Minutes of the Minerva Executive Board Meeting
August 11, 2010
The meeting was called to order at 10:00 a.m. at the Maine State Library Studio by Kevin Davis, Chair.
Attending were Kevin Davis, Shelly Davis, Karen LaForgia, Betsy Pohl, Steve Norman, and Jay Scherma. Attending by videoconference were James Jackson Sanborn, Alisia Revitt, Janet Blood, and Cindy White.
Minutes of the July 14 meeting: Shelly Davis and Karen LaForgia should be included in the list of nominees. Kevin Davis is actually Chair, not President. Betsy (not Liz) Pohl. In James’ report, with the first bullet point about the self-check, substitute “SIP2” for “sit-to”. Dollar amounts for Triple-I costs should be struck in the second bullet point and elsewhere. Instead, indicate “costs would have been substantial” as appropriate.
Motion by Betsy, second by Karen that the minutes be approved as corrected. Motion carried.
Maine InfoNet Representative—
Judy Frost was not present.
Maine InfoNet Director—
James reported on the recent Access & Delivery workshop. There was much interest in a proposed Cooperative Lending Agreement. Policies and practices should be in place so libraries know what the expectations are. The Cooperative Lending Agreement would use the visiting patron function of Millennium. A couple of libraries already are using that function.
Maine InfoNet is working on developing a book wrapper for books put into ILL delivery, with a message something along the lines of “This book brought to you by (X Library) and delivered to you by the statewide, cooperatively-funded delivery system.” A suggestion was made that bookmarks with that message would work well for public libraries. Janet wondered if this effort was being looked at in terms of branding. Maine InfoNet does not seem to have a brand. Maine InfoNets’s 1.4 million annual deliveries means about 700,000 items. A million bookmarks would be expensive. Jay strongly recommends combining the message with preprinted packing slips. He is concerned about adding one more step to the ILL process.
Janet suggested that a variety of formats could be offered. Bookmarks are green; they can be reused. A generic product not identifying a specific library has advantages—something like “Maine Libraries Make It Happen.”
James noted discussion on the new listserv for public library directors about adding ebooks to Overdrive. Kevin asked about analysis of Overdrive use. James said that we are halfway through the second year of a three-year contract. Statistics have been looked at frequently, but no concerted analysis yet. James does not expect that Amazon Kindle is going to work with library applications. Amazon views libraries as competitors with the Kindle.
In an update on the OneSearch button, James said that publicity would go out at the end of August/beginning of September. A program on the OneSearch feature is planned for the conference.
Alisia Revitt reported that Minerva has been quiet. The upgrade Minerva went through recently will be happening tomorrow for URSUS. For the bounced email notices issue, Nelson and intern Peter have created dummy patrons to experiment and figure out what is happening.
The discovery was made that overdue notices were not being generated for InnReach items checked out by Minerva patrons. Those email overdue notices are now being sent. Sending bills is in the pipeline to happen.
Jay does not have a formal report. As noted in his email yesterday, the financial report was sent to him in an unusable format. The information subsequently has been sent to him in the correct spreadsheet format. The balance in the Minerva account is approximately $238,000. Forty-six libraries have paid in full so far. No problems are foreseen with the Minerva late payment policy.
Motion by Steve, second by Betsy that the revised annual budget be approved. Motion carried.
Circulation Standards Committee—
The committee is working on the standards for information in patron records and on a best practices manual.
Cataloging Standards Committee—
Standards for information in patron records—
Being worked on by Circulation Standards Committee.
Agreement to Participate—
Steve will convene this group and move forward. Jay suggests running this group’s work past the Attorney General’s Office and the Maine InfoNet 501(c)(3) parties, if any.
Betsy has concerns about training, especially with staff turnover in member libraries and prevalent budgetary constraints. She observed that the same topic was being discussed the last time she was on the Minerva board.
The option of central cataloging was brought up.
Alisia noted that there is no one on the Minerva staff to really teach member library staff how to catalog. Minerva staff can only teach how to use Millennium cataloging. Minerva training in a way is a drop in the bucket.
Janet thought we should have a “best practices sheet” for cataloging. That information is hard to access now, which is why the same questions come up repeatedly. James suggested a Minerva cataloging “Quick Start” sheet.
Alisia mentioned the training survey being planned to find out what the issues are and where training resources could be best applied. References were made (not by Alisia) to “undisciplined diversity” and a resource allocation problem in connection with cataloging system wide.
As for the potential issue of OCLC/Z39.50 records becoming unavailable, CatExpress (already used by many Minerva libraries and quietly running in the background) might be a possible solution. There was discussion of the number of bib records added annually to the Minerva system and the cost of acquiring those unique bib records.
Janet will be the official fact finder with the Circulation and Cataloging Standards Committees to initiate working on Quick Start/quick reference sheets like the foldout instruction sheet that comes with a new computer.
The consensus was that it is too early to look at budgeting additional Minerva positions for cataloging or training.
The issue of seasonal lending of ILLs by schools and colleges was brought up. How can the OPAC be made to work better with that? Alisia noted the complication that even when Unity College suspends ILL during summer months, it is still open. Therefore, items are still available locally, which is the difference between there and other schools. Libraries with weeklong furloughs also present a problem. Libraries that are moving (Pittsfield, for instance) are yet another challenge. Anyway, the message that pops up on the OPAC in such cases is something like “This item is not available to this patron.” So the message is a problem for the “patron experience.” Alisia will see if there is a better way to handle this particular situation. Implications were noted for the Agreement to Participate and also the consolidation/unifying of circulation policies. The latter issue was put on hold during the 2009b upgrade process. The notices function had been a sticking point, but the upgrade has helped on this point. Now, since the upgrade, the header and footer on notices can be customized. The text can be a generic “This item is due at your library.” The header or footer can identify the individual library.
Karen wondered about ILL borrowed material with due dates that fall on closed dates for a school, especially during a two-week long holiday. The suggestion was made that a call be made to the lending library to see if it is OK to change the due date.
Revision of bylaws is in process.
Agenda items for next meeting—
Jay requests discussion of budgetary factors for next year’s budget: Triple-I charges, travel charges, etc. Bylaws do not stipulate exact dates for approval of the annual budget.
Also, discuss scheduling the next Users Council meeting.
Motion by Betsy to adjourn. Meeting adjourned at 11:43 a.m.
Submitted by Steve Norman, Acting Secretary