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Library Commission Minutes - November 6, 2003

SAN FRANCISCO PUBLIC LIBRARY COMMISSION Minutes of the regular meeting of Thursday, November 6, 2003. (As approved January 6, 2004) The San Francisco Public Library Commission held its regular meeting on Thursday, November 6, 2003 in the Koret Auditorium, Main Library. Vice President Steiman called the meeting to order at 4:05 pm. The following members were noted present: Commissioners Bautista, Coulter, Steiman, and Strobin. Commissioner Chin joined the meeting at 4:15PM. President Higueras and Commissioner Streets were reported as excused attendance. Agenda Items: 1) Approval of October 2, 2003 Minutes 2) City Librarian's Report 3) 04/05 Library Bidget Workshop 4) Commission Officers for 2004 6) Friends of the Library Report 7) Labor Union Report 8) New Business 9) Public Comment APPENDIX A -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- AGENDA ITEM #1 APPROVAL OF THE OCTOBER 2, 2003 COMMISSION MINUTES Public comment on APPROVAL OF THE OCTOBER 2, 2003 COMMISSION MINUTES An anonymous member of the public suggested that the full name of Mr. Loranger’s organization be provided rather than its abbreviation and suggested that the minutes obliterated history by not reporting details of comments. This person also noted that comments regarding the draft Strategic Plan by the Deputy City Librarian and regarding the BALIS Report were not included. Mr. Ed Regan found his comments had been accurately reported. Mr. Peter Warfield commented that the reported discussion of the Strategic Plan was insufficiently detailed to highlight changes called for by the City Librarian and the Commission President. Mr. Warfield also commented that some of his remarks and the City Librarian’s response to them were not reported. Commission discussion of APPROVAL OF THE OCTOBER 2, 2003 COMMISSION MINUTES Vice President Steiman asked that the full name of the San Francisco Neighborhood Antenna-Free Union (SNAFU) be spelled out rather than just be identified by its abbreviation in the minutes. MOTION: by Commissioner Bautista, seconded by Commissioner Strobin for approval of the October 2, 2003 Minutes. ACTION: 5-0 (Bautista, Chin, Coulter, Steiman, and Strobin) -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- AGENDA ITEM #2 CITY LIBRARIAN’S REPORT City Librarian Susan Hildreth began her report with an extensive report and analysis of the decisions made, including the lack of success of the Library’s Prop 14. Application for the Richmond Branch, at the October 28th Sacramento Prop. 14 Bond meeting. The City Librarian additionally presented: information concerning a Branch Library Improvement Program bookmobile purchase; a report on Tool Lending Center developments; a Millennium transition update; and an update on Library exhibits and programs. Ms Hildreth also called attention to a “Closing Party”[PDF] planned for the Excelsior Branch Library on November 23rd. (copy attached) Public comment on AGENDA ITEM #2 CITY LIBRARIAN’S REPORT An anonymous member of the public commented on the Library’s lack of success with Prop. 14 applications and noted that the competition for these funds would likely become even more intense in the 3rd cycle. This person suggested that the Library’s chances for success were iffy if not farfetched and that fiscally responsible plans should be undertaken to be prepared. Mr. Ed Regan found the presentation informative, but expressed reservations with the proposed use of book mobiles to provide interim services, suggesting that a larger vehicle such as a mobile home or temporary building would serve better. Commission discussion of AGENDA ITEM #2 CITY LIBRARIAN’S REPORT In response to questions by Commissioner Coulter, the City Librarian reported that that negative comments offered by critics of the Richmond Prop. 14 Application had limited impact on the Bond Board’s decision making process. Commissioner Coulter expressed dismay that individuals who were not Richmond residents would attempt to damage the chances for funding. Commissioner Chin expressed no such surprise noting that these critics were purely negative and that contrary to their words of concern about books and the Library their actions were simply mean and nasty. The City Librarian reported that Supervisor McGoldrick had informed her that at the next Board meeting he would be taking a bus full of Richmond District neighbors to Sacrament to demonstrate neighborhood residents’ strong support of the Library’s application for State Library Bond Act funding. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- AGENDA ITEM #3 04/05 LIBRARY BUDGET WORKSHOP Library Finance Director George Nichols presented a detailed overview of the current fiscal landscape and economic outlook as well as the advent of a new regime in Sacramento in order to set the stage for his discussion of the outlook for the Library’s 2004/05 Budget (copy attached). Public comment on AGENDA ITEM #3 An anonymous member of the public commented that the report simply noted that in good years prudence should be exercised so that in bad years when less could be expected services could continue. This person then discussed the Board of Supervisors action to allocate Library funds and the way in which the various Library fund sources were used, noting that the cost of the purchase of the school property was not included when adding up the Library funds that the Board of Supervisors had allocated for the schools. Mr. Ed Regan lauded the report and requested a detailed breakdown of the Library’s book collections, particularly its non-fiction collections, and expressed a hope that funds would be available for expanded hours of service. Mr. Peter Warfield urged that the Commissioners consider the priorities mandated by Prop E, (Library Preservation Fund) for more books and hours, suggesting that for a wealthy library, among the nation’s best funded, a larger share of funds should be allocated to books and additional hours of service. Commission discussion of AGENDA ITEM #3 04/05 LIBRARY BUDGET Vice President Steiman pointed out that the Library was meeting the goal of increased public service hours mandated by Prop. E (Library Preservation Fund) and that the Commission would be prudent when considering what other needs could be funded if additional funds were available. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- AGENDA #4 COMMISSION OFFICERS FOR 2004 The Commission Secretary recommended that in view of the certainty of the election of a new Mayor that the Commission act to postpone nominating and electing officers for 2004 until the new administration had had an opportunity to make its wishes known regarding the Commission’s membership. Public comment on AGENDA #4 COMMISSION OFFICERS FOR 2004 An anonymous member of the public noted that there was uncertainty with change of administrations but that historically some Commissioners were usually retained along with new appointments so as to maintain continuity. Commission discussion of AGENDA #4 COMMISSION OFFICERS FOR 2004 MOTION: by Commissioner Bautista, seconded by Commissioner Strobin to postpone nomination and election of Library Commissioner for 2004 ACTION: 5-0 (Bautista, Chin, Coulter, Steiman, and Strobin) Vice President Steiman announced that she was continuing discussion of Agenda Item #5 Library History Plaques to a later meeting. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- AGENDA ITEM #6 FRIENDS OF THE LIBRARY REPORT Friends of the Library Executive Director Martín Gómez reported that the Friends had gone to Sacramento to support the Library’s Prop 14 (State Library Bond Act) Application for the Richmond Branch and expressed disappointment at the mean spirited opposition to this worthy project voiced by the Library’s critics. Mr. Gómez announced that the Planned Giving Program was underway and then invited the Commissioners to attend a reception honoring author Amy Tan. Mr. Gómez next discussed a $50,000 gift for the Excelsior Branch Capital Campaign that the Friends had received from the Silver Giving Fund. The Executive Director of the Friends reported the happy news that Deborah Doyle, Chair of the Friends Board, had been recognized with the prestigious California Library Association President’s Award and would receive it on November 15th at the upcoming CLA meeting in Ontario. Additionally, he noted that Friends Board member Ellen Huppert was being recognized for her contributions during National Philanthropy Day activities and then concluded his report with a reminder of Project Read’s 20th Anniversary Commission discussion of AGENDA ITEM #6 FRIENDS OF THE LIBRARY REPORT Commissioner Chin lauded Ms. Huppert’s contributions, noting that she was also a school volunteer. In response to questions by Vice President Steiman, Mr. Gómez briefly discussed the Grants to Branches for the coming year. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- AGENDA #7 LABOR UNION REPORT Librarian’s Guild member Ruth Maginnis called the Commissioners’ attention to issues of concern to Guild members relating to Workers Compensation Claims and about increased numbers of hand injuries thought to be related to the new ILS system. Concerning branch library renovations, Ms. Maginnis urged that all seismic risk level 4 facilities be given highest priority for repair without waiting for additional grant money to do so. Ms. Maginnis then presented a lengthy critique of the proposed Wall of Library Heroes reporting Librarian’s Guild opposition to the proposal and suggesting that the Friends of the Library’s contributions were being favored while those of library staff and members of the public were being overlooked. Ms. Maginnis