Minutes — August 12, 2016


The one hundred fifty-seventh meeting of the Ohio Public Library Information Network (OPLIN) Board of Trustees was called to order at 9:55 a.m. on Friday, August 12, 2016 by Board Chair Becky Schultz at the OPLIN office in Columbus, Ohio.

Present were Board members: Marty Beets, Susan Brown, Karen Davis, Jeff Garringer, Cindy Lombardo, Chris May, Travis McAfee, Michael Penrod, and Becky Schultz.

Also present were: Stephen Hedges and Karl Jendretzky (OPLIN); Stephanie Herriott and Jamie Pardee (State Library); and Michelle Francis (Ohio Library Council).



Becky Schultz presented the slate of officer candidates recommended by the Nominations Committee: Susan Brown, Chair; Joe Greenward, Vice-Chair; Cindy Lombardo, Secretary; and Michael Penrod, Treasurer. Becky asked if there were any additional nominations or questions, and there were none.

The Chair called for a vote on the slate of officers submitted by the Nominations Committee; all aye.


Karen Davis motioned to approve the agenda as presented; Michael Penrod seconded. There was no discussion, so Chair Susan Brown called for a vote on the motion; all aye.


The Chair presented the proposed Board meeting schedule for Fiscal Year 2017. Becky Schultz commented that the Director Search Committee felt that a special meeting on May 12, 2017 would also be needed. The Chair then asked for approval of the following schedule of meetings, all at the OPLIN office starting at 10:00 a.m. unless otherwise noted: August 12, 2016; October 14, 2016; December 8, 2016; February 10, 2017; April 14, 2017 (9:00 am start); May 12, 2017; and June 9, 2017. The Chair also asked for approval of two further meetings for planning purposes: August 11, 2017; and October 13, 2017.

Cindy Lombardo motioned to approve the Board meeting schedule as revised; Chris May seconded. There was no further discussion, so the Chair called for a vote on the motion; all aye.


The Chair called for public participation.

Michelle Francis reminded the Board of events coming up at the Ohio Library Council (OLC) Convention in late September, particularly the OhioMeansJobs session and comments by Sen. Randy Gardner, as well as a legal update from OLC's legal counsel. Regarding the current Public Library Fund (PLF) distributions to counties, Michelle noted that actual distributions have been below estimates, but an increase is anticipated next year. Preparations have begun to try to get an increase in the PLF funding formula in the next biennium budget; Legislative Day is March 29 next year.

6. APPROVAL OF THE MINUTES of June 10 meeting

Karen Davis motioned to approve the minutes of the June 10 meeting as presented; Becky Schultz seconded. There was no discussion, so the Chair called for a vote on the motion; all aye.


Jamie Pardee presented budget information as of the end of Fiscal Year 2016 (June 30) and as of the end of July in the new fiscal year (2017). Expenditure amounts in FY 2016 were close to budgeted amounts except for the Telecommunications category, where expenditures were significantly less than budgeted; the FY 2017 budget has been adjusted accordingly. Jamie noted that the cash balance at the end of FY 2016 was large and anticipated to be larger at the end of FY 2017.

Michael Penrod motioned to accept the Financial Reports; Chris May seconded.

Stephen Hedges called attention to the cash balance and presented some general information about plans to use these funds. He noted that the preferred use of the funds would be specific project support, rather than increasing ongoing annual costs. He also reminded the Board that support of digitization initiatives in public libraries is part of the OPLIN Strategic Plan, but at this point any costs involved with such support are unknown. Stephen demonstrated that much of the cash balance results from large E-rate reimbursements and lower telecommunications costs.

Cindy Lombardo asked how much the year-end cash balance should be. Stephen and Jamie agreed that it would be best to have $1—$2 million in reserve.

There was no further discussion, so the Chair called for a vote on the motion; all aye.

8. OLD BUSINESS — none


9.1. Discuss plan for replacing network equipment

Karl Jendretzky reported that the current OPLIN routers at library sites have passed their end-of-sale dates. He would like the Board to consider replacing them with new Ethernet switches that have dual power supplies and support the current IEEE MAC Security standard (MACsec) to encrypt data.

Karl also reported that new hardware will soon be installed at the OPLIN network core to replace the current single 10 Gbps internet connection through the Office of Information Technology (OIT) with dual 20 Gbps connections through OARnet. The current network intrusion detection device can only protect one connection, so it would be ideal to purchase a second.

Karl suggested that a second network core router could then provide complete redundancy protection to the OPLIN network.

In response to questions, Karl answered that the current site routers are about seven years old, and that network core equipment that can handle more than 10 Gbps is more complex and significantly more expensive.

Stephen asked if the Board was interested in seeing detailed plans from Karl for expanding network capability and improving security at the next meeting, and they were.

9.2. Approve new position description

Stephen Hedges explained that Amie McReynolds has resigned her position at OPLIN, but her duties had changed quite a bit during the six years of her employment, so it would be better to fill her open position with someone doing other work that would be more valuable for supporting current OPLIN goals. OPLIN staff have discussed a variety of ideas. One idea was to hire a systems administrator to allow Karl Jendretzky to spend more time assisting libraries on site, but there is another way to do that which will be discussed later. Staff eventually agreed on a Digital Resources Manager who would work with the libraries and partner organizations on issues related to information databases, digitization and training; this person would also have to backup network support calls as needed. Stephen presented a rough draft of such a position description and suggested an annual salary around $50,000.

