Library Commission Minutes - October 2, 2001
Minutes of the regular meeting of Tuesday, October 2, 2001.
The San Francisco Public Library Commission held its regular meeting on Tuesday, October 2, 2001 in the Koret Auditorium, Main Library.
The meeting was called to order at 4: 07PM by President Higueras.
The following members were noted present: Commissioners Coulter, Higueras, Steiman, Streets and Swig.
Commissioner Chin was noted excused attendance.
Commissioner Bautista joined the meeting at 4:12PM.
AGENDA ITEM #1 APPROVAL OF THE MINUTES OF SEPTEMBER 4, 2001 REGULAR COMMISSION MEETING
Public comment on AGENDA ITEM #1 APPROVAL OF THE MINUTES OF SEPTEMBER 4, 2001 REGULAR COMMISSION MEETING
An anonymous member of the public commented that the audio recording of the meeting was incomplete and that Public Comment Summary Statements were not posted on the Library's website. The anonymous member of the public additionally commented that the Library Commission information had been relocated on the website making it more difficult to find. This person noted that there were mistakes in the numbering of the agenda items as reported in these Minutes. The anonymous member of the public also discussed comments in these Minutes related to corrections in the June 28th Minutes which this person found incomplete. Mr. Peter Warfield observed that the sound quality of the recorded videotape of the meeting was very poor. Mr. Warfield also commented that the reported Minutes understated public participation in the meeting and did not report fully on an assault on books that he suggested was to be found in comments attributed to library consultant Dallas Shaffer. He also noted comments in support of more books and hours were not included in David Binder's remarks related to patrons' wishes regarding the Library's future plans. Mr. Warfield also found that other comments he had made regarding more books and hours, use of the online catalog, and the availability of documents related to agenda items were not fully or accurately reported.
Commission comment on AGENDA ITEM #1 APPROVAL OF THE MINUTES OF THE SEPTEMBER 4, 2001 REGULAR COMMISSION MEETING
In response to questions by Commissioners, the Commission Secretary affirmed that the identifying number designations for the agenda items reported and a typographic error would be corrected. It was further noted that the meeting would be stopped whenever it was necessary to turn the tapes so that all of the discussion could be fully recorded on the audio tapes of commission meetings.
MOTION: by Commissioner Steiman, seconded by Commissioner Coulter for approval of the September 4, 2001 Minutes as amended.
ACTION: AYE 6-0 (Bautista, Coulter, Higueras, Steiman, Streets, and Swig)
AGENDA ITEM #2 MISSION BAY BRANCH LIBRARY
The City Librarian introduced Ms. Amy Netches and Mr. Matt Schwartz of the Redevelopment Agency staff who provided the Commissioners with a general overview of the development of the proposed condominium project creating the Mission Bay Branch Library and an affordable senior housing development. Ms. Netches described in some detail the ongoing development of the Mission Bay Project by Catellus and discussed the history of this entirely new planned economically diverse community with an eventual population of 11,000. Ms. Netches identified the proposed site for the library/senior housing development as parcel N3A located at the corner of Berry and 4th Streets. She described extensively the proposed transit and other civic developments planned for the immediate area where the project was proposed to be built.
Mr. Matt Schwartz, Senior Development Specialist with the Redevelopment Agency provided the Commissioners with a highly detailed discussion of the various aspects of the building planned to house the library and the senior housing development. He noted that there would be 139 units of housing and an adult day center for use by the building residents. Mr. Schwartz also described the shared loading areas, the 7,758 sq. ft. ground floor corner location for the branch library, and a planned 2,500 sq. ft non-profit office space. Additionally, Mr. Schwartz reported that the planned building included 4,100-sq. ft. of retail space on the street level to promote pedestrian activity in the new neighborhood. Mr. Schwartz also reported on the visibility of the branch library as a central civic presence in the new neighborhood. The Senior Development Specialist further reported on the background of how Mercy Housing was chosen as the developer and manager of the proposed senior housing development. Mr. Schwartz then discussed aspects of the financial package which was put together to make this project possible, noting that the library would own the branch library portion of the condominium, and discussed how some of the proposed terms and agreements involved in the project were developed.
