Morrill Memorial and Harris Library Investment Committee

Minutes of January 10, 2023 Meeting

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

Kurland, Rebecca Seibel

Minutes of the 5/17/22 meeting were approved.

Rachel provided an update report for the Library Trustees:

1. Doing final budget prep for 2023. Highlights:

a. Plan to use about $5,000 from CD set-aside account to cover increased

cost of fuel and library staff salaries.

b. Do not propose to request money from endowment at this time, but

keeping an eye on the increased use of the set-aside account, which

currently has about $25K.

c. Roof work planned. Will apply for other grants, but may need to use the

Campbell Fund, which is intended for capital expenditures.

d. Increased use and cost for streaming services, while still need to buy

DVDs, etc.

e. Restoring pictures above fireplace – also from Campbell Fund

f. Fundraising revenue is down – Rebecca noted that the Friends have done

well and suggested that the Trustees increase their ask for support,

especially for programming.

Rebecca reported for the Friends:

1. Over $26K in checking account

2. The membership drive did very well – more than $5K this year

3. Friends will distribute about $8,400 to Library from the book and holiday

sales ($5,100), and other fundraising ($3,300). Rebecca noted that the

holiday sale will probably stay in its limited format.

Report from the Chair (Cindy):

1. Presented the Report to Town for Town Meeting.

2. There will be no distribution to the Library from the restricted funds this


3. $393,283.81 balance at end of year.

4. The Committee reviewed the updated Gross Projection Lookback model. 

Since the Committee wishes to preserve not only the original principal of the

Endowment but also the purchasing power of the funds, it is important to

consider inflation.  The purpose of the model is to help the Committee

determine how much might prudently be distributed under different

inflation assumptions.  As an example, if inflation was assumed to be 5%

since 2017, then we would need to leave $337,294 in the endowment

accounts to maintain the “purchasing power” of the funds, with the difference

from the current balance available for distribution, if so desired.

5. Due to growth in the Restricted Funds, $550.90 is available to trade. Is there

a charge if we invest it? Mostly in a cash account earning 3% interest.

Betsy reviewed the portfolio:

1. The balance of the account is down, as is the entire market. Mascoma Wealth

Management has overseen the funds since April; we’ve seen a 13% loss,

which is not too terrible, given the context.

2. There was a discussion about ESG v. non-ESG performance, comparing the

performance over the last 6 months with the Cemetary Trustees, which have

similar objectives but are not targeting ESG investments. LIC did somewhat

better. John noted that there has been a lot of discussion around ESG funds

and “greenwashing”, which Betsy concurred, noting that “green v. non” is not

as indicative of performance as sector concentration.

3. All agreed that no transactions were needed.

The meeting was adjourned. Next meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, May 23, 2023

at 8AM using Zoom.

Respectfully Submitted,

Gretchen Rittenhouse