Mideastern Michigan Library Cooperative

Director’s Report

November - December 2018

State Budget/State Aid:

State Aid Budget, FY2018-19:  Library of Michigan sent a spreadsheet to each cooperative director indicating library progress on completing the required Annual Report. The filing window opened October 1, 2018 and closes February 1, 2019.  State Aid payments are processed by the date the report is locked/submitted.

Note:  The total amount for State Aid is $12,067,700.  The per capita direct state aid $.39689 and indirect $.39689.  Cooperatives will also receive $.39689 for direct aid. Payments to libraries are generally made beginning in February and after July 1, 2019.  MMLC has received the first half payment for 2018-19 State Aid.

Cooperative Services:
Programming:  Irene has scheduled well over 600 programs through Summer Reading.  She is finalizing performer contracts and sending confirmation sheets.

Member Grants:  Several libraries have submitted grant applications for the MMLC Technology and Innovation and the Continuing Education Grants.  Grant checks are issued as applications are received.

OverDrive Consortia:  The MMLC OverDrive group met to discuss the possibility of joining the statewide resource sharing opportunity when it is offered. Members were in favor of participating.  The second topic was collection development and focused on new ways to assist members in spending collection money during each fiscal year. Members will make every effort to purchase items throughout the year and will consider donating any unused money to the Group Funds committee.


MMLC Advocacy: 

Federal Legislation:  The Museum and Library Services Act of 2018 passed providing authorization for the Institute for Museum and Library Services organization that grants federal funding for libraries.

Advocacy Committee:  The committee will meet in February to review the Advocacy Plan and also to discuss the National Library Legislative Day event cancellation for 2019.


Cooperative Directors Association:

Cooperative Directors Association (CDA):  The CDA met in December at the Library of Michigan.

  • Theresa Runyan was introduced as the new MeL Engagement Specialist, Public Libraries. The MeL Team has been asked to make a presentation at the February 2019 Advisory Committee meeting.
  • The Penal Fines Task Force will post information to the Woodlands Library Cooperative website after the first of the year.
  • The CDA voted to sponsor a table in the MLA exhibits area again in 2019. Working at the booth was a great opportunity to talk to library staff members from all over Michigan.
  • UPDATE: Six cooperatives (Northland, MMLC, MMLL, Superiorland, WPLC, and Woodlands) have committed to hosting a “Small Libraries. Big Impact.” mini-conference on April 29 and 30, 2019.  The committee met in late November in Grayling to discuss registration and programs.  It was determined that marketing for the conference would include Class I – IV libraries only in accordance with the federal definition of a rural community with a population of 25,000 residents or less. While larger libraries may have branches in rural communities, their overall base of support is much larger.  Registration will begin by early February and will be managed by MMLC.  Each of the six cooperatives will have a designated number of registration openings and a two week window for early registration.  This is due to the limited space available at the conference venue in Gaylord at Treetops.


CDA Webinars:  All of the free webinars may be accessed at:  https://mmll.ploud.net/workshops-webinars/webinars.  We are also seeking new webinar ideas for 2019.  Please send me those that you think would benefit libraries in the state.


Collaborating Partners – CDA, LM, MiALA, MLA, and MCLS:  Attendance was over 90 at the fall workshop “Removing Barriers: a Library Accessibility Workshop” at Grand Valley State University’s Eberhard Center in Grand Rapids on November 9, 2018.  Evaluations were very positive.  The group will meet in January to discuss topics for next year.


Collaborating Organizations:

Michigan Library Association (MLA):  Gail Madziar made the report for MLA and announced that her retirement date is March 30, 2019:

  • Michigan Legislative action:
    • Narcan bills failed to pass in 2018 and will be reintroduced in January; currently, the individual is covered for liability, but the library is not.
    • Bills moving election months did not pass, but will probably be reintroduced; the goal is to change the annual schedule to allow for an earlier Presidential primary.
    • Sick Leave: Rick Snyder signed two bills that gut citizen-initiated laws to raise Michigan's minimum wage and require employers to offer paid sick leave. Senate Bill 1175will allow employees to accrue leave time immediately and be able to use it within 90 days. Employees will be able to accrue one hour of leave time for every 35 hours worked, rather than for every 30 hours worked as the citizen-initiated proposal would have allowed. Employers must offer up to 40 hours of sick leave per year, rather than 72 hours in the law as originally drafted.  One of the biggest changes from the citizen version is that the sick leave law will not apply to businesses with fewer than 50 employees.
    • Minimum Wage: Senate Bill 1171as signed into law will raise Michigan's minimum wage from $9.25 this year to $9.45 on Jan. 1, 2019. The full minimum wage will rise to $12.05 in 2030. The bill, sponsored by State Sen. Dave Hildenbrand, R-Lowell, also restores the tipped wage paid to workers who collect tips as part of their jobs. The tipped wage currently is 38 percent of the full minimum wage, or $3.52 per hour. That generally applies to restaurant servers.  Current minimum wage for 2018, $9.25.  More information:  https://bit.ly/2CHP1WC
  • REMINDER: MLA is offering a “New Director Academy: Survive and Thrive as a Library Director”.  Maxine Bleiweis, a former library director and now consultant/public speaker, will lead the five session program that will also include individual consultations.  Deadline for registration is January 18, 2019:  https://bit.ly/2zq0FlW
  • Spring Institute 2019 registration is open now for “Growing, Networking and Inspiring”. Conference information is at:  https://bit.ly/2CJnGn6
  • Executive Summit will be May 31, 2019 at the Library of Michigan and will focus on Succession Planning.

Midwest Collaborative for Library Services (MCLS):  Randy Dykhuis made the following report:

  • The second search for a new Executive Director yielded three finalists who will be interviewed in January. Information/registration related to the interviews and remote viewing of candidate presentations will be available via email.
  • The position of MCLS Associate Director has been put on hold until a new director is hired.  Randy has assumed the responsibility of the Group Purchasing Manager until the current search for that position is concluded.
  • The OverDrive consortium sharing pilot project between the MCLS OverDrive group and the Lakeland Library Cooperative OverDrive group is going well. Other cooperative groups will have the option to join in the next several months.


Library of Michigan (LM):  Shannon White made the following report:

  • Randy Riley was attending the Chief Officers of State Library Agencies at the time of our meeting in December. A new resolution has been presented to the legislature supporting the Campaign for “One Dollar Per Capita” LSTA Grants to States program. It is based on the concept of using population to determine funding for the state.  At $1 per person, the current funding amount would double from $164 million to $325 million.
  • A Colorado State Library Data Workshop will be offered on August 7-8, 2019 in East Lansing; grants for attendance are available through LM.
  • Kathy Webb reported that 100 libraries have finalized Annual Reports so far.
  • Clare Membiela reported that she has been following a few bills. One is on amending the Charter Township Act of 1955.  Nine township libraries still exist under the old law.  Clare will send a list of those libraries to the CDA.  Another involves bills on service animals.  She will continue to monitor both bills.
  • Liz Breed reported that the Request for Proposal process for an early literacy database will take place in early Spring.


MMLC Administration:

  • The FY2017-18 audit process has been completed with Lewis and Knopf with no exceptions. Irene did an excellent job working with our auditor to be certain that our financials were in compliance with all necessary accounting standards.
  • Two webinars acquainted members with new product opportunities: Findaway Launchpads and Library Ideas VOX Books.  Libraries who are interested have indicated their intent to purchase and a list for both is in progress.
  • At this point, it does not appear that Lynda.com is affordable for small to mid-sized libraries. I will continue to watch this product and reintroduce it to members if the cost is reduced.
  • I provided a Board Orientation for Community District Library at their November meeting.
  • I spoke about the value of cooperative at the December meeting of the Kiwanis Club of Flint. I was the guest of Carol Flayer, my longtime friend and wife of Steve Flayer, Shiawassee District Library Director.
  • We have completed our second year as fiscal agent for the Friends of Michigan Libraries/Trustee Alliance.
  • As we ended the year, we began the process of reviewing our technology needs and upgrading our equipment.
  • In November, I announced my retirement effective September 30, 2019. The MMLC Board Personnel Committee met early in December to consider options for conducting the search process.  The Committee will make recommendations at the January Board meeting.


Respectfully submitted,

Denise Hooks

MMLC Director