25 MAY 2005

The regular meeting of the Board of Trustees of the Webster Groves Public Library was held at the Library House at #5 Mason Avenue on Wednesday, May 25, 2005. This meeting was rescheduled from May 18, 2005. President Jon Furst presided, and Acting Library Co-Directors Michelle Haffer and Elise Fortman kept the minutes. Present: Library Board Trustees Stacy Deleste, Christine Krueger, Charles Maas, Pam Mahoney, Tom Reedy and Gladys Tolley. Also present: Susan Pruchnicki from Bond Wolfe Architects. Absent: Debra Fortney and June Gill.

Call to Order

Mr. Furst called the meeting to order at 6:37 PM.

Advance Planning

Mr. Furst introduced Susan Pruchnicki, from Bond Wolfe Architects who spoke to the Board of Trustees about bond issue campaigns (usually taking a year or more to place on the ballot and pass), needs assessments, and expansion/renovation of public library buildings. Ms. Pruchnicki discussed several approaches the Library could take, such as her firm’s Destination Renovation program, and the “Bring in an Expert” grants available through the Missouri State Library. Bond-Wolfe offers assistance to the library throughout the initial phases of planning, including gathering community input, fund- raising and budgeting, as well as design.

Public Agenda

There were no items for the Public Agenda this month.

Minutes of the April 2005 Meeting

Mr. Reedy moved that the minutes of the April 20, 2005 meeting of the Trustees be approved as submitted. Ms. Deleste seconded the motion, which carried unanimously.


Ms. Fortman reported that the most recent issue of the Missouri State Library’s Newsline publication carried a story about the Webster Groves Public Library joining the Municipal Library Consortium of St. Louis County.

President's Report

Mr. Furst said the topics he wished to cover would be addressed in the individual committee reports.

Librarian's Report

Ms. Haffer distributed the Children’s Room calendar for June, and reminded the Board that the Summer Reading Program would kick-off this year with a visit from a knight in full armor complete with a sword. Sir Karl Kindt will be at the Library on Friday, June 3 at 3:30 to meet and greet Reading Program participants.

Ms. Haffer reported that the Consortium Board intends to contract with the “Get Connected” library delivery service that is used by many Missouri public library systems and the MOBIUS network of academic libraries. “Get Connected” would replace the St. Louis County Library delivery service that is currently used by all 9 Consortium libraries, at an approximate annual savings of $2,000. Ms. Haffer passed out copies of the Consortium President’s letter to St. Louis County Library’s Director informing him of the decision. The new service contract will be effective on August 1, 2005.

Ms. Haffer reported that staff member Sharon Morris will leave the Library staff effective the end of May 2005. Her position will not be filled, as the new Horizon procedures have made it possible to streamline and redistribute her duties among other staff.

Ms. Fortman reported that the Library is scheduled to present its 2005-2006 budget at a public hearing before the City Council on June 21, 2005. The Finance Committee must meet to review the preliminary figures before the full Board approves the budget at the June meeting. In Ms. Tolley’s absence, Mr. Furst will present it on June 21, 2005.

Ms. Fortman reported that the Library’s Public Officials Liability insurance policy is due for renewal in June. The quote for the annual premium at renewal is $3,479, an increase of $67 over last year. Ms. Krueger moved that the Board approve renewal of this policy as proposed. Mr. Reedy seconded the motion, which carried unanimously.

Ms. Fortman advised the Board that as of May 25, 2005, the Library would begin using a collection agency to attempt to retrieve long overdue materials and fines. This service is one of the options available with the Horizon system, and is used by most of the other Consortium libraries, who report about a 60% recovery rate. Notices explaining the need for this step have been posted on the Library’s website and at the front desk.

Ms. Fortman reported that she has finally received a draft copy of the audit report for 2003-2004. The final copies will be available the first week of June, and will enable the Library to reopen its Line of Credit Loan from Cass Bank, and shop for short-term financing for this year’s budget shortfall.


There was no report from this committee this month.

Building and Grounds

Mr. Reedy reported that after consulting with City Hall he has determined there are two uses best suited for the #5 Mason property: to rent the property out as a residence or to continue using the house for Library staff, Board and Friends meetings and storage. Mr. Reedy will investigate the cost of hiring a property management company and readying the house for rental. A vote on the best usage will be held at the June meeting.


Before the 14th of June, Ms. Fortman will contact the members of the Finance Committee (Tolley, Reedy, Maas, and Mahoney) to review the first draft of the Budget.

Ms. Tolley reviewed the financial reports and disbursements for April. Mr. Reedy moved that the bills be approved as presented. Ms. Deleste seconded the motion, which carried unanimously.

Human Resource

Ms. Deleste reported that 10 applications for the Director’s position have been received. Of these, the Committee selected 6 to contact. Those still interested will be faxed a standardized employment application. Interviews will then be set up for those candidates still wishing to be considered.

Ms. Fortman asked if the ad for the Director should remain on the Library’s website, and if so, should the previous deadline for application be extended or removed. Consensus was to leave the ad posted, but say position will be open until filled.

Mr. Furst said Ms. Fortman would provide information to the HR Committee regarding benefits associated with the Director’s position.


There was no report from this committee this month.

Old Business

Ms. Krueger attended the April 26, 2005 Webster Groves City Development/Redevelopment Tools meeting. She said that the focus of this meeting was finding ways to enhance various business/taxing districts in Webster to make them more productive and interact in more cooperative ways with the local residents of their districts. Ms. Krueger did not feel that much of this would directly involve the Library as the Library does not generate tax revenues.

New Business

Mr. Furst reported that Ms. Fortney, Mr. Furst, and Mr. Reedy have been reappointed by the Webster Groves City Council to serve new three-year terms, expiring May of 2008.

Mr. Furst proposed the slate of officers for the coming year remain as it is currently. A vote to elect the slate will be held at the June meeting. The proposed slate is:

President – Jon Furst             Vice-President – Tom Reedy             Treasurer – Gladys Tolley


There being no further business before the Board, Ms. Tolley moved to adjourn the meeting. Ms. Krueger seconded the motion, which carried unanimously. The meeting was adjourned at 8:00 PM.

The next meeting of the Library’s Board of Trustees will be held on Wednesday, June 15, 2005 at the Library House, #5 Mason Avenue, at 7:00 PM.