Library Trustees Meet

Chair Karla Alfred called the remote meeting of the Library Trustees to order at 7:04 PM on Wednesday, September 1.  Trustees approved minutes of July 27, 2021. 

Library Director Leslie McDonnell presented updates on various topics:

  • COVID Update – Beginning on 9.7.21, a mask mandate will be in effect for both staff and visitors.  Plexiglass partitions will remain up.
  • Jen Carlson, Children’s Librarian, is planning some in-person activities in the children’s room.  Plans for mitigation include: the wearing of masks, sufficient space to spread out, and no food or drinks allowed.
  • “Hiring a Director” workshop – two Trustees (Alfred and Kara Peterson) and the Director attended.  All reported that helpful information was shared.  A six-month time period was recommended.  McDonnell has tentative plans to retire mid-2022.  She plans to meet with the Town Administrator for guidance concerning Holliston’s hiring procedures.
  • ARPA funding – Following the ARPA Steering Committee’s recommendations, the Select Board this week okayed funding for 3 years for the purpose of expanding electronic resources for the library.
  • Friends of the Library – This group has purchased a new light fixture for the Travel Room, a Nintendo switch, brochure holders, and has donated $2000 towards Hoopla.

In new business, McDonnell recommended that the Trustees vote to eliminate fees for a lost library card and the processing fee for lost books.  McDonnell called the fees a “nuisance” and said, “for the amount of work it is not worth it.” Trustees voted in favor of eliminating these fees.

The Library also has 5 working Hotspots (Internet access point).  McDonnell recommended the loan rule for a Hotspot should echo the loan rule for e-readers; that is, a 3-week loan period with a one-time renewal, the borrower must be 18+ and a resident of Holliston.  Additionally, these will not be available for mail delivery; they must be picked up and returned to the Holliston Library.  A $35. replacement cost will be incurred in the event of a lost Hotspot.  Trustees voted in favor of this criteria for Hotspot loans.

A 6th Trustee is sought by the group to fill a vacancy due to the August resignation of Bob Malone. The term of this person will extend until the next town election in May.  If interested, more information can be elicited from any member of the Trustees or the Library Director.

In news of the building itself, McDonnell spoke of two items:

  • Minor Flooding in the Conference Room – James Keast, Facilities Manager, hired Mr Handyman ($1100) to investigate the cause for flooding and fix the problem.  Several areas were investigated and a window well was determined to be the source.  Unbeknown to all, the window well was concrete (but had been filled with dirt) and this concrete contained a drain.  Bi-annual checks are planned to avoid further problems.
  • Parkings lines – Owners of the building adjacent to the Library have painted lines to delineate former and new parking (see below).  McDonnell planned to check with the Town Administrator and the Facilities Manager about the safety and use of these by Library patrons.

The meeting adjourned at 8:22 PM.  The next meeting of the Trustees will be October 6, 2021, at 7 PM.

Yvette Cain

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