Minutes — December 13, 2019


The one hundred seventy-seventh meeting of the Ohio Public Library Information Network (OPLIN) Board of Trustees was called to order at 10:01 a.m. on Friday, December 13, 2019 by Board Chair Travis McAfee at the OPLIN office in Columbus, Ohio.

Present were Board members: Angela Baldree, Travis Bautz, Jamie Black, Roger Donaldson, Chris May, Travis McAfee, Hilary Prisbylla, Tara Sidwell, Garalynn Tomas, and Holly Varley. 

Also present were: Karl Jendretzky, Laura Solomon, and Don Yarman (OPLIN); Stephanie Herriott and Jamie Pardee (State Library); and Michelle Francis and Jay Smith (Ohio Library Council).



Jamie Black motioned to approve the agenda as presented; Holly Varley seconded. There was no discussion, so the chair called for a vote on the motion; all aye.


The State Librarian was unable to attend the meeting, and OLC staff were delayed, so the Chair postponed public participation until later in the meeting.

4. APPROVAL OF THE MINUTES of October 11 meeting

Chris May motioned to approve the minutes of the October 11, 2019, meeting as presented; Tara Sidwell seconded. There was no discussion, so the Chair called for a vote on the motion; all aye.


Jamie Pardee reviewed the financial reports, noting that disbursements remain in line with estimates for this time of year. There is a balance of about $50,000 in Information Resources which can be moved to unplanned spending authority, which will reduce the $102,000 deficit. Yarman reported that OPLIN’s E-rate reimbursement requests were approved by USAC, and OPLIN is on track to get $1.6 million for the current service year, a bit above estimates, so it may not be necessary to ask the Controlling Board to increase the agency’s spending authority. The projected cash balance at the end of the fiscal year is $2.2 million.
Angela Baldree motioned to accept the financial reports; Jamie Black seconded. There was no discussion, so the Chair called for a vote on the motion; all aye.

Pardee also reported that the State Library Board met Tuesday, December 10. They awarded almost $225,000 in federal LSTA grants, the largest grant going to five libraries in Columbiana county for the purpose of joining SearchOhio. The State Board of Education appointed Janet Carlton, Digital Initiatives Coordinator at Ohio University Libraries, to a five year term on the State Library Board starting in January. On Thursday, congressional negotiators reached a deal to approve $1.3 trillion in federal spending for 2020, avoiding a government shutdown.

6. OLD BUSINESS — none


7.1. Advanced Digital Researcher Award/Ohio History Day
For several years, OPLIN  has sponsored Junior and Senior “Advanced Digital Researcher Awards” for Ohio History Day projects. The best projects have used subscription resources from public libraries, but frequently those are resources beyond what is offered in the Ohio Web Library, particularly newspaper archives that public libraries make available. Last year, State Library staff had hoped to sponsor an award to promote Ohio materials in DPLA, but their funding source prohibited them from award sponsorship. Yarman discussed the possibility of expanding the scope of the award to encourage use of the digital primary resource materials created by Ohio libraries.

Jamie Black asked how many projects were submitted, and whether the award amount was a factor. Yarman said he didn’t think the award amount was relevant: the researchers just weren’t exploring digital materials beyond free websites easily discovered with a Google search.


Yarman reported that the transition from lyndaLibrary to LinkedIn Learning is still paused, and the company has no additional information. Yarman has attended several meetings concerning the Ohio Digital Network project; he reported that the Digital Public Library of America plans to hold its annual network council meeting at the State Library next year, and DPLA is considering Columbus for DPLAfest, the biannual conference of participating institutions.

Yarman reviewed the expected E-rate refunds for the current funding year. There are 70 sites put out for bid for contract renewals or upgrades. In addition, there are sixteen libraries under contract where new pricing may make it possible to upgrade their capacity at the same monthly cost. Jamie Black asked who reviews the contracts; Jendretzky replied that these are state contracts vetted by the Department of Administrative Services.

