Mideastern Michigan Library Cooperative

Director’s Report

February - March 2023

State Budget/State Aid:

  • In April, State Aid First Payments will start being distributed to libraries based on when the library finished their State Aid Report.
  • Cooperative directors are hearing that the state budget for next year will stay the same. But this can change either way by the time the budget is final.

Cooperative Services:

  • We had our quarterly zoom meeting with all the areas of the cooperative. The members who were able to attend had a nice discussion on what’s going on in everyone’s library.
  • TLN is upgrading the MAP system, and they hope to have a soft launch at the beginning of May. Eric could be stopping at everyone’s library with promotional material to help promote the upgrade.
  • Eric contacted Jim Flury at TLN to see if they could work with LibraryIQ to get a statewide discount, which they are working on. If anyone is interested, please let Eric know.
  • If anyone is interested in Tutor.com, please let Eric know ASAP.
  • Our Annual Joint Meeting with Advisory Council and Board will be at Brick Street Restaurant in Grand Blanc on May 11, 2023 at 5pm. More information will be coming soon.

Michigan Cooperative Directors Association (MCDA):

  • TLN, Lakeland and the other cooperatives have completed the final report for the Mi-83 Grants which was due on March 31, 2023.
  • Most of the Cooperative Directors will be attending the Advocacy Day in Lansing on April 25, 2023The cooperative directors are looking to have a strategic planning session for MCDA in August.
  • The cooperative directors are looking to have a strategic planning session for MCDA in August.

Library of Michigan (LM):

  • Shannon White’s last day was February 28. HR in MDE has been taking time to fill positions, so Shannon’s position may take time to fill but LM has made plans on covering work until filled.
  • Grant program is changing per announcements that went out; no more small grants– focusing now on medium ones. Must attend webinars to apply for a grant.
  • Books challenge contacts/reports have decreased. Please report to LM if/when they occur (to Randy).

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

  • Opened registration for Advocacy Day, on April 25th. 40% full already. Register soon at: https://www.milibraries.org/advocacy-day Also looking for bookmobiles that we would like to have on site for visibility!
  • Call for ambassadors to volunteer is opening now, through April 28. Also opening call for proposals and exhibitors for the annual conference coming soon.
  • MLA to do polling in Michigan for book bans / censorship; reviewing proposal now– looking at a 6 week project with a firm. They plan to break down info based on cooperatives for reviewing info collected.

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

  • We’ve held Community Conversations to ask you about your aspirations for the future, which yielded a lot of information we’re compiling and will share soon.
  • Our community-driven Virtual Dialogues that connect staff from all types of libraries in our region continue through 2023, and our training program includes a self-paced course on Resilience in the Workplace.
  • We promoted Megan Dudek to the role of Shared Library Systems Manager at MCLS, following her years of experience supporting the Michigan eLibrary Catalog (MeLCat), MeL eResources, and RIDES.
  • We hired Susan Bannwart as our Group Purchasing Coordinator in February, who brings years of experience as a public and school librarian in Indiana to her new role.
  • We hired Sarah Zawacki as MeL Support Specialist effective April 3, who brings years of wide-ranging public library experience to her new role.

MMLC Administration:

  • Irene and Eric have attended all the FOML Executive, Budget and Finance, and Board meetings.
  • We had our Advisory Council meeting with speaker Scott Garrison, Executive Director of MCLS.
  • Eric attended MLA Workshop, Webinar and Workgroup, which is planning a webinar on Accessibility Audits in which Scott Duimstra is one of the speakers.
  • MLA Think Space had an update and Eric attended the meeting.
  • Eric participated in both LM monthly updates.
  • MCLS had a Community Conversation in which Eric participated in.
  • Eric attended the MLA Connect: Mental Health and Well-Being: Dealing with Difficult Patrons.
  • MCDA had their monthly meetings via zoom and Eric was at both of them.
  • Lapeer District Library is dealing with a Book Challenge (Gender Queer). Their Board meeting in February was cancelled due to over-capacity in the room. They rented a larger room for the March Board meeting, LDL Board President said before the public spoke that the Board would not be making any decision on the book challenge at this meeting. There were 3 hours of public speaking for 3 minutes each on both sides of the challenge. Eric was at both meeting to show his support for the Library and their Board.
  • Eric attended the Holly Board Meeting to talk about MMLC services.
  • Irene is working on digitizing old MMLC Board meeting minutes, Advisory Council meeting minutes, Region of Cooperation meeting minutes, and Director reports.
  • Eric did Board training at Chippewa River District Library.

Respectfully submitted,
Eric Palmer
MMLC Director