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Library Commission Minutes - October 7, 2004

SAN FRANCISCO PUBLIC LIBRARY COMMISSION (As approved November 4, 2004) Minutes of the regular meeting of Thursday, October 7, 2004 The San Francisco Public Library Commission held a regular meeting on Thursday, October 7, 2004 in the Koret Auditorium, Main Library. The meeting was called to order at 4:01 pm. The following members were present: Commissioners chin, Coulter, Steiman, and Strobin. President Higueras was reported excused attendance. Commissioner Bautista joined the meeting at 4:20pm. Vice President Steiman announced the Agenda Item #3 Donor Recognition Policy would be taken off calendar. Agenda Items: 1) Public Comment 2) Approval of September 2 Minutes 3) Commission Discussion of June 19 Minutes 4) City Librarian Search Progress Report 7) City Librarian's Report 8) Friends of the Library Report 9) Labor Union Report 10) New Business 11) Adjournment APPENDIX A -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- AGENDA ITEM #1 PUBLIC COMMENT An anonymous member of the public discussed a Metropolis magazine article about the new Seattle Main Library offering views on the favorable response to that library in contrast to our Main Library, and offered their views on the merits of building collaboration through use of focus groups. Mr. Peter Warfield called attention to an anti-RFID rally; discussed his views on the Prop. E Hearings, and asked about public input on the RFP (request for proposals) for RFID. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- AGENDA ITEM #2 APPROVAL OF THE MINUTES OF SEPTEMBER 2, 2004 Public comment on AGENDA ITEM #2 APPROVAL OF THE MINUTES OF SEPTEMBER 2, 2004 An anonymous member of the public found the Minutes very bad citing: inaccurate reporting of the date of the June 17th meeting in the approval of the Minutes headings; inaccurate reporting of this person’s comments about Mr. Warfield and an American Libraries editorial on “gadflies; and the incorrect report of a page 5 comment. Mr. Peter Warfield commented that the minutes were inaccurate and full of omissions and opposed approval. Mr. Warfield cited: lack of mention of letters of support he noted in his comments; inaccurate report of comment he offered on the Prop E (Library Preservation Fund 1994) Hearings; and omission of questions he had asked. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- COMMISSION discussion of AGENDA ITEM #3 APPROVAL OF THE MINUTES OF JUNE 19, 2004 Commissioner Chin urged that the minutes briefly summarize comments offered and maintain focus on Library business. MOTION: by Commissioner Chin, 2nd Commissioner Strobin for approval of the Minutes of the regular meeting of June 17, 2004 as amended to change the incorrect date in the agenda item headings for the June 17th Minutes. Approved by the following vote: ACTION: 4-0 AYE (Chin, Coulter, Steiman, and Strobin) The Acting City Librarian left the meeting at 4:19pm. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- AGENDA ITEM #AGENDA ITEM #4 CITY LIBRARIAN SEARCH PROGRESS REPORT Library Human Resources Director Donna Marion reviewed progress in the search for candidates for City Librarian. Ms. Marion reported that Mr. Hawkins and experienced Library Consultants June Garcia and David Dubberly were actively pursuing applications from potential candidates, noting that 200 contacts had been made. The Library's Director of Human Resources noted that the job announcement had been widely posted in professional journals and online sites. Ms. Marian additionally reported that Mr. Hawkins found progress on the candidates search going more slowly than anticipated and noted that he would make a report to the Commission at the October 21st meeting. Ms. Marion concluded by discussing a presentation on the search made to the Council for Neighborhood Libraries, (CNL). Public comment on AGENDA ITEM #4 CITY LIBRARIAN SEARCH PROGRESS REPORT An anonymous member of the public commented that given slow progress perhaps the Commission should reconsider its strategy, noting that interest might be stimulated by open discussion of the issues including an underlying reason why the search might be difficult. Mr. Peter Warfield requested more information about the search. Mr. Warfield commented that as this was one of the Commission’s most import tasks the Commission should take an active role. Commission discussion of AGENDA ITEM #4 CITY LIBRARIAN SEARCH PROGRESS REPORT Vice President Steiman noted that there had been several public discussions about the many obvious reasons why our search might be proceeding slowly noting: that several important libraries were searching for leaders; that questions about the adequacy of the salary remained; and that San Francisco was well known to be very expensive place to live. Vice President Steiman noted that Mr. Hawkins was a respected experienced headhunter and that the search was being conducted in a careful thorough manner just as its critics contended they wanted. Answering questions by Commissioner Chin, Ms. Marion discussed outreach work being done by mr. Hawkins’ Library Consultant June Garcia to persuade potential applicants to apply. Responding to questions by Commissioner Bautista, Ms. Marion reported that the Department of Human Resources proposed to review the position’s salary range when the pool of candidates and their requirements became better known. The Acting City Librarian rejoined the meeting at 4:29pm. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- AGENDA ITEM #7 CITY LIBRARIAN’S REPORT The Acting City Librarian reported on the progress of the 3rd round of mandated Prop E (Library Preservation Fund 1994) Hearings and outlined the next steps in the process ar the remaining four branch meetings were completed. Mr. Underwood then provided an overview of plans to install energy generating solar panels on the roofs of the Chinatown and Presidio Branch Libraries at no cost to the Library. The Acting City Librarian next introduced Toni Bernardi, Chief of Children and Youth Services for a report on Summer Reading 2004. Ms Bernardi presented a detailed report on the extensive arrange of programs for children and teens offered at the Main Library and all branches during Summer 2004. Ms. Bernardi in particular lauded the principle support provided by the Friends of the San Francisco Public Library and other sponsors of this year’s summer reading programs. Mr. Underwood concluded his report with an update on current and upcoming Programs and exhibitions. Public comment on AGENDA ITEM #4 CITY LIBRARIAN’S REPORT An anonymous member of the public reflected on their attendance at several Prop. E Hearings. This person also discussed and asked questions about the solar installation and its possible impacts on the Chinatown Library's roof garden. Mr. Peter Warfield commented on: his concerns with the lack of attendance at the Prop. E Hearings; about the Library's publicity for the hearings; and concerning what he believed those attending the meetings had requested. Ms. Marcia Popper, Council for Neighborhood Libraries, and a Presidio Branch user was excited by the plans for solar installations noting that it was not just a wise environmental and economic decision but that it advanced the Library's educational outreach on preserving limited resources. Commission discussion of AGENDA ITEM #7 CITY LIBRARIAN’S REPORT Commissioners Bautista lauded the solar projects recalling that several local schools had also installed solar panels that could potentially lead to cost-savings on energy by lower those costs in the long-term. Commissioner coulter requested that the Library track and report benefits achieved by putting in the solar panels. Commissioner Coulter noted the low attendance at the Prop. E meetings, and discussed some of the changes that attendees requested. Commissioner Coulter suggested that Library Administration consider ways that more costly hours could be made available on weekends and in the evening by reviewing and suggesting changes in work rules. Commissioner Chin commended Toni Bernardi and congratulated her hard working and dedicated staff of children's and teen librarians for producing another Summer Reading Program in 2004. Commissioner Chin then noted that everyone preferred that more users participate in the Prop. E Hearings but perhaps their lack of attendance reflected a degree of satisfaction with the current situation. She felt that library users were realistic about costs and the need to prioritize providing services. Vice President Steiman noted that attendance that this round was not much different that during the previous series of hearings. The Commission Vice President Steiman pointed out that the significant improvements in collections and hours made possible by Prop. E had made such a difference in the kinds and availability of library services that users understood that the Library was doing the best that it could given available resources. Commissioner Bautista lauded Toni Bernardi and her staff calling them “heroes” of the library system. Commissioner Bautista noted that our teen users needed and deserved additional space and that consideration should be given to reallocations to better serve them. In response to Commissioner Bautista's comments, the Acting City Librarian suggested that a presentation on Teen Library users could be brought to the Commission. Ms. Bernardi outlined the strong beginnings and future growth proposed for her cadre of teen librarians as resources became available. She noted that already existing FTEs were being reallocated to provide additional dedicated teen librarians. Vice President Steiman thanked Ms. Bernardi and her dedicated staff on behalf of the Commission. In response to Commissioners questions, Mr. Underwood and Deputy City Attorney Catharine Barnes discussed various aspects and implications of solar installations on library facilities. The Acting City Librarian report there would be no impact on the Chinatown Library's roof garden. Vice President Steiman noted that the Chinatown roof garden was well used for programming. The Acting City Librarian informed the Commissioners that staffing cost related issues would be among the factors addressed in the various scenarios to be outlined in the staff’s Prop. E Hours of Public Service report to the Commission. Commissioner Coulter suggested that it might be necessary to change staff work rules over time in order to be able to provide the services the users wanted. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- AGENDA ITEM #8 FRIENDS OF THE LIBRARY REPORT Ms. Deborah Doyle, Acting Executive Director for the Friends reported that the big book sale had raised $225,000 and called attention to the positive response to the silent auction of artworks created for the Library's “Reversing Vandalism” Exhibit. Ms. Doyle lauded the library staff, particularly the security staff, for their cooperative support for this year’s book sale. Ms. Doyle called attention to a special observance of “Banned Books Week” during the book sale, noting the very popular author readings from banned books. The Acting Executive Director of the Friends of the Library then updated the Commissioners on the work of the many committees working to support the Friends’ Campaign for Neighborhood Libraries, citing in particular production of popular $10 fundraising calendars. Ms. Doyle concluded her report be discussing the Friends of the Library's ongoing outreach efforts in support of the Library's Prop. 14 (State Library Bond) applications. Public comment on AGENDA ITEM #8 FRIENDS OF THE LIBRARY REPORT (None offered) Commission discussion of AGENDA ITEM #8 FRIENDS OF THE LIBRARY REPORT Vice President Steiman thanked Ms. Doyle for her efforts on behalf of the Library. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- AGENDA ITEM #9 LABOR UNION REPORT Ms. Melissa Riley, Librarians Guild, suggested various ways that attendance might be increased at the Prop. E Hearings and noted in her experience, despite what was said in surveys, demand for evening hours fell significantly after 6pm. Ms. Riley lauded the installation of solar panels and expressed the hope that they could be included on many branch Library improvement program branch renovations. Ms. Riley passed along a copy of an article “Seven Deadly Sins of Library Technology” to the Commissioners. Ms. Riley saluted Rich Walsh and George Nichols as outstanding public servants whose talents will be missed. She expressed appreciation that they would be coming back to offer some limited help after their retirement. Ms. Andrea Grimes, Librarians Guild, honored the contributions of Rich Walsh and George Nichols lauding their cooperative work with the Union and strong record of support for the work of frontline library staff. Ms. Grimes noted that such exemplary civil servants were irreplaceable assets that would be missed. Commission discussion of AGENDA ITEM #9 LABOR UNION REPORT It was the consensus of the Commissioners in agreement with the Union’s sentiments that both Mr. Walsh and Mr. Nichols would be greatly missed. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- AGENDA ITEM #10 NEW BUSINESS Vice President Steiman & Commissioner Bautista requested a report on branch library landscaping management. Commissioner Coulter requested a status update on the RFP (request for proposals) for RFID. Commissioner Chin requested consideration of a resolution commending Library supported Helen Chin, Principal of the Gordon Lau School. Commissioner Chin also inquired about a discussion of the status of the former practice of library friends donating magazine subscriptions to their branch libraries. Public comment on AGENDA ITEM #10 NEW BUSINESS An anonymous member of the public expressed alarm at some of the points raised in discussion concerning landscaping maintenance expressing preference for more greenery rather than shrub removal. This person also discussed their views on the issue of RFID urging a full public discussion. Mr. Peter Warfield found all of the proposed items good and asked for a discussion about donations of books as well. Mr. Warfield called for a public discussion of RFID at the Commission suggesting that the devil would be in the details and that only extensive public review would satisfy public concerns. Ms. Melissa Riley, Librarian’s Guild, discussed her experience as a branch library staff member in dealing with landscaping issues and working with Recreation and Park Department staff. Commissioner Strobin left the meeting at 5:39pm -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- AGENDA ITEM #11 ADJOURNMENT MOTION: by Commissioner Steiman, 2nd Commissioner Chin that the meeting be adjourned In Memoriam of the Late Val Tietz, a longtime friend, patron, landlord, and staunch supporter of the Glen Park Branch Library. Public comment on AGENDA ITEM #11 ADJOURNMENT An anonymous member of the public noted that Ms. Tietz had been a well regarded member of the community. Approved by the following vote: 4-0 AYE (Bautista, Chin, Coulter, and Steiman) There being no further business, at the hour of 6:00pm the Public Library Commission adjourned. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Michael Housh, Commission Secretary 10/19/04 Please note: Copies of Commission Minutes and handouts are available in the Office of the Commission Secretary, 100 Larkin Street, San Francisco, CA 94102 ATTACHMENTS to the October 7, 2004 Minutes: Minutes of the regular Commission Meeting of September 2, 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 -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 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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