2021 Meeting Minutes

February

MINUTES

FOJPL BOARD QUARTERLY MEETING

Thursday, February 11, 2021

Via Zoom

In Attendance: Carol Race, Sandy Harris, Patience Frederiksen, Anne Fuller, Susi Gregg Fowler, Summer Christianson, Catherine Melville of the Juneau Public Library, Nikki Love from AEYC and Maggie Dalrymple, AmeriCorps volunteer. 

CR called the meeting to order via at 5:05 pm and introduced FOJPL’s newest board member, Summer Christianson, who was elected by a polled vote of the board prior to the meeting, and welcomed her to the board. 

I. Agenda

PF moved that the agenda be adopted. SF seconded. Adopted without objection.

II. Minutes

SH moved that the minutes of the annual meeting of November 14, 2020, be approved. PF second. Approved without objection.

III. Reports

AmeriCorps. Nikki Love and Maggie Dalrymple gave a visual and oral report on the continuing work of the community outreach program in children’s literacy funded in part through a Friends of the Juneau Public Library grant. Nine childcare programs are being served, and estimate of 160 children served with frequency of visits every other week. Maggie delivers and picks up book bundles of 8 to 10 books each which the childcare centers incorporate into their progams. MJ Grande of JPL children’s services works with Maggie preparing the bundles. The visual report showed thank you messages from one of the childcare centers. Maggie aspires to in-person story times again when weather improves enough for outdoor gathering. She mostly is serving toddlers through preK but the family childcare centers have a greater age range and so for these they include books for beginning readers. Nikki mentioned the value of the community connections between the children served and the library and other resources. JuneauFamilies.org posts monthly parent bulletins on their website, a joint effort of AEYC and Partnerships for Families and Children. Board members commented on the success of the outreach program, particularly given pandemic restrictions.

Library. Catherine Melville filled in for Library Director Robert Barr whose Covid-19 responsibilities are taking much of his time. Catherine reported that JPL libraries reopened after rising Covid-19 alert levels in October forced closures although libraries continued to provide some services. Recently the libraries have returned to 7 day a week service although not at the pre-Covid levels. Increased information about the virus allowed the focus to shift to concerns

about airborne contagions rather than primarily as surface transmission. Open library hours are now from noon rather than having different start times. Outreach staff are able to get out more although outreach is still more limited than pre-Covid. For example, senior housing requires more restriction, for example, although they still drop off books.  She noted that some staff can now get vaccinated which may open up some possibilities. 

The library is applying for another “Big Read” grant. Juneau has received two in the past. The application will be for An American Sunrise by Joy Harjo (current U.S. poet laureate).  Because of uncertainty about Covid-19 restrictions, there will be a more flexibility in time. 

She also announced that the library will have a 3D printer that will be available to the public. They plan a soft opening before establishing how to provide public access to technology to which most people would not otherwise have access.

Plans are underway for the summer reading program, which will again be heavy on virtual and distance options.

Asked about current staff levels at the library, Catherine said there is still a certain amount of scattering of staff, some are still working on Covid-19 related tasks. Much of Robert’s time is still EOC, as the JPL administrator and webmaster.  However, this also means some of those employee costs are not coming out of the library budget for the time being. CARES act money helps. As the budget planning process looms, and with acknowledgement that the tourist season will again be significantly reduced, it’s acknowledged that sales tax will be lower and that may have implications for all city budgets.

CR raised the suggestion of funding for staff development, as proposed by a Friends member at the annual meeting. SF recalled that the member knew of a Friends group in another community that offered financial assistance to library staff to continue their library education. CR suggested that this is a topic to consider over time and asked Catherine to mention it to Robert.  Catherine mentioned the State’s continuing education program that people sometimes use for travel to conferences, etc. 

Amazing Bookstore

SH noted that the bookstore takes the breaks that the library does. They have kept the free book distribution going. regardless. Things started moving in January. They began accepting donations on Saturdays for a couple hours, which went well. They are still giving books to the school district. They gave out over 10,000 books despite time being closed. They have considered renting out the bookstore space to private parties. They’ve developed a “mystery grab bags” project as a more-or-less curbside project so that someone can get 10 books for $10.00. They have a Squarespace system so people can buy on line. They sold 29 grab bags in January. They have an email set up now: FOLJuneau@gmail.com.   Safety protocols have been set up for the bookstore volunteers.  Not all volunteers have felt ready to return. Surveying volunteers, they 

had enough to open two days a week, which they started January 30. They hope to get more. They will have no more than 3 people in the back area right now but are looking at expanding for the future. They made $1780 the first weekend open and $1335 the second. 

