Seasons of Change
by Myrna Griffith
Early in the year the board begin planning for new fundraisers. April 30, 2011 would be the Woodward High Trestle Trailhead opening celebration. The Board would have a root beer float stand, using A & W root beer signifying the Ankeny to Woodward portion of the trail. It was decided that two board members would decide together when inclement weather would determine Library closure. Once decided, one of them would notify the director.
In March planning for the Woodward High Trestle Trailhead opening celebration took continued. Several Iowa authors including Two Rivers Romance Writers, an Iowa Chapter of Romance Writers of America, and Saturday Writers, a group of Des Moines area writers, were in the library for book signings for a meet and greet. Gene was planning a storybook garden, decorating the outside with storybooks or book related items for fundraising.
In April the board finalized their plans for the April 30th event. 12 authors were expected to attend the author meet and greet. Root beer floats would be set up in the library courtyard, weather permitting. Gene Grell, Jim and Carolyn Gough would groom the courtyard for the storybook garden. Judy attended another class, this time on patrons and poverty.
There were many favorable comments on the root beer floats served by the board members for the High Trestle Trail celebration. Having authors inside was helpful and motivated people to come in and experience the library and what it has to offer. The Library ran out of ice cream but the root beer that was left was purchased by the volunteers. The event raised $753.30 and deposited in the Friends of the Woodward Library Foundation account.
In May Judy attended a class on Public Relations. Judy applied for a $500 grant to purchase books. In June, Judy attended a class on how to start a writer’s group. The State Library of Iowa paid for one year’s subscription for A to Z maps and the link has been added to the library. The website could be used in the library and patrons could access it at home. In mid-June a special meeting was held to discuss staff wages. It was approve to give both Judy and Amy a 4 % raise, which was equal to amount of the city employee’s raises. Judy’s hourly wage went from $13.77 to $14.32 per hour and Amy’s went from $10.68 to $11.11 an hour.
In July the computer use was used 132 times and WiFi was used 5. August computer was used 141 times, WiFi was used 8. 10 new patrons were added. The Summer Reading Program went well. The Friends and Neighbors Day Book Sale raised $37 dollars that went to the city. During this month the library joined the Wilbor Consortium Program. The consortium program for individuals to check out electronic books to be read online or with an ereader. The set-up fee was $500 and then $500 annually to remain enrolled. The Friends of the Woodward Public Library Foundation agreed to pay the set-up fee. There was a recurring fee of $.10 per audio book per checkout. The community requested a change in the library evening library hours, the board continued to discuss this matter.
September, computer usage is up again at 180. A survey was made and distributed in October, placed in businesses and public places in Woodward. The survey was placed on the school website, City of Woodward website and the Woodward Public Library website. An article placed in the school newsletter, the Envision Woodward newsletter, and an article placed in the local newspaper. The survey was to find out what kind of evening hours the community wanted for the Library.
Many activities were on the schedule, including programs and fund raisers through the month of March. Fundraisers included the annual Silent Auction, Gift Wrapping and Book Signing. Four programs were scheduled with the Dallas County Naturalists.
In November, Judy and Amy attended training in the use of Wilbor and people were already using it by early December. The Silent Auction raised $1289. A media release, during this time, brought support from organizations and businesses.
The results of the survey were discussed at the December meeting. 70% of those surveyed were satisfied with the current library hours; however 29% indicated an interest in more evening hours or weekend hours. The board was interested in meeting the public interest while staying within its current budgetary limits. Continued discussion was tabled until the next meeting at the beginning of the year. It would also give time for the director and assistant to discuss the findings and bring their recommendations back to the board.
24 people (adults and children) attended the Naturalist’s program and 20 people participated in the AFSCME wellness clinic. Gift wrapping brought in $172. The book signing had three authors and brought 30 people to the library.
The year began with the need to purchase addition book shelves. The Foundation had agreed to purchase the shelves. The library needed to upgrade the DVDs for the children’s area and the Board was discussed an anniversary celebration. Judy attended the January annual Dallas County Meeting.
The new Library hours decided upon for a 6 months trial were:
Monday 9-12 1-5
Wednesday 9-12 1-5
Thursday 9-12 1-7
Friday 9-12 1-5
The Holiday Policy was reviewed. In January a second board meeting was held to discuss the Bouton Library Services Contract and the budget. Bouton had 129 residents and they were to pay $137, but it was decided they should pay $100 semi-annually. This did not increase the budget, but it would save tax money needed for the library. The second item on the agenda was to discuss the budget for 2012-2013. It was decided to increase in the entire library budget totaling 3% just over $49,000.
In February new shelving and a new computer desk were ordered and the library waited for them to be built. The 20th Anniversary, of the new library building, would be celebrated in 2013 not 2012. The two year Bouton Contract was signed. Judy renewed her certificate which would be good until 2015.
In April the new book shelves were installed and books were being shifted. To upgrade the DVD’s the library had a campaign—Kiddio Campaign and Judy had already received $50 towards new videos. National Library Week would be celebrated on April 12 with cookies and coffee at 1-3 and 5-7. It was decided to purchase new light fixtures for the front of the building.
All of the Naturalist Programs from the previous year until March 28 of this year had been very well attended. Again this year a High Trestle Celebration would be held. This year it would be scheduled for May 12th. The library would do a fundraiser of Root Beer Floats and host authors.
The Library applied for a Dallas County Grant to be used for microfilm. The board began considering the possibility of hiring a part time person for the library. Judy attended another Dallas County Librarians meeting in May.
In June the board began planning for the Anniversary Celebration. The plans included cake, balloons, outside banner, Iowa authors, book characters visit, and possibly a book give away.
The library needed a facelift, so Jim Gough agreed to paint the restroom with the possibility of painting the entry way and meeting room. Summer Reading would be held on Wednesdays, June 27 through July 25 at 10 am, excluding July 4. The 141 Garage Sale Book Sale would start on July 30th. The library would participate in the Friends and Neighbors Day by walking in the parade as board members, employees and maybe book characters, offering root beer floats, and handing out flyers with library hours and book sale information.
After discussion it was agreed to hire a part time person with flexible hours. An interview committee was set up and advertised. At a subsequent meeting the duties for this person were agreed upon.
A board member work day to clean the library of unneeded items and to set up for the book sale. A work day was scheduled as well as the book sale which would be August 3 and 4.
