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Library to recoup funding

By Staff | Dec 4, 2013

At the Nov. 25 Sistersville Public Library Board Meeting, Library Director Heather Weekley announced that their lost state funding should be reinstated in January.

She also reported on recent renovations by city workers.

“Since the last meeting, they have temporarily fixed the roof near the back corner, trimmed the tree, and fixed the gutter in the back of the building,” she said.

Librarian Kyle noted that they also placed their new “EXIT” signs on the walls.

“We do appreciate (City Commissioner) Daniel (Grimes) sending the crew over,” said Henderson.

Councilman Bill Rice, who is on the library committee, asked about supplies which the city is no longer supplying to the library.

“How did you get the supplies you need before?” he asked.

Weekley explained that the city-employed cleaner would bring them with her.

“How are you getting your toilet paper and paper towels?” asked Rice.

“We buy them out of our book fund,” said Weekley.

Rice said he believes the city should open an account at a store so the library can purchase supplies as needed. He noted that at the last Sistersville Council meeting, when he said he’d never seen the levy money go from one year to the next, that was because all of the levy money was usually spent.

“They had over $3,000 left,” said Henderson. “That should have been a carry-over balance, and it did not appear on the financial statement.”

“We got a statement from them from June through October, and it wasn’t carried over as of those papers,” said Weekley.

Henderson also informed Councilman Rice of funding they are waiting to receive from the city.

“At the October council meeting, the council approved the transfer of $2,000 into our book fund,” she said. “That had not been done as of last week.”

The library board is continuing to look into obtaining its own insurance.

“We’re concerned about either a major loss or total loss-having to replace everything in the library,” she said. “I presented a proposal (at their last meeting) from State Farm for insurance for the library. The board decided to approach the Board of Risk, which the city has insurance with, to see if we might be able to get something there.”

She said she had confirmation that the city has $60,000 worth of coverage on the contents of the library.

“However, in the event of a claim, the check would be payable to the City of Sistersville and there’s no guarantee that it would ever come back to the library,” she said, noting that she was not speaking of the city’s current administration but of the circumstances in general.

She said that insurance through the Board of Risk would be expensive. She was not certain whether or not the library board is covered under the city’s general liability because there are two legal entities involved: city and county.

“Insurance is an expense we don’t currently have, but we have a very big obligation to the tax payers to protect this property,” she said. “Now we have a grey area I’m not comfortable with.”

“I think we ought to do it as soon as possible,” agreed Library Co-President Joe Jones.

“It is $13,048 a year,” said Henderson of a figure from State Farm Insurance. “But that’s with a $1,000 deductible. It’ll come down some.”

She moved that they pursue obtaining insurance through State Farm, Jones seconded it, and the board approved the measure.

In other news, Weekley discussed a training which she, Librarian Sabrina Kyle, and Librarian Assistant Barbie Tanley attended on Nov. 22 at the Moundsville Public Library. The purpose of the training was to explain aspects of the Affordable Healthcare Act, as well as a separate initiative called “Geek the Library.”

“We are going to sign up to get free resources to promote the library,” she said. “You get t-shirts, post cards, bookmarks, bags, and stickers.”

She explained that the term “geek” is being used as a positive verb meaning to partake in various interests. Susan Reilly, director of Sistersville Public Library’s Service Center, explained that “Geek the Library” should benefit public relations.

Weekly reiterated an offer from Barb Slider of Usborne Books to hold a book fund raiser at the library.

“I talked to (Tyler County Library Director) Rosanne (Eastham) from Middlebourne, who also had a fund raiser,” said Weekley. “She said it went very well. 35 books were added to the (Tyler County) library. That’s not bad just for letting her come in and set up.”

She explained that in addition to purchasing books, people could donate them to the library in their own names or to honor someone else. The board expressed interest in the fund raiser and discussed the possibility of holding it in 2014.

“Steve Winters will be coming again to sell and sign his new book, A Knight in the Ville: The December Dark,” said Weekley. “He’s going to come on Thursday, Dec. 19, from 6-8 p.m.”

She said local author Alexander Lloyd King will also be holding a book selling and signing on Jan. 30 from 6-8 p.m. A few of the illustrators of his book covers may also attend to sign the books. He plans on donating half of his proceeds to the library.

“December 6 is our Summer Reading Workshop in Moundsville,” reported Weekley, stating that the library will still be open during its regular hours that day. “This summer the theme is science.”

She also updated the board on her and Librarian Kyle’s educational undertakings.

“Sabrina and I received scholarships to attend Marshall University online through the Library Association and Bridging the Gap,” she said. “We’re working on our degrees in library science, and we should both have our associate’s (degrees) this spring. Last semester we both made the dean’s list.”

Minutes of the last meeting could not be approved because Board Secretary Burl Folger was not in attendance to present them. Weekley took minutes of the current meeting. The board approved the treasurer’s report.

The next Sistersville Public Library Board meeting is planned for Jan. 27 at 12:30 p.m.