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Library Board Talks Crackling Phones, Missing Magazines

The Roosevelt County Library board met at the Culbertson branch Saturday, March 2. Chairperson Laurie Evans, vice chair Gloria Mason, library director Andrea Hayes, Culbertson librarian Leona Colvin and trustees Beth Kekkel and Pat Henry were in attendance.

Under old business, the board discussed an ongoing issue with phones crackling at the main branch in Wolf Point. According to the meeting minutes, the issue is significant enough to make understanding callers difficult or impossible. The minutes indicate that Nemont was contacted and spent “a good amount of time trying to find the source of the problem.” They concluded that the problem was an in-house issue and recommended that the library contact the county for additional IT support. Plans are in the works to contact Richard Lang of Awesome Computers in Billings. Roosevelt Medical Center IT director Brian Fordyce may also be consulted. In the meantime, one of the public computers has been turned off since its use appears to aggravate the problem.
Draft copies of a patron behavior and library use policy were distributed at the meeting. Hayes explained that she had researched and found similar policies ranging from 1-12 pages and written in a variety of styles. In particular, she mentioned a presentation prepared by a law student named Angela Moore titled Legally Enforceable Patron Behavior Policies. Hayes indicated that she plans more research on the matter. It was noted that the Culbertson and Froid branches may need to have slightly revised versions of the final policy written for their benefit. Colvin suggested taking the policy to Roosevelt County Attorney Austin Knudsen’s office for review.
The availability of magazines at the main branch was discussed. The branch displays many current issues of magazines in the reading area, but has been experiencing a high rate of missing issues. Branch employees have been slowly moving some titles to the staff area, where patrons must ask a librarian to sign them out. It was decided to move the remaining titles as well. The plan at this stage is to move the Montana section to replace the current magazine display. To prepare, the Montana section is being inventoried.
During new business, Colvin reported that she had invited Carol Hackley from the Wolf Point Pound Puppies to come to their Dr. Seuss-themed story time program. She said that Hackley did a great job and brought a kitten along. Colvin said she learned that Dr. Seuss was an animal lover who advocated for pet rescue adoptions instead of pet store purchases. Colvin also invited board members to take a look the Culbertson branch’s new chairs and children’s furniture. Finally, she reported that the Culbertson branch has selected April 25 as the date for the pie social.
Mason informed the group that the Froid Friends of the Library have given Froid librarian Sheri Harvey permission to purchase a new vacuum cleaner.
James E. Shanley Tribal librarian Anita Scheetz had eye surgery in late February. Scheetz reports that the Poplar Women’s Book Club met Jan. 15 with nine members attending. She indicated that her staff called 911 twice during January.
Colvin and Harvey will be attending the Montana Library Association’s conference in Helena for several days beginning April 10. Friends of the Roosevelt County Library president Laura Krauth attended the first Montana Trust Board meeting in January. She informed Hayes that she has since resigned from that board, as she believes she would not be able to make a sizable contribution to the newly-formed organization.
The main branch is getting ready to launch their new 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten program, which aims to incentivize early reading efforts. They plan to launch the program in May. Evans suggested that the Wolf Point High School wood shop class may be interested in making bookshelves for the kids.
Krauth and Hayes had a phone meeting with the Montana Historical Society and asked questions about processes for digitizing newspapers. They were informed that MHS has earmarked funds from a small grant for digitizing newspapers in the Wolf Point area. MHS expects to reach a decision about the funds very soon. They told Krauth and Hayes that MHS already has The Herald-News on microfilm, making the digitization process more affordable. Colvin expressed curiosity about digitizing The Searchlight as well.
The next meeting of the library board is set for Saturday, April 27. The location has yet to be determined.