CR raised a concern being careful to differentiate between the operations of the Amazing Book Store and the Friends of the Library and SH will run questions about financial clarity on any unintended overlap  by Gary Kostenko and Ceann.

Web/Wild Apricot 

AF reported that the Donate button on the Friends of the Library website is live on the FOL website and that reminders have been sent out to members.

Treasurer’s Report and Budget

Budget:  PF guided the board through the proposed budget. After discussion and decisions on changes, CR moved the budget as amended be adopted. SF second. Without objection it was so ordered and the final budget as approved is attached. 

Treasurers Report-Annual report for 2020:

The Friends’ activities generated income of $163,001.27

Friends’ expenditures totaled                             $100,959.69

2020 net income was                                           $62,041.58

The Friends’ investment account at Alexandria

January 2020 starting amount                            $632,992.21

December 2020 closing amount                        $702,354.14

Total 2020 earnings                                              $69,361.83

With net income and total earnings of more than $131,000, PF reports that FOJPL is doing very well financially, especially during a Covid year with multiple long-term closures of the bookstore.

Endowment Report: Per BB, the committee had not yet had an opportunity to meet. 

Other

CR reported receipt of a $1130 Sustainability grant. 

CR also reminded members that Barbara Berg wants to be replaced on the endowment committee board and to consider applying. 

Meeting adjourned at  **. 

May

Friends of the Library Board Meeting

May 13, 2021, 5:05pm

In attendance: Sandy Harris, Anne Fuller, Patience Frederiksen, Robert Barr, Carol Race

I Agenda – Agenda change made and approved. Moved so by Sandy Harris, seconded by Patience Frederickson 

II Minutes from last meeting approved, moved so by Sandy Harris, seconded by Patience Frederickson

III Library Reports – Robert Barr

All is going well, the library will return to full hours on May 24th when all staff are projected to be vaccinated. Vaccines are proving to be super effective. In a study by Cleveland Ohio Clinic of 40thousand people, 99.7% of the recent Covid cases were those not vaccinated. CDC today released new guidelines for mask wearing determining that those who have been vaccinated no longer need to wear masks. The library will no longer require masks for those who have been vaccinated. This will need to be on the honor system as there is no way to determine if a patron has received a vaccine which will make it a bit uncomfortable for some staff. CBJ plans to keep in line with CDC recommendations but there is always change so need to keep tuned to local instructions.

Robert is moving to the Manager’s Office and recruitment notices for a new library director are going out nationally. The job announcement and recruitment will end June 1 and June will begin the process of assessing candidates. Human Resources Dept. will put together a hiring committee and candidates will have interviews, public presentations, Q&A with various groups including staff and FriendsJPL throughout the month of June. Hopefully the person chosen will be able to begin August 1.

We anticipate grant opportunities this year and Kate Enge at the library will be looking closely at local, state, federal and Alaska Humanities Forum grants assessing which are right for library and also for FriendsJPL. Patience spoke about state grants at this time being a wait & see as legislation is not complete. Several were mentioned: Shopping List grants, Project grants, Emergency Broadband Funding, Emergency Connectivity Funding, e-rate funding, RPA.

Robert answered Anne’s question about ventilation in the downtown library. It is currently getting a major update moving from old hydraulic to new digital Hvac control system and a new filtration system. The small meeting room will be getting an air conditioning system. The large meeting room may be next if needed, waiting to see the response to the new systems in place. 

The Big Read project has received funding of $11,500. And an Interlibrary cooperation grant of $2500 for purchasing books. The book selected is American Sunrise.

Summer reading will be on Beanstack through the State Library this year and open to all ages. Youth Service staff is currently seeing some class visits and also daycare visits. There may be storytimes in the near future. MJ Grande is putting together a team to replace what last year was an AmeriCorps Volunteer job of delivering and helping daycare providers receive books from the library as an outreach program.

