Morrill Memorial and Harris Library Investment Committee

Minutes of January 18, 2022 Meeting


Present:  Cindy Stableford, Betsy Ruml, Gretchen Rittenhouse, John Hawkins, Rachel Kurland, Rebecca Seibel


Minutes of the 5/18/21 and 6/23/21 meetings were approved.


Rachel provided an update report for the Library Trustees:

1.    In 2021 the library spent about $4K more than it took in, including $6,600 in painting expense that was covered by an earlier bequest.

2.    Highlights of 2022 budget:

a.    Plan to use about $1,500 from CD account

b.    Do not propose to request money from endowment

c.     No plans for major expenditures

d.    Expect a bequest from the Campbell family

Rebecca reported for the Friends:

1.    $24,256 in account

2.    The membership drive did very well

3.    Friends distributed about $8,000 to Library from the book sale ($3,800), holiday sale ($2,400), and other fundraising

4.    Will decide in April whether or not to hold the book sale this summer. There are about 50 boxes of sorted books in the basement!

Report from the Chair (Cindy):

1.    Growth projection lookback model, which changes the annual distribution calculation, is now in the Rules of Operation.

2.    Presented the Report to Town for Town Meeting

3.    There will be no distribution to the Library from the Downer Fund.  The Ordway/Steele/Mattison Funds will distribute $1,534.40 (from the Wellington Fund).

4.    Made the transactions as agreed upon in spring 2021. 


Betsy reviewed the portfolio:

1.   The equity returns were good in 2021; bonds did not perform well, although the move from the Total Bond to Short Term Bond funds improved the results.  Overall balance was $407,217 at the end of 2020; 2021 ended at about $453,000.

2.    Move from Large Cap Index to Global ESG Select was also advantageous, as the Global ESG Select mimics the large cap fund but has ESG focus and increased foreign market exposure.

3.    No recommendation for change.  Still have a good blend of funds at 75% equities (39% US, 36% foreign (mostly Europe)) and 25% fixed income/cash.

4.    All agreed that no transactions were needed.


Betsy raised the possibility of outsourcing the endowment’s investment management.  The Trustees for Public Funds began to utilize Mascoma Wealth Management in 2021 and has been pleased with the results.  The Cemetery trustees also has them manage their funds and report that it is going well.  Mascoma offers a low fee of ½ of 1%/year to community groups. Professional management eases the pressure to ensure that knowledgeable volunteers are available and removes fiduciary responsibility from those volunteers.  The process of re-balancing the portfolio is easier.   There are 6-7 members of Mascoma’s team; the Trustees for Public funds reports that they have been responsive and willing to take part in meetings.  The Library Investment Committee will continue to provide guidance re the Trustees’ investment objectives, oversee cash needs, and control the distribution model.  


The Committee voted to recommend using Mascoma Wealth Management to oversee investment of the Endowment funds to the Library Trustees.  Rachel will propose that at the next meeting.  It was noted that it may be easier to leave the restricted funds with Vanguard; this will be considered.


The meeting was adjourned. Next meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, May 17, 2022 at 9AM at the Library.


Respectfully Submitted,


Gretchen Rittenhouse