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October 20, 2014 Minutes of the Regular Meeting

ANN ARBOR DISTRICT LIBRARY BOARD
343 S. FIFTH AVENUE, ANN ARBOR, MI
MINUTES OF THE REGULAR MEETING
MONDAY, OCTOBER 20, 2014

14-212 I. CALL TO ORDER

President Rosenthal called the meeting to order at 6:59 p.m.

14-213 II. ATTENDANCE

Present: Head, Kaplan, Leary, Murphy, Barney Newman, Rosenthal, Surovell
Absent: None
Staff: Hadler, Neiburger, Parker, Wilson (recorder)

14-214 III. APPROVAL OF AGENDA
(Item of action)

Secretary Head, supported by Trustee Leary, moved to approve the agenda.

AYES: Head, Kaplan, Leary, Murphy, Barney Newman, Rosenthal, Surovell
NAYS: None

Motion passed 7-0.

14-215 IV. APPROVAL OF MINUTES OF SEPTEMBER 15, 2014
(Item of action)

Trustee Leary, supported by Secretary Head, moved to approve the minutes of September 15, 2014.

AYES: Head, Kaplan, Leary, Murphy, Barney Newman, Rosenthal, Surovell
NAYS: None

Motion passed 7-0.

14-216 V. CITIZENS’ COMMENTS

David Chernin

My name is David Chernin, I’ve lived in Ann Arbor since 1971 and I’m a retired internist from St. Joes. I want to read to you three numbers. First seven hundred and seventy-one. This is the number of volumes of novels that the main branch owns of books by Nora Roberts and James Patterson. Literature of the type once described by Truman Capote as quote “not writing just typing” unquote. And never reviewed in any literary journal of note. So seven seventy one. A second number seventy-four. The volumes at this library by Saul Bellow and Toni Morrison, the last two American Nobel Prize winners in literature. And a third number thirty-nine. The number of copies here of DVDs The Hangover, parts one, two and three. This is shameful. This library has clearly abandoned the idea of a library as a quote “center for knowledge and enlightenment“ unquote as recently voiced by the head of the New York City Library system. Replacing it with the concept of a place for public entertainment at its lowest level. Twenty years ago this library had a collection of books the community could be proud of. Now with shelves filled with what can only be called trash. Books that create a false picture of our world as dominated by money, sex and violence. The library is contributing its part to a further coarsening in the level of civil discourse. Thank you.

14-217 VI. FINANCIAL REPORTS

CFO Hadler reported the September report showed an unrestricted cash balance over $16.4 million. Tax receipts over $10.9 million, reflecting 94% of the budgeted amount, have been received through the end of September. Budget versus actual showed an operating surplus of just over $95,000. The fund balance stands just above $8.3 million. Eight line items are over budget and should come back into line later in the year.

14-218 VII. APPROVAL OF DISBURSEMENTS
(Item of action)

Trustee Leary, supported by Secretary Head, moved to approve the September 2014 disbursements.

AYES: Head, Kaplan, Leary, Murphy, Barney Newman, Rosenthal, Surovell
NAYS: None

Motion passed 7-0.

14-219 VIII. COMMITTEE REPORTS

14-220 A. BUDGET & FINANCE COMMITTEE

Chairperson Barney Neman reported the committee consisting of herself and Trustee Kaplan met on October 10th and discussed the restatement of the AADL 403(b) plan. Trustee Murphy was ill and unable to attend but provided the committee with a number of questions which were answered.

14-221 B. FACILITIES COMMITTEE

Chairperson Leary reported the committee consisting of herself and Trustees Barney Newman and Surovell met today. The committee reviewed changes at the Downtown Library. The Friends Book Shop is moving from the basement to the first floor Teen Room. Open hours for the Book Shop will increase and the Friends will still have storage space in the basement area. The Teen area has been relocated to the third floor. The Outreach and Neighborhood Services Department has been relocated to the fourth floor. The former third floor Outreach space is being readied for recent staff hires. The front porch project has been delayed until spring. The bike exchange program has been installed and is operating. The lease with First Martin for the space housing the archives is expiring and will come back to the Board in November.

14-222 IX. DIRECTOR’S REPORT

Director Parker reported she recently attended the Building Chicago Conference and appeared on a panel with Cory Lavigne and John Yarema about the use of emerald ash borer damaged trees in the construction of Traverwood.