AEYC will not be coordinating an AmeriCorp Volunteer for the library this year as mentioned above, and has requested that we donate to the Imagination Library through them. Discussion ensued among us and it was felt by all that this is not a good fit for the library for various reasons. In the past it was tied into a Family Night  program at the library offered by us and AEYC. AEYC’s participation ended although the library continued doing the Family nights. There was also concern from the bookstore on over amount of duplicates that they needed to deal with. We agreed that we would like to work with AEYC but need to come up with more creative ideas to benefit both library and them. Carol will follow up. 

IV Bookstore Report – Sandy Harris

Bookstore is now open 10-4 Friday thru Monday. Currently there are not enough volunteers to add hours with staffing 2 per shift. If guidelines are changing, they may be able to go to one person per shift and open more hours.

Donations are pouring in! Spring cleaning and also many from UAS. The donation room was closed for a week to catch up. Many wonderful books are donated but also many that need to be trashed. Signs are posted on acceptable books but it still takes a lot of sorting. 

World Wide Movers are picking up recycling and ThriftBooks are being packed for a Fall shipment.

New volunteers are being trained. Sandy will no longer be on the Bookstore Committee but we will continue to receive updates from her and other members. Private Parties and Grab Bags are not happening at this time. 

V Treasurers’ Report – Patience Frederiksen 

Treasurer’s Report  

Friends of Juneau Public Libraries  

January to March 2021  

Income  

Total Actual Income $41,591.48  

Annual Income Projected $129,600.00

% of Projected Income 32.1%

Expenses  

Total Actual Expenses $26,472.34

Annual Expenses Projected $131,600.00

% of Projected Expenses 20.1%

Net Actual Income $15,119.14

Alexandria Capital Account  

Value as of January 1, 2021 $702,354.14

Value as of March 31, 2021 $709,806.17

Change in Value $7,452.03

Value as of April 30, 2021 $722,682.74

Change in Value $20,328.60

1st quarter income 32% for the year and 1st quarter expenditures were 20% less than usual. Alexandria Account surged in April providing substantial amount for 1st quarter. Expenses for 1st quarter were normal without extra needed for Bookstore. Bookstore may consider new Book carts in the near future.

Patience will talk with Ceann, our bookkeeper, about moving some monies into Alexandria account from checking account. First Bank will use our gmail account to connect with us. 

VI Technology – Anne Fuller, Summer Christiansen, Carol Race

Anne has our Facebook up and running and is posting current information on happenings. Anne is also continuing to update our webpage and has posted about Robert’s National Award and upcoming events. The current look of our website does not allow visibility of too many new posts at one time. 

Summer has determined that Twitter is not the right fit for us and is working on connecting us to Instagram. Carol Is checking gmail account.

VI New Business

Discussion of Robert’s departure. Carol will connect with library staff to see what is planned to thank him for his excellent service as Library Directory.

Meeting ended at 5:59pm

Post Script: Patience provided us with a summary of our checking account that indicated that it would be possible to move $50K from checking into our Alexandria Account. An email vote was taken and unanimously agreed to do so. 

Sept

Friends of the Library Board Meeting              DRAFT

September 9, 2021 5:00

In Attendance: Carol Race, Sandy Harris, Patience Frederiksen, Anne Fuller, Karlene Kuhn, Susi Gregg Fowler, John Thill (CBJ Library Director) [SH took notes until SF arrived] 

Introductions and Welcome

Carol called the meeting to order and introduced newest board member, Karlene Kuhn, whose nomination had been moved, seconded and resoundingly approved via email. Karlene works for NAMI and does outreach as a Friends of the Library volunteer and is working to set up informal lending libraries at nonprofits in Juneau. We’re so glad to have her on the board. 

Carol also introduced our new CBJ Library Director, John Thill. Most of the group had met John before, but this was his first regular Friends meeting as our new CBJ Library Director. He began work August 23 and came to us from his position as assistant library director in Meridian, Idaho, and is most welcome. 

Approval of Agenda

SH moved to approve the agenda. PF seconded. No objections.

Approval of Minutes

PF moved to approve the minutes of our May meeting. SH seconded. No objection. 