Susan Brown asked if most of the work would be done in the office or remotely, and Stephen replied that the person would need to be present in the office to backup network support, but would occasionally need to travel to conventions and meetings. Susan asked if an MLS/MLIS degree would be required and Stephanie Herriott replied that the similar positions she has identified require such a library degree. Stephanie also noted that postings for such positions often get a lot of response from librarians currently working at higher education institutions.

Michael Penrod motioned to approve the draft of the Digital Resources Manager position description with the understanding that Stephanie Herriott would edit it to final form; Cindy Lombardo seconded. There was no further discussion, so the Chair called for a vote on the motion; all aye.



Becky Schultz reported that the Director Search Committee has met a couple of times and developed a timeline for the process of finding a new director following Stephen Hedges' retirement next June. They plan to finish writing the job description in October.


Stephen Hedges reminded the Board of a brief discussion during the last meeting about alignment between the goals in the Strategic Plan and the job goals of OPLIN staff, and he provided information about OPLIN staff goals. As part of the criteria for evaluating staff performance, each person has two "job goals" related to daily operations, one "project goal" related to a current OPLIN project, and one "stretch goal" for developing new skills and knowledge, and all are explicitly related to an OPLIN Priority from the Strategic Plan.

Stephen also reminded the Board of a question at the last meeting about the possibility of a follow-up to the database survey with questions about library staff database training and how usage statistics are collected and used. Stephen emailed the Content Advisory Committee to get their thoughts about a possible follow-up survey, and while committee members thought training and statistics information could be interesting, it was pointed out that the purpose of the survey was to help the committee with future database decisions, and training and statistics information would not be useful for that purpose. Stephen suggested that a new survey may be helpful after the new Digital Resources Manager has become established. The Chair asked Stephanie Herriott about the time required to hire a Digital Resources Manager, and Stephanie thought the process would move quickly, perhaps as quickly as six weeks.

Stephen reported that the LSTA-funded Digital Public Library of America (DPLA) in Ohio planning process has come to an end, so there was a meeting at the State Library to discuss the transition to governance of the Ohio Digital Network, as the Ohio DPLA service hub will be called. The Digitization Hubs, OhioLINK and the Ohio History Connection, the organizations identified as Community Engagement Centers for the Ohio Digital Network, decided that OPLIN should continue to play a role in this initiative as the communication point for public libraries and the public library representative to the Ohio Digital Network Executive Committee.

Regarding the OPLIN office activities calendar, Stephen highlighted a CLEVNET meeting he and Karl Jendretzky attended, where Stephen explained the OPLIN Strategic Plan. He also reported that Laura Solomon had been a speaker at the Ohio Library Support Staff Institute at Ohio Northern University.

11.1. Library Services Manager report

In the absence of Laura Solomon, Stephen Hedges reported that there has not been a lot of demand for new websites since the last Board meeting, but several other things have been happening. Laura will be teaching a webinar for TechSoup on August 24 on the basics of social media analytics. She will be teaching the first OPLIN webinar about common problems with library websites in September, using webinar software from the State Library, and the webinar will be recorded. Promotion of this webinar will begin next week; Michelle Francis reminded Stephen that OLC would also like to promote this webinar.

The Website Kit "Module Market" continues to be an effective way for libraries to order additions to their websites and to remind them of what is available. Finally, Laura and Karl have started testing outsourced hosting of the website kits.

11.2. Technology Projects Manager report

Karl Jendretzky explained that after discussions among OPLIN staff about Amie McReynolds' open position, it was decided to start exploring the option of using a hosting company for the website kits and other any high-profile OPLIN websites, rather than hiring a systems administrator to allow Karl to undertake different tasks. He has the OPLIN main website running with one such company and has been monitoring the performance and comparing it to the current servers he manages.

Karl reported that the State of Ohio had a subtle problem with their intrusion protection system that was restricting State of Ohio and OPLIN traffic to the internet at peak load times; that problem has been corrected. New "fabric" cards will soon be installed in the OPLIN network core router that will allow us to use a path to the internet that does not pass through the state's intrusion protection, which duplicates OPLIN's own intrusion system.

Karl also reported that the new OpenDNS licenses have allowed a number of CLEVNET libraries to begin using the system; 134 libraries now have OpenDNS accounts. Use of the SMS messaging system continues to see strong growth.

Karl explained that as library websites continue to move to the HTTPS (HTTP Secure) protocol, the EZ-Proxy software that is used to authenticate access to databases through the websites will cause problems. The solution is to buy wild-card digital certificates for each library, which cost about $80 a year. For now, OPLIN will buy those as needed, but it may be worth talking to OCLC about hosted EZ-Proxy, since the software we have will not be upgraded with any easier way to handle HTTPS.

Finally, Karl reported that CLEVNET has moved backup hardware to the State of Ohio Computer Center next to the OPLIN core.

11.3. Database usage

Stephen Hedges reported that database usage continues to be slightly stronger than it was last year.


12.1. At-large appointment to Executive Committee

Chair Susan Brown appointed Becky Schultz to the at-large position on the OPLIN Executive Committee.


On motion of Cindy Lombardo and second of Karen Davis the Board adjourned at 11:15 a.m.