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Meetings
Board of Trustees

Jan. 19, 2010

Funding Charts (PDF)FY11 Overview (PDF) Organization Chart Salary Summary (PDF)

Trustees of the Public Library of the City of Boston
Meeting of the Corporation and Administrative Agency
Tuesday, January 19, 2010 at 3:00 p.m.
McKim Trustees Room, Central Library
700 Boylston Street, Copley Square

AGENDA

1. Chairman’s Report

Mr. Jeffrey B. Rudman

  • Review and Approval of Minutes for the Trustees Meeting held on November 17, 2009

2. President’s Report

Ms. Amy E. Ryan

  • Presentation and discussion on FY11 Boston Public Library Operating Budget
  • Presentation and discussion on The Boston Public Library Compass: Principles for Excellence
  • Proposed establishment of BPL/BPLF Joint Government and Community Relations Committee
 
 

VOTED: “that the Trustees of the Public Library of the City of Boston establish the Boston Public Library/Boston Public Library Foundation Joint Government and Community Relations Committee”

3. New Business

Mr. Jeffrey B. Rudman, Chairman

4 Adjournment

Mr. Jeffrey B. Rudman, Chairman

Executive Session to Discuss Legal Issues

Mr. Jeffrey B. Rudman, Chairman

Upcoming Trustees’ Meetings:

  • Tuesday, March 9, 2010, 3:00 p.m., West Roxbury Branch
  • Tuesday, May 11, 2010, 8:30 a.m., Annual Meeting, Copley Square Library
  • Tuesday, September 14, 2010, 8:30 a.m., Copley Square Library
  • Tuesday, November 16, 2010, 3:00 p.m., Roslindale Branch Library

 

Trustees of the Public Library of the City of Boston
Jeffrey B. Rudman, Chairman; A. Raymond Tye, Vice Chairman; Evelyn Arana-Ortiz; Zamawa Arenas; James Carroll; Donna M. DePrisco; Berthé M. Gaines; Paul A. La Camera
President
Amy E. Ryan
Clerk of the Board
Jamie McGlone



Trustees of the Public Library of the City of Boston
Meeting of the Corporation and Administrative Agency
Tuesday, January 19, 2010 at 3:00 p.m.
McKim Trustees Room, Central Library
700 Boylston Street, Copley Square

A Meeting of the Trustees of the Public Library of the City of Boston as a Corporation and as an Administrative Agency was held at the Boston Public Library, McKim Trustees Room, Copley Square Library, on Tuesday, January 19, 2010 at 3:00 p.m.

Present at the meeting were: Trustees Evelyn Arana-Ortiz, James Carroll, Donna M. DePrisco, Berthé M. Gaines via telephone, Paul A. La Camera, Jeffrey B. Rudman.

Also present at the meeting were: President Amy E. Ryan; Alice Hennessey, Special Assistant to Mayor Thomas M. Menino; Meredith Weenick, Associate Director, Administration & Finance, City of Boston; Maribeth Cusick, Esq. and Elizabeth Dello Russo, Esq., City of Boston Law Department; Keith Mahoney, City of Boston, Mayor’s Office of Intergovernmental Relations; Jan Spitz, Executive Director, the Norman B. Leventhal Map Center at the Boston Public Library; David J. Vieira, President, City Wide Friends of the Boston Public Library; Don Haber, President, Friends of Jamaica Plain Branch; Marleen Nienhuis, President, Friends of South End Branch; Elizabeth Snyder, Development Officer, Boston Public Library Foundation; Ruth Kowal, Director, Administration and Finance; Mary Flaherty, Human Resources Manager, Sean Nelson, Chief Financial Officer; Edward D. Maheigan, Budget and Procurement Manager; Koren Stembridge, Director, Partnerships & Communications; Michael Colford, Director, Resource Services/Information Technology; Christine Schonhart, Neighborhood Services Manager; Gina Perille, Communications Manager; Sarah Markell, Assistant Neighborhood Services Manager, Cluster 2; Elissa Cadillic, President, AFSCME, Local 1526, Council 93; Anna Fahey-Flynn, President, PSA/CWA, Local 1333; members of the Library administration, staff, public, and Jamie McGlone, Clerk of the Board.

Chairman Jeffrey B. Rudman presided.

Chairman Jeffrey B. Rudman welcomed the Stakeholders, Affiliates, and Colleagues of the Public Library of the City of Boston and invited Ms. Koren Stembridge to report on the Boston Public Library’s community support and ongoing response plan to the tragic earthquake that struck Haiti on January 12, 2010.

Ms. Stembridge shared an overview of the Boston Public Library’s community support and response effort, in collaboration with the City of Boston and community organizations, including the provision of information and resources, published http://bpl.org/news/haiti.htm a new web page dedicated to providing information and links to news updates, community meetings, BPL programming, and background on Haiti.