The Friends will be vacating the lower level Book Shop for the first floor space by the end of the year. Plans are to remodel the vacated space for youth and teen programming.

The WLBPD newsletter will be in the mail shortly to registered WLBPD patrons.

AADL is hosting two major authors this month. Dr. Kathy Reichs was here yesterday and on Tuesday the library welcomes Gary Shteyngart.

Staff day was well attended this month and the various presenters ranging from Washtenaw County Community Support and Treatment Services staff, AAPD Community Engagement Officers to Omari Rush who talked about Popping UP Art in Ann Arbor were all well received.

Director Parker reported that the elevator passed state inspection and is open to the public.

X. MONTHLY STATISTICS

Deputy Director Neiburger presented the software developed by IT staff that is used to support the collection development process.

14-224 XI. OLD BUSINESS

14-177 A. DOWNTOWN LIBRARY ELEVATOR REPAIR UPDATE

Director Parker reported the elevator was running smoothly. Staff served popcorn on “opening day” when the elevator was opened for public use and offered “free” elevator rides.

14-225 XII. NEW BUSINESS

14-226 A. RESOLUTION TO AMEND AND RESTATE THE ANN ARBOR DISTRICT LIBRARY 403(b) TAX SHELTERED ANNUITY PLAN
(Item of action)

Trustee Kaplan, supported by Secretary Head, moved and read: Whereas, the Employer sponsors and maintains the Ann Arbor District Library 403(b) Tax Sheltered Annuity Plan (the “Plan”) for the benefit of eligible employees; Whereas, the Employer desires to amend and restate the Plan to comply with applicable laws, including qualification requirements under the Internal Revenue Code; Whereas, under the terms of the Plan, the Employer, through its Board of Trustees, may appoint and remove plan representatives, amend and restate the Plan, and delegate and transfer to third parties the authority and power to administer, amend and terminate the Plan; Now therefore, be it resolved, that the Plan, in the form presented to the Trustees, is approved and adopted generally effective as of January 1, 2009, except as otherwise provided therein; Further resolved, the undersigned hereby delegates to the Executive Director or the Chief Financial Officer the full and discretionary authority, power and duty to: Act as the Plan Administrator and Named Fiduciary of the Plan with the full and discretionary power to administer the Plan; Amend, modify, restate or otherwise alter the terms of the Plan as required to comply with law, collective bargaining agreements or otherwise reflect plan design changes; Appoint and remove trustees, custodians, payroll slot vendors and other third party administrators for the Plan; Manage and invest the assets of the Plan, including the power to: Adopt and maintain an Investment Policy for the investment of Plan assets; Select and monitor the investment choices, including those that are available for Participant-directed investments under the Plan; And appoint one or more investment advisors to assist in evaluating the investment performance of Plan assets or educating and advising plan participants regarding their self-directed investment choices under the Plan; (Vice President Murphy continued reading the resolution) Resolved further, notwithstanding the Executive Director’s or Chief Financial Officer’s amendment authority granted hereunder, the Employer, through the Board of Trustees, reserves and retains the right, at any time, to amend, modify or otherwise alter this delegation of authority and/or the Plan, as well as the exclusive power to terminate the Plan; Resolved further, the Executive Director and Chief Financial Officer shall be indemnified by the Employer, to the extent permitted by state law, against any and all liabilities arising by reason of any act or failure to act made in good faith pursuant to the provisions of the Plan, including expenses reasonably incurred in the defense of any claim relating thereto; Resolved further, that any actions taken previously by the Executive Director, Employer’s Human Resources Department in implementing the benefit design, administrative or other changes necessary to comply with recent law changes for the Plan are hereby ratified, confirmed, and approved; (Treasurer Barney Newman continued reading the resolution) Resolved further, that the Executive Director or the Chief Financial Officer is authorized and directed to execute the Plan, and take such other action as may be necessary or appropriate to implement the Plan or these resolutions; Resolved further, that Rebecca Head, Ann Arbor District Library Board Secretary, has the authority to certify this resolution; Resolved further, that all resolutions and parts of resolutions that conflict with the provisions of this resolution are rescinded.

AYES: Head, Kaplan, Leary, Murphy, Barney Newman, Rosenthal, Surovell
NAYS: None

Motion passed 7-0.