Gene Grell had been reading old board minutes and writing the library history for the celebration.
Beginning in July, the library staff would receive a 2.5% raise. The part time person would receive $9.25 per hour. Donna Julseth would be unpaid the volunteer program coordinator and report monthly to the board. Later this month, Judy Grimes submits her resignation as Library Director effective August 4. Her last working day would be July 21. As a result the book sale was immediately cancelled. The board began to make immediate plans to advertise and hire a new director. The library hours would be reduced temporarily with volunteers and Amy Mueller staffing those hours. An open house celebration was planned for Judy’s retirement.
In August, the board reviewed the job applications and chose five to interview. As a result Stephanie York was hired as Library Director. She would finish her Master’s Degree in Library Science during her first year. She started at $14 per hour and began working September 17th. Susan Lemon was also hired this month, as the part time library clerk.
The board continued to plan for the 20th Anniversary Party to be held on January 13, 2013 and more fund raisers for the year. Also planning took place for a party to honor Amy resignation, and Stephanie’s Welcome Party to be held on October 13.
Silent Auction was held again in November and Gift Wrapping in December.
As Stephanie began as the library director, there was still the need to have someone clean the library. Decision was made that Stephanie would schedule herself two hours a week for cleaning. She also requested training in Destiny (circulation/cataloging software) and Microsoft Office due to the new versions that were coming.
In October, the Foundation received a donation for the Library, in memory of Ruth Ramsey for $930. By the end of the year, programs were being scheduled and EBSCO had been installed on the computers as a database for children. The Anniversary party continued to be finalized. An Outdoor Banner was selected and purchased, to be displayed in front of the library for the Anniversary event.
The 2013 year began with putting everything in place for the Anniversary party to be held on January 13. The party was to celebrate 20 years in the new building. A TV had been purchased to run a video about the library during the party. The party had competition with inclement weather, but the turn out for the event was good anyway.
Early in the year a Lost and Damage Items policy was adopted. Patrons having lost items would forfeit library privileges until these items were payed for.
The Library had been having problems with the contracted technology person for maintenance, so the board asked for bids from two business Right Click and J & D Computers. Only Right Click had summited a bid. Later on Right Click submitted another bid for virus protection and back up. J & D Computers still had not submitted a bid. At the May meeting Jason Schiffer from J & D Computers presented is proposal. The board asked questions and Jason gave recommendations. Later in this meeting, the board accepted the proposal for computer maintenance from J & D Computers.
The carpet needed to be replaced. A search for grants to help pay for the new carpet was made, but none were found. Fundraising through summer lunches at the Social Center would make this possible. The carpet would be installed over a long weekend, starting on Saturday afternoon and evening, Sunday, and finish on Monday or Tuesday since the library didn’t open until 4pm. The plan was to have this installed in January or February when there is less foot traffic in the library. At the December board meeting, the carpet would be selected. The time selected to lay the carpet was tentatively set for over Martin Luther King holiday in January.
In March, Barbara Maier submits her letter of resignation as a board member. She is replaced in June by her husband John Maier. The board of trustees attend training in March.
Once again, the board discussed fundraising ideas. By the May meeting the board had generated several new ideas for fundraising. One idea was to serve lunches during June, July, and August at the Social Center when lunches were not served. They agreed to try this on June 3rd. The fundraiser was very successful, so it was decided to do the lunches for July 1st, August 5th, and September 2nd. These lunches were as successful as the successive three months, as well. Dollars raised went towards new carpet. By the August luncheon, the Board had raised $2000.
A board member visited with the Social Center Committee, in August. The Library Board requested to do a Soup Luncheon in January or February with the proceeds going to the new carpet fund.
A new computer policy was adopted. As a part of the policy computer users were required to sign in for one hour of use. A new vacuum was purchased from Nebraska Furniture Mart for $294.99.
In March, NEDCR database records had arrived. Its use had to have a dedicated computer, which was donated to the library. Stephanie indicated she would research on how the database is used.
A policy was drafted for staff or a board member to be present during each Foundation programs. Ebsco offered a free trial use that Stephanie signed up for. Summer Reading theme for this year was ‘Dig into Reading’. 36 children had registered. By the end of the program, 44 young readers were signed up, and 8 children completed three levels and received a free book.
Stephanie attended Kid’s Conference and the Board watched a training video in May on early literacy—The First Five Years.
In June, a wage increase of 2.5%, which coincided with the city raises, was passed and would become effective, July 1st.
A Meeting Room policy was adopted.
The Friends and Neighbors Day was celebrated this year on July 13th, at which time the annual Library Book Sale was held and raised $145. During the July board meeting, Stephanie announces her engagement. She would be getting married within the year and would be moving to Kansas City, Missouri. The dates had not been set, but she wanted to give the board ample time to find her replacement.
In August, the Board discussed an outreach to the Bouton community. Stephanie had presented research on the amount of compensation other libraries receive from outreach cities similar size to Bouton. The present compensation is $200 per year. Discussion begin on placing “Little Free Library” in Bouton or a “Loan a Book/Take a Book” at some location in Bouton to encourage library usage. Discussion would begin by talking to the Bouton mayor to see if there would be an interest. At the end of the year, there was no place to be found to place a Little Free Library.
The Library had to have air conditioning work done. The air conditioning repair cost was presented to the city to see how the payment of two bills would be made. The mayor stated the payment would be paid by the Library’s line item of Building Maintenance, and what the Library could not pay, the city would pay the remainder.
Discussion again for the need for a 2nd Library Assistant with a flexible schedule. This position’s salary would not affect the budget, because it would use the dollars not used by director or assistant while they were away. The decision was made to advertise the position with a salary of $8.25 per hour. Two interviews were conducted. An individual was selected, who did not want to receive IPERS. As such, she could only be considered a substitute and not an employee. As a result the Board continued looking for someone else.
Books shelves made by Iowa Prison Industries were purchased again and purchased with Myrna Mayfield Grant dollars.
Minburn Communications required a change to the library’s email address.
In September, Stephanie began programs on computer literacy and the library sent the school’s yearbooks to be digitalized.
In November, the Board decided to temporarily display art work on the walls of the Library and make them available to the patrons for checkout. If no one checked them out this program would be discontinued.
The Foundation requested the Board’s thoughts on what they wanted as furniture arrangements, in the Library, after the carpet has been laid. It was their desire to purchase library furniture.
