Minutes for the Sept. 9 Trustees Meeting

The meeting convened at 7 p.m. at the library. Present were Carol Wilson, Rachel Kurland, David Webb (for the Friends), Cindy Binzen, Curt Albee, Miriam Newman, Melissa Strayton (librarian), Kerry Claffey (bookkeeper) and Marty Frank.

Minutes from the August meeting were approved.

Librarian’s Report: Melissa, recently returned from vacation, said she had little to report. An order was placed in August for adult books and audiobooks. Sarah Rogers has been hired as the children’s programming coordinator and has already come in for a few hours for an introduction to the library and to see what materials we have on hand. The first after-school program will take place Sept. 19. Melissa will organize a volunteer training to try to make sure everyone is prepared to handle most of the matters that might arise while staffing the circulation desk; she’ll send out an email soon to figure out what date might work best and solicit questions about what problems people have encountered. She has contacted Paul Searls, a historian from Northern Vermont University and author of the recently published “Repeopling Vermont”; she’ll try to arrange a program for early November. 

Regarding the replacement of the laptop computer used for circulation, Melissa and David agreed that a Chromebook wouldn’t be suitable because of its small screen. David mentioned that he found a refurbished Dell laptop on an online site with a 15 inch screen and a Windows 10 operating system for about $125. The board voted to buy it.

Friends Report: David reported that the Friends believe they have money in their budget to buy a tent to replace the large one that Curt has been making available for the book sale, although what they’ve found is a 18x20 footer, rather than the 20x20 we’ve been using. One challenge will be finding a place where we can set it up; the construction of the new septic system has rendered the previous site unsuitable because of the the presence of various pipes and lines that might be punctured by a tent stake. The Friends’ annual meeting is scheduled for Oct. 3 at 7 p.m.; Sydney Lea will be the speaker/reader. With the holiday sale approaching, the Friends will need some space in the basement for storage.

Treasurer’s Report: A profit and loss statement that covered through the end of July was distributed. Some apparent errors in accounting were noted, and Kerry said he would check them out and send out a revised statement. We should be receiving a bill soon from Green Mountain Power that will calculate what is owed for our electricity after our solar credits have been calculated. In that regard, no progress has been in gaining a better understanding of how our arrangement with the solar company works. On the insurance front, we now have a liability policy to replace the one we had with The Hartford, although our broker, Odell, is having trouble securing a document needed from the Richards Group, our former broker.

Miscellaneous: Curt reported that the mason never showed up to discuss how he might address the problem with the mismatched mortar color. He will continue to try to make contact. The total cost of constructing the septic system will be around $18,000. The work that remains to be done includes: repaving the pathway to the side entrance, which we hope will be done whenever Blaktop shows up in Strafford to do work for the town; diagnosing and repairing the water-pressure problem that has cropped up since the system was put in; springtime landscaping to restore the lawn. Curt noted that Brent Cadwell had to diverge from the original septic design in a couple of instances. The original plan for the line from the tank to the leach field had to take a less direct route because of ledge, and the pump chamber in the tank was placed closest to the road (the design had called for it to be toward the leach field) to avoid having too many elbows. Curt plans to talk to Brent about the new lawn that was put in because he believes it wasn’t properly raked before new seed was put down. After we received news from the state that our water failed inspection, Curt shocked the well again and a new water sample will be submitted to the state. 

Cindy reported that the lamppost repair turned out to be more of a challenge than expected. Rocky discovered that the cement anchor is in two pieces, which makes it hard to stabilize the post. She’s going to ask him to dig it up and try to patch it. Rocky also did some work on the roof above the side entrance to replace some nails that had come up.

Marty reported that Stuart Smith dropped in the library last Saturday to inform us that a benefit concert featuring classical guitarist Colin McAllister has been scheduled for Dec. 14 at the church. Marty will work with Stuart to make arrangements.

The next meeting will be Oct. 21 at 7 p.m. at the library.

Submitted by Marty Frank