Mideastern Michigan Library Cooperative

Director’s Report

August and September 2020

State Budget/State Aid:
STATE AID FY2020 (from Kathy Webb LM)

  • The new state aid rates have been computed for FY2021. One million dollars has been added to the FY2021 distribution, bring the total amount of State Aid to public Libraries to $13,067.700. Per capita breakdown of $.4299853 for direct and indirect state aid to public libraries. Cooperative per capita of $.4299853
  • The FY2021 Public Library Annual Report/State Aid Application report will be available for submission from October 1, 2020 and close on February 1, 2021. Payments will be processed as follows: 1st 50% payment will be made after your state aid/annual report is reviewed ($.214993 per capita)  The remaining 50% will be paid after July 1, 2021.  Please note that state aid reports are reviewed in the order that they are received. Reviews and first payments will begin after March 1, 2021


Cooperative Services:

  • Working with Findaway about bring a discount to the MMLC members for Wonderbooks and Launchpads. Wonderbooks could be 5% to 14% discount depending on the dollar about the cooperative spends and a 15% to 22% discount at Launchpads.
  • There has been an increase interest in Tutor.com, some of the cooperative have it available for their members. I will be reaching out to MMLC members to see if there is an interest in this product.
  • The MMLC Programming Team met in mid-August to review the Preferred Performer list for FY 2020-2021. The list was released to over 40 library systems in mid-September, with options for live in-person events and virtual event options. The mmlc.info website is currently being enhanced to include new, dynamic content in the Programming area. Due to the cancelation of the MMLC Annual Showcase, we invited performers to submit a short promotional video to the MMLC private YouTube channel. The new website pages will feature links to each performers exclusive video, a marketing photo and individual websites.


Michigan Cooperative Directors Association:
Michigan Cooperative Directors Association (MCDA):

  • At MLA Virtual Conference MCDA will be doing a Digital Bag Drop and with that we will be offering a free membership to MLA for a year for the winner.
  • We have been working on a letter for the Board Trustee as well as an updated flyer giving information for about the Cooperatives and our services. We are hoping to send them out to the Directors and the Library Board President soon.


Library of Michigan (LM):

  • Shannon White from Library of Michigan has asked the cooperative director to remind out members about the Digital Literacy Classed that LM and MCLS will be putting on soon. This could be some good Professional Development for staff members and its only $15. To register for the course, visit the MCLS website at: https://www.mcls.org/training-events/events/foundations-digital-literacy-2020/   Currently there are 5 sessions left with seats available in October. Be sure to get your spot and grow your confidence, skills, and knowledge in this area to help support your own local community.
  • Randy Riley State Librarian, has announced that the most of the awards that LM sponsor have been canceled for this year. They felt there were too many libraries doing great things during the pandemic to try to pick one wouldn’t be fair.


Michigan Library Association (MLA):  Debbie Mikula, Executive Director of MLA

  • The library community has been rewarded with a $1 million increase to the FY21 State Aid to Libraries. Please take this opportunity to thank your Senator, your House Member, and the Governor. You can find your legislators and send an email using the button below. We’ve created a quick thank you template if you need it, but feel free to personalize and share your heartfelt appreciation. Learn More and Thank Your Legislators


Midwest Collaborative for Library Services (MCLS):  Scott Garrison, Executive Director

  • Scott is considering running a pilot of Library Simplified, a platform that allows a library using multiple eBook/audiobook vendors to make titles available via one app, SimplyE. One caveat about Library Simplified is it does not work with Hoopla. It works with other eBook vendors' systems including OverDrive and B&T's Axis360.
  • If you think your library would be interested in being part of the pilot please let Eric know. You can learn more at https://librarysimplified.org/


MMLC Administration:

  • Since MMLC is the Fiscal Agent for FOLM, Irene and I have attended several meetings including the Board meeting, Stragetic, Executive committee meeting and Budget committee meeting.
  • I attended the MMLC Overdrive meeting hosted by Anne Heidemann, chair of the committee.
  • Library of Michigan have now switched their Friday meetings to every other week and I have attended 5 of them and try to send out emails with the updates.
  • On August 12, I attended the Big Disruption Can Lead to Big Opportunities hosted by MCDA. It was a two-day conference and I saw several MMLC members in attendance.
  • I had a phone conference with Sarah Galt, MMLC new Board member representing Grace A. Dow.
  • I attended the MMLC Personal Committee meeting where we discussed my evaluation.
  • Irene and I attended the MMLC Budget Committee meeting where we adopted the 2021 Budget with a 50% cut in the budget. Within this budget there would be no Grants available.
  • On September 10, MMLC had our Board Meeting via phone and they approved the Budget and also a PPE grant for Public Libraries. The checks were mailed out that night.
  • MLA has had a couple webinars and I have attended both of them. One was Library Culture: Building Awareness, Trust, and Best Practices around Equity, Diversity and Inclusion as well as Findings and Resources from RE-opening Achieves, Libraries and Museums (REALM) Project. They are only halfway done with the REALM project so there will be more finding coming soon.
  • I am on the 2021 MLA Annual Committee and we had our first meeting, which was a meet and greet meeting. If there is anyone who is interested in severing on an MLA committee they are looking for volunteers, due to the pandemic less people volunteered so contact me or MLA if interested.
  • I met with Kate Van Auken, Director of White Pine, we discussed what the MCDA will do at the MLA Virtual conference. In the past we did a booth but we felt that was too expensive so we went with the Digital Bag Drop.
  • I attended the TLN Technology Form via Zoom. This led me to attend another meeting with Capira Curbside through OCLC.
  • MCDA have switched to every other Tuesday meeting and I have attended 4 of them.
  • Attended a Patron Point webinar through MCLS.
  • Joe Hamlin from LM had an Annual Report session which I attended.
  • Clare D. Membiela from LM had a meeting with Debbie Mikula from MLA about the Library Privacy Act working its way through Michigan legislature, it has passed the senate and sent to the house. But they most likely won’t work on it till after the election.
  • I had a zoom meeting with Peter Wuerl from Findaway, to work on a discount for MMLC Members.


Respectfully submitted,

Eric Palmer

MMLC Director