MERLIN CONSORTIUM MEETING
February 20, 2014 Minutes (online)
I. Call to Order
Chair Courtney Dietsche called the meeting to order at 10:04 a.m.
II. Quorum Determination/Recognition of Proxies
Quorum (of 15 members) was determined with the following attendees: Linda Stobbe, Jim Trojanowski, Mike Sheehan, Mike Sauvola, Marsha Sorensen (NWLS); Shirley Miller (Ashland); Cherie Sanderson (Boulder Junction); Kristine Lendved (Cable); Molly Lank-Jones (Hayward); Courtney Dietsche (Iron River); Caryl Pfaff (LCO College); Julie Zelten (Land o’ Lakes); Jennie Thewis (Mellen); Teresa Schmidt (Mercer); Kaye Petts (Phelps); Pam Eschenbach (Presque Isle); Ida Nemec (Sayner); Amy Stormberg (Shell Lake); Jane Frankiewicz (Spooner); Sue Heskin (Superior); Darrell Pendergrass (Washburn); Patti Meyer (Webster); Cela McGinnis (Winchester); Donna Knuckey (Winter).
Jane Frankiewicz carried a proxy for Judy Pearson.
III. Approval of the November 14, 2013 Consortium Meeting Minutes
Cherie Sanderson moved to approve the minutes. Seconded by Donna Knuckey. Passed unanimously.
IV. Approval of Financial Reports
Linda Stobbe reported that the December statements have been audited and the January amounts are current. Motion to approve by Teresa Schmidt and seconded by Ida Nemec. Passed unanimously.
V. Other Business
Merlin Compliance Changes
Mike Sheehan reported that while all the highlighted areas in the document will be changed, that the wording to the Membership Cost Requirement item was made more generic after a suggestion was offered at the last Merlin meeting. Mike left it up to the Consortium on how to proceed with approval of the changes.
Shirley Miller asked Courtney Dietsche if further changes could be made and Courtney granted the request. Shirley moved to change the language in the Circ Standard related to overdue fines to read that “all fines would be sent back to the owning library.” Jane Frankiewicz seconded the motion. Marsha Sorensen asked for clarification on Shirley’s request. After receiving it she mentioned that the proposed policy changes would conflict with the current Lending Table and the Fines Paid Table. Teresa Schmidt asked if there was a way to determine the impact since she felt this might not be a significant enough issue to warrant a policy change. Marsha said she could do a study to see how it could impact fines at Ashland. Jennie Thewis asked for clarification on how the current lending table works. Molly Lank-Jones and Sue Heskin reminded the Consortium about similar discussions at previous meetings regarding the Fines Paid Table being necessary for generating accurate reports of fines collected. Sue reiterated her understanding that fines transfers are probably a wash for fining libraries. Several remarked on how staff and time intensive it would be to sort what fine amounts would be sent back to the owning library. This additional bookkeeping cost may offset the amount brought in. Sue also expressed concern about sending money through delivery. Marsha encouraged fining libraries to promote Ecommerce if they are concerned about their patrons paying fines at neighboring libraries. Ecommerce fine payments are sent to the home/fining library. Teresa suggested studying this more and talking about it at the next meeting. Many agreed to table the item until the next meeting. Shirley withdrew her motion and Jane withdrew her second.
Cherie Sanderson moved to accept the Merlin Compliance document with noted changes. Teresa Schmidt seconded. Passed unanimously.
Paging Lists and Cleared Holdshelf Procedures
Marsha Sorensen had been reminding people to clear the holdshelf daily. She has seen where this is not being done and warned about implications of doing so, up to causing system failure. There are times when Marsha provides a global clear holdshelf but this is problematic for holds. Marsha also mentioned a feature that can be turned on that basically extends the holdshelf. Many expressed interest in this feature. A few also confessed to forgetting to clear their holdshelf regularly. Sue Heskin added that this feature would be nice to have but members should be careful not to abuse it. Teresa Schmidt moved to have the holdshelf extension feature enabled. Kristine Lendved seconded. It was suggested that library staff still clear their holdshelf as planned and Marsha will monitor the file size over the next month and report if a global purge is still necessary. Courtney Dietsche reminded people of the importance of running paging lists regularly as well.
NWLS Record Maintenance Reports
Courtney Dietsche had asked Mike Sheehan for a reminder of what reports NWLS typically runs for libraries. Mike discussed the scheduled reports NWLS runs for libraries as well as those generated per library staff request. NWLS is happy to generate these reports and makes every attempt to complete them promptly. NWLS only requires that libraries provide plenty of notice for unscheduled reports needed. Libraries are appreciative of these services provided.
Update on Project WIN Progress
Jim Trojanowski reminded attendees that they can track the progress of Project WIN through the website (http://librarieswin.org/) but noted that committees are completing their draft reports.
More recently, the Leadership group and committee chairs conversed with members of Illinois Heartland Library System in southern Illinois to learn about a similar merger they performed of four separate ILS into one, called SHARE. That webinar was recorded and should be available on the Project WIN site.
Jim walked the members through the timeline, noting specific topics.
• Draft committee reports are due the week of February 24, to be reviewed by the Leadership group and then distributed for library review. A survey will also be sent to each library. Directors are encouraged to share the survey link with staff, volunteers, and Board members to gather feedback. Only one survey per library should be completed.
• Survey data will be compiled and committees will make necessary revisions to complete a finalized committee report.
• Revised committee reports will be released around mid April.
• A community forum report is anticipated the week of April 21.
• A final report will be released in early May with voting by each separate system during the time period of May 19-30.
The Leadership group was tasked with getting feedback from libraries on preferences in holding the community forum report. Options include holding it in-person, via video teleconference, via webinar, or through a combination of in-person and virtual. Libraries provided discussion and opinions through chat box text and voice commentary. Overall feedback showed:
• About 2/3 prefer gathering in-person.
• The remainder prefers video teleconferencing.
• There is no interest in holding a combination (in-person and electronic) forum.
Attendees sent their comments in text boxes and the Questions Log was saved for reference. Jim agreed to poll those who missed the meeting to get their preferences as well.
Jim lastly encouraged people to forward him any questions they might have with the Project WIN timeline.
Shirley Miller moved to adjourn the meeting at 11:20 a.m. Ida Nemec seconded. Passed unanimously.
Next meeting date: May 22, 2014 at 10:00 a.m. at NWLS.