Minutes — February 12, 2016


The one hundred fifty-fourth meeting of the Ohio Public Library Information Network (OPLIN) Board of Trustees was called to order at 10:00 a.m. on Friday, February 12, 2016 by Board Chair Becky Schultz at the OPLIN office in Columbus, Ohio.

Present were Board members: Marty Beets, Jill Billman-Royer, Susan Brown, Karen Davis, Joe Greenward, Jamie Mason, Chris May, Travis McAfee, Michael Penrod, and Becky Schultz.

Also present were: Stephen Hedges, Laura Solomon, and Karl Jendretzky (OPLIN); Bill Morris, Stephanie Herriott, and Jamie Pardee (State Library); and Doug Evans (Ohio Library Council).


Jill Billman-Royer motioned to approve the agenda as presented; Michael Penrod seconded. There was no discussion, so the Chair called for a vote on the motion; all aye.


The Chair called for public participation.

Doug Evans provided an update on Public Library Fund (PLF) revenue and libraries with levies on the March ballot. He noted that Ohio Library Council (OLC) Chapter Conferences begin in March, and that OLC Legislative Day will be held on April 13 and will include a press conference this year. Finally, he announced that the new OLC website is now expected to launch next week.

4. APPROVAL OF THE MINUTES of December 11 meeting

Jamie Mason motioned to approve the minutes of the December 11, 2015 meeting as presented; Michael Penrod seconded. There was no discussion, so the Chair called for a vote on the motion; all aye.


Jamie Pardee presented the Financial Reports as of January 31 and noted that both revenue and expenditures are very close to what they should be seven months into the fiscal year. She did call attention to the low expenditure for telecommunications services from the Office of Information Technology (OIT), noting that OIT is switching to annual billing and the bill was received after January 31. Stephen pointed out that the amount of the bill, which was based on last year's total expenditure, was less than budgeted.

Michael Penrod motioned to accept the Financial Reports; Chris May seconded. There was no discussion, so the Chair called for a vote on the motion; all aye.


6.1. Approve Extending OPLIN policy

Stephen Hedges distributed a copy of the current "Policy on Extending OPLIN to Other Institutions," a copy of the current policy with extensive changes marked to convert it to a "Policy on Extending OPLIN Connections Beyond the Library," and a clean copy of the proposed revised policy. He reminded the Board of discussions related to this policy at the October and December meetings, and of the Board request that he bring a recommended policy to them at this meeting.

Stephen explained that his review of the previous discussions clarified that there were two issues that needed to be addressed by this policy: the sharing of OPLIN connections with other institutions; and the sharing of OPLIN connections with the general public outside the library premises. The Board had not seemed to support any change in the current policy regarding sharing OPLIN connections with other institutions. On the other hand, the Board discussions seemed to favor sharing OPLIN connections with the general public outside the library. Stephen also noted that the wording of the Ohio Revised Code language regarding OPLIN seemed to support these positions, so he tried to incorporate them into the proposed policy revision.

The policy proposal was reviewed by other OPLIN staff, with particular discussion about the best ways to enforce the prohibition against sharing an OPLIN connection with other institutions. The results of the staff discussions are included in the proposal.

Jamie Mason motioned to accept the revised policy as presented; Michael Penrod seconded.

After discussion, Jill Billman-Royer motioned to amend the policy by replacing "should remember two things" with "shall accept two conditions"; Susan Brown seconded.

The Chair called for a vote on the amendment; all aye.

There was no further discussion of the amended policy, so the Chair called for a vote on the original motion.

Recorded vote: Marty Beets, aye; Jill Billman-Royer, aye; Susan Brown, aye; Karen Davis, aye; Joe Greenward, aye; Jamie Mason, aye; Chris May, aye; Travis McAfee, aye; Michael Penrod, aye; and Becky Schultz, aye.

6.2. Report on OpenDNS licensing

Stephen Hedges noted that at the last meeting there had been discussion of acquiring licenses for public libraries to use a more sophisticated product from OpenDNS for Internet filtering, but no quote had been received from OpenDNS at that time, so this item was held over for action at this meeting. After the December meeting, however, OpenDNS agreed to provide the better product to Ohio public libraries at no additional cost. Therefore no action by the Board is needed.

6.3. Report on OIT Network Services MOU

Stephen Hedges communicated to OIT the Board's December decision to decline the Memorandum of Understanding with OIT for billing Internet access costs, explaining to OIT the Board's concern that accepting the MOU at this time would leave OPLIN ineligible for E-rate reimbursements of OIT costs. It was Stephen's previous understanding that OIT would make a different proposal to the Board, but instead they have simply issued an invoice for all costs for fiscal year 2016. Since this does not involve any contractual agreement, the E-rate reimbursement is not endangered and no action by the Board is needed.


7.1. Approve sponsorship of OLC Convention and Expo

Stephen Hedges distributed a letter from Lori Hensley, Director of Education and Events for the Ohio Library Council, offering the opportunity for OPLIN to again be a Platinum Sponsor ($10,000) of the OLC Convention and Expo in September. The contribution would offset Internet access fees at the venue and allow OLC to provide several Internet computers and a device charging station for conference attendees. OPLIN would be acknowledged on conference materials and signage and would receive free space and electricity service in the exhibit hall, as well as meeting space for the annual OPLIN update.

Susan Brown motioned to provide $10,000 to OLC for Platinum level sponsorship of the OLