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


Board Members Present:
Jim Johnson, Chair
James Martin, Sandra Cameron,
William Scheuerle, Bob Argus,
Kay O'Rourke, Dora Reeder,
Laura Vickers. James Harkins,
Margaret Fisher, Alma Hires,
and Michelle Schofner were excused.

Library Staff Present:
Joe Stines, Director of Library Services;
Marcee Challener, Manager, Materials & Circulation Services;
Linda Gillon, Manager, Programming;
David Wullschleger, Manager, Operations;
Suzy George, Chief Librarian;
Gina DuBois, Administrative Services Coordinator;
Aracelis Putnam, Administrative Specialist;
Alicia Gonzalez, Assistant County Attorney


Mr. Johnson called the meeting to order at 4:00 p.m. A quorum was present.


Mr. Martin moved that the minutes be approved as corrected. Mr. Argus seconded. The motion passed unanimously.

Comments from the Public:

Said Jravani, Chair, Committee for expansion of New Tampa Regional Library, asked the Library Board to consider
a twenty-five thousand square foot expansion stating that the library is over used and under supplied.

Mr. Argus made the motion to amend the agenda adding Management & Budget Director, Eric Johnson. Dr. Scheuerle seconded. The motion passed unanimously.

Mr. Johnson discussed Indirect Costs stating that $2.2 million has been budgeted for FY07. Property taxes levied on behalf of the Library Taxing District as well as any user fees, grant revenues, interest earnings are allocated to this fund. There are a variety of County functions that are paid for out of other sources, generally County-wide Property Taxes so we charge the costs of these Administrative Services (overhead costs). Mr. Johnson handed out a breakdown of the Administrative Services costs.

The Planning Committee Chair requested that the agenda be amended to allow the Planning Committee to report before the Budget Committee. Mr. Argus so moved. Ms. Cameron seconded. Mr. Stines explained to Mr. Johnson that traditionally the Planning Committee primarilylooks at the Unfunded CIP List for planning purposes and then their report goes to the Budget Committee and are merged by the Library Board. That is how we have approached efforts to update. Normally the Library Board would not have reviewed the Unfunded List at thistime but they have had presentations from the public about unfunded projects. The motion passed unanimously.

Committee Reports

Planning Committee: Chair, James Martin stated that it was brought to the Committee's attention the Commissioner Castor is investigating the possibility of closing the Westgate Regional Library during construction. The Committee is recommending to the Library Board that a letter be sent to the Board of County Commissioners and the County Administrator stating the Library Boards concerns.Mr. Stines stated that Mr. Wullschleger has prepared a fact sheet for Mike Kelly, Real Estate Director, estimating that it will cost approximately eight hundred thousand dollars to move the library based on one specific site noted by the Real Estate Department. Architectural Services is preparing a cost estimate on the capital savings that would be realized if the library were closed during construction. Real Estate Department has identified a vacant 11,000 sq. ft. drug store located on Hanley Road and Wallace. Mr. Stines feels that a half million dollars to relocate is realistic.

Ms. Vickers asked that the letter reflect that at the end of May at the community meeting, county staff assured the residents of Town n' Country that the building would not close during construction.

Mr. Stines noted that costs savings with new construction are a result of relocation is being explored by Swati Bose. Those figures are not known currently. The Board would like the following issues addressed: for the past seven years the citizens have been told that the library would remain open during construction; financial impact of relocating; the impact on citizens and library services; that the grant funding will
not be jeopardized by the delay; ill will from citizens who opposed a joint facility. Mr. Argus made the motion to have the Library Board Chair
write such a letter. Mr. Martin seconded. The motion passed unanimously.

The Planning Committee recommended to the Library Board that the $2.5 million is used to renovate the West Building third floor at the John F. Germany Public Library, and that the remaining funds are used to purchase land for any project on the unfunded list that does not have land identified. Mr. Martin stated that at the Budget Committee meeting today it was discussed further. Mr. Martin asked that the recommendation not be acted
on until the Budget Committee reported.

Mr. Stines suggested Mr. Johnson, Director, Management and Budget, explain what led to the additional funds. Mr. Johnson stated that his department performs forecasts in terms of growth and revenue and the cost of new facilities to tell the Library Board whether there are enough funds to move forward with their plans. Mr. Johnson stated that in May they received information that almost every jurisdiction in the State of Florida had unprecedented growth in the tax base, largely from increased value of existing homes, not from new construction. In Hillsborough County it is more than twenty-two percent this year. Mr. Johnson suggested the following options for the Library Board to consider. Recognize that next year's property tax revenue will probably be unusually low. There is the potential that this is unusual growth and maybe followed by a lower increase next year than planned. Spending the money this year on a one time commitment as opposed to on-going commitments makes sense. His other concern is that at some point there will be a public uproar when governments receive twenty to thirty percent increases in the value of the tax base.

