Director's Report - March 10, 2015

Mathews Memorial Library
Bette Dillehay, Director
March 10, 2015

This report is intended to provide the Chairman and members of the Board of Trustees with a report of activities during the period February 10 – March 10, 2015.

Financial Report
Operational expenses for the report period totaled $9,541.22. Current year-to-date expenses total $62,245.28. Unencumbered funds (Not including salaries and related benefits) total $52.439.81, of which $35,804.81 are approved budget funds and $16,635.09 in Grants/Donations. Unexpended funds continue to exceed those of the previous fiscal year, which, as of March, 2014, were $43,127.65.
Through January 23, 2015 (latest available information), for the first seven months of the current fiscal year, salaries and related benefits totaled $130,222.06 or 50.96% of the budgeted amount for FY 2014-2015 ($255,556.00). Information including the latest pay period has not been received.

Patron Update
The current number of patrons is 10,942. The number of patrons and/or visitors to the library during the report period totaled 5,767. The daily patron count showed an increase of $44.57% over the February, 2014. This significant increase is believed to reflect use of the expanded facility and additional computers.

Personnel Update
Mike Fisher, a part-time staff member, has accepted an opportunity to pursue a career in music. He will continue to work on weekends depending on his schedule. Samantha Franklin has assumed his hours and responsibilities in the Youth Center.

Amy Hudgins continues to work toward professional certification. She recently completed a course, “Youth Services in Public Libraries,” offered through Northern Kentucky University. Such study adds significant value to her role as staff support in the Teen Territory.

Adult Programs. Last month I reported that “Much time was spent by staff in January planning programs which are scheduled for February and March.” Due to weather conditions, only one of the several programs planned was actually held. The program featuring the former poet laureate of Virginia, Carolyn Kreiter-Foronda took place on Thursday, February 19th at 4 p.m. While a smaller audience than anticipated, her presentation was very well received. A program which was cancelled, but had created quite a bit of interest, was a talk by Larry Chowning on “Watermen of Mathews.” This program, scheduled for March 5th was cancelled and rescheduled for April 23rd.

On April 28th, it is planned to sponsor once again a bus trip to an exhibit at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts. The event, “The Art of the Flower,” includes a lecture, tour and luncheon. Arrangements are complete; however, the individual cost has not yet been configured.

Youth Programs. In spite of closures and cancellations, youth programming is quite active. The program launched to encourage parents to read 1,000 books to their children before they reach kindergarten has a dozen participants. In March the library will celebrate Youth Art Month. With the assistance of former art teacher, Karen Podd, the students have formed groups to create artwork to be applied to the front windows of the teen area. The theme of the work is “A Better World” in keeping with the library initiative to encourage teens to recognize their potential.

The Youth/Teen staff is actively pursuing additional ways to serve the young people in the community. Many ideas center on an emerging theme of libraries as places of creativity or “maker spaces.” More will be heard about this in the coming months.