concluded the Labor Union Report commenting that this was an expensive project in times where there was a shortage of funds and that short staffing was already a problem. Commission discussion of AGENDA #7 LABOR UNION REPORT In answer to a question by Vice President Steiman, Ms. Maginnis replied that while there had not been a vote by the Librarian Guilds to oppose the Wall of Heroes, there was total lack of support for it by those attending Guild meetings. There followed a discussion of various issues related to the proposed Wall of Heroes with Commissioner Coulter emphasizing that the goal was to recognize citizen volunteer support for the creation of and maintenance of the Library throughout its history. Commissioner Coulter left the meeting at 5:45pm. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- AGENDA #8 NEW BUSINESS Commissioner Bautista requested a report to the Commission on the Library’s bookmobile services. Public comment on AGENDA #8 NEW BUSINESS An anonymous member of the public suggested that the report to the Commission on bookmobile service should be comprehensive. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- AGENDA ITEM #9 PUBLIC COMMENT An anonymous member of the public noted no report was made concerning the “Reversing Vandalism” project or on the Richmond Neighborhood meeting concerning the proposed renaming of the Richmond Branch Library to honor the late Senator Milton Marks. Additionally, this individual expressed their opposition to Supervisor Chris Daley’s action in reallocating Library funds to the school district. Mr. Eugene Lee, a library user, applauded the catalog upgrade but called for the Library to provide more help for those learning how to navigate the new system. Mr. Lee noted however that, even with the bugs yet to be resolved, the new system was much faster and better than before. Commissioner Chin left the meeting at 6.05pm. The meeting ended with the abrupt loss of the quorum at 6:05pm Michael Housh, Commission Secretary 11/20/03 -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Minutes of the regular Commission Meeting of November 6, 2003 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. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- City Librarian’s Report – 11/6/03 October 28th Proposition 14 Bond Board meeting – A dedicated contingent from San Francisco traveled to Sacramento for this important meeting. 66 projects totaling $547 million in requests were submitted. 16 projects totaling $91 million were funded. Projects ranked as follows: outstanding – 13, very good – 38 (Richmond was in this category), acceptable – 15, limitations – 1. All outstanding were funded as well as 3 very good projects. Over 100 people gave testimony on projects; two members of the public testified against the Richmond project, the only project that received any negative testimony. We received useful information in the project evaluation on how to make the Richmond application more competitive; and we also had a useful phone consultation from the rating panel on the morning of 11/6. We plan to resubmit the Richmond project for Cycle 3 funding, the final cycle, as well as 4 other new projects. Branch Library Improvement Program bookmobile purchase – After great effort on the part of the Library Finance staff, the City has issued a check for the Sunnyvale Public Library bookmobile that will be used for temporary services in the Excelsior neighborhood during the branch closure as well as other neighborhoods in the future. The bookmobile is in excellent condition and we hope to have it ready for the Excelsior Branch closing party on November 23rd. The Library is also purchasing a new bookmobile which will be manufactured according to our specifications and be ready in Spring 2004. Tool Lending Center update – The grant agreement with Clean City Coalition has been signed. We hope to reopen the popular service before Thanksgiving. We have an effective agreement with good management controls. The Library staff will actively assist the CCC staff with the Tool Center program. Millenium update – The migration to Millennium was successfully completed at the end of August. The new online system is very popular with the public and reference staff. The circulation system is web-based and entails use of a mouse. The previous system was text-based; and the introduction of the mouse and lots of clicking is a challenge for circulation staff. In order to address outstanding issues since the migration, a Post-Migration Team has been formed. Chaired by John Kenny, Assistant Chief of Main Library, the team will be organized into subgroups focusing on public catalog review, holds/reserves, circulation and training. A weekly progress update is posted on the staff intranet. Exhibits and Programs – Report is attached. 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).