805 N. Chicago Street,
Geneseo, IL 61254


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December 2009 Board Minutes

Geneseo Public Library District
Board of Trustees Meeting
December 14, 2009

The Board of Trustees of the Geneseo Public Library District met in regular session in the Hammond Room of the Library on December 14, 2009. President Gary ZumMallen called the meeting to order a few minutes early at 6:26 as all members expected to attend were present. Board members in attendance included Dr. Jan Dyke, Barbara Erdman, Darline Holland, Dave Johnson, and Gary ZumMallen. Holly McAvoy was absent, attending a school program for one of her children. Board member Jim Hale died in the period since the meeting on November 9. Also attending the meeting were Library Director Claire Crawford, Sarah Alexander representing the Leadership Committee, Jim Luikart to present the Financial Report, Lisa Depies from the Geneseo Republic, and Linda Altermatt as scribe. Additionally, President ZumMallen gave permission to Mike Thompson to make a video recording of the meeting. There was an addition to the agenda under New Business to discuss the process of appointing a replacement for Jim Hale, who will be sadly missed.


Citizen’s Input  

There was no comment from the citizens who were present.


Secretary’s Report

President ZumMallen called the Board’s attention to the minutes of November 9. There was a correction in the spelling of Mary Farrell’s name. Barbara Erdman made a motion to approve the minutes with that correction. Darline Holland seconded the motion and in voice vote all Board members present approved the motion. There was one piece of correspondence, a thank you note from Mary Farrell expressing her gratitude to the Board members for a monetary gift on her retirement.


Financial Report

Jim Luikart presented the Financial Report. He told the Board that for the most part the interest rates were holding steady. However, the six-month certificate of deposit that matured in December was renewed at an interest rate nearly ½ % lower. Another certificate of deposit, earmarked for working capital, will come due in January. Dave Johnson and Jim Luikart will work cooperatively to determine the best action on that account. Another deposit of $22,154 was received in payment from the tax levy. The Community Foundation pledged $5,000 from Great River Bend Foundation for the ground breaking for the new library building. Central Bank deposited $25,000 in the Building Fund as partial payment on the $100,000 pledged earlier. An additional $5,000 was presented to the Library as a gift for the purchase of materials to benefit senior programming. A portion of that money, $1,000, was spent for Public Broadcasting System DVD’s. Library Director Crawford noted that as VHS tapes become outdated, they are being replaced with DVD’s.  The posted budget reflects a high level of spending in that account (#402.1); however, the budget report will be changed to reflect the purchase with the gift funds.

Jim Luikart met with the auditors and a report should be forthcoming from them soon.


Dave Johnson questioned the spending for Account #418.4 Workman’s Compensation. While this is a one-time annual payment, it is an increase over the budgeted amount. Additionally, the spending for subscriptions to magazines and newspapers are slightly over budget. Most of these subscriptions fall due in November. Library Director Crawford said she is aware of the discrepancy. The increase is due to a shift to more online subscriptions, which are more expensive. After some further discussion, Darline Holland made a motion to approve the Financial Report and Bills to Be Paid as presented. Dave Johnson seconded that motion and in roll call vote all members present approved the motion.


Building and Leadership

Gary ZumMallen opened the presentation with an announcement that the Library Board is in a difficult situation. The Library’s architect is waiting for the Board to vote to approve the expenditure of funds for completion of the finished drawings needed for approval by the Community Development Board. The building permit, when issued, will expire in six months. At the present time, the funds are at least $900,000 below the amount recommended to begin the project. John Bean, the Library’s lawyer, has advised the Board that under laws governing libraries, it is illegal to take out a mortgage of any kind or to procure general obligation bonds to provide funding for the project without approval through a voter referendum. If the Community Development Board does not approve the request for a variance in zoning, the Library will bear the increased cost of an additional set of finished drawings. President ZumMallen asked the Board for direction. Barbara Erdman stated that it is very difficult to pass a referendum in this community, particularly in the current financial climate. After further discussion, it was agreed to shift the next Library Board meeting to January 4, with a meeting of the Leadership Committee scheduled on January 11. The question was tabled for the January Board meeting to allow the Board to discuss the problem at that time and arrive at a decision with all available members present.


Each Board member was provided with a folder containing the new marketing materials designed to inform and inspire prospective donors. The poster display of the new building design was quite impressive.


Librarian’s Report

Library Director Crawford stated that the participation in the Christmas Walk was quite successful. A number of people visited the Library and were pleased and entertained. 


The small elevator or “dumb waiter” passed its annual inspection. The fire inspector suggested that the fire alarm system for the basement is all right for now, but the Board might consider updating the equipment. Jim Luikart suggested the Geneseo Telephone Company, which provides the other security systems for the Library, should be consulted.


The Board was asked to reconsider the amount charged for making copies for library patrons. Library Director Crawford suggested that the current rate may be unnecessarily low. Dr. Dyke stated that the copier helps to bring in patrons and the low cost actually benefits the community. Dave Johnson suggested that the amount charged for color copies could probably be increased. President ZumMallen asked for a cost analysis on the wear and tear on the machines plus the actual consumption of materials. He asked Library Director Crawford to contact the company for per page costs, including depreciation, to provide the information to the Board by the January 4 meeting.


Currently, Claire Crawford is working with the IT specialist on a technology plan that will enable a smooth transition to an updated library within budget restrictions and satisfy requirements for next year’s Per Capita Grant.


Lastly, Library Director Crawford asked the Board’s permission to move the Director’s office to the smaller room previously occupied by the Library’s bookkeeper. This would enable the larger room near the front desk to be used for work space by the staff. Excess furniture could be placed in the storage unit until needed. Dr. Dyke made a motion to allow Claire Crawford to determine her preferred office location, reorganizing the former Director offices as needed. Barbara Erdman seconded that motion and in voice vote all Board members present approved.


Unfinished Business

There was no Unfinished Business to be considered.


New Business

President ZumMallen asked that in the next week each of the Board members submit names of people who might consider serving on the Library Board in Jim Hale’s place. He noted that Jim Hale had served the Board to the very best of his abilities even within weeks of his passing. Memorials in his name were to be donated to the Library.



With no further business before the Board, Barbara Erdman made a motion to adjourn. That was seconded by Darline Holland. The meeting adjourned at 7:20 PM with seasons greetings exchanged by all. The next meeting will be held on January 4, 2010 at 6:30PM in the Hammond Room of the Library.    

Library Information

805 N. Chicago Street,
Geneseo, IL 61254
Phone: 309-944-6452
Fax: 309-944-6721
Email: gpld@geneseo.lib.il.us
Toll free number for renewals: 1-888-542-7259