News for January

The big news at this time of year, as you might expect, has to do with the budget. If the governor’s proposed 20% cut in library funding holds, funding for the system will be reduced by $400,000+ which puts us back to 1997 funding levels. The management team, along with a committee of member library directors, are working on various budget solutions, using the worst case scenario as a starting point. A fairly rigid hiring freeze is in place, with every vacancy being analyzed. Critical vacancies will be filled with transfers, an act which has already happened and directly affects System Services. Andy Coyle has been transferred from the Catalog Dept. to Lit/Media to fill a position there taht has been vacant since June 2008. To help offset Andy’s departure from the Catalog Dept., Betty Spring will be spending 18.5 hours a week in Cataloging, and 18.5 hours in Digitizing.

At the same time as our funding is shrinking, library use is up all throughout the county. The System as a whole saw a 6% increase in circulation in 2008, going from 8.3 million in 2007 to 8.7 million in 2008.  The MCLS Legislative Committee will be rolling out a petition drive in February, and I ask that all of you take the time to sign the petition at Central. You can also contact your legislators through the advocacy page on the NYLA website — Let them know how important library services are.



News for December 10

Hi Everyone…

Here are a few quick updates:

  • You most likely already know that Paula will continue as interim Director until a new Director is hired. She will continue on in a part-time capacity – about 20 hours a week. The deadline for applications for the Director position is December 15, and the search committee expects to conduct interviews in January.
  • Although we have no definite word from the State, County or City about budget numbers for 2009-2010, we are preparing for a rough year. I will be talking with all System Services department heads in the coming weeks to try and identify cost-savings in each department. The Town Directors have opted to reduce system spending on databases by $55,000 in 2009, which is a start. I will do my best to keep you informed of budget activity as it happens and as it affects you.
  • On a happier note, we have lots of holiday parties coming up: the Staff Association Party is Saturday night and costs $20 a person. Tickets are still available from Kathy Fischer. Then we have the Central Staff Party next Tuesday in KGA, and the Tech Services Party on Wednesday in Rundel.
  • I will be on vacation from December 24 through January 5, but will be in town and available by cell phone if you need me for anything. My cell number is 613-2223.
  • Sharon has recently sent out the updated emergency contact list for System Services Departments. If you don’t have a copy, please see Sharon. In Paula’s absence and until a new Director is hired, David Creek will be in charge of deciding to close the library in case of bad weather. My best advice to those of you who come in very early — if the roads are really bad, most Monroe County schools are clsoed, and TV & radio are advising against driving, stay home. As per the city policy, you will have to use time banks to cover that time, but I think that being safe at home is more valuable than losing a day off your timebanks.
  • Eportal reminder: anyone with a network login should be able to access the ePortal now. The address is You login using rpl\your network username and your network password. Make sure you use the forward slash after rpl — it’s the one above the Enter key on your computer keyboard. The Staff Directory is there, as well as other forms and information. Dennis has been adding a lot of information in the System Services & MCLS Office areas, and Greg Benoit is working on transferring the RPL/MCLS Policy & Procedure Manual from the S: drive to the portal. If you are unable to login using these directions, open a Help Desk ticket so LAS can fix the problem.


News Updates

Although most of you probably already know this, I have been given the okay to announce that Denise Enders has been appointed to the FT Clerk/Typing position in Acquisitions. Please join me in welcoming Denise to her new duties. At this time, Denise’s PT Clerk II position will not be filled.

Sharon Johnson’s medical leave has been extended to December 29, allowing her more time for healing.


  1. Many of you know that Sharon Johnson from the Processing Dept. had foot surgery last month. She saw her doctor yesterday and had rods removed from her toes. She is recovering well, and plans to return to work on December 8. If you’d like to send her a card, you can get her address from Kathy Fischer in the Personnel Office.
  2. Paula’s last day will be December 19. The RPL & MCLS Boards have formed a search committee which meets every Wednesday from 2-4 pm. I expect you will see an announcment about the Director’s position search soon.
  3. Some of you attended a presentation on the MCLS Marketing Initiative a few weeks ago and learned about what that committee has been up to. The next part of their work involves identifying and analyzing points of service between MCLS System Services (Tech Services, Shipping, LAS, ILL, & Digitizing) and Central Services (the Divisions) and the member libraries. This will be started during two training sessions in November and December for Division Heads and MCLS Department Heads.
  4. The Foundation expects to have two very large banners hung on the front of the Rundel Building on Friday October 31. These banners have been in the works for several years (I think the project began with Carolyn Schuler) and are intended to raise the visibility of the library to downtown residents and workers.
  5. Preparations for the Rochester Historical Society continue, with portions of Upper Stacks being cleared out for their use. Yesterday, the RPL Board voted to move ahead with the lease agreement, although there are still some issues that have to be worked out. The lease will also have to pass City Council.

New Librarian in MCLS Office

Dennis Williams will be joining the MCLS Office as a Librarian I beginning Monday September 8. Dennis has been working as a substitute librarian in the branches and comes to MCLS with a good understanding of how the system works and with lots of enthusiasm. He will be coordinating the NYS annual reports for all member libraries, working with various state and system grants programs, and coordinating MCLS training…just to name a few of his responsibilities. Dennis has a background in television, and very through understanding of technology.

In the next few weeks, I will likely ask Dennis to spend some time in each Systems Services Department so he can get an idea of what you all do. I’ll be speaking with the department heads about this more in the coming weeks.

Stop in the office and introduce yourself to Dennis next week.

Trustee Survey

This link is being placed here for MCLS Trustees to take a website survey. If you are not a Trustee, please do not take the survey.

MCLS Trustee Survey

Marketing Presentation

To those of you who showed up for this presentation today, I sincerely apologize for the mix up. I made the change in this blog post on Monday, but should have followed through with emails to the Systems Services Departments as well. If you plan to attend the presentation on July 24 at 3:00 pm, please respond to this post with a comment — just leave your name or initials — so I know who plans to come.

The Marketing presentation I had scheduled for System Services staff for Thursday July 10 has been moved to Thursday July 24 at 3:00 pm in the Rundel Auditorium.



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