A technology grant was written for computer replacement instead of having several i-pads floating around in the library, but was not received. Since this did not happen, the board began looking for maintenance service.
For the Silent Auction this year, it was decided to have 6 gift baskets placed in highly visible places in various community businesses. Also, a night’s stay at a Bed and Breakfast or at the Hotel Pattee and tickets at the Civic Center were also auctioned.
Another book shelf was needed for the library and it took several months to find someone to build it.
At the end of the year, the board decided to change term limits for the Board members from six years to four years.
A Winter Family Reading Program was scheduled again this year, since 4 families participated the previous year.
Stephanie was backlogged in getting the new materials out. The State Library offered PLOW platform for library websites. It was free to the libraries, but someone needed to attend the training. John Maier volunteered to go.
The front bulletin board did not have any organization to it so, Jeanne Arends volunteered to help Stephanie maintain three separate boards: community, library, and more permanent listings board. The Foundation also requested to have a bulletin board above the coat rack. Plans were in the works for the scheduled luncheon fundraiser. It would be January 6th at the Social Center. Potato soup and chili would be served. The board accepted the resignation of Gene Grell. Stephani Danti replaced Gene in the Special March meeting in 2014. Lastly, it was decided not to renew the Movie License because it was not often used.
The Bouton Little Free Library installation outreach was placed on hold until spring. In the January meeting the board approved the $2600 raised for new carpeting to be taken from the designate carpet fund raising money held by the Foundation and be paid to the City of Woodward. The City would then pay for the carpet and installation.
As the Board moved forward to limit their terms, several members signed agreements to change from 6 years to 5 years. This was done so the Board could establish staggered terms and eventually shorten Board terms from six years to four years. This policy received 2nd reading by the city council at the February Board meeting. In March the 3rd and final reading by the city council occurred for final approval.
As January begin, Stephanie reported that there were still new books that needed to be catalogued and shelved. She hoped to have volunteers to help remedy this.
The soup luncheon fundraiser was a success. The money raised was placed in the “carpet-designated fund”.
The budget was submitted to the City with 1.32% decrease from the previous year. Building Maintenance and Repair need were shared with the city. This included:
1. an infant changing table for the restroom;
2. purchase and installation of a water fountain for the wall just outside the restroom;
3. purchase and installation of a new sink in the restroom that is ADA compliant;
4. cell phone booster;
5. commercial sign on the door/in the window listing the hours of the Library.
The city council approved $1995 for a new sink, changing table, cell phone booster, and water fountain.
The city gave the approval to hire a full time director and to offer benefits. A new line item was requested to be added to the library budget for marketing and publicity. The Board also began to brainstorm ideas for marketing the library. It was also decided to contact the school to see if the library could link to the W-G school’s website. The question of applying for E-Rate Funds were discussed again. The last item discussed was the possibility of the Woodward Academy using the Library.
In February, the Board continued to update the Library Policy manual. The Foundation’s selection of color for the new furniture was rejected, sent back to the Foundation with the request for different colors. Bookshelf bids had come in. John Stidoph was selected to build the shelves and $1796.72 would be used from the Myrna Mayfield grant to pay for the shelves. IT monthly maintenance was still being done by J & D Computers.
In March, the Foundation presented upholstery samples for the furniture in the teen area. The Foundation also requested a reply by March 11. To accept the E-Rate discount for internet, the Library had to comply with Children’s Internet Protection Act (CIPA) by providing a filter on the computers. It was voted to accept the provision and have IT people make the Library compliant and apply for E-Rate discount.
The new contract between Bouton and the Library had been approved by the city attorney, approved by the Library Board, and signed by the City of Bouton for the year. Stephanie attended the PLOW training for the new website; she complied a list of items needed for getting site up and running. The Library continued to have monthly issues with the technology and the IT monthly maintenance; the Board agreed to continue with the current IT people until July 1.
It was decided to apply for a Casey’s grant to purchase periodical stands and a sign for the front door. The grant would pay 40% and the Library would pay for 60%. The library would ask the Foundation to pay for 60% before applying for the grant.
The new material processing was still a problem, so Stephanie was researching the feasibility of ordering new books that are shelf ready instead of depending on volunteers to prepare the items thus taking librarian time to complete the process. It was requested that each board member bring ideas to the March meeting for marketing and promoting the Woodward Public Library.
Possible grants were presented in the February meeting. Stephanie presented proposed projects for the Myrna Mayfield grant due April 1. Stephanie believed she had enough prizes and awards for the Summer Reading Program. A list of jobs were presented that volunteers could do. The Board members were requested to come up with ideas to recruit volunteers, organize volunteer jobs, and list other jobs volunteers could assume to assist the Library staff in keeping the library running smoothly.
Also at this meeting, Stephanie presented her letter of resignation, to be effective May 3, due to her forthcoming marriage and relocation to Missouri. Her resignation was accepted. Stephanie had found book in the library that was of some value. She asked if anyone knew how to list the book on the internet in an attempt to bring in more money than would be received from Half-Price Books. Materials for Summer Read Program had arrived. The new Library Director would be responsible to plan and organize the program. Stephanie would be taking vacation April 16-22. She would get someone to work as much as they wanted, but asked if any Board members would be available to fill-in also.
A special board meeting was called in late March. The follow items were addressed:
1. Policy Manual was distributed to be readied by the next meeting;
2. New board member was introduced;
3. Potential interview questions were distributed to be used to interview for the next Library Director;
4. Interview Committee was set-up. John, Stephanie D. Linda, and Jim. Stephanie Y. would sit in as a resource person;
5. Short discussion and a vote to purchase 2 book shelves from Perry Public Library for $100 each;
6. The next month’s Social Center Meal profits will go to the Library. A short list was made for possible uses of the money;
7. Reviewing possible candidates.
In April, Stephanie informed the board that she and Susan had sent out over 50 notices regarding books that were overdue by 3 or more months. Some of the books had already been returned. The Library was experiencing a budget shortfall. The Library had three months left in the fiscal year and the budget was nearly totally depleted. The Library would know by April 15, if it would be receiving one of the bookcases from the Perry Public Library. The wiring for the cell booster was complete, the antenna would be put up in the near future.