Ms. Stembridge commended the outstanding assistance of Mr. Jean Antoine, General Reference Librarian, General Reference Department for all his efforts including translating the BPL’s relief resource web page into Haitian Creole.

The Chairman addressed the review and approval of the Minutes for the Trustees Meeting held on November 17, 2009. Following discussion, on a motion duly made and seconded, the Minutes for the Trustees Meeting held on November 17, 2009 were approved and posted on the BPL Website www.bpl.org

Chairman Rudman reported that the business of today’s meeting would focus on the FY2011 library budget noting that the news is sobering in light of the projected revenue losses and no vote would be taken today.

President Amy E. Ryan, in her report to the Trustees, underscored today’s presentation and discussion would be the first step in a long deliberative process, in anticipation of the projected revenue losses slated for FY2011, and an opportunity for the Board to think about strategies for shaping the future of the BPL, developing next steps, and transforming the BPL into the Best Library for Boston five years from now.

To further those ends, the President underscored the importance of the continuum of the Trustees turning to the community for their ideas in concert with the recommendations of the Neighborhood Services Initiative report and the Boston Public Library Compass: Principles for Excellence process.

Further, the President reiterated the importance of building on the strengths of the Boston Public Library including a robust website www.bpl.org coupled with strong citizen involvement for their ideas in moving the library forward and ensuring the BPL is financially sustainable and the right size for Boston. The FY11 budget is an important step in setting the Boston Public Library up for success in the future.

The President noted that the BPL’s primary responsibility is to the citizens of Boston whose mission consists of delivering core services including providing books, computer and electronic access to resources and services, services to children, and lifelong learning opportunities.

The President addressed the opportunities and essentials for building a 21st century library for Boston by touching every citizen in Boston and now critically more than ever in our buildings, in the community, and online as reflected in the over 5 million visits per year to our website.

President Ryan engaged the Board to think about where the BPL is now and how to position the library for future success in concert with a planned financial sustainable approach, strong administrative team, improved business practices, and Principles for Excellence.

On the budgetary front, President Ryan provided an overview of a report distributed to the Board entitled Boston Public Library Projected Revenue FY09-FY11 that included a chart on All Funding Sources to the BPL Operating Budget, FY00- FY11, State Funding to the BPL Operating Budget, FY00-FY11, and a breakdown of BPL Personnel Costs by the Organizational Chart as reflected in the noted links:

http://www.bpl.org/general/trustees/FY11 overview_slide only.pdf ; http://www.bpl.org/general/trustees/funding charts.pdf; and http://www.bpl.org/general/trustees/org chart salary table summary.pdf

In a review of the BPL Projected Revenue FY09-FY11, it was noted in FY09 the BPL received a total of $48 million from all funding sources, $41.1 million in FY10, and projected revenue of $37.4 million for FY11 based on the latest information available.

When factoring in the cost of advancing FY10’s level of services, including collective bargaining increases and other critical needs, our projected budget gap is approximately $4.75 million less than last year, a decrease of 11%.

The estimated total revenue loss over two years reflects a total of $10.6 million or 23% of the BPL operating budget. State funding alone is estimated to decrease by $6.5 million over 2 years or a 73% decrease. The projected tremendous revenue losses from all funding sources are being analyzed by the management staff to develop a proposed budget for FY11 in conjunction with budget instructions received from the City of Boston and anticipated State revenues due to be received next week.

The President noted that the proposed budget will examine concentrating service points system-wide, reviewing of hours at Copley and the branches, possibly closing facilities, reducing the workforce, and cutting the materials budget. The criteria for decision-making come directly from our Neighborhood Services Initiative, which calls for: ability to deliver core customer services, up-to-date and accessible facilities, technological infrastructure, convenience to residents, and geographic placement.

Reiterating strongly that we are all in this together, the President noted that the BPL Compass process will inform us on what the community and staff see as our principles, which will further guide the BPL. That is why it has been so important to receive – and continue receiving – everyone’s input in concert with the next three milestones:

• 27 January 2010 – Governor’s budget announced
• 17 February 2010 – Special budget planning meeting of the Board of Trustees
• 09 March 2010 – Meeting of the Board of Trustees

The Board discussed the unprecedented projected FY11 budget cuts for the library within the context of the economic crisis facing the country and libraries nation-wide. The economic woes are resulting in public funding imbalances nationally that will adversely affect public institutional budgets for years to come.

President Ryan addressed the economic woes affecting public libraries around the country resulting in the closure of branch libraries, the drastic reduction of services and hours, and significant reductions in books and material budgets.