Reports

Library Report. Catherine Melville was unable to attend because she was needed in Douglas. JT reported on his first weeks as Library Director. He has been acquainting himself with Juneau, meeting with nonprofits and community groups making personal connections and familiarizing himself with the people involved, work being done, and letting them get to know him. He has visited Sealaska Heritage Institute, Zach Gordon Youth Center, the Shéiyi X̱aat Hit (Spruce Root House) youth shelter, is heading to The Glory Hall tomorrow. Strategic planning for the library is getting started, assessing core services, planning a community survey and focus groups with community partners. He noted that some library employees are still assigned to covid-related projects but are beginning to come back to library duty. Staff will review policies and job descriptions little by little. The goal to get through them all within the year. The library received a $1500 grant to provide a small honor-system library at the shelter with the focus being books related to health, for staff as well as youth. He noted that there are great spaces for reading in that facility. Speaking of grants, he said that the library will have a grants committee to prioritize applications. In response to questioning by CR, JT said that they would also be looking at the Friends’ grants, a goal being speaking with one voice.

Bookstore Report. The Amazing Bookstore continues to be amazing, in a nutshell. Here is Sandy’s report.

“Things are continuing to evolve at the Bookstore in response to changes in covid guidelines and life in general.  Basically things are good and the bookstore is thriving.

Some highlights and noteworthy changes are:

1). Store hours have changed because of changes in covid protocols.  We have reverted back to having two desk volunteers on for each shift so that we can monitor numbers of shoppers in the store at any given time and advise all shoppers of our guidelines.  There is a limit of 10 shoppers in the store at one time.  Because the store operation needs double the volunteers, we are a little short of the volunteers needed to stay open 7 days a week.  Free books in the hallway are moving well.

2). We have a number of new volunteers starting.  There is a notice posted in the store to recruit new people and the response has been good.

3). The recycle situation seems to be getting better, at least for soft cover recycle.  Store volunteers are taking boxes of recycle home or to the recycle center and the backlog is gone.  WWM continues to take the hardcover recycle.

4).  Following an incident when a desk volunteer felt unsafe with a knife carrying customer and called the police (who arrived very promptly), a volunteer training was held.  Aaron Surma, the ED from NAMI, met with volunteers at the bookstore and on zoom to discuss some approaches to interacting with people who seem aggressive or defensive.  He stressed the importance of interpreting that kind of behavior in order to respond appropriately.  An interesting comment was made by volunteer Tom Wagner that the store may see more Glory Hall patrons now that the GH has moved to the valley.

5). The list of “accepted donations” is in the process of being revised.  Back room pricers are being asked to identify the material that never sells and always goes to recycle.  I will keep Anne informed as decisions are made.

6). The initial response to the idea of holding a volunteer appreciation pizza party at the store after the mall has closed was very positive.  Obviously, any parties are on hold for now, but an event to celebrate and to have a face to face encounter with everyone is a goal for the future.”

There was some further discussion about book donations and SH said they do a lot of recycling and there has been discussion among the volunteers about limiting some kinds of donations and numbers. They will probably stop taking magazines.  

Note was also made that with the opening of the new Glory Hall, there is more overlap among patrons of the Amazing Bookstore and the Glory Hall and visitors to the Valley library. 

Goose Creek Correctional Facility wanted books, and Debbie Fagnant is coordinating that. 

Technology/Web/Wild Apricot/Twitter Report. Summer Christiansen was unable to continue on the board, so at this point, AF remains our sole tech person and is unable to add Twitter or Instagram to her load as she continues to keep up websites and Facebook (our public facing technology) and our Wild Apricot membership/donation “inward face.” Anne keeps people up to date with changes in hours, donation times, etcetera. CR checks the gmail account so she sees donations and Ceann notifies her of any checks that come for Friends at the library address, and she adds those into Wild Apricot. She mentioned that there have been several donations, including in honor of our outgoing director, in memory of Barbara Pavitt, and several others. KK offered to help with social media, and her offer was immediately accepted. SF volunteered to write thank you notes to those who have given gifts to Friends and CR will get her names/addresses. 

