Minutes — February 14, 2020


The one hundred seventy-eighth meeting of the Ohio Public Library Information Network (OPLIN) Board of Trustees was called to order at 10:02 a.m. on Friday, February 14, 2020 by Board Vice-Chair Chris May at the OPLIN office in Columbus, Ohio.

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

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



Angela Baldree motioned to approve the agenda as presented; Justin Bumbico seconded. There was no discussion, so the Vice-Chair called for a vote on the motion; all aye.


The Vice-Chair called for public participation.

Jay Smith outlined upcoming events on OLC’s calendar, which include a webinar on the state’s TechCred program, and a webinar about current ebook rights efforts. OLC Legislative Day will be held April 21. There will be a Trustees workshop on March 7; regional trustee dinners have also been scheduled, and those will feature speakers from the Ohio legislature. The Trump administration’s proposed federal budget again eliminates the Institute for Museum and Library Services; Michelle Francis and select Ohio library directors participated in a fly-in to Washington D.C. to urge lawmakers to restore IMLS funding.  Smith reviewed current state legislation that OLC is tracking, including HB76 that concerns ballot language, and HB450 which addresses fiscal officer succession.

Stephanie Herriott outlined the timeline for hiring a new State Librarian. The State Library Board should be selecting finalist candidates at their next Board meeting. 

4. APPROVAL OF THE MINUTES of December 13 meeting

Angela Baldree motioned to approve the minutes of the December 13, 2019, meeting as presented; Justin Bumbico seconded. There was no discussion, so the Vice-Chair called for a vote on the motion; all aye.


Jamie Pardee reviewed the financial reports, noting that all expenses are on schedule with the budget. Unplanned spending authority currently sits at negative $52,000. As the projected cash balance at the end of fiscal year 2020 is $2.4 million, Pardee expects to go to the Controlling Board in May to request an increase in spending authority over a portion of that balance.
Jamie Black motioned to accept the financial reports; Holly Varley seconded. There was no discussion, so the Vice-Chair called for a vote on the motion; all aye.

Don Yarman mentioned that he and Pardee had already discussed meeting with the Controlling Board about this, as well as requesting that the Board waive competitive bidding requirements for internet filtering as Cisco Umbrella/OpenDNS has such a broad install base in library systems across the state. Karl Jendretzky explained that any change would not be something OPLIN could program centrally; each library would have to change how its networks are configured. If OpenDNS stops working—for example, if it could no longer accommodate emerging standards such as Strict-Transport Security—then it would be worth the effort to move libraries to something new.

6. OLD BUSINESS — none

7. NEW BUSINESS — none


Yarman reviewed the E-rate work completed for the next service year. Bid decision letters have been issued for the two forms 470 previously issued. Most circuits will stay with their incumbent vendor, but favorable pricing will move seven libraries to new vendors. AT&T responded to the 470s with both state pricing and with E-rate-specific “lowest corresponding price,” which will require OPLIN to sign a service agreement directly with AT&T for those circuits. Assistant Attorney General Kari Hertel confirmed that this is permitted,  and she is assisting in the process of contract review. Yarman will release another 470 listing a few additional sites OPLIN has identified needing upgrades. Jamie Black asked how 470s are organized: by region, by vendor, by library? Yarman explained that it is up to each organization how they are broken up; E-rate consultant Lorrie Germann had recommended that OPLIN put all planned renewals and upgrades on a single 470. The second 470 for possible coterminous upgrades to Spectrum circuits was standalone because the language had not been formally approved, so it was better to segment that request off. 

Yarman thanked Jay Smith and Bill Morris for attending Sunset Review testimony, noting that it was good to see familiar, supportive faces in the room.

Yarman introduced Hannah Simpson, OPLIN’s iSchool intern. Hannah is currently a Communications Specialist at Delaware County District Library. While at OPLIN she is creating marketing kits with publicity materials for each of the Ohio Web Library databases; the kits will include web and flier graphics, as well as promotional copy for social media campaigns.

8.1. Library Services Manager report
Laura Solomon reported that 32 websites have been upgraded to Drupal 8 and launched; 14 more sites are either in process with Braindunk or under review by libraries. Solomon created a new support site for Webkit customers, webkits.oplin.org; in addition to the manuals and training videos, the new site contains graphics sized specifically for Webkit layouts. Libraries can download and customize images to promote some of the programs and services they have in common. On February 24, Solomon will present a webinar on “Evolving Technology,” an update to her popular “Emerging Technology” webinar she has presented each year. Registration for that program is full, but the recording will be posted to OPLIN’s YouTube channel.

8.2. Technology Projects Manager report
Karl Jendretzky talked about the development of ezproxy-guardian code, which ingests activity logs from EZProxy and scans them for behaviors that are markers for improper use (e.g. too much data transferred, too many failed attempts to establish a session), and checks also for markers of legitimate use. Rules vary by database as different targets behave differently. Some behavior is blocked outright; some behavior just generates an email alert. The goal is to generally increase the security of EZProxy access to databases and protect vendor data from outside scraping.

Jendretzky rebuilt the network in the colocation space to create redundant connections to OPLIN’s primary core. The new NR3 core allows for link aggregation (LAGs) for the colocation tenants CLC and SEO, so there isn’t a single failure spot for their consortium servers. SEO’s move into the NR3 colocation space went very smoothly, and the CLC's servers, already in NR3 racks, will transfer onto their redundant connection in the next two days. In addition, the CLC has moved their offices into the State Library, and Jendretzky is adjusting network programming to carry the CLC’s office connection along the circuit OPLIN provides to the State Library. Jendretzky will announce a network maintenance window soon which will affect library customers on the state’s VOIP solution, as he builds redundancy into pathways for voice traffic.

OPLIN is seeing library messages on the SMS Gateway being blocked as spam if the message contains any URL with a “.info” suffix. Only a few libraries in Ohio use .info domains, and Jendretzky advises them not to include those domains in the text messages it sends out to patrons.
With the addition of a new stats API for Transparent Language, all statewide database stats are now being harvested automatically by programs for stats.oplin.org. Jendretzky continues to tweak the scripts as vendors make changes to their interfaces which break the automatic harvesting. Yarman added that he provided no stats report to the Board for this meeting because the usage numbers for December and January were almost identical to December and January of the previous year.

The SRX300 routers that OPLIN has deployed in most libraries are actually firewall devices, and Jendretzky is investigating what basic firewall services OPLIN can easily provide to libraries through those devices. The goal is to identify a set of best-practices rules—such as isolating “Internet of Things” devices from more critical parts of the libraries network, or segmenting staff and patron traffic— that can support a small library network with little staff attention after the initial on-boarding.

As Chair Travis MacAfee was unable to attend the meeting, Yarman reported that Board members Black, Bumbico, and Sidwell were previously appointed to the nominations committee, and he will discuss with them the process of filling upcoming Board vacancies. Yarman outlined plans for the April planning meeting, a longer Board meeting that starts at 9:00 a.m. and lasts through lunch. In addition to the usual review of OPLIN’s service plan, the Board will brainstorm about the feasibility of new services that could have an impact on OPLIN’s next budget request. One topic for discussion will be the request from the Sunset Review Committee for any recommendations for legislative changes that would improve agency efficiency. Yarman also reminded the Board that they have to complete ethics training every year, and he will email the link to that training when it is available.

With no other business pending, the Vice-Chair adjourned the meeting at 10:52 a.m.