The City Librarian reported that library staff had been very actively involved in this project for nearly a year, noted the $3.6 million purchase price for the branch library, and outlined various aspects of the proposed outline of terms with the Redevelopment Agency that warranted Commission consideration. The City Librarian provided a detailed discussion of the unique aspects of this joint project with Redevelopment and clarified details of costs involved. Ms. Hildreth described the library's condominium ownership of the branch library space, how joint tenancy maintenance costs were being negotiated, and the advantageous aspects of having library staff working with the developer to create an 7,758 sq. ft. branch library at this site within the amount available through the bond. It was noted that the Redevelopment Agency had asked the Library to include in the agreement: a commitment to operate the branch library for a specified number of hours and days; that Redevelopment would like the agreement to specify weekend and evening hours; and that the Redevelopment Agency wished to have 1st right of reversion should the Library not continue to operate a branch library at that location. Ms. Hildreth concluded with a request that the Commissioner's authorize library staff to continue to negotiate remaining details of an agreement with the Redevelopment Agency and bring back final terms for the Library Commission's review and recommendation to the Board of Supervisors for approval.
PUBLIC COMMENT ON AGENDA ITEM #2 MISSION BAY BRANCH LIBRARY
An anonymous member of the public commented that this proposal seemed to be a minor element in Catellus overall plan and that while library staff had been working on this proposal for some time behind the scenes this was the first and likely only time that the Commission would discuss it in public. This individual suggested that there were a number of issues to be clarified such as what was meant by senior housing and affordable housing. This individual noted that this agreement looks like a purchase but reads like a lease. Mr. Peter Warfield noted that these terms amounted to a blank check for library staff to conclude an agreement without input by the public or the Commission. Mr. Warfield also observed that this proposal provided for no funds to operate this new branch library. He further suggested that as yet there were very few residents in the area that the new library would serve, and that this entire proposal raised questions about making a significant commitment of library resources without addressing the issue of equity with the other branch libraries in the system. Mr. Warfield commented that this allocation of resources did not address the system wide support services center previously mentioned as possibly being located in this area.
COMMISSION COMMENT ON AGENDA ITEM #2 MISSION BAY BRANCH LIBRARY
Vice President Steiman noted that there were a significant number of residents in the South of Market neighborhood and that there was a more than sufficient population to warrant having a new branch library. In response to a question by Vice President Steiman, the City Librarian reported that change orders for various branch library projects would be reported to the Commission. She additionally clarified that the Library was only to receive the land at no cost and that the Library would have to pay for the shell and all tenant improvements. Vice President Steiman next discussed concerns with the reversion language included in the outline of terms noting that it was unwise not to anticipate a day when financial circumstances would require that the Library either not continue to operate its branches in the same way or that they be used in other ways to support the library system. In response to a question by Commissioner Bautista, the City Librarian reported that it was possible that Prop. 14, (State Library Construction and Improvement Bond) funds could be used on this project. In response to Commissioner Bautista's questions regarding building design issues for this project, Bond Program Manager Marilyn Thompson discussed the review process she envisioned for the library related aspects of the project's designer HKIT's proposed schematic design for this project. Ms. Thompson noted that library staff had commented on the preliminary schematics submitted to the Redevelopment Agency by Mercy Housing's designers and that the unique nature of the shared ownership of this site could produce a design review process on this project unlike that which would be used with most of the other new and renovated branch libraries.
In response to a question by President Higueras, Deputy City Attorney Donnell Choy clarified that the final terms of any agreement between the Library and the Redevelopment Agency on the development of the Mission Bay Branch Library would be brought to the Library Commission and the Redevelopment Commission for review and recommendation for approval to the Board of Supervisors. Ms. Hildreth commented that the Commission would have a very active role in overseeing the design process for these branch libraries. In answer to a question concerning the Redevelopment Agency's timeline for development of this segment of the Mission Bay Project, Ms. Netches outlined the status of the various housing projects currently underway in the project area and the expected schedule of build out of these surrounding projects. Ms. Netches noted that this particular project would be both a senior and an affordable housing project. She commented that the library will serve not only the Mission Bay neighborhood but the South of Market neighborhoods as well. She then outlined various ongoing and proposed transit projects and park development that will build an important new community. Commissioner Bautista suggested that some of the affordable housing units might be made available to low income librarians.
In response to questions by Commissioner Streets, the City Librarian discussed the Library's ongoing responsibilities for paying shared maintenance costs incurred by this condominium project as a part of its annual budget. In response to further questions by Commissioner Streets, Mr. Schwartz further clarified how these charges would be set and described the oversight processes which would be in place to monitor the activities of the Mercy Housing Board which would manage this project. In addition, Ms. Hildreth discussed issues involved in adding the operations of a 27th branch library within the requirements of Prop. E (Library Preservation Fund) and how this might be accomplished. Ms Hildreth also discussed how she proposed that the Commission review change orders for this project and other proposed projects. President Higueras discussed in some detail how change orders had been addressed in the past such as with the Ocean View Branch Library and noted that a similar process might be considered. Vice President Steiman noted that she wished to see modifications in the proposed terms in both items #2 and #6. In response to a question by Commissioner Swig, the City Librarian noted that if the Commission approved the proposed terms, it would authorize library staff to continue to negotiate an agreement which would then have to be reviewed and approved and recommended to the Board of Supervisors by both the Library and the Redevelopment Agency Commissions.
MOTION: by Commissioner Bautista, seconded by Commissioner Coulter that the Commission authorize the City Librarian, in consultation with the City Attorney's Office and the Director of Property, to negotiate an agreement with the San Francisco Redevelopment Agency consistent with the terms outlined for the acquisition and development of a Mission Bay Branch Library facility in a mixed-use condominium senior housing project to be developed on Parcel N3a-1, which fronts on 4th Street between Berry Street and Mission Creek Channel in Mission Bay.
Commissioner Steiman requested amendment of this motion to include the Commission's expressed reservations concerning items #2 and #6 in the proposed outline of terms.
AMENDED MOTION: by Commissioner Bautista, seconded by Commissioner Coulter that the City Librarian is authorized, in consultation with the City Attorney's Office and the Director of Property, to negotiate an agreement with the San Francisco Redevelopment Agency consistent with the terms outlined subject to revisions in items two and six for the development and acquisition of a Mission Bay Branch Library facility in a mixed-use condominium senior housing project to be developed on Parcel N3a-1, which fronts on 4th Street between Berry Street and Mission Creek Channel in Mission Bay.
ACTION: 6-0 Aye (Bautista, Coulter, Higueras, Steiman, Streets, and Swig)
AGENDA ITEM #3 CITY LIBRARIAN'S REPORT
City Librarian Susan Hildreth brought the Commissioners up to date on recent branch library improvements projects noting that the Bayview Branch would re-open as an all PC branch on October 5, 2001. Ms. Hildreth also reported that the Visitacion Valley Branch Library would be closed on October 10th and reopen on December 12th to allow for a major electrical upgrade which would allow installation of PCs.
Ms. Hildreth next discussed the recent developments in the Glen Park Branch Library site selection process. The City Librarian discussed a meeting to be held at the Glen Park Recreation Center to allow additional neighborhood comments on the sight selection process, noting that the owners of the "Kelly" site had indicated that they were unwilling to sell the property. The City Librarian then discussed aspects of the remaining proposed sites, the Diamond Super site, and a site located adjacent to the Glen Park BART Station.
The City Librarian then discussed a recently adopted Board of Supervisor's Resolution authored by Supervisor Mark Leno prohibiting filtering of all public access computers in the library except those in the Main Library Children's Center and those dedicated to children's use in branch libraries. Ms. Hildreth described in some detail the discussion including Supervisor Tony Hall's concerns with protecting children from inappropriate access to certain materials found on the Internet which were discussed at a September 20th Meeting of the Board's Rules Committee which addressed the resolution. The City Librarian suggested that the Commission discuss the issues involved at its November 2001 Meeting.
Ms. Hildreth concluded her report with a matter which had come to her attention to late to be included on the agenda, the announcement that nominations for San Francisco's next Poet Laureate where being taken and that application forms for that position were available at the rear of the auditorium.
Public comment on Agenda Item #3 CITY LIBRARIAN'S REPORT:
An anonymous member of the public noted that the proper name for the Bayview Branch Library was the Bayview- Anna May Wadden Branch and commented that the owner's refusal to sell the "Kelly" site favored by the community as the new location for the Glen Park Branch Library should not justify its elimination from consideration. The anonymous member of the public expressed a belief that acquisition of this site for the branch library was not impossible. In addition concerning the discussion of Internet filtering legislation, this individual commented on the importance of defending Intellectual Freedom by offering unfiltered access. Peter Warfield commented on issues raised during the discussions of various sites for branch libraries, noting that there had been a strong preference expressed for free standing libraries rather than those located in shared structures. Mr. Warfield observed that shared facilities inherently involved more problems and expressed the hope that ways could be found to reconsider the availability of the (Kelly) site. In relation to the discussion of Internet filtering legislation, Mr. Warfield commented favorably on the strong preference for unfiltered access by the Library Commission, the City Librarian, and the Supervisors but expressed concerns as to how the library might address issues created by the segregation by age of access to information available on its computers.
COMMISSION COMMENT ON AGENDA ITEM #3 CITY LIBRARIAN'S REPORT
Vice President Steiman noted that it was very clear that Mr. Kelly was unwilling to sell this site under any circumstances. She further hoped that the discussions at the Glen Park neighborhood meeting would focus on the remaining alternatives pointing out that there were not too many alternative choices in the center of the Glen Park neighborhood.
President Higueras noted that, while the Library had not experienced problems with inappropriate access to the Internet by younger patrons nor initiated discussion of a response to mandates for Internet filtering, the Commission would have to address the issues raised in the Supervisor's legislation. The City Librarian informed the Commissioners that a study concerning inappropriate access to questionable Internet sites by users of the computers in the Main Library Children's Center had shown that only .6% of sites visited could be deemed inappropriate. Ms. Hildreth additionally observed that a review of these sites revealed that many were sites that had names similar to popular educational sites that could easily have been accessed by mistake.
AGENDA ITEM #4 MAIN LIBRARY POE REPORT
The City Librarian introduced Library Building and Grounds Superintendent Matt Smyth and Mr. Phil Sowers of the Bureau of Architecture, Department of Public Works who brought the Commissioners up to date on the efforts to respond to the Commission's concerns with proposed POE related renovations to the Grove Street entry area and to damaged table surfaces in various parts of the Main Library. Mr. Sowers provided an extensive overview with views of a proposed redesign of the Grove Street entry area that responded to Commissioner's concerns about the availability of seating for seniors and disabled patrons. Mr. Sowers discussed the display case which would replace the existing stone bench with a lighted display area with adjustable shelving which would allow for display of library related materials. Mr. Sowers noted that these revised proposals had been developed in consultation with the DPW's ADA (Americans With Disabilities Act) staff.
Mr. Sowers then showed the Commissioners samples of various kinds of surface materials that might be used to repair the extensive damage that was occurring to the wood veneer surfaces of the smaller patron worktables throughout the Main Library. He noted that, while the wood like replacement veneer retained a look similar to the existing surfaces, a Corean replacement, while slightly more expensive, was far more durable. Mr. Sowers showed the Commissioners a Corean table surface in a green shade that matched the color used on the tops of the service desks in areas near the worktables. Mr. Smyth noted that staff favored the Corean replacement surface as both more durable and having a greater flexibility to repair if damage did occur.
The City Librarian then brought the Commissioners up to date on the status of two POE related items which had been placed on reserve, noting that the Human Rights Commission have waived the MBE/WBE (Minority and Women owned Business Enterprises) requirements for the library signage RFP (Request for Proposals). Ms. Hildreth also reported that a request for release of funds for the radio repeater system was being forwarded to the Board of Supervisors after additional background information had been provided by the DTIS (Department of Technology and Information Services).
PUBLIC COMMENT ON AGENDA ITEM #4 MAIN LIBRARY POE REPORT
An anonymous member of the public was glad to see an improved proposal for the Grove Street entrance and noted that it was important to have gathered input from the disabled in revising the design. This person additionally observed that while everyone favored low maintenance that the proposed replacement table surfaces resembled 1956 linoleum and was both forbidding and industrial, with little warmth.
COMMISSION COMMENT ON AGENDA ITEM #4 MAIN LIBRARY POE REPORT
Vice President Steiman commented that the redesign of the Grove Street entrance was much improved. She then expressed reservations concerning the proposed table surface replacement materials that while noting that the laminate might cost less and that the Corean was better in the long term, she expressed a preference for a less industrial looking finish. President Higueras observed that it was very important to consider the long-term maintenance issues involved when making these choices. Commissioner Bautista liked the redesign of the Grove Street entrance but expressed concern that special efforts be made to keep it free of wind blown trash. She suggested that she did not favor any particular color for the replacement surfaces but that that it would be most important to choose a color that would blend in with the other surfaces in the library. Commissioner Coulter, while noting that he was not an interior designer, found the Grove Street entrance proposal relatively acceptable assuming that the display case could be kept up. However, Commissioner Coulter expressed grave reservations with what he perceived to be a serious risk that the design of the Main Library would be degraded by creating new looks to solve relatively small problems that in sum added up to significant changes in the appearance of the building. Commissioner Coulter suggested that the building's designers be consulted concerning the proposed changes so that anything that was done would add to rather than diminish the integrity of the building's overall design. President Higueras while conceding that some changes were inevitable expressed concern with creating a patchwork effect through many small changes and expressed a preference that long-term planning take these issues into consideration. There ensued an extensive discussion among the Commissioners concerning the scope of the problem with the damaged tables and what could be done to address these concerns with the overall impact of making changes. Mr. Smyth reported that repairs to these surfaces were becoming necessary every three to six months and that the problem was most evident on the perimeter tables on the 4th floor. After further discussion it was a consensus of the Commissioners that staff allow the tables to go un-repaired for the next three months and that during that time the Commissioners would visit the areas where damage was occurring and consider alternative repair options. Mr. Sowers noted that the estimated prices for the various repair options included in the construction bid or as an alternate item could be held for this period of time. Commissioner Bautista pointed out that this issue was a system wide problem, not just confined to the Main Library.
President Higueras called for a brief recess at 6:20PM
The Commission returned to session at 6:38PM
AGENDA ITEM #5 BRANCH LIBRARY BOND PROGRAM REPORT
Library Branch Improvement Bond Program Manager Marilyn Thompson gave a very detailed report on the status of recent branch library bond related activities. Ms. Thompson noted that the 1st Quarterly report based on DPW budget figures reported to the CIAC (Capital Improvements Advisory Committee) would be released during this month. Ms. Thompson reminded the Commissioners that these figures were budgets only and that as the bond program moved forward revisions would be reviewed by the Commission's Branch Bond Ad Hoc Committee and by the public. The Branch Bond Project Manager then called attention to the Ad Hoc Committee which the Commission had created to oversee bond related activities and noted a schedule of meetings would be made available. Ms. Thompson then discussed aspects of the next phase in the development of a turnkey library developed within the projected budget for the Mission Bay Branch Library given the Commission's preliminary approval of the outline of terms for development of this branch. Ms. Thompson reported that a design team was being put together comprised of library staff, staff from the Redevelopment Agency, the Department of Real Estate, experts in tenant improvements from the Bureau of Architecture, Department of Public Works, and that a library design planner would be added to the team. The Branch Bond Program Manager next discussed the initial stages of work on the Richmond Branch Library noting that a design team had been put together to prepare the application to the state for Prop. 14 (State Library Bond) funds and the Library Consultant Dallas Shaffer was conducting preliminary interviews of the library staff and members of the community to develop a building program for presentation to the state in the first round of applications in June of 2002. Ms. Thompson further reported that a series of design review meetings addressing CEQA (California Environmental Quality Act) requirements and other review issues would be held in the coming weeks. The Branch Bond Program Manager then informed the Commissioners concerning ongoing discussions about landmarking issues with President Tim Kelly of the Landmarks Preservation Advisory Board. Ms. Thompson next described discussions with staff at the Department of Recreation and Park and City Planning, concerning issues effecting those branch libraries in the program located in Recreation and Park properties. Next, Ms. Thompson discussed the architectural design charrette being held by the Friends and Foundation of the San Francisco Public Library. Finally Ms. Thompson called attention to a Glen Park neighborhood meeting to be held on October 4th at 7:30PM to discuss the various options available to the community in selecting a site for the new Glen Park Branch Library.
PUBLIC COMMENT ON AGENDA ITEM #5 BRANCH LIBRARY BOND PROGRAM REPORT
Mr. Peter Warfield expressed happiness at receiving regular reports on the bond program but decried the lack of a document outlining the planning process and in particular expressed interest in learning much more about this process. An anonymous member of the public mentioned looking forward to a written report on these matters, and noted the Commission's Ad Hoc Committee on the Branch Library Bond program had not yet met. The anonymous member of the public expressed concern that the Library Foundation would hold a planning session concerning branch libraries prior to the Commission's Committee having ever met suggesting that this sends a message that detailed focused planning done by and paid for by the Foundation is more important than public planning.
COMMISSION COMMENT ON AGENDA ITEM #5 BRANCH LIBRARY BOND PROGRAM REPORT
President Higueras pointed out that the Library Commission would take a very strong role of planning oversight over the Branch Library Bond Program unlike any other Commission's process. He noted that this public process will benefit all parties concerned with President Higueras noted that the Friends and Foundation Charrette was a promotional event which could provide lessons which might be useful to the architects who are chosen by the Commission to design the branch library buildings. He noted that there should be no confusion between what the Foundation does in their efforts to raise money for FF&E (furniture, fixtures, and equipment) and the Commission's charge to oversee construction of these buildings.
AGENDA ITEM #6 COUNCIL OF NEIGHBORHOOD LIBRARIES REPORT
Ms. Sue Cauthen, Council of Neighborhood Libraries briefly described the history, structure, and work of the Council in support of branch libraries and reported that the Council had been recently reorganized and had adopted a revised Mission Statement, (copy attached). Ms. Chris Ortiz described the ongoing efforts of the members of the Council, with the assistance of a facilitator, to improve its activities. Ms. Ortiz called attention to the fact that there was a need to add additional members to the Council as some branch libraries currently were unrepresented. Ms. Ortiz then noted that members of the Council had met with Commissioners Steiman, Coulter, and Bautista and looked forward to working with the other Library Commission members.
PUBLIC COMMENT ON AGENDA ITEM #6 COUNCIL OF NEIGHBORHOOD LIBRARIES REPORT
COMMISSION COMMENT ON AGENDA ITEM #6 COUNCIL OF NEIGHBORHOOD LIBRARIES REPORT
Vice President Steiman expressed her appreciation for the work of the Council of Neighborhood Libraries. President Higueras commented that he looked forward to the Council's input on the development of the Branch Library Bond Program. Commissioner Bautista called attention to the excellent work done by Library Chief of Branches, Donna Corbeil and her staff and noted that the Council was a great group that contributes to the ongoing development of our branch libraries.
AGENDA ITEM #7 COMMISSION MEETING SCHEDULE 2002
The Commission Secretary provided the Commissioners with an overview of the proposed meeting schedule for 2002 and recommended that the Commissioners approve it. The Secretary in particular pointed out the two months, January and November, were the New Year Holiday and Election Day warranted changing the meeting day from the first Tuesday of the month to another day. The Commission Secretary also reported to the Commissioners that he had reserved the Koret Auditorium on the third Tuesday and Thursday of each month for use by the Commission as alternative meeting dates should they be needed.