Michelle Francis introduced Jay Smith, OLC’s new director of Government and Legal Services, who outlined his background. Francis reviewed recent OLC webinar and workshop topics, including the recent Safety and Security Conference. For the first time since 2008, the Public Library Fund exceeded $400 million for the year.

Jay Smith reviewed current legislation that OLC is watching, including  HB76, which makes changes to ballot language for local levies. OLC testified in opposition to the bill. OLC is supporting an amendment to HB46 that will make it permissive, not required, for Ohio libraries to participate in the Ohio Checkbook program, as other political subdivisions are.

Jendretzky demonstrated the new OPLIN Database Usage Reporting Tool, https://stats.oplin.org. 

8.1. Library Services Manager report
Solomon reported that Drupal 8 migration is on track and picking up speed. Twelve library sites are now live on D8, nine sites have been upgraded and are awaiting word from the libraries to release, and the consultants are working on twelve more sites. The project is about a quarter complete. Solomon has completed revisions to the Webkit manual, incorporating all the changes Drupal 8 brings. There was a security issue with the queuing module used on the Drupal 7 sites, and Solomon upgraded that module to the D8 version for the Webkit customers.

8.2. Technology Projects Manager report

  • Still working with AT&T to complete the migration of the CLEVNET headend from the Cleveland Public Library to the SOCC.  AT&T had provisioning issues which necessitated redoing the orders. As soon as last sites are moved the legacy headend equipment can be removed, saving OPLIN money.
  • While OPLIN can’t switch to lower pricing on Spectrum circuits mid-contract, it does appear that many libraries will get increased bandwidth for the same cost. Those libraries are out on a separate 470 for E-rate.
  • Jendretzky is exploring, in the long term, a change to OPLIN’s internal routing from OSPF (Open Shortest Path First) to BGP (Border Gateway Protocol), which is more complex to implement but is more common to larger scale networks. OPLIN might implement the new protocol the next time the library site routers are replaced.


  • Jessica Dooley has been a good addition to the staff. Good to have a companion to delve into server administration. Jendretzky and Dooley have been using Fail2Ban to identify attacks on the servers and block the offending addresses. They’ve also tightened access rules to the Webkit server and adjusting Drupal permissions to better protect library websites, and increased security on the listserv server to prevent bad subscription spam.
  • Looking to refresh some of the server hardware used for internal OPLIN services. The public-facing services are hosted on AWS to avoid the risk of hardware failure, but it’s less expensive to host our own hardware for internal use. Jendretzky has a lead on surplus hardware from another state agency that OPLIN might be able to acquire and put into production for the office.
  • The way OPLIN uses EZProxy makes it difficult to use EZProxy’s internal tools for blocking illicit use: if a single robot exploits EZProxy to scrape content from one vendor, EZProxy will cut off all remote access for all resources for that library. As a solution, Jendretzky has begun developing a custom daemon to monitor EZProxy’s log files, enabling more targeted defence automation for identifying and blocking bad behavior.

NR3/Data center

  • Jendretzky is reallocating hardware at the OPLIN core to balance the needs for fiber and copper connections while adding increased redundancy to OPLIN core. 
  • Enabling environment for SEO staff to configure equipment in preparation for moving services to the SOCC. The shared rack with CLC will have more advanced, fully redundant connection with more upstream bandwidth, and no additional hardware costs to OPLIN.
  • Jendretzky is planning an overnight maintenance window for core equipment.
  • Construction continues at the SOCC to consolidate parking lot and dock entrances and improve property security.


  • OPLIN renewed InfosecIQ phishing testing/education for another year; five additional libraries have requested accounts.
  • SMS Gateway activity is leveling off; about 1.5 million text messages were relayed last year, and the service is on track to send 1.6 million in 2019. No need to buy additional credits for a couple years. 
  • No new libraries on OpenDNS; continues to meet needs with little support attention. 
  • Ten different databases are loading stats into Ohio Database Usage Reporting Tool (ODURT). The new service runs on about 2500 lines of code.

The Chair had no items to report.

With no other business pending, the Chair adjourned the meeting at 11:03 a.m.