CLERMONT COUNTY PUBLIC LIBRARY
BOARD OF TRUSTEES
MAY 18, 2020
VIA ZOOM TELECONFERENCE
Present: Tony Cardinal, Joe Braun, Judith Kocica, Tricia Lyons, Mary Jo Waite, Jennifer Doss, Adam Bird
Staff: Theresa Herron
The meeting was conducted via Zoom teleconference and Facebook Live.
Mr. Cardinal called the meeting to order at 6 p.m.
Tony Cardinal, Judith Kocica, Tricia Lyons, Joe Braun, Mary Jo Waite, Jennifer Doss, Adam Bird, here.
Attendees recited the Pledge of Allegiance.
APRIL 20, 2020, MINUTES:
Motion by Ms. Waite, seconded by Mr. Braun, to approve the April 20, 2020, minutes as mailed. Ms. Kocica questioned a statement about a plan being created to put staff salaries back into place. Ms. Gray confirmed she is working on that plan. In favor: Mr. Cardinal, Ms. Kocica, Ms. Lyons, Mr. Braun, Ms. Waite, Ms. Doss, Mr. Bird. Motion was adopted.
Ms. Wick read three questions submitted by employees.
Question 1: It has been said by members of Admin that they want to open the library as soon as possible, but there have been serious social distancing challenges that we have seen from businesses that have already opened. Every step has been taken so quickly, and to my knowledge, front line staff have not been consulted about procedures or safety. How will administration bring in front line staff to address any future decision about safety procedures when it comes to providing services?
Answer 1: The Library will be following guidance from the state.
Question 2: Obviously with the adapting times staff have been asked to take on larger rolls within the system. These rolls add additional task outside of certain job descriptions and although everyone wants to do their part there are concerns about cramming 40 hours of work in 32 hours. With the continuing of curbside after we re-open and the expectation for Programmers to continue to produce online content as well as expectations for front line staff to now become in house janitors for the safety of the public is there any discussion on compensation for those employees with the raise expectations and duties assigned? We all know times are hard and we have to all do our part to help, but there also needs to be understanding of job expectations vs pay.
Answer 2: There are no current plans to increase pay.
Question three. Along those same lines, has there been any discussion of when hours per staff will be returned to normal. Is this 20 percent cut maintained for the rest of the year? And the answer is there are no current plans as to when and if staff hours will be increased.
Answer 3: There are no current plans as to when and if staff hours will be increased.
Mr. Bird asked for clarification on question 2: are employees wanting a pay raise or a pay adjustment because they are taking items to the curb?
Ms. Wick explained some of the changes in normal work flow- including help with program coordination, disinfecting high-touch areas such as computer workstations, soap dispensers, etc. in bathrooms, cleaning public computer terminals after each use.
FISCAL OFFICERS REPORT:
April financial report was presented.
Ms. Kocica asked about a payment from the Clermont County Auditor for $841.51. Ms. Gray said that was for tax collection fees paid with the final disbursement of the distribution of mobile home property taxes.
Ms. Kocica also asked about payments to employees. Ms. Gray said those were travel and mileage reimbursements.
Ms. Gray reported the Public Library Fund was down by 35 percent for May. She budgeted for the PLF to be down by 40 percent for May. She said the Library is spending money on sanitation supplies and items needed to reopen the branches like Plexiglas guards to be installed at circulation and reference desks.
Ms. Gray also reported receiving a rebate check from the Bureau of Workers Compensation for approximately $9,700. She reported that so far, the Library has not been eligible for and CARES Act reimbursements as a result of COVID-19. She will continue to look for financial opportunities to offset the cost of protecting the libraries, the staff, and patrons as well as reimbursements from companies that provide services like vehicle insurance.
Motion by Ms. Kocica, seconded by Ms. Waite, to accept the April financial report. All in favor. Motion was adopted.
Motion by Ms. Kocica, seconded by Mr. Bird, to pay the April bills. In favor: Mr. Cardinal, Mr. Bird, Ms. Kocica, Ms. Lyons, Ms. Waite. Abstained: Mr. Braun and Ms. Doss. Motion was adopted.