The IT equipment needed replacement and Donna was looking for grants to fund this project. Scott Elett would be the Library’s consultant, for finding an IT replacement, at the cost of $48/hour. An anonymous donor would fund his fees for a year. This was approved by the board.
The Plow website for the Library was up and running but it still needed to have items added to it.
The list of possible candidates for director had been narrowed down to three, interviews would start on April 8.
Two samples of tiles for the bathroom had been selected by Terri D. and Stephanie Y. and shared with the Board. The estimated cost was $421.80. Donna H. would write the grant for $250 to fund it. The faucets would also be replaced. The Furnace/Air Conditioner needed to be replaced at the cost of $7000-$8000. Donna had agreed to write the grants, the Board just needed to let her know what the library needed.
The Board would by doing the lunches at Social Center for June, July, and August, a book sale, and root beer floats at Friends & Neighbors Day (in June) for fundraisers for this year. Stephanie Y. brought to the board Cintas requirements for entry rugs. Because the budget was so tight this was tabled until December. The city council had asked for a list of things the Library would like to have done by the town and/or Academy volunteers. The Board would have a special meeting on April 10 at 5:30 pm to select the new director. It was decided to keep the fax fee at $1.00 per page. Lastly, the going away Open House party for Stephanie would be on Thursday, May 1 from 1-7 pm.
The Library Director contract was offered to Leah White. She could join the staff in June, which would require special scheduling for the library.
By May, the budget was reaching its budget total with 2 months left in the fiscal year. The bookshelves purchased from Perry Library had arrived. The cell booster project would be finished by mid-May. Newspaper, magazine, and periodical racks purchased with Myrna Mayfield grant dollars had arrived. The old newspaper and periodical racks had been purchased by Toledo Pubic Library.
IT Equipment Replacement was put on hold because the new Director Leah White is quite tech savvy and able to do updates. Leah was familiar with PLOW and will continue to do up-dates, but she feels it was a bit out of date. She would research domain cost so the library could create one of its own.
Building maintenance and the tile project was put on hold, due not acquiring a matching grant. Another matching grant was being sought.
In June, it was reported that Lynn Williams would host the Summer Reading Program every Wednesday from 10 to 11 am. The VHS and cassette tapes were weeded out. Leah had signed up for Baker & Taylor “Automatically Yours Program” a subscription service of automatically sent new books. The office was cleaned to have a book processing area and the Foundation purchased a label maker. A book case had been rearranged so New Books could be seen upon entering the library. All DVD cases were replaced with a 3-ring binder with sleeves, which cost approximately $60. A Lego Club would start in September. Leah requested a new phone with an answering machine for approximately $70. The cost for a domain for a website is $85.85 for 5 years.
Frank White made a presentation on IT Equipment Replacement that included different options to upgrade and/or replace equipment. The board would obtain two more bids before they would make a decision. Leah would write a grant from the Bock Family Foundation for the replacement of the equipment.
The library raised $350 from the June luncheon to be used for the restroom tile. Leah would write a Casey grant that would pay 40%. The Board negotiated with the city for the replacement of the Furnace/Air Conditioner.
Social Center Lunches fundraisers were scheduled for June, July, and August. On Friends and Neighbors Day the Library sold Root Beer Floats and held a one day book sale. Summer Reading registration also happened on Friends and Neighbors Day.
Leah continued working at the Minburn Public Library until a replacement librarian could be found. Discussion began on purchasing better table and chairs for the meeting room, but was tabled until funds were available. The contract for Bouton’s library service was sign. Bouton would pay $200 per year beginning in 2015. Susan was given a 2.5 percent raise for the coming fiscal year.
July began the new fiscal year. Leah asked the Board what kind of reports they wanted to see. She told them that she would like to begin next month showing some of the usual data in graphs. Library patron visits were now be counted daily not just once a week. Before Leah was hired, she had request to attend the Leadership Institute that would be in August 6-8. She asked for the Board’s input to staffing the Library during her absence. Several Board members agreed to volunteer to help staff the library while she was gone. Work in organizing the DVDs was on going. Myrna Mayfield grant would be used to purchase Legos and public request for Lego donations would also be made. The new phone with an answering machine had been installed.
Susan is a notary republic, but John, president of the board, requested that Leah become one, as well, and that the Library would pay for the fee. It was affirmed that the computer remote access had been rescinded for the former computer consultants. Some books had been donated to the library. It was requested that Leah would ask if Amy Mueller would help in organizing them by genre so that once the Academy and Woodward Resource Center began using the books, distribution would be easier. John reported that a community member was interested in taking on a regular, active role in volunteering at the Library.
The Root Beer Floats and Book Sale during Friends and Neighbors Day were very successful. The Foundation will pay for the Website’s domain. Woodward Academy is much more interested in using the Library Services since learning that the Library is not expecting the books to be returned on the usual 2-week loan. The Phase 5 and Phase 6 houses would also be using the books. Talks were still ongoing concerning the Little Free Library.
The tile in the restroom has been replaced. Leah and Donna would be working on the Casey’s matching funds grant for part of the cost. Funds available for the matching grant would come through the lunches sponsored by the board during the summer. The Bock Family grant was being written to fund the technology equipment up-date.
Frank White was present. He was being paid by the Foundation to be the library’s IT consultant. He presented an estimated cost for changes to the computer system. Nick Thompson, from Right Click also presented a proposal for upgrade to the computer system.
Leah became the full time Librarian in July. She asked Mary Bagley about rotating Saturdays with Susan. Leah reported that there were many items long over-due. She reported there was a service available for fee to take over the collection process, she would get more information and report at a later date. Jeanne asked about putting a Free Little Library at the High Trestle Trailhead and/or at the park. Since they are both city property the city would mostly like approve this action. This was tabled until the Mayor would be consulted. Jeanne had been cleaning the library closet and had found items for resale. There was discussion on holding a garage sale with these items for the 141 Garage Sale day. The luncheon for July raised a little over $300.
At a special July meeting, a decision was made accept a new written bid from Nick Thompson from Right Click for IT equipment.
All summer fundraisers (lunches (3), book sales, and rummage sale) were successful. $56.54 was sent to the city for their share of city used book sales. In the August board meeting, Leah presented a wish list of Library which would use some of the proceeds from the summer fund raising. The list:
2. Speakers to go with the projector;
3. Door Counter-infra-red counter;
Leah would bring cost of each to the next meeting.
