The Archbold Community Library Board approved pay hikes for both hourly and salaried staff at its Wednesday, March 10 meeting.
The action came following an executive session that lasted about 40 minutes.
When the board returned to regular session, it approved a 1.3% cost-of-living raise for all employees.
In addition, hourly workers will receive a pay hike of 25 cents per hour. Salaried employees will receive an additional $25 per pay period hike.
Sonya Huser, library director, said in her report that adult audiobook checkouts are at a four-year high. Childrens audiobook checkouts are at a five-year high.
In addition, interlibrary loan use is at a five-year high, and checkouts of DVDs is up for the first time in years.
Part of the increase in DVD checkouts, she said, is the result of displaying the cover artwork for the DVDs in the library and allowing patrons to check out six DVDs at a time.
Also, the addition of a new employee has allowed the library to catch up on a backlog of cataloging new DVDs.
Huser said library employees will be doing training with Leo Wixom III, Archbold police chief.
As part of that training, Wixom will teach ALICE, which stands for Alert, Lockdown, Inform, Counter, Evacuate, a program to deal with active shooter situations.
Huser said the police department “has been very supportive lately.”
She added Michele Bagrowski, Archbold Schools curriculum director, and Matt Shields, middle school principal, have worked with library staff to determine the best way to deal with students who congregate at the library or on library property after school.
She said Martie Yunker, also known as Ms. Martie, children’s librarian, received a grant for $1,122 for the summer reading program.
Yunker is in need of clean, empty Gatorade bottles, empty paper towel rolls, and used K-Cup coffee pods.
Huser said the Friends of the Library group has more than $5,700 in the bank. She is putting together a wish list.
Kevin Seibert, board member, asked if the library has returned to regular hours after the pandemic.
Huser said the library is still on reduced hours, adding she’s not sure she wants to go back to regular hours.
She said staying open until 8:30 pm three times a week seems pretty late.
The library currently closes at 7:30 pm on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays.
Huser said the library is only missing 1 1/2 hours a week on Saturdays by closing at 1:30 pm.
In her report, Jennifer Harkey, library fiscal officer, said revenue and expenses for the library were normal.
She said the library received the first property tax payment of about $142,000 from the county.
The board also approved carrying over $247,000 in money left over from 2020 into 2021, and approved the permanent budget.
As part of that budget, the board approved the amount of money set aside to repair the wooden shutters on the library. The shutters have received no maintenance since they were installed when the building was built in the 1990s.
The original cost for shutter repair was $5,500, but Siebert suggested increasing that figure, noting that more problems with the shutters may be revealed as they are removed.
The final figure for the project was up to $7,500.
Harkey said she is no longer investing library funds in certificates of deposit, noting that “sweep” accounts are earning more interest.
In a sweep account, at the end of each day money on deposit over a certain threshold is automatically “swept” into a higher-earning investment account.
The library board also reviewed, and made a minor change to its pandemic policy.
The policy change will impact any future pandemic events.
The next meeting is Wednesday, May 12, 7 pm, at the library.
“Auld Lang Syne” is sung at the stroke of midnight to bring in the new year.
Early variations of the song were sung prior to 1700 and inspired Robert Burns to produce the version we know.
An old Scottish tune, “Auld Lang Syne” literally means “old long ago,” or simply, “The good old days.”