March Minutes

Richmond Free Library

Board of Trustees

Minutes, March 1, 2018


Present:  Jenna Bisset, Laurie Dana, Kristen Hayden-West, Keith Franz, Rebecca Mueller, and Trustee candidate Jana Brown.  Absent: Ellen Crary


Approve Minutes

Minutes from the February 1 Trustees meeting were unanimously approved.

Treasurer’s Report

Keith does not have an updated budget but feels that we are on track for the budget year ending June 30, 2018.  Rebecca reported that there will be additional charges for supplies in the coming report.  He will have more information for the April meeting.

Library Director’s Report

Rebecca’s emailed Library Director’s Report included the following items.  Trustee discussion indicated in bold.:

  • The animation workshop, with MMCTV, was a great success — participants learned a lot and were very happy with their productions
  • Babysitter Certification course filled up quickly – will be offered March 10. Trustee Discussion: Trustees asked if this could be repeated as some disappointment was heard about not getting in. Rebecca will contact Rescue to ask about a second session. She has a waiting list.
  • Baby Brunch will be held Sunday, March 25to welcome the new residents of Richmond
  • Katherine Paterson, author of the current Vermont Reads title, Bread & Roses, too – will be speaking at Richmond, 6:30 pm, June 5.  Richmond Free Library has been selected as one of the 4 state venues for this year by the Vermont Humanities Council for author presentations.
  • Easy Readers/Playaways have been shifted in the juvenile room
  • Relocation of Internet/Electricity for a new Circulation area can be run via the ceiling.
  • The Town of Richmond wants to switch all phone lines to Voice Over Internet Protocol (VOIP) with Comcast and discontinue services by Waitsfield Telecom. Trustee Discussion: Currently the library has 4 phone lines (main phone, 2nd main line backup for outgoing calls, fax and elevator emergency phone.  The Library Director and Trustees voiced several concerns including whether the cost savings were worth it.  Of particular concern is the loss of landlines service which function in a power outage.  For example, the elevator emergency phone must function during an outage.  It is also not clear whether the free Comcast service the library currently has through an existing service agreement would continue.  Rebecca expressed concern about whether Comcast can match the responsive service provided by Waitsfield & Champlain Valley. There is also a desire to support a local company.  Rebecca indicated she feels she will be pressured to agree.  Trustees agreed that more information is needed in order to help the Library Director to make an informed decision about what is best for the library.  Rebecca will seek more information.
  • A cash box for payments for the ongoing book sale in the entry has been mounted on the wall with instructions about checks.


Book Sale Report

This year’s book sale was very successful Income was around $5,900 (of which $856 was income from the raffle).  This is slightly less than last year but last year’s income included about $125 from the bake sale.

Non-Resident Fees

Currently the RFL fees paid by patrons who are not Richmond residents is $35/household and results in about $1,000 of income.  This income currently goes into the Town’s general fund.  It is the opinion of the Trustees and Library Director that this money should be devoted to either salary or books/materials line items.  Rebecca reported that the change cannot be made for this year.  Keith suggested that this money go into the copier fund.  The alternative is that the trustees request that this money be reflected in a new line item in next year’s budget.  This would need to be done via a letter to the Selectboard.

New Business

The Friends of Richmond Library, which meets 2 times a year, seems to have been experiencing a drop in interest as the Book Sale is currently their only event. There was some discussion about the volunteer schedule precluding those who work, or attend school, from volunteering.  Because the Friends help to fund many Library programs and efforts such as the recent children’s non-fiction upgrade, it is important that the Trustees continue to have a liaison to the group.  Since Kristen has been fulfilling this role, the Trustees will discuss and select a new liaison at the April meeting.

Strategic Plan

Kristen moved and Keith seconded the motion to approve the Revised Draft of the Strategic Plan 2017-2022 from the February 1, 2018 meeting with changes as read by the Secretary.  The motion passed unanimously.  The final language appears as an addendum to these minutes.  The order of the items will be partly determined by the design & photos which Laurie will now work on with help from Wendy and Vicki.


Town Manager Geoff Urbanik suggested that the Library present the Strategic Plan to the Selectboard.  Trustees generally agree this is a good idea, not only to present the Plan, but to discuss the Library’s unique relationship to the Selectboard—this will be important as there will be 2 new members.  This will be an agenda item in April.

Next Meeting

The next meeting of the Richmond Free Library Trustees will be Thursday, April 5 at 6:30 p.m. at the Library.


Agenda Items:

  • Election of Officers, selection of Friends of RFL Liaison
  • Review of Annual Calendar
  • VOIP phone service – update and Trustee action needed
  • Strategic Plan document design progress
  • Discussion of Selectboard presentation


Respectfully submitted,

Laurie Dana, Secretary

March 2, 2018



Strategic Plan 2017-2022


RESOURCES:  The library plans to buy more print & digital materials, in a range of formats and subjects, appropriate for patrons of all ages and abilities.


EXPERIENCES: The library plans to host activities that reach out to a broad spectrum of people to address the interests and needs of all community members.


PARTNERSHIPS:  The library Intends to actively expand partnerships with groups and organizations in our community.


ENVIRONMENT:  The library will reconfigure interior and exterior space to enhance comfort, quiet work, and group gatherings.


ENGAGEMENT:  The library will provide positive and supportive interactions with all library visitors.


Approved by Richmond Free Library Trustees

Thursday, March 1, 2018



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