Stephanie Dante reported there was interest shown for the Lego Club, from the post she had made on Facebook.
Upcoming programming including:
a. Arrow Making
b. Flint Knapping
c. Local Archaeology
2. Wednesday Early Dismissals included:
a. Lego Challenge Day
c. Stem (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) activity/craft
d. Fourth week had not been announced
3. Story Time for 3-5 year olds would also begin in September and would be held on
Wednesday mornings when the public preschool does not have class.
4. Book Club would resume in September.
5. Dallas County Library Association would sponsor an Author Visit on Tuesday, October 7.
Tickets would be available at the Library for the Meet & Greet at Hotel Pattee, with a presentation by the author William Kent Kruger in the Perry Preforming Arts Theater. Each Dallas County Library was asked to contribute $50 towards the event. Leah would ask the Foundation to pay for our share. Kruger’s book Ordinary Grace will be the September Book Club’s reading selection.
The annual report had been submitted to the State Library during the last week of July.
The Board president reported that Bouton had not decided what kind of structure they wanted for the Little Free Library. Discussion ended with Linda Weyers and John Maiers volunteered to approach Duane Tingwald about the possibility of interest in the project of making it a memorial to Betty. The Woodward Mayor had not selected a replacement for the Board vacancy. Jim Gough had agreed to stay on the board for another term. Linda agreed to stay until Mayor Devick found a replacement. The City Council would have the first reading on Monday night, August 11, to change the ordinance limiting Board membership to just two Townships in Woodward (there are four more Townships which are in Boone County). This would make selecting Board members much easier.
The Foundation agreed to pay for the domain as well as the yearly fee for the new website. There had been no response from the Woodward Academy or Woodward Resource Center in partnering with the library as reporting in the last meeting. The Bouton Little Lending Library project had stalled.
Donna and Leah were currently writing the Bock Family grant due September 1 to fund the technology equipment update. Library had received the Casey’s grant.
The subject of meeting room furniture was tabled. Also, John had asked to be put on the agenda of the next City Council meeting to ask for permission to put one or two Free Little Libraries on city property.
New business at this August meeting included four items.
1. It had been discovered there were issues with the front door and the front windows. The actual windows were okay, but the wood around them were rotted out due to condensation. The front door also needed considerable work. The estimate to fix both was $400. John and Leah would inform the City Council about the need for repair.
2. Proper allocation of expenses was discussed. The board would ask the city not to pay bills until they have been approved by the Library Board.
3. Some discussion began on how to discourage people from being behind the desk in the library work area due to security issues.
4. There would be a Welcome Open House for Leah on August 13.
At the September meeting interfacing/working with Bouton and Woodward Academy was tabled. These projects were moving slow. Jim Gough had agreed to volunteer his services in areas of building maintenance concerning the issues of the windows and door. Website, meeting room furniture, front door and windows, volunteers, door counter and TV wall mount were all tabled until October. Security additions for the library workroom were put into place. Doors were installed and a cash drawer was installed. Free Little Libraries and a Story Walk were discussed. The Little Libraries had been put on hold because discussion was still happening with the City. The Story Walk would be put in the park or at the Trailhead and funded by grants.
At this meeting, Leah wanted to rearrange the library furniture and shelving to make the library a little more accommodating and flowing. This was tabled until the following meeting. Discussion on Marketing View, Mission Statement and Vision Statement began but were also tabled until next meeting.
October 22-24 Leah would be attending the Iowa Library Association Conferences. Kathy Yager helped Leah schedule volunteers to cover the library hours. Leah was able to have 13 rolls of Duct Taped donated from the Duct Tape Company for a project later in the year. The Open/Close sign had been broken during cleaning, so Leah made a laminated sign to replace it. Beggar’s night would be Friday, October 31 and Leah would have the library open. Leah was not pleased with the new magazine display rack. The covers are not visible enough and they do not hold a whole year. She had found clear boxes which held a complete year which were quite expensive. She would talk to the Foundation to see if they would be willing to purchase these. If that was not possible, she would purchase smaller clear boxes found at Target which are less expensive, but not large enough to hold a full year’s copies.
Overdue book policy for collecting overdue materials does not spell out exactly what the procedure is for collecting these materials. Leah had spoken with the city police and they advised her of several steps that need to be taken if materials are not returned to the Library in a timely manner. Leah shared several ideas for discussion. After discussion on overdue materials, a procedure policy was written and adopted. A short note would accompany each check out.
Beginning November 1, patron records would be updated. Leah shared with the board the Library’s Accreditation was due by June of 2015. The Board would have to hold two community meetings with a wide variety of patrons represented to get input. Two 2-hour meetings were required. Meetings were held Monday, October 20 and Monday, October 27 from 6 – 8 at the library. A light supper was served to those community members present. Jeanne worked with Leah on a list of community people to contact.
Bouton had agreed to have a little free library placed in the town. The Resource Center and Woodward Academy still had not expressed an interest in working with the library. It was decided to table these two projects until further notice. John would apply for a grant, in January of 2015, from Lowe’s to fund the purchase of Bouton’s little library, as well as, three for placement in Woodward.
John shared with the board Leah’s two month probationary report. John presented Resolution #1 to the Library Bylaws in regards to the payment of Library bills. It was voted on and approved at the Board meeting and presented to the City Council and approved at their next meeting. John and Leah then explained the Experience Works program. Workers aged 55 and up are given on-the-job training and job experience in certain businesses, working 20 – 40 hours per week. Workers were paid minimum wage by the Department of Labor. The Board agreed that this was a great way to get addition help in the library. John would notify the program directors of our interest.
Donna and Leah sent the Bock Foundation grant to fund our technology up-date by the September 1 deadline. Meeting Room furniture was tabled. Leah expressed interest in the library doing this. She would gather data about expense and present it to the Board at the following meeting. Kathy Yager had recruited several volunteers who were now working in the library. Jim again agreed to do basic repairs for the Library. Security additions to the work room were being done by placing two book carts to cordon off the work room. Leah shared the cost of purchasing gates, but felt the book carts were filling the need at this time. A movie license had been obtained. Leah had found a TV mount to place the TV on the wall informing Patrons of Library programming, coming events, etc. The Foundation had generously offered to purchase furniture for the adult area of the library as well as purchase coffee materials. These items would be ordered in October and report of what was purchased would be given in November. Leah wanted to rearrange the library, in January, after all the new furniture arrives. In November, she planned to present her plans.