Ms. Wick reported she visited branches and talked to staff about how things were going.
Staff seem very comfortable with the Curbside Pickup service that started May 12 and accepting returns beginning May 19 at noon.
Staff returned to work May 4 and managers were encouraged to be flexible when scheduling staff. Managers created work areas utilizing the entire branch to allow for the six-foot social-distancing requirements and all staff are required to wear facial coverings.
Curbside Pickup has gone really well. Patrons can pick up their holds, request 10 items, and ask for 10 pages of blank tax forms or government documents. The number of Curbside Pickup orders filled in the first week are: Union Township with 180; Miami Township 161; Williamsburg 48; Batavia 37; Bethel 33; Goshen 40; New Richmond 30; Owensville 29; and Felicity 19. Ms. Wick explained how Curbside Pickup is handled.
The Library will be accepting returns, Tuesday, May 19, starting at noon. All materials will be quarantined a minimum of 72 hours before they’re checked in. Returned materials will be quarantined in the meeting rooms and the rooms will not be available for public use once the Libraries reopen.
The Library has a reduced programming department staff. Theresa Herron and Ms. Wick have been handling program approvals and five staff members are helping: Cara Frank of the Amelia Library is working with programs for preschoolers, Robin Coleman of Miami Township, school-age; Mary Kleemeier and Victoria Smith of Union Township, teen; and Ashley Lemaster of Williamsburg, adult. The goal is to provide online content that is dynamic, diverse and meets the needs of all age groups. The Library will not host any in-person programs for the foreseeable future.
The Library is offering the annual Summer Reading program online with gift prizes awarded at the end at each branch in each age category: preschool, school-age, teen, adult. The program is June 1 to September 1. Patrons can register and record minutes online or ask a library staff member to help them.
REOPENING THE LIBRARIES:
Ms. Wick said the biggest challenge to reopening is having enough cleaning and disinfecting supplies. The Facilities Department is working on making sure enough supplies are available and are providing barriers between workstations at each branch so employees can maintain social distance.
The Library plan is to reopen with graduated services. Hours will be limited, patrons will not be encouraged to linger in the Library, staff will clean their work stations often, remove the self-serve coffee station at Miami Township, disinfect public computer terminals after each use, frequently clean hard services like door handles, close water fountains and place hand sanitizer at checkout locations. The public will be encouraged to wear facial coverings. Furniture has been moved to allow for social distancing. Information Services has set up remote access to public computer terminals so staff members can assist patrons while being six feet away. Plexiglass is being installed at service desks.
The planning team working on the reopening plan include Amelia manager Beth Lammrish, Owensville manager Chris Rich, Felicity manager Kasey Richey, Goshen manager Lisa Breithaupt, Technical Services manager Joel Walters, Information Services manager Jim George, and Ms. Wick.
The Health District is requiring a minimum 50 percent of the fire code for occupancy. The library is considering opening the branch for four hours at the end of the day with the first hour set aside for vulnerable populations. Patrons would not be encouraged to linger. No date has been set for reopening.
OHIO GOVERNOR’S IMAGINATION LIBRARY:
Ms. Wick said United Way of Greater Cincinnati will serve as the fiscal sponsor for the Clermont County Ohio Governor’s Imagination Library. A fund-raising campaign will be conducted to raise $30,000. The Library will act as the Referral Agency, and will be the location where parents can register their children to participate in the program.
Motion by Mr. Braun, seconded by Ms. Doss, to schedule a special meeting of the board for 7 p.m. May 20 to discuss matters set forth in ORC 121.22)(G)(4) related to preparing for negotiations or bargaining sessions with public employees concerning their compensation or other terms and conditions of employment. In favor: Mr. Cardinal, Ms. Kocica, Ms. Lyons, Mr. Braun, Ms. Waite, Ms. Doss, Mr. Bird. Motion was adopted.
Motion by Ms. Doss, seconded by Ms. Lyons, to adjourn the meeting at 7:11 p.m. All were in favor. Motion was adopted.
Next meeting date is June 15.
Board President Board Secretary