Minutes of the Meeting of the Board of Trustees

of the Bernards Township Library

November 29, 2017



1.         CALL TO ORDER

President Kippy Piedici called the meeting to order at 7:31 p.m. in the Bernards Township Library Lower Level Conference Room.




In accordance with the requirements of the Open Public Meetings Law of 1975, notice of the meeting was posted on the bulletin board in the Reception Hall of the Municipal Building, Collyer Lane, Basking Ridge and the Bernards Township Library Public Notices bulletin board; was mailed to The Bernardsville News, Bernardsville and the Courier News, Somerville; was filed with the Township Clerk; and was posted on both the Township’s website and the Library’s website.






4.         ROLL CALL

Present:  Mary Jane McNally, Tim Opremcak, Vivian Pagoulatos, Kippy Piedici, Zina Pozner, Scott Ross, Santosh Subramanian, and Cynthia Yin

Absent:  John Carpenter

Also Present: Ruth Lufkin




There was no public comment.




MOTION 17-43 was made by Tim Opremcak and seconded by Zina Pozner to approve the minutes of the October 25, 2017 meeting as written.  The motion passed unanimously.




·      Kippy advised the Board that the December meeting is still on the calendar, but may be cancelled if conditions warrant.

·      Kippy reported that the New Jersey Library Construction Bond referendum, which authorizes the raising of $125 million through bonds to be used on renovation and construction projects for public libraries, passed handily.  The State Librarian, in consultation with the President of Thomas Edison State University, will set eligibility criteria for the grants.  For any approved project financed by bond proceeds, the grant award may support up to 50% of the eligible cost of the project.   

·      Kippy advised the Board members that they would be required to attend diversity and inclusion training as a result of the recent mosque settlement.  The anticipated date is be the week of January 22, 2018.   Ruth will alert Board members when the date is set.



·         Ruth drew the Board’s attention to the Book Lover’s 2018 Calendar, an annual gift to Trustees as a small token of appreciation for their varied and extensive support of the Library.

·         Program Coordinator Maureen Norton has successfully received a grant from the New Jersey Council for the Humanities Public Scholars Project that will subsidize two programs in 2018. 

·         The Girls Who Code Club was awarded a $400 grant from the National Girls Who Code organization to support club activities. 

·         Both the MAIN Directors group and the MAIN Technology Committee will meet in the Library next month. 

·         Ruth read three pieces of correspondence:  two praising the library staff for its outstanding service and one in thanks for the book placed in the Library in memory of former Board of Trustees President Arthur “Art” Soderberg.




Santosh Subramanian, Chair of the Nominating Committee, presented the following proposed slate of officers for 2018:  President, Kippy Piedici; Vice-President, Zina Pozner; Treasurer, Vivian Pagoulatos; and Secretary, Mary Jane McNally.  The slate will be presented for a vote at the January reorganization meeting.




A.    Treasurer/Finance—Vivian Pagoulatos

·         Spending is on target this year.  85% of the budget has been spent while 88% of year has passed.

·         Debbie Merghart and Karen Vaias are working with Ruth Lufkin to develop the 2018 budget.


B.    Friends of the Library Liaison—Scott Ross

·         Scott reported that Friends’ Chair Noah Ginter reached out to The Bernardsville News Staff Writer, W. Jacob Perry for an interview.

·         Scott expressed the desirability of increasing the role of the Friends regarding fundraising, specifically how to increase the number of contributors and how to tell the Library’s story more effectively.

·         Scott also discussed ways for Board Members and Friends to gain more knowledge of each other’s roles. 


C.   Land and Building—Cynthia Yin

No update


D.   Legislation & Advocacy—Mary Jane McNally

·         Mary Jane distributed an article explaining the tenets of net neutrality and discussed possible implications to the library community should the current regulations be eliminated.

·         Mary Jane also distributed a fact sheet from NJLA in support of A1427/S2633 which would allow voters of a municipality to approve an increase in the municipal free public library funding currently set at 1/3 of a mill.  The bill passed the Assembly in 2016 and was referred to the Senate Community and Urban Affairs Committee. 


E.   Personnel—Mary Jane McNally

No report


F.   Policy—Zina Pozner, Santosh Subramanian

·         Santosh presented a revised Computer and Internet Acceptable Use Policy.  MOTION 17-44 was made by Scott Ross and seconded by Vivian Pagoulotos to accept the policy as presented.  With a roll call vote, the motion carried 8-0-0.

·         Zina is working with Library staff to update the Collection Development Policy.

G.   Strategic Plan—Scott Ross

·         Scott reported that the Strategic Planning Committee met and settled on four initiatives:  funding, community outreach, technology, and allocation of library space.   Next, the Committee will make a first pass at a draft document. 

·         To eliminate overlap and duplication of efforts, the Planning Committee will defer to the Board Technology Committee’s plans regarding technology.


H.  Technology—Tim Opremcak

·      Tim, Santosh, Ruth, and Ryan met in the newly outfitted Tech Center and toured/reviewed the equipment. The next step is to develop simple training documents for staff and users.

·      Future items for the committee to consider are:  WiFi bandwidth, ISP speed, and budgeting.


I. Township Committee Liaison—John Carpenter

No report



There was no Old Business.



·         Ruth invited Trustees to the Staff Holiday Luncheon, Wednesday, December 13, from noon to 2:00 pm.  This year the Bernards Café is catering.

·         MOTION 17-45 was made by Vivian Pagoulatos and seconded by Santosh Subramanian to adjourn the meeting at 8:34 p.m.  The motion passed unanimously.

·         The next meeting of the Bernards Township Library Board of Trustees is scheduled for 7:30 p.m., December 27, 2017.