Public comment on AGENDA ITEM #7 COMMISSION MEETING SCHEDULE 2002
Mr. Peter Warfield suggested that the Commission adopt meeting dates for the Ad Hoc Branch Bond Committee. He further commented that it was his preference that the beginning time for regular Commission meeting is returned to 5:00PM, a time he found more convenient for both library staff and members of the public to attend Commission meetings. An anonymous member of the public found that returning to the 5:30PM-start time for Commission meetings was more convenient for a number of people.
Commission comment on AGENDA ITEM #7 COMMISSION MEETING SCHEDULE 2002
Vice President Steiman questioned the choice of the 2nd Tuesday of January as the first meeting date in 2002 as that date did not work for her. Several Commissioners suggested that instead that the meeting be held on the 1st Wednesday in January (January 2, 2002). The Secretary suggested that should the Koret be available that the meeting could be held on the First Wednesday. It was the sense of the Commission to keep the 4PM start time.
MOTION: by Commissioner Bautista, seconded by Commissioner Coulter for approval of the proposed schedule with the proviso that should the Koret be available that the first meeting in 2002 will be held on the first Wednesday (January 2, 2002) instead of the second Tuesday (January 8, 2002) as was proposed.
ACTION: Aye 6-0 (Bautista, Coulter, Higueras, Steiman, Streets, and Swig)
Agenda item # 8 FRIENDS AND FOUNDATION REPORT
Ms. Cynthia Adam, Interim Executive Director of the Friends and Foundation of the San Francisco Public Library gave the Commissioners a report on its very successful annual big book sale. Ms. Adam reported that the fundraising event raised the most ever more that $160,000 from this year's sale. Ms. Adam then provided the commissioners with an overview of the Friends and Foundation's branch library design charrette being held on October 5,6, and 7, 2001. Ms. Adam outlined the schedule of activities and described the extensive outreach that had been done to invite participation this interesting event. She concluded her report with a discussion of this year's lecture series.
Public comment on Agenda item # 8 FRIENDS AND FOUNDATION REPORT
An anonymous member of the public expressed great interest in the charrette and gave a description of two dictionary definitions of the term wondering at the appropriateness of using this term given this person's understanding of the meaning of the term. This individual stated that it was this person's understanding that this was by invitation only and would not be a public event. This person reported that the Commission Secretary had informed this individual that this event was not deemed a passive meeting body. The anonymous member of the public continued that in their view that if Library Commissioners participated in this event their participation would violate the Ad Seriatim (meeting) provisions of the San Francisco Sunshine Ordinance. This person noted the purpose of the Sunshine Ordinance was to open such meetings to public view and that Commissioners should be aware of its requirements. Mr. Peter Warfield expressed confusion as to what was the purpose or purposes of this meeting. Mr. Warfield noted that he had not received an invitation nor to his knowledge had any on the Library Commission's regular mailing list received an invitation to the charrette. Mr. Warfield commented that no specifics had been presented regarding what exactly would be involved in these programs. He further commented that it appeared that many interested people had not been informed about or invited to the event. Mr. Warfield noted that he had not found any invitation to the event to a Library Commissioner or anyone else when he inspected the Library Commission's (3-30 day) Public Information File in the Commission Office. He noted that there was no record of Commissioners having been invited in the Public Information File.
Commission comment on Agenda item # 8 FRIENDS AND FOUNDATION REPORT
In response to questions by President Higueras, the City Librarian reported that all events held in the library during the Main Library's open hours were open to the public. Ms. Adam discussed in some detail the extensive outreach efforts which the Friends and Foundation had made in sending out both mail and email invitations to the charrette. President Higueras clarified that it was his understanding that this was not a formal planning event but was instead a kick off event for the Friends and Foundation's capital campaign to raise money for FF&E (furniture, fixtures, and equipment) for the branch libraries. He further noted that this important event could create excitement and interest in the bond program. Ms. Adam confirmed that this was specifically not conceived of as a specific planning event but was merely a way of generating ideas that could be useful to the library in the course of the bond program. In response to a question by Vice President Steiman, Ms. Adam and President Higueras, a professional architect, offered definitions of the term charrette as it is used as a term of art in architecture. In response to a question by President Higueras, Deputy City Attorney Adine Varah reported that attendance by a quorum of the Commission or of a Committee could raise an issue concerning the Ad Seriatim provisions of the law and offered to discuss the specific questions regarding this matter with Commissioners. Commissioner Bautista questioned the circumstances of Mr. Warfield's inquiry whether invitations had been sent to the Commissioners and was informed that the invitations to this event were sent to the Commissioners through the Friends and Foundation rather than through the Commission Office.
