James Johnson, Jr., Chair
900 North Ashley Drive
Tampa, Florida 33602
James Martin, Jr., Vice-Chair
William Scheuerle, Secretary
Phone: (813) 273-3660
Fax: (813) 273-3707

Tampa-Hillsborough Public Library Board



Sandra Cameron called the meeting to order at 4:10 p.m. A quorum was present.


Library Board Members Present:
Sandra Cameron, Ian Greig
Kay O'Rourke, Anniece Ross
Helen Swisshelm, Liz Blue
Mary Sherman
Library Board Excused:
Catherine Bartolotti
William Scheuerle
Josephine Gracia, Dora Reeder

Library Board Absent:

Library Staff Present:
Joe Stines, Director of Libraries
Marcee Challener, Assitant Director
Linda Gillon, Manager of Staff & Administrative Support

Suzanne George, Facilities Coordinator
Jackie Zebos, Senior Librarian
Barbara Marquette, Administrative Assistant

Special Guests:

Members of the Public:



After corrections and additions were noted, the minutes from the June 22, 2000 Library Board meeting were approved as written.


At the July 12, 2000 Board of County Commissioners meeting, County Attorney Emmy Acton presented a legal opinion on the filtering of public library computers. Library Director, Joe Stines, followed that presentation with a staff report about library policies on filtering. The BOCC voted 6-1 to accept the report.

At a future Library Board meeting, Mr. Stines will bring back to the Board, a final written policy and procedure to implement the policy. The policy is within the boundaries of the previous motion passed by the Library Board and has been accepted by Dan Kleman, County Administrator. Copies of this report were distributed to the Board members.


Audrey Grimes, North Tampa Friends of the Library, thanked the Board for the improvements to the parking lot and asked for additional parking, lighting, and higher fences. Facilities Coordinator Suzanne George responded that the lighting would be installed shortly.

Maureen Gauzza, Upper Tampa Bay Friends of the Library, described the Northwest Area and identified the communities that are covered by this area. Ms. Gauzza presented the Chair with a letter from the different homeowners associations. The letter detailed their need for library services within this area. The homeowners associations are in the process of locating property for the proposed library. The chair instructed Ms. Gauzza to give the letter to Kay O'Rourke, who is the Planning Committee chair. Ms. Gauzza discussed a lease back concept, which they may propose.

Joan Szeglowski and Mary Silver, West Gate Regional Friends of the Library, distributed a package of information detailing the needs of the West Gate library and letters of support. Ms. Szeglowski discussed the needs of the community that uses the library and the availability of transportation for the lower income families and the elderly of the area. Ms. Silver stressed the need for a regional library in the area.

The chair thanked the public for coming and invited them to stay for the meeting.



Chair Kay O'Rourke reported great progress for the Northwest Regional Library. Kay O'Rourke, Joe Stines, Israel Grajales, and David Wullschleger traveled to Jacksonville and met with the architect to select the colors. The library will be ready earlier than anticipated but should not cause a conflict with the opening of the Jan K. Platt Regional now expected in late November to early December. David is working on establishing a moving contract with the Purchasing Department. No dates have been set for the dedications or openings of either library.


Chair Helen Swisshelm stated that she watched the BOCC meeting on television and that the $5 million that has been allocated to the library budget is not final. The BOCC still has two more meetings before the budget is adopted. Helen stated that it seems that some of the Commissioners are confused about the Library Board's priorities. There are two project lists, the funded and the unfunded. Five projects were to be funded fully or partially by CIT (Community Investment Tax) funds: West Gate, Lutz, North Tampa expansion, West Tampa, and South County. Joe Stines explained that every year the BOCC vote on the unfunded list and once the project is moved to a funded list, it is not voted on again.

Ms. Swisshelm said the public feels the extra funds should be used to advance the funded or partially funded projects in their area and others want facilities funded for their area. Some of the Commissioners feel that the partially funded projects should be put first, funded in priority, and other Commissioners, who know that the need is great, want to fund the new projects. The Library Board's goal is to present a priority ranked recommendation to the BOCC. Joe Stines explained that there are a lot of questions from the public and that there are several options and possibilities. Staff is meeting with the Management and Budget Office on August 4th to discuss these options and answer questions.

Three projects were discussed by the BOCC: 1) complete the West Gate expansion, 2) build a library for Upper Tampa Bay (Westchase), and 3) build a library for South Brandon. Originally the unfunded list's number one project was the South Brandon Library and number two was the Upper Tampa Bay Regional. There was confusion about the proposed 4,000 sq. ft expansion for West Gate because it was partially funded at the time of the discussion. At the same time the surplus funds were made available Hillsborough County Parks and Recreation Department offered land adjacent to West Gate that would make a 10,000-sq. ft. expansion possible. Helen Swisshelm asked whether there were some funds available for the South Brandon library. Joe Stines replied that there are no funds. It is number one on the unfunded list. Helen Swisshelm stated that the Budget Committee and the Planning Committee as well as staff should meet to prioritize the project list. Joe Stines stated that his understanding was that the BOCC wants the Library Board to come back in a public workshop and bring their recommendations. They want the Board's advice but they will make the final decision. Operating costs will be another issue that will need to be addressed.

Joe Stines suggested that the Budget and Planning Committees meet and give a recommendation to the full Library Board at their August meeting. The committees will meet on July 31 at 11:30 a.m. and August 18 at 1:00 p.m. at the John F. Germany Library.