Mr. Johnson stated that the Library Board does have the option of rolling back the millage rate closer to what it was a year ago. Last year the Library Tax District millage was increased by 1/20th of a mill. At the end of August property tax notices will be sent out and by law property taxes for those citizens who have homestead exemption their property taxes can not be raised more than three percent. But someone who just bought property or have investment or business property, some of these people will be seeing a twenty to thirty percent increase and they will expect government to lower the millage rate to offset that unusual growth in the assessed value of property.

Budget Committee: Chair, William Scheuerle stated that they reviewed the new Unfunded List and some operational and construction needs.

The Budget Committee is recommending that the $2.5 million be used:

  • To refurbish the third floor of the John F. Germany Library.
  • Expansion of the Checkpoint RFID system to the following libraries: John F. Germany, Jimmie B. Keel Regional, Jan Platt Regional, and New Tampa Regional.
  • Purchase of land for recommended future libraries on the Unfunded List.
  • Outsourcing of the Library's web page design and maintenance services.
  • Overhaul of the Library delivery system.
  • Increase the R3M fund by one to one. five percent of the operating budget.

With the concurrence of the Planning Committee the Budget Committee is recommending that the Library Board accept these six priorities. Mr. Martin stated hat the purchase of land for future libraries would be a two part process. A) Purchase of land and B) the construction of the library. Mr. Argus seconded. Discussion followed. The motion passed unanimously.

Dr. Scheuerle stated that Rod Kelly, Manager, R3M (repairs, renovations, and replacement) has the responsibility for maintaining approximately six million square feet of county property which are inspected every two years. Using infrared photography and ariel photos Mr. Kelly and his staff have been able to identify potential moisture problems. The Library's R3M budget is approximately nine hundred thousand dollars.

Mr. Martin asked that they continue the discussion of the Unfunded Projects List. Mr. Argus made the motion that the Library Board Chair write a letter to the Pasco County Library Board Director addressing our issue with the seventeen percent usage by Pasco citizens at New Tampa Regional. Mr. Argus seconded. Motion passed unanimously.

Ms. Cameron made the motion that the Library Board accept the Unfunded Capital Projects List. Mr. Argus seconded. Motion passed unanimously.

Mr. Stines stated that Library staff would take on the responsibility of:

  • Exploring, determining what can be added to the current New Tampa Regional site.
  • Follow up on the suggestions that came from citizens on City of Tampa land.

Policy and Bylaws Committee: No meeting was held this month.

Nominating Committee: Mr. Argus presented the following slate of Officers:

  • Chair: Jim Johnson
  • Vice-Chair: James Martin
  • Secretary: Bill Scheuerle

Mr. Johnson asked for nominations from the floor. There were none.

Unfinished Business

Ms. Cameron asked for the status of the SouthShore Regional Libraries wiring. Mr. Stines stated that the ITS Department had approved the wiring.

Dr. Scheuerle asked for the status of the letter requesting that vocational school students be considered to build the Upper Tampa Bay sign. Mr. Stines believes that a contract has been awarded. Ms. George stated that Architectural Services has negotiated a thirty-five thousand dollar contract. Dr. Scheuerle made the motion that the previous motion be put into abeyance. Ms. Vickers seconded. Motion passed unanimously.

New Business

Ms. Vickers stated that there have been several newspaper articles for and against the Cybermobile and warned the Library Board to be aware that there may be repercussions coming.

Director's Report

Mr. Stines stated that the Spanish speaking Cybermobile Librarians have resigned and replacements are being recruited.

He also stated that most of the SouthShore Regional Library positions have been filled. The greatest need is for Children's Librarians and a national ad has been published in the Library Hotline.

Mr. Stines stated that the Dolly Parton Partnership has received a $57,000 donation from the Children's Board as part of the match, $10,000 from United Way, $6,000 and $3,000 from two other sources. He hopes to have the first mailing before the end of 2006.

The meeting was adjourned at 5:46 p.m.

Meeting Dates:

Budget - Tuesday, July 27, 2006 - 3:00 p.m. at the Port Tampa City Public Library
Planning -Tuesday, July 25, 2006 - 2:00 p.m. at the John F. Germany Public Library
Policy & Bylaws - Tentatively scheduled for Tuesday, July 25, 2006 - 3:00 p.m. at the John F. Germany Public Library
Library Board - Thursday, July 27, 2006 - 4:00 p.m. at the Port Tampa City Public Library

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