Agenda Item #9 LIBRARY LABOR UNION REPORT
No report was made. City Librarian Susan Hildreth expressed her appreciation for the support that the Librarian's Guild provided at the Board of Supervisors in addressing the Internet filtering issue.
Agenda item #10 NEW BUSINESS
Commissioner Bautista requested that staff provide the Commission with the status report on library security plans and information on emergency response preparation.
Agenda item #11 PUBLIC COMMENT
An anonymous member of the public expressed appreciation for the efforts being made to record the entire meeting. This individual additionally suggested that the Commissioners not sell the Main Library short and let the building run down, that the building exists to serve the public at the highest level. The anonymous member of the public then discussed Commissioner Coulter's tenure on the Library Commission and changes in Commission traditions that had occurred and this person's thoughts about them. Mr. Peter Warfield noted that there were many libraries that had experienced damage and that perhaps a better option might be to choose solid wood furniture that could be more easily repaired. Mr. Warfield expressed surprise that routine usage could result in such damage. Mr. Warfield noted that the Board of Supervisors had allocated $30,000 for this purpose, an amount that far exceeded the book budget of many branch libraries and noted that this money might be better used for other purposes. Mr. Warfield explained that he had exercised his rights under the Sunshine law to view materials available in the Public Information File.
Agenda Item #12 ADJOURNMENT
MOTION: by Commissioner Steiman, seconded by Commissioner Coulter that the meeting be adjourned In Memoriam of former Library Commission President John Bransten.
Commissioner Coulter recalled former Commissioner Bransten fondly and noted that he had been dedicated in his support for the Library.
Public comment on Agenda item #12 ADJOURNMENT
An anonymous member of the public observed that this individual had not known the former Commissioner, but was aware that his brother had served on the Commission. The anonymous member of the public then commented on a discussion that had occurred under the adjournment item at the previous Commission meeting concerning access to Commission information.
President Higueras observed while the members of the Commission serve the public they do retain their right to personal privacy and suggested individuals seeking to contact the Commission respect these rights and follow the normal procedures for communicating with the Commission.
ACTION: AYE 6-0 (Bautista, Coulter, Higueras, Steiman, Streets, and Swig)
The meeting was adjourned at 7:35PM.
Michael Housh, Commission Secretary 10/12/01
Please note: Copies of Commission Minutes and handouts are available in the Office of the Commission Secretary, 100 Larkin Street, San Francisco, CA 94102
Copies of Public Comment Summary Statements as authorized by San Francisco Administrative Code Section 67.16 can be found in Appendix A. These summary statements are provided by the speaker and their contents are neither generated by, nor subject to approval or verification of accuracy by, the San Francisco Public Library Commission.
Minutes of the regular Commission Meeting of October 2, 2001
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
By Peter Warfield
Comments on 9/4 Minutes.
(Agenda Item #1)
The 9/4 Minutes repeatedly fail to reflect the assault on books that the Branch Library Facilities planning discussion suggests. For example, Dallas Shaffer gave as an example, the Multnomah library system, saying reduced their book collection by one third in all their branches, "so less became more." She went on to say a library could provide "better service if you have smaller book collections." Also omitted was David Binder's survey findings that people volunteered that they want more books as a high priority.
(Agenda Item #3)
With regard to the City Librarian's Report, I said I am glad to hear our library is considering a new catalog - because the current one has so many problems. I also suggested library users be involved in all aspects of planning (not, as stated in Minutes that the "interests of library users should be given full consideration").