Anniece Ross represented Dora Reeder as chair. The Board reviewed the revised Naming Policy and moved that the document be approved as it stands. Liz Blue seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously.






Sandra Cameron asked if there was any unfinished business. She stated that she has had no response from Ron Rotella regarding the Cultural Arts District Steering Committee. Marcee Challener stated that she had received a call from John Fernandez asking about Sandra's letter. Marcee referred him to the March minutes on the Web, which were referenced in the letter. Discussion followed as to which letter he was responding. Joe Stines stated that we would forward a copy of the June minutes to Mr. Fernandez so that he would have a complete picture. Anniece Ross asked whether the Task Force had met. Joe Stines responded that we have not been notified of any meetings. Joe has spoken to Helen Levine, Legislative Liaison, who is representing the County and said that neither she nor Dan Kleman, County Administrator, had been notified of any meetings. Ian Greig stated that this is a city project and that the county would probably not be involved until the end. Joe Stines is also on the task force and has not been contacted. Anniece Ross asked that Joe forward a copy of the June minutes and asked when the first meeting is expected to occur. Joe Stines stated that he would arrange a meeting with Helen Levine and Dan Kleman and the Cultural Arts Ad Hoc Committee to discuss the county's position. Joe will contact other members of the Task Force to see whether they have any information.

Nominating Committee Report: William Scherule recommended (read from last month's minutes) that the Board reappoint Sandra Cameron, Chair; Anniece Ross, Vice Chair, and William Scheuerle, Secretary. The Chair then asked for nominations from the floor. There were none. Liz Blue moved that the nominations be accepted as put forth to the Library Board. Anniece Ross seconded the motion. The motion passed unanimously. Ms. Cameron stated that she was very honored and humbled.

Joe Stines announced that in today's Tampa Tribune there was an advertisement for all of the different County Board vacancies.

STATE STATUTE 84-443: Anniece Ross distributed a copy of Chapter 84-443 along with a breakdown of the sections, which answer the question "Where the Library Board Receives Its Powers." Ms. Ross discussed each of the five documents she printed from the Internet and distributed to the Board. Ms. Ross asked for clarification of Section 6. What is the mechanism for change and for altering recommendations? Joe Stines responded, when the Library Advisory Board makes a policy recommendation it goes to the Library Director. The Library Director then forwards the recommendation to the County Administrator. The County Administrator may approve or disapprove the recommendation. He also has the option of presenting the recommendation to the County Commissioners, which he usually will do in matters of public interest, or those that dictate that the BOCC must approve the policy. The Library Board always has the option to change the policy and restart the process.

Sandra Cameron stated that this is an advisory board, not directly involved with taxing. The purpose is to separate the Board from politics, which is set out in the statute. The Board recommends to the Library Director, who recommends to the County Administrator, then to the BOCC. Joe Stines stated that the County Administrator has approved all policies that are in the policy manual.


The Chair asked for any new business. There was none.


Marcee Challener, Manager, Public Services, reported that staff are preparing to open the Jan K. Platt Regional Library but have concerns about the Peninsular Library. During the last year the staff have been working on defining the focus of the library and what collections to redirect. One of the items identified was the Business Collection. Ian Greig asked what provoked staff to have the collection at one library and not the other. Ms. Challener explained that this type of collection would typically be found in a regional library and that space is also a consideration. The focus of the Peninsular Library would be homework resources, programs and recreational reading. Ms. Challener also proposed that staff be redeployed and cut back operating hours by four hours per week (Monday 10-7 instead of 9-9).

The need for the change is based on the impact that Jan K. Platt Library will have on the Peninsular Library and their circulation. Analysis of circulation by zip code, found that 25% of the circulation comes from south of Euclid Ave. Since Jan K. Platt Regional is located at Euclid and Manhattan, the staff expects that Peninsular's circulation will drop 25% possibly 50%.

Discussion followed. Handouts will be provided to the public with signage advising the new location of the Business Collection. Helen Swisshelm recommended acceptance of the proposal.

Kay O'Rourke asked whether Commissioner Platt was pleased with the construction of the new library. Joe Stines didn't know whether she has had an opportunity to visit the site. Patrice Koerper, Public Relations, has produced a brochure which invites citizens to donate to areas where donations are needed such as landscape materials.

Ian Greig asked about the landscape maintenance line item budget and asked for a breakdown. Joe Stines stated that staff could provide a breakdown but that they have very little control since everything is contracted through the Purchasing Department by Facilities Maintenance. Staff will provide a copy of the contract to Mr. Greig. Kay O'Rourke asked if the current landscape maintenance contractor would be the same one that currently cares for the Northwest library. Suzanne George replied that the contract is currently under bid.

The Board asked to be included in the walk through of Jan Platt and also a visit to an Electronic Library. Helen Swisshelm congratulated the staff for all of the publicity and exposure the library has been receiving. Joe Stines updated the Board on the new firewall software. At this time the firewall is not operational.

The Chair asked Mary Sherman to serve on the Policy and Bylaws Committee, Ms. Sherman accepted. Ms. Cameron asked that everyone stay on his or her committees.




The meeting was adjourned at 615pm.

Next Library Board Meeting:
         Date: August 24, 2000
         Time: 4pm-6pm
         Location: John F. Germany Public Library

                 - Unless notified otherwise

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