peter Warfield also found the explanatory materials unreadable and suggested printing them in a bigger typeface would be helpful. Mr. Warfield then cited his cautionary remarks related to the Library's Prop. 14 Applications and asked again for details of the comments offered during a conference call between the Library and the state evaluators -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- AGENDA ITEM #9 FRIENDS CAPITAL CAMPAIGN UPDATE REPORT (TAKEN UP 8TH) Mr. Martín Gómez, Executive Director of the Friends of the San Francisco Public Library and the Friends’ Ms. Kathy Bella, presented a detailed overview of the current status, proposed plans, and goals of the Friends of the Library's Capital Campaign for the Branch Libraries (copy attached). Public comment on AGENDA ITEM #9 FRIENDS CAPITAL CAMPAIGN UPDATE REPORT (TAKEN UP 8TH) None offered. Commission discussion of AGENDA ITEM #9 FRIENDS CAPITAL CAMPAIGN UPDATE REPORT (TAKEN UP 8TH) Commissioner Bautista found the campaign’s planning impressive noting that it was crucial that training be an important element in achieving success in the campaign. Commissioner Bautista urged her colleagues to participate. Vice President Steiman reported that she was actively working on behalf of the Glen Park Branch and also encouraged her fellow Commissioners to participate in the campaign. Mr. Gómez called attention to the very active help and support that the Friends were receiving from Library administration and branch library staff. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- AGENDA ITEM # 10 ADJOURNMENT MOTION:Commissioner Bautista seconded Commissioner Chin that the meeting be adjourned. ACTION: AYE 5-0 (Bautista, Chin, Coulter, Steiman, and Strobin) The meeting was adjourned at 6:25pm. Michael Housh, Commission Secretary 1/28/04 Please note: Copies of Commission Minutes and handouts are available in the Office of the Commission Secretary, 100 Larkin Street, San Francisco, CA 94102 -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Minutes of the Library Commission Meeting of January 20, 2004 Appendix A The Public Comment Summary Statements included in these Minutes are authorized by San Francisco Administrative Code Section 67.16. These summary statements are provided by the speaker. Their contents are neither generated by, nor subject to approval or verification of accuracy by, the San Francisco Public Library Commission. The number of members of the public who spoke anonymously at this meeting. 1 Public comment available for viewing in pdf format. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Explanatory documents: Copies of listed explanatory documents are available as follows: (1) from the Commission Secretary/Custodian of Records, Main Library, 6th Floor, (2) in the rear of the Koret Auditorium immediately before and during the meeting, and (3)to the extent possible, on the Library's Web site. Additional materials not listed as explanatory documents, if any, that are distributed to the 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 §§ 67.9, 67.28(b) & 67.28(d).
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