Notices, agendas, and minutes of the Springfield Town Library are posted here in accordance with Vermont's Open Meeting Law. Meetings are open to the public. Every session includes time for public comment. The Trustees meet on the second Tuesday of each month at 6:30pm, on the second floor of the Springfield Town Library, at 43 Main Street in Springfield, Vermont.

For more information, call the Library at (802)885-3108 or e-mail

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Trustee minutes, August 14, 2018

Town of Springfield
Library Board of Trustees
Tuesday, August 14, 2018

1. The meeting was called to order at 6:30PM.
Present: Jen Dechen, Herb Jamison, Richard CoFrancesco, Amy Howlett (director), Barbara Ball (minutes), Margie Reurink, Matthew Pincus
Absent: Sara Druen

2. Additions/ subtractions to the Agenda
Amy requested a discussion on the policy for the family room.

3.   Public comments

4.   Review and approve minutes from the June meeting
Motion to pass the June minutes as written passed. (Jen motioned, Richard second.)
5. Guidelines for Unplanned Quorums
A reminder that even if 4 or more trustees are present, library decisions cannot be made outside of regularly scheduled and announced meetings.
Margie asked what is appropriate to tell the public regarding what happens in the board meetings.
The only things that board members should not discuss is anything that happens in an executive session.
Amy also added that executive sessions should only be used if they are really needed. For example, in disciplining a library director, etc. Also, it was mentioned that no decisions can be officially made in an executive session. For instance, if an executive session was called to discuss if a director should be fired, discussion could happen in the executive session, however the board would need to come out of executive session to officially vote on whether it should be done.

Amy added as an aside that if board members ever receive public criticism regarding a library staff member, the person with the complaint should be encouraged to talk to the Library Director about staff issues, not to the Board or to Board members.

5A. Policy for Family Room
Amy drafted a policy for the family/small conference room.
This room was recently completed and is waiting for furniture. It is available as a private meeting space. The current draft policy is as follows:

The Springfield Town Library has one family/small conference room on the second floor available for free public or private use. Groups or individuals may reserve it for up to 2 hours per day (no more than 6 hours per week) for use during regular library hours. Library staff may approve exceptions.

The room has Wi-Fi and comfortable seating for up to 5-6 people. A folding table is available if users need work space. Users must clean up the meeting area following use and return furniture to a regular location.

Possible uses/users for the room include:
- Out-of-town lawyers have called in the past to ask about meeting space.
- Department of Children and Families (DCF) Family visits
- Proctoring a test
- Skyped job interviews
- Group study sessions.

Library staff have already created the book to request the room.

Some board members felt uncomfortable regarding safety concerns relating to DCF visits at the library. However, DCF visits have been taking place all along at the library, often in the children's room.
Discussion that we are a public library and are open to all. There is a behavior code that is enforced.

Board members had questions regarding staff drills re evacuation, etc. Amy said staff are currently working on a manual for responding to a variety of situations. Currently, there is a half-page what-to-do list to guide library staff in an uncomfortable or dangerous situation that includes pushing the panic button to contact the police, begin evacuating the building using back entrances, etc.

Trustees would like to review this manual when it is completed.

Amy did state that all library staff are CPR, AED, and mental health first aid trained.

Some board members wanted the policy to say more. For example, what should the public expect from using that space?
One suggestion was to move “While the room is a private space, the library code of behavior applies” from the procedures to the policy.

Amy will work further on this policy and bring it back to the board next month.

Room reservations for the family room are held for 20 minutes if someone doesn't show up.

6.   Strategic Plan Review:

Amy updated the board on the Strategic Plan
A board member requested that references be added so readers understand the numbering system.
Finances: Regarding a question on the budget and the library being 90% funded by the town, Amy said that the other 10% is provided by FOSTL or by bequests, etc.

Discussion of ways the STL has worked to increase library users such as:
- In 2018, a massive roll-out to Union St School. This September, there will be another roll-out.
- During National Library Week, letters were written to everyone whose card was blocked to try and get them back.

Brainstorming of other ways to increase library use:
- Reach out to the Family Center?
- Have an event at the High School? The family room could be a study space.
- Have  a booth at any local wellness day events
- When kids sign up for sports leagues at the Springfield Rec. Department, offer to sign them up for a library card there as well.

Board members would like time to read the Strategic Plan before approving it.
Amy will email this document to everyone.
Trustees should respond by email to Amy by next Tuesday, 8/21, with any suggestions or comments. Amy will compile the list of feedback and get it back to the Board.
The Board should be ready to accept this plan at the next meeting.

7. FOSTL Report: included in director’s report
8.   Director’s report (separately)

9. Executive session if needed
10. Next meeting date: Tuesday, September 11, 6:30PM

11. Adjournment: Jen moved to adjourn the meeting at 8:10. Margie seconded the motion and the meeting ended.