AF noted the Friends web addresses: http://www.friendsjpl.org

https://facebook.com/friendsjpl  

 and the email address: juneauplfriends@gmail.com 

AF brought up the Big Read Kickoff at the Juneau Douglas City Museum on October 1 from 4:30 to 7 and JT agreed to get the graphic being used so it could be posted on websites. This year’s read is An American Sunrise by Joy Harjo. [NOTE: AF already has it posted!]   All of the addresses above are up and running. 

There was discussion about AEYC. This year Friends will not be partnering with AEYC to help support a literacy volunteer working with childcare centers. CR noted that working with centers just became too tough with Covid-19. Joy Lyon has retired from AEYC. The possibility of working with them again in the future is still there. JT mentioned that he plans to meet with AEYC staff as he has heard that they had some great family programs.  

Treasurer’s Report. PT presented the budget report, noting that basically, the news is all good for both the operating budget revenue expenses, which show that so far, revenue is growing faster than expenditures. PT noted the Alexandria Account has earned $46,945  and is on track to possibly make another $50,000. 

Operating Budget as of June 30, 2021

Budgeted % Actual

Total Revenue $129,600 50.7% $77,307.12

Total Expenses $131,600 40.2%   $52,887.18

Total Income $24,390.55

Alexandria Account as of August 31, 2021

BEGINNING VALUE January 2, 2021 $702,354.14

Deposits to Account $  50,000.00

ENDING VALUE August 31, 202 1 $799.299.21

CHANGE IN VALUE   $ 96,945.07

The observation was made that the Amazing Bookstore is truly funding itself and more.

CR and PF did meet with the AmeriTrade/Alexandria group and the decision was made to change the investment allocation a little, toward a slightly more aggressive strategy. 

Endowment Report. No meeting has happened yet with all of the Covid related business affectng the library and the community. JT asked about membership and CR said Donna Pierce, former JPL library director, Barbara Berg, former JPL library director and past member of the Friends Board, and now JT as director. She noted that Barbara has been asking to be replaced. 

New Business.

The Friends of the Juneau Public Library annual meeting is scheduled November 13 at 3:00 pm and we don’t know at this point if it will be via Zoom again like last year. PT noted that Zoom brings in other people, as we discovered last year, and that perhaps even if we are able to gather in person, a hybrid meeting might be useful. 

AF spoke to appreciating the outreach that JT is doing to different community groups and her hope that we will continue to add other unserved or underserved parts of the community. She mentioned Housing First and the newly out-of-prison folks, along with continuing support of young children and parents. There was discussion about how well grab bags of selected books for kids/parents worked.

JT spoke to a long-term goal of seeing staff out in the community are, wherever the people are. Despite restrictions due to Covid-19 and staffing shortages, the library has continued most of its outreach. Only the senior housing asked that it stop for now.

There was conversation about people not necessarily knowing all the things the library and Friends do. KK said she has a contact at KTOO and would be willing to make contact to see if they might be interested in doing a piece about library outreach. Kate (at the library) was mentioned but she focuses on book reviews. 

PF raised the idea of slides to share at the annual meeting showing some of the work or projects of JPL, Amazing Bookstore and the Friends Board. JT expressed his willingness to take that on for JPL, and CR suggested she and SH for the Bookstore and all of us on the Board can be thinking about ideas. Possible ideas were kicked around with the idea being not more than 10 to 12 slides. KK expressed willingness to work on this and CR suggested a planning meeting. There was general agreement and a planning meeting for the annual meeting was set for Monday, October 25, at 5:00. 

Meeting adjourned at 5:55 p.m.

Addendum. Following the meeting, the Board realized that library director John Thill, needed to be added as a signatory for the Friends replacing former library director Robert Barr. Because the next regular meeting is not until the annual meeting in November and the director’s ability to sign checks is necessary to smoothly conduct business, the Board agreed to a vote by email. 

On September 20 Carol Race moved that the Board suspend the rules and vote via email for John Thill to be added to Friends of the Juneau Public Libraries’ First Bank account as a signatory and remove Robert Barr from the account as a signatory. Patience Frederiksen seconded the motion. 

The motion passed unanimously, with all voting members of the Board voting yes: Patience Frederiksen, Carol Race, Anne Fuller, Sandy Harris, Susi Gregg Fowler, Karlene Kuhn.

The vote is included as an addendum to the September quarterly meeting minutes. 

Susi Gregg Fowler, Secretary

Nov