Larchmont Public Library
Board of Trustees
Minutes of Meeting – May 14, 2014
The Larchmont Public Library Board of Trustees met on May 14, 2014 at 6:45 p.m., attended by Board Chair Pamela Dubitsky (PD), Trustees Lauren Gottfried (LG), Maureen LeBlanc (ML), Barbara Liptak (BL), John McGarr (JM), and Iven Taub (IT), Town of Mamaroneck Liaison Abby Katz (AK), Friends of the Library Liaison Wendy Raso (WR), Library Director Laura Eckley (LE) and Assistant Director June Hesler (JH). Trustee Jennifer Conley and Village Liaison Marlene Kolbert were absent.
Board Chair Dubitsky called the meeting to order at 6:52 p.m.
The Board reviewed and unanimously approved the Minutes of the Board Meeting of April 9, 2014.
Friends of the Larchmont Public Library Liaison Report
WR reported that, at the 5/13/14 Annual Friends Meeting, she was elected President of the Board and Lesleigh Forsyth was elected Secretary, with three new members elected to the Board. WR also reported that author Elizabeth Kolbert’s discussion of her new book, The Sixth Extinction, at the May 3rd Friends program was very well attended. Library Board Chair Dubitsky reported that she had attended the Annual Friends Meeting and presented the Library Transformation Project, and that the Friends had expressed great enthusiasm for the project and pledged an initial seed donation of $25,000. PD and the Board thanked the Friends for their very generous support and, as always, their excellent programs.
Finance and Budget Committee
Schedule of Bills and Performance Report: The Board reviewed and unanimously approved the Schedule of Bills dated 5/7/14 and 5/14/14. The Board received the Performance Report dated 5/5/14.
Sewer Tax Bill: JM reported that he and LE had met with Village Treasurer Denis Brucciani as well as the Village Assessor, and resolved issues regarding the space allocation between 119 and 121 Larchmont Avenue. Upon JM’s recommendation, the Board agreed to pay the outstanding sewer tax bills.
Buildings and Grounds
Members of the Board commented on how wonderful the garden looks and LE responded by noting that the new gardener is very dedicated and is taking great care of the property. LE reported that additional work on the side garden will be completed this month. LE also reported that recent rainstorms caused flooding in the basement at the front of the building and through the windows in the Children’s Room, and that the drains will be cleaned to prevent future basement flooding.
Retirement. LE reported that Principal Library Clerk Lin Verrastro will retire as of May 31st. Board Chair Dubitsky noted that Lin has been with the Library for more than 17 years and will be greatly missed, and the members of the Board expressed their thanks to Lin for her many years of skilled and very dedicated service. LE reported that she and JH had met with David Richy, Senior Library Clerk, to discuss staffing following Lin’s retirement.
Children’s Room. LE reported that the Children’s Room has had many recent successes. She proudly announced that the Library has received the 2014 Best of Westchester Children’s Room Award for the second time (elected by readers’ vote), and noted that ours is the only children’s room in Westchester to have ever received this award. She also proudly announced that Children’s Room librarian Rebecca Teglas has received a $7,800 grant from Better World Books, and noted that this very prestigious and competitive international grant will allow the Library to create a sensory integration program for children on the autism spectrum and will provide funding for staff training as well as the purchase of equipment and books. The Board members then re-asserted, as they have in the past, a strong commitment to providing special needs services and expressed their tremendous appreciation of the Children’s Room staff and all the great work they do for our community.
NYLA Awards. LE mentioned award opportunities offered by the New York Library Association and asked the Board to consider possible submissions.
NYS Annual Report. LE reported that the New York State Annual Report has been completed. Upon Ms. Eckley’s recommendation, the Board unanimously approved the report.
Donation. LE reported that, at the 2014 Annual Meeting of the Friends of the Library, a long-term resident of the community (and participant in the library-sponsored Veteran’s History Project) spoke very eloquently of his appreciation for the Library and staff, noting that he and his wife had been dedicated patrons for over fifty years, and then presented a $5,000 check in memory of his wife for the Library’s unrestricted use.
Correspondence, Communications & Media Coverage
LE reported that Lynne Crowley, Archivist of the Larchmont Historical Society, wrote an article in the April LHS newsletter on the Schaefer family and noted that the statue on display in the Children’s Room lobby is of the Schaefer children.
The Board voted unanimously to enter into Executive Session to discuss legal and personnel matters at 7:50 p.m., and to exit Executive Session at 8:30 p.m. The Board then voted unanimously to approve employee salaries for FY14/15, and to approve a Stipulation Agreement, dated May 1, 2014, with a library employee.
Board Chair Dubitsky adjourned the meeting at 8:35 p.m. The next regularly scheduled meeting of the Board will be held on June 18, 2014.