Library Board/City Council Workshop 4/2

Estacada Public Library Board of Trustees

Workshop with City Council Subcommittee

April 2, 2012, 6 p.m.

Estacada City Hall ~ 475 SE Main Street


Call to Order

The meeting was called to order at 6 p.m. by President Hardman.

Present:           President Karen Hardman, Dir. Janet Bowen, Dir. Earlean Marsh,

Dir. Suzanne Sager, Dir. Kraig Bartel, City Councilor Brent Dodrill,

City Council Liaison Sean Drinkwine, Mayor Becky Arnold, Library Director Anna Stavinoha

Councilor Dodrill thanked the Library Board for the time and energy they spend on behalf of the Library. He acknowledged that there have been recent challenges, but that the Library is one of Estacada’s greatest assets, not just because of the beautiful facility but also because of the staff and volunteers.

Public Input: There was none.

Review of Bylaws: Councilor Dodrill began the discussion of the Library Board Bylaws. He stated that he was aware that President Hardman, Dir. Bowen and the City Manager had met to look over the bylaws recently. He said that he wants to make sure that we are familiar with what the job of the Library Board is. He clarified the difference between “doing the right things” and “doing things right,” and said that both are important.

Mayor Arnold clarified that the copy of the bylaws they were reviewing had no proposed changes noted, but that the Council was aware that there are some changes needed.

Cr. Dodrill explained that during this meeting the Board would be highlighting areas of the bylaws that may need to be revised, and that those possible revisions would be discussed further at a later Board Meeting.

There was a discussion of the Trustee offices. Cr. Dodrill said that the office of Secretary may need to be considered for revision because of the difficulty of the Library Director being available to advise the Board while at the same time recording the minutes. There was a general consensus that this is correct. There was also a discussion of the office of Treasurer and the impracticality that the Treasurer would always be on the Budget Committee.

There was a discussion concerning the process of developing the Library budget. Cr. Dodrill made the recommendation that the budget process needs to begin very early. President Hardman explained that there had been a delay this year due to the change in the District funding. Dir. Bartel stated that it is very important for there to be a collaborative effort to compile the budget including public and Board input.

Cr. Dodrill clarified with LD Stavinoha that the budget will be available for the Board to look over next week.

There was mention of the hostility that is felt between staff and Dir. Bartel. Dir. Bartel asked for clarification. Dir. Hardman gave the example of “it is not what you say, but how you say it.” Cr. Dodrill referenced the “Toxic Talk” worksheet he often uses with boards or councils.

There was mention of the practicality of the treasurer reviewing all expenditures before the funds are allocated. Cr. Dodrill recommended discussing this at a regular meeting.

Cr. Dodrill brought up the Board Agenda with regard to public input. He reminded the Board that once they move on from that part of the agenda the public doesn’t get input anymore. He also referenced the City Council procedure of not answering a question immediately during Public Input if it is a question that would require some research. The Council’s response is that they will try to get the information and get back to them, or they will direct staff to deal with that question.

There was a brief discussion of when the agenda should be available.

Cr. Dodrill referenced the Board’s responsibility for the annual evaluation of the Library Director. He explained the process and purpose of the City Council’s evaluation of the City Manager as an example. The Board asked questions and discussed this process.

Cr. Dodrill commented the section about the Library Director and staff at the bottom of page 5 of the bylaws. He highlighted that the Library Director manages the library and staff on a day to day basis and that the Board gives general direction and sets policy.

Dir. Bartel stated that he would like to add that clarification is needed because he understands that they are an advisory board, but that they have a certain amount of authority. He said he thinks there needs to be some clarity between the Board, the Library Director and the City Manager on where those boundaries of authority lie. Cr. Dodrill gave one guideline stating that the Board only directs the Library Director and the Library Director directs her staff. There was a discussion of library staff questioning Board decisions. There was a discussion about library staff attending Board meetings.

Other Concerns or Ideas: Cr. Dodrill summarized best practices for running an effective meeting.

Mayor Arnold encouraged the Board to work on the bylaws and to utilize City Hall staff for guidance and information regarding City policies.

Cr. Drinkwine reiterated the importance of working together as a Board, not as individuals, and he feels that will make a big difference.

Dir. Bartel expressed his complaints about the initial proposal to change the bylaws.

The Board scheduled a budget workshop for Monday, April 16, 2012, at 6:30 p.m. at the Library.

Adjournment: The meeting was adjourned at 7:20 p.m.

Next Meeting: Monday, April 16, 2012, 6:30 p.m., at the Library (Budget Work Session)