14-227 B. RESOLUTION RECOGNIZING OCTOBER 19-25, 2014 AS NATIONAL FRIENDS OF THE LIBRARY WEEK
(Item of action)

President Rosenthal, supported by Treasurer Barney Newman, moved Whereas, The Friends of the Ann Arbor District Library, established by local citizens in 1953, recognizes the critical importance of a securely-established public library and has provided loyal and consistent support for the development of our highly-respected District Library system; Whereas, The Friends has continuously obtained funds and resources for the District Library, thereby providing support for programming, equipment, collections, special educational events and exhibits, and outreach to the community; Whereas, the work of the Friends highlights the fact that our library is a cornerstone of the community’s access to education and enrichment and aims to encourage everyone, from small children to senior citizens, to engage in the joy of life-long learning through use of the library’s resources; Whereas, the Friends understand the critical importance of public awareness of the library’s needs and resources and endeavors to sustain community support for the District Library and its collections and services; Whereas, the Friends’ gift of their time and commitment to the Ann Arbor District Library demonstrates the way that volunteerism leads to positive civic engagement and the betterment of our community; Now therefore, be it resolved, that the Ann Arbor District Library Board of Trustees proclaims October 19-25, 2014 as Friends of the Library week in Ann Arbor, County of Washtenaw, Michigan and urges everyone to join the Friends of the District Library and thank them for all they do to make our library and community so much better; Resolved further, that all resolutions and parts of resolutions that conflict with the provisions of this resolution are rescinded.

AYES: Head, Kaplan, Leary, Murphy, Barney Newman, Rosenthal, Surovell
NAYS: None

Motion passed 7-0.

14-228 C. VOTE FOR CLOSED SESSION AT THE NOVEMBER 17, 2014 REGULAR MEETING FOR DISCUSSION OF REAL ESTATE AND OPINION OF LEGAL COUNSEL
(Item of action)
Roll call vote

Trustee Leary, supported by Vice President Murphy, moved to hold a closed session at the November 17, 2014 regular meeting for discussion of real estate and opinion of legal counsel.

A roll call vote was taken.

AYES: Head, Kaplan, Leary, Murphy, Barney Newman, Rosenthal, Surovell
NAYS: None

Motion passed 7-0.

14-229 XIII. CITIZENS’ COMMENTS

David Chernin

This meeting though just typified what the point I was trying to make. If someone listened to this meeting they wouldn’t know whether they were listening to a group discussing a bread factory or a place where people come for books. The data that was put up there, I think everybody recognizes these days that science is king. All other fields try to model themselves after science because has achieved things that people think are quite incredible, beneficial. But a library is not a chemistry lab. So to come to a meeting like this and hear virtually no discussion of books is just, I find incredible. I know the one book was discussed, The Goldfinch, it won the Pulitzer Prize. I think if you go and read the reviews of it by say, one review books, Times Literary Supplement, New York Times, they all thought it was a really mediocre book. And I don’t think any people who are serious about books look upon the Pulitzer Prize in Fiction as any sort of real guide to quality literature. All you have to do is go down the list of the books that have won the prize of the past twenty years to see that. So, recently I’ve been reading probably one of the best philosophers around these days Roger Scruton, he’s a British philosopher. And he has been writing about this confusion between science and areas of life that are not covered by science. So I just want to read you a couple sentences. First this where he writes the meaning experience plays no part in scientific description since science has or at any rate assumed absolute sovereignty over what is true, the meaning comes to be viewed as a fiction. So, I read that just in relationship to the various charts that were thrown up on that screen. The second thing is this, the Czech philosopher T.G. Masaryk, who died in 1937, described many the ills of the modern world to quote “half education” unquote there was the prominence in public life of the semi-educated he suggested that stirred up the hopes and destroyed the certainties of mankind, all faith was cast in doubt, all morality relativized, and all simple contentment destroyed. And that’s what I think is happening here. That an institution that used to be some place where people could actually find inspiration or hope or at least a different view of life is now simply trying to run itself as if it were a corporation churning out anything, candy bars, loaves of bread, whatever. And it disgusts me and really I think, I know there were a lot of comments on that bond issue lost, I think the biggest reason was not because some secret group sat, (speaker was notified his time was up, but continued) I’d like to make one sentence please. The people who love books voted against you. And that is going to continue to be true.

14-330 XIV. ADJOURNMENT

Trustee Surovell, supported by Treasurer Barney Newman, moved to adjourn the meeting.

President Rosenthal adjourned the meeting at 8:18 p.m.