Minutes of the Meeting of the Board of Trustees

of the Bernards Township Library

January 30, 2019




Library Director Ruth Lufkin called the meeting to order at 7:30 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:  Jack Brull, Joe Esposito, Karen Kogut, Mary Jane McNally, Kippy Piedici, Zina Pozner, and Cynthia Yin

Absent:  Richard Mazzio and Vivian Pagoulatos

Also Present: Ruth Lufkin



Speaking in place of Nominating Committee Chair Rich Mazzio, Mary Jane McNally reviewed the slate of officers first presented at the December 2018 meeting:  President, Zina Pozner; Vice-President, Vivian Pagoulatos; Treasurer, Kippy Piedici; Secretary, Mary Jane McNally.  With no nominations from the floor, the proposed slate of officers was adopted by acclamation.





There were no members of the public present.



MOTION 19-01 was made by Kippy Piedici and seconded by Cynthia Yin to approve the minutes of the December 19, 2018 meeting as written.  With Jack Brull, Joe Esposito, and Mary Jane McNally abstaining, the motion passed unanimously. 



·         Newly elected President Zina Pozner thanked Kippy for her fine leadership during the past four years.

·         Zina welcomed Jack Brull and Joe Esposito to the Board.  Mr. Brull is starting a five-year term and Mr. Esposito is serving a one-year term as Township Committee Liaison.

·         To guide her in making committee appointments, Zina distributed a list of the Board committees and asked Board members to indicate which two they preferred.

·         MOTION 19-02 was made by Kippy Piedici and seconded by Mary Jane McNally to adopt a resolution in compliance with the “Public Contracts Law and Regulations” confirming a contractual relationship with Baker & Taylor, Inc. for the purchase of books and other library materials for more than $40,000.00 during 2019.  With a roll call vote, the motion passed 7-0-0.

·         MOTION 19-03 was made by Joe Esposito and seconded by Kippy Piedici to adopt the Township of Bernards Employee Handbook of Personnel Policies and Procedures as amended and re-adopted by the Township Committee on January 2, 2019 as the Employee Handbook for all Library employees.  With a roll call vote, the motion passed 7-0-0.



·         Ruth distributed a final version of the Library’s statistical report for 2018. 

·         Ruth briefly reported on some personnel issues: 

§  Ruth has posted an eight-hour a week Library Assistant position.

§  Ross Talbert, who is covering Greg Brothers’ sick leave, is working out well

§  Ruth is reviewing the role of Library Assistant Marketing, Communications and Programming following the resignation of Donna McArthur.  In the meantime, other staff members are filling in.

·         Ruth is working on the 2019 budget.  Despite making gradual staff reductions and adopting other economies, the numbers will be very tight.

·         Ruth is identifying a copy machine to replace the present administration copier that has reached the end of its useful life.  There is a possibility that The Friends could cover the replacement cost. The Friends are also looking to replace the public use copiers.

·         The Girls Who Code program submitted invoices and been reimbursed the grant money received for them in November 2017.

·         In an effort to attract more participants, Teen Librarian Rachel Talbert has scheduled two Teen Advisory Board (TAB) meetings each month. 

·         Ruth called the Board’s attention to colored paper quilts on display in the hallway.  They are part of “Snuggle up with a Good Book,” a family read aloud program that has attracted 110 families.

·         Ruth and Valerie Thornton visited Fellowship Village to promote materials delivery and Fellowship Village staff are planning a field trip for residents to tour the Library.

·         Karen Andriolo and Lynne Hilf promoted Library services by exhibiting at the Wellness Fair that was part of Ridge High School’s Staff Wellness Day.

·         Ellen Ryan and Ruth will meet with Jack Brull to explore additional options for establishing connections with residents of The Hills.

·         Ruth advised the Board that two people with strong ties to the Library passed away recently.  Patricia Cunningham was a Library Board member (1991-2004) and Board President (1994-1996).  Ed Babbott was a longstanding volunteer coordinator with the Library’s Leisure Learning program.




A.     Treasurer/Finance—Kippy Piedici

·         Kippy presented a thorough overview of the Library’s financial situation.  The Library has received its full 1/3 mil allocation of $2,400,487.  Although this looks like a strong figure, it is $66,000 short of what is needed to provide quality service.

·         The Library needed to take $20,000 from reserve funds to cover the MAIN assessment.

·         The Library will purchase some self-checkout machines from bequest money.  These stations will be evaluated to guide further purchases.

·         Kippy mentioned that the Board needs to review the reserve allocations.

·         Kippy recommended, and the Board agreed, that given the state of our finances we cannot afford the renovations that comprise Phase 3 of the Space Reorganization from Library reserves.  Furthermore, given the personnel available, we are not in a position to undertake a major fundraising effort right now.


B.    Friends of the Library Liaison—Richard Mazzio

The next Friends meeting will be the evening of Monday, February 11.


C.   Land and Building—Cynthia Yin

No report


D.    Legislation & Advocacy—Mary Jane McNally

Mary Jane distributed a sheet outlining the major legislative and advocacy areas, notably:

·         Flat funding for libraries at a reduced level for the 9th straight year

·         A-3801 and its companion S-2668 to provide for increased Per Capita Library Aid.

·         A-4815 to provide funds that would fund Library Link through the current fiscal year.


E.   Personnel—Mary Jane McNally

Included in the Director’s report


F.   Strategic Plan—

No report


G.   Technology—Karen Kogut

No report.


H.    Township Committee Liaison—Joe Esposito

Joe expressed how delighted he was to serve on the Library Board.



·         MOTION 19-04 was made by Mary Jane McNally and seconded by Karen Kogut to adopt a resolution certifying the annual MAIN membership agreement.  With a roll call vote, the motion passed 7-0-0.

·         Mary Jane read correspondence from the New Jersey Library Trustee Association (NJLTA) addressing concerns regarding the potential loss of statewide delivery and other services provided by LLNJ.



·         Ruth distributed a handout, passed around MAIN’s recently developed Media Kit, and presented a slide show that summarized the 2018 MAIN Top 10 accomplishments.

·         MOTION 19-05 was made by Kippy Piedici and seconded by Cynthia Yin to adjourn the meeting at 9:00.  The motion passed unanimously.

·         The next meeting of the Bernards Township Library Board of Trustees is scheduled for 7:30 p.m., February 27, 2019.