For new business the marketing plan was put on hold. Mission and Vision Statements would be updated and could be done during the Accreditation Five-Year Plan. Leah found a service that would accept many free books for the Library. To use this service the Library must send 6 boxes or up to as many as 20 boxes. If the books were sold, the library would receive 10% of their selling prices. The November fundraiser would be the Silent Auction done by the board this year and not the Foundation. Terri and Angie would work on it together. The Board was also look for families to open their homes for a Christmas Tour of Homes on December 7.
In November, Maryann Mori visited the Board meeting and gave a summary of the two community meetings held in conjunction with the Accreditation Five-Year Plan. Sixteen community members were in attendance the first night and 17 were present for the second meeting. The community members were asked to list 1) Aspirations, 2) Challenges, and 3) Changes needed. Next, they were asked to list their Visions for the community. Maryann then shared the Demographics of Woodward with the committee. Last, the committee chose the three items they felt were most important for the community with the results as follows: #1—Help residents know their community with a central source of information (such as a newspaper or newsletter) about community events; #2—Provide the services and support to have creative activities; and a tie for #3—a place for lifelong learning and a comfortable place to meet. Maryann recommended forming a committee to begin the process of planning for results. That committee consisted of John, Jeanne, Terri and Leah and began meeting on Monday, November 10 at 5:30. While the Strategic Plan was being written Leah created a Brand/Logo to go with the new plan. This was presented to the board at the February 2015 meeting.
Leah presented the Annual Report that would be available in the library for patrons and given to each City of Woodward council members.
Grants had been written. There had been no word about the Shopko or West Central grants. The Bock grant for technology upgrades was estimated at about $6500. The Foundation would fund 20% or about $1600. That left $4900, which was requested from Bock grant. The Library receive 30% of their request or $1500, leaving $3400 yet to fund the technology upgrades. The Foundation had suggested that the Board send a mailing to Woodward and Bouton residents requesting donations towards this project. The Board agreed. Leah would made contact with the Foundation in regard to the cost of the mailing. In December, there still had not been word from Shopko and West Central had lost the application. So Leah wrote another to West Central requesting $2800 for technology. The Library would know following West Central’s meeting on December 10.
Kathy Yager had recruited several volunteers to work in the library. All but one volunteer had been trained by Leah to work at the desk. The Board directed Leah to draft a job description for the Volunteer Coordinator. Leah presented that Mike Blaser had given the Library an estimate for wiring and mounting the TV. The Board voted to have Mike do the work, and was to be paid using undesignated fundraiser money.
Leah shared a drawing of possible re-arrangement of the Library area. She had selected furniture that would be presented to the Foundation for purchase. It was hoped to have the new furniture and the library rearrangement completed February 2015. Thielen Brothers would be moving the bookshelves for a very nominal fee.
There was a need for more discussion and to have more questions answered from the director of Experience Works before the Board would make a final decision on the program. It was the consensus of the Board that the program was a good addition to the library. More preparation was needed before the Silent Auction. Big ticket items were discussed. Leah asked for donations on Facebook. Those available to help would meet in the Library on Monday, November 24 at 1 pm to assemble baskets. Five homes would be on the December 7th Christmas Tour of Homes. Tickets were already printed; cost $10. The tour would run 3-6 pm with a drawing for door prizes to follow at the Library.
The changing of the Library hours would be a part of the Strategic Plan. The library had the building’s shingles replace in October and the bill paid in November.
The Book Club would return on December 18 meeting at Cayanne’s Café. The book discussed was Unbroken. The Library employees and their spouses had been invited by the city to attend the annual Employee Dinner on Thursday, December 18 at the Pattee Hotel. Cost of the meal would be $30 each and paid out of the library budget. The Library’s seasonal holiday would be as follows: closed Christmas Eve Day and Christmas Day, opening Friday, December 26 and Saturday, December 27 regular hours. The Library would be open New Year’s Eve Day, closed New Year’s Day, open Friday, January 2 and Saturday, January 3.
The Board authorized Leah to order bills paid by the city if the due day falls prior to a Board meeting. The volunteer program was going well. The Strategic Plan of three tiers was presented and approved by the board. The Silent Auction was underway during the December board meeting, the tickets for the Tour of Homes were selling well, and each Board member was asked to bring a dozen cookies for refreshments at the Library during the Tour of Homes.
The Library space revitalization took place the weekend prior to Presidents’ Day. The January meal at the Social Center on January 5, would be a Potato Bar. A special meeting was called December 22 to discuss the budget for 2015-2016. During the meeting it was decided the library would open on Thursdays from 9-12 effective the first Thursday in January. Two budgets were presented. Following discussion, the budget accepted was the one with budget cuts and included a line item for building capital expenditures.
The January meeting was Linda Weyers last meeting, she would be replaced by Kathy Yager. Table and chairs for the children’s area cost $1043.32 and were purchased using funds from the Frantum memorial. The Strategic Plan was completed and was submitted with the accreditation materials that were due March 1. There would be an Open House on Tuesday, February 24 during the library’s regular hours of 4-7. Community members who attended the Strategic Plan meetings received a special invitation to attend and view the Strategic Plan. The community at large were also invited to view the new revitalization arrangement in the Library. Posters were placed in various locations notifying the community of the Open House.
By January, there had been no word from West Central concerning the grant, but the Library had received a partial grant from Shopko for technology. The Silent Auction and Home Tour had been a huge success. 116 people visited the Library on the day of the Tour of Homes. The January meal at the Social Center was also a success. The money raised was used to purchase an electric door counter. The Library space revitalization took place February 14-16 during the hours the library was closed. Leah would be helped with final arrangements following the move.
The Personnel Policy was updated. Leah’s salary was raised a $1 per hour effective March 1, 2015.
One goals the community requested and outlined in the Library’s Strategic Plan 2015-2018 included:
A. create a web based community calendar;
B. initiate a community newsletter—web based and hardcopy;
C. install a digital information board in the library.
To begin this first goal right away in 2015, Jeanne had called business and community organizations and made a sheet of community events for the month. Copies were posted in the Post Office and in the Library. A letter was sent to various businesses and community organizations to inform them of this change. Many of these were personally delivered by the library volunteers.