Trustee Paul A. La Camera reported that he and President Ryan recently met with the Massachusetts Speaker of the House Robert A. DeLeo to explore pursuing additional State funding and advocacy for other sources of revenue for the Boston Public Library in concert with the proposed Trustees Boston Public Library/Boston Public Library Foundation Joint Government and Community Relations Committee.

Following further discussion, Chairman Jeffrey B. Rudman requested that a Special Trustees Meeting be scheduled within three weeks dedicated to addressing preliminary proposals on and recommendations for developing the FY11 Boston Public Library Operating Budget with the goal of transforming the BPL into the Best Library for Boston.

President Ryan provided an update on the Trustees Compass Advisory Committee that will shape “The Boston Public Library Compass: Principles for Excellence.” Chaired by Trustee James Carroll and led by President Amy Ryan, these Principles will guide the Library’s overall direction in the coming years within the context of financial sustainability.

Chairman Carroll reviewed the outline, stated purpose and distinguished list of individuals serving on the Trustees Compass Committee that will be supported by strategic planning library consultant Ms. Maureen Sullivan and a staff committee headed by Ms. Christine Schonhart, Project Leader. Once the Principles are developed and approved at the annual meeting of the Trustees on May 11, 2010, they will inform future services, resource allocation, capital plans, collection policies, technology initiatives, partnerships and fundraising.

Trustee James Carroll underscored that President Ryan recognized the solid foundation that the Trustees Neighborhood Services Committee established and the power of its authorship by the whole range of distinguished members.

The Compass Committee represents the next phase of that process to shape a broad vision for the entire Boston Public Library in concert with the powerful energy throughout the library culture generated by Amy Ryan’s stewardship of the Boston Public Library and noted the Inaugural Meeting of the Compass Committee was held on December 8, 2009 and the second meeting is scheduled for January 25, 2010.

Trustee Carroll reiterated the process has been broadened to reach out to the staff and public for their ideas and suggestions through both personal and online potential capabilities that will culminate in a report to the Trustees at the Annual Trustees Meeting in concert with a committee that builds strong bridges with the academic, corporate, education and neighborhood community leaders.

The President reported that Trustee Zamawa Arenas has graciously offered the services of her company ARGUS Communications to assist the Boston Public Library with the development of a brand strategy to compliment the compass process with input from the various stakeholders and BPL staff to move the library forward to the next stage of its identity development.

Ms. Christine Schonhart distributed a comprehensive report on The BPL Compass: Principles for Excellence which provides guidance on reviewing all committee documents, meeting minutes, community comments and Trends and Best Practices in Library Services www.bpl.org/compass

Ms. Schonhart reported that the Board is fully engaged in the Compass process as leaders to guide the future of the Boston Public Library in the development of Principles for Excellence in light of the projected demographics as noted and through their responses to the questions posed:

Demographics:
• City of Boston population increased by 3.2% from 2000 to 2008.
• By 2030 the City of Boston population is projected to grow to about 625,000 residents, an increase of 2.6% over the next twenty years.
• 13% growth in population aged 0-19
• 13% decrease in the population aged 20-59
• 69% growth in population aged 60+
• The City of Boston continues to be a destination for new Americans. 36% of the population of the City speaks a language other than English at home. 27% of the City population was born outside of the US.
• Boston had the highest proportion of foreign born residents among the 25 largest U.S. cities in 2007.
• The largest and fastest growing immigrant groups are Asians and Hispanics. Since 1990:
o The Latino population has increased 54%
o The Asian population by 71%.

Questions:

1. As leaders, what are the principles you’d like to see that will drive the library of the future?
2. What emerging trends are you seeing in your field or others that the library should be paying attention to?
3. Based on the projected changing demographics of our City – what role can the public library play in the lives of our citizens?
Chairman Rudman provided background information on the proposed establishment of the Boston Public Library/Boston Public Library Foundation Joint Government and Community Relations Committee led by Co-Chairs Trustee Paul A. La Camera and BPLF Board member Mr. Kevin Phelan to build and foster a committed team of BPL and BPLF stakeholders to focus on funding challenges and opportunities and garner support for the FY11 State Legislative Agenda for Libraries. Following discussion, on a motion duly made and seconded, it was
VOTED: “unanimously that the Trustees of the Public Library of the City of Boston establish the Boston Public Library/Boston Public Library Foundation Joint Government and Community Relations Committee”

Chairman Rudman reviewed the schedule of upcoming Trustees’ Meetings as follows: Special Trustees Meeting, February, 17, 2010; Tuesday, March 9, 2010, West Roxbury Branch; and Tuesday, May 11, 2010 at 8:30 a.m., Annual Meeting, Copley Square Library.

There being no further business, the meeting of the Corporation and Administrative Agency adjourned at 4:30 p.m. and the Board voted to go into Executive Session to discuss legal issues.

Respectfully submitted,

Clerk of the Board

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