In mid-February, the Board received on-line training. They attended the online meeting at the library. The class was “Recruiting New Board Members and How to Better your Board Meetings”. The Lion’s Club collaborated with the Library to have an Easter Egg Hunt on April 4. There were two age groups and two different start times. Ages 2-5 at 10 am and Ages 6-10 at 10:30 am. The Lion’s Club donated $100 toward new books as prizes. Donations of plastic eggs and candy were needed. The event was held in the Library due to weather conditions. 36 children and 27 adults attended. The event went so well, that Leah encouraged the Library to hold this joint event the following year.
The library purchased a tall table for $77 and 2 stools for $55 to be used for laptop seating in the front of the library. The total of $132 came from donations and fundraising money. Photography classes taught by Spellman Photography and Adam Ohrt held on two Saturdays in April. Spellman photography and Adam Ohrt. Nine attended the first session and 13 the second session. The classes went very well and Spellman Photography was interested in holding future classes. In January, the Library receive $250 from a West Central grant.
The Library Space Renovation took place after closing on February 14 and continue through the 16th during library closed hours. After the move took place, volunteers helped Leah through the following week with the final arrangements. Open House was held on February 24 from 4 pm to 7 pm with 60 patrons in attendance. Many gave positive feedback.
Phase I of the computer upgrade began and computers were purchased from the Option 1 plan. Phase II would happen as funds became available. The plan was to retain 25% of the Silent Auction for Phase II. The library purchased a laser jet color printer for only library staff only use.
The Building and Maintenance portion of the 2015-2016 budget in the amount of $16,000 had been approved by the city with the expectations that the Library and the Foundation would raise half of the funds. Donna Howe wrote a grant to Lowe’s asking for some of the repairs to be done. In March an updated list of building repairs was presented to the board.
In March, the final probationary period for Leah was reviewed. It was decided to develop a list things that happen throughout the year. A calendar of events for the Board was developed so it would be known what would be upcoming without being surprised. All lists were given to Jeanne Arends who made the calendar and presented it in the April meeting.
Discussion centered on developing Committees based on events that would be taking place. The conclusion was that the Committees would be developed as needed. A list of Library accomplishments were presented at the March meeting and received positive feedback.
Five grants were applied for to cover a wide range of necessary purchases for the Library.
The Application Form for Accreditation and Direct State Aid Tier Level was due March 20, 2015 and was presented to the board at the March meeting and then submitted to the State Library.
April was National Library Week (special activities in the Library to highlight the week), Volunteer Appreciation Month—April 16 was the day the Library’s volunteers were honored and a gift was given to each. Plans were underway for the Friends and Neighbors Day June 6 to hold a Book Sale and to kick of the Summer Reading Program. Stephanie Dante resigned and a replacement was sought. John had develop a list of places to advertise Library activities. One suggestion the board learned from the Board training in February was to have different people do the minutes. The consensus of the Board was to continue having a Secretary do the minutes. John discovered a startling fact that 106,000 – 109,000 people pass through our High Trestle Trailhead on an annual basis. Discussion followed concerning ways the Library might be publicized at the Trailhead. It was decided to review two policies each month. The Board would review them each month at home and then approve the policies at the next meeting. A book sale was held April 13 - 25. Grant applications were submitted to Lowe’s, Myrna Mayfield, Walmart, and Dallas County. A list of contributors for prizes/items for the Silent Auction was distributed to the board members.
The Dallas County Library Association held their second Toddler Fest on May 2nd at the Dallas County Fairgrounds in Adel. It was very successful with 612 in attendance. Summer Reading ran from June 6 to July 18 for all ages. Lynn Williams helped once again with the kids programs. There would be incentives for reading and attending programs. The Blank Park Zoo presented on July 15 at 3:30pm. Because the microfilm reader did not print, a request was made by a patron to put down a deposit and check out the microfilm and take to another facility with a machine that prints. It was decided that microfilm cannot be check out by patrons, but rather Leah would try to set up an agreement with the Perry Public library for patrons to view and print microfilm on their machine.
In May a Library Wish List was distributed to the board. The Library monthly newsletter was proceeding well. Leah set up an email newsletter template to send out. It would include library news and highlight the new material at the library. The board reviewed three more Library policies. A Wal-Mart grant for Little Free Libraries was developed by Barb Maier, Donna Howe continued to work on the Lowe’s grant for building maintenance and repairs, and Leah submitted the Dallas County Foundation Grant for Innovate Tablet Services. The Library had received the Myrna Mayfield Grant for $2500 with funds going towards new computer chairs, Summer Reading Program, Enhanced Library Programing, and the Des Moines Register subscription. An updated Board Planning Calendar was distributed. Planning for the Silent Auction began in May. John was in charge of acquiring prizes from the complied list of fundraising items and prizes. A book sale was held at the Friends and Neighbors Day and the summer Social Center meals began in June.
In June the Summer Reading Program--challenged the kids to read so many minutes and attend programs and to activities to be rewarded by being able to ‘buy’ prizes at the library store. Super Hero Training Academy for all ages had obstacles around the Library to earn a Super Hero certificate. Grant writing continued, Barb had submitted to Wal-Mart and Leah had submitted to Lowe’s. Donations of 4 Tickets to the Iowa Cubs game and 4 tickets to Blank Park Zoo were used as prizes at the book sale. For every book purchased the customer was able to put their name in the drawing of their choice. Before the end of the fiscal year, Leah received a positive job review with a recommendation of a raise.
In July Kendra Spoelstra was appointed to the board and began serving. Leah reported that June had been a Fantastic Month for the Library. 65 youth and 25 elementary student, had registered for the Summer Reading Program and were attending regularly, and 4-8 teens were attending. Leah planned an outreach to daycares by going to various daycare sites in Woodward to share story hour and had begun this summer to one daycare. It had been extremely successful. A Teddy Bear Sleep-over event was lots of fun for 13 children who brought their teddy bears for an afternoon of fun, then left them overnight in the Library. 16 were in attendance for June’s Book Club event. At the end of July, WILBOR became Bridges. This caused some confusion and some re-education for the patrons. Super Heroes Academy was well received. The letters that had been sent out to Woodward and Bouton residents, early in the year, had solicited $1000 in donations. The Foundation planned to purchase a ‘buy-in’ for Bridges e-books collection exclusively for the Woodward Public Library.
Annual Reviews were given to the staff and a 2.5% raise was given to each. It was the consensus of the board to begin the process of raising the Director Salary to be more in line with other area Libraries and with other City employees.
The June book sale was successful and 10% was given to the city. The Library received $1405 grant dollars for tablets and they were received in September. The summer lunches were successful and proceeds were earmarked for technology. The library also purchased a receipt printer for check-outs. The Silent Auction and Tour of Homes was set for November 16 through Sunday December 6, the day scheduled for the Tour of Homes. Mary Bustad chaired the Tour of Homes committee. A committee was set up for the Silent Auction. John had already been soliciting donations for the event. Help was needed for the 141 Garage Sale and Book Sale held on August 7 and 8 from 8 am--4 pm. This year DAV came in and picked up unsold books and rummage sale items.
By August the homes had been solicited and accepted for the Tour of Homes. The homes would be Jacques, Bustads, Kaisers, and Burkharts. Again July was a fantastic month for the Library. The enthusiasm for the Summer Reading Program had been great. The visit from the Blank Park Zoo brought 82 people to the library. The 1000 Books before Kindergarten program had begun in the fall for pre-Kindergarten students. Book Club had 12 attendees. The book for August was Blue Heaven by C.J. Box. Then, the group would have the opportunity to meet the author in Perry on September 17. 75 people from Dallas County attended the event. The afterschool program began after Labor Day following the same plan as the previous year. Volunteers were scheduled during Leah’s vacation August 31—September 8. Summer Luncheon this month once again was successful. This month’s Luncheon money went towards a Little Free Library by the Trailhead. The board were already planning to do the January luncheon if asked. Leah would create an event flyer for the Silent Auction. Help was needed once again for the 141 Garage Sale and Book Sale. Again DAV would pick up any unsold books and Rummage Sale items. The sale was successful. The Volunteers were acknowledged for their help throughout the summer and thank yous were sent to each.
The events for September included Leah attending the State Library of Iowa Town meeting September 16 and 17 and the Dallas County Foundation Grant award night September 22. It was announced at this month’s meeting that the Library had received the accreditation certificate from the State Library in August. Howard Schutt was contacted to build a Little Free Library for the Trailhead. The community monthly newsletter was struggling because organizations were not getting information turned into the library.
The 1000 Books before Kindergarten started October 12. Leah attended the Iowa Library Association Conference October 14-16. The Dallas County Foundation grant money was to be used for “tethered” Tablets. Trick or Treat night was observed at the library October 31 from 6 pm--8 pm. Volunteers were continually helping at the library. John Maier resigned from the board because he was moving out of town. Mary Bustad was contacted to help gather information from organizations for the newsletter.
The Library would be closed for the holidays Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, December 24, 25, and 26. In November, Katie Spellman led a two day Workshop on techniques and composition used in photography. An Adult class led by Jeanne Arends was held in December on the making of a “Handmade Holiday Gift”. The attendance for the After School Program had increased and two volunteers came in on Wednesdays to help with the traffic. New magazine races had been installed and a notable increase in magazine checkouts occurred due to the accessibility of all of the magazines. New furniture had arrived giving a very welcoming feeling to the magazine/newspaper section of the library. The Fundraiser from the community mailing earlier in the year was successful and the money went toward e-books. The new Tablets had been purchased. The Silent Auction and Tour of Homes once again was successful. Terri sent thank yous to all who contributed items, as well as a thank you to John Maier for all the work he did before leaving the board. The library would do the January meal for the upcoming year.
In January, it was reported that the Cell Booster was missing on the roof. Mike Blaser installed lights to improve the lighting on the south side of the building making it easier for patrons to see book titles on the shelves. The city installed a new water heater and the window sills were worked on during the winter.
In February, a new Adult Program--Adult coloring, started. The furnace broke down and needed repaired which cost $171. An estimate would be sought for replacement of the furnace. After attending the Board meeting for the first two months of the year as a visitor, Gene Grell would be appointed to the board to begin in March. The 2016-2017 library budget was not approved by the city, consequently more work would need to be done.
March brought a memorial request from the Nadine Burkhart Family. The family wanted a stain glass panel designed to go between the office and the checkout desk. The design would come from Mary Rose [Nichols], a Perry business. Mary Rose would do the art and customize it to allow for additional memorials. Several programs were scheduled March through April 2, including the Lions’ Club/Library Easter Egg Hunt. The Board showed interest in sharing the Strategic Plan with the City Council. The Board voted not to do summer luncheons this year. Jolene Swanson was asked to paint a Little Free Library and a design second a Little Free Library for Howard Schutt to make. During National Library Week April 10-16, Kathy Yager sponsored a volunteers recognition on April 14 at 10 am.
A special meeting was called on March 21 at 6:30 to design a hiring plan due to the resignation of Library Director, Leah White. A committee of 3 including Terri, Kathy, and Gene was set up. Later Jim would be part of the team. Leah posted an ad on the State Library website. One week later, Terri posted ads in the Madrid newspaper and the Perry Shopper. The hourly wage was established at $12-$13.50 per hour. Resumes along with a city application form were sent to Terri. Volunteers were scheduled and Susan’s hours were increased until the new director was on board. A Farewell Open House was held on Thursday March 31, 4-6:30.
Immediate projects that needed immediate attention, were Myrna Mayfield grant due April 1, the Mary Rose Stained Glass Project, the Easter Egg Hunt Saturday, March 26, and the Genealogy Program Saturday, April 2.
By April the Visitor Counter had arrived and had been installed. The Receipt Printer had arrived but didn’t mesh with the library’s technology. The Myrna Mayfield application requested dollars for a DVD cleaner. For National Library Week the Library held a Scavenger Hunt on Thursday, April 14. The hiring of a new Library Director was on schedule. The Summer Reading Program theme was Sports and would be implemented by the new director. Since Susan was working more hours and doing the top 3or 4 library jobs, she was paid an additional $3 per hour in the absence of the director, plus an additional two weeks at the higher rate, after the director would be hired.
A special meeting was held on April 11. The applications for the director had been received and deadline had been moved to April 15. A second special board meeting was held on April 27. Three interviews were held. It was decided that Myrna Griffith would be hired as Library Director at the wage of $13.25 per hour/40 hours a week. Upon her 3 month review, with the plan to receive her public librarian certification, the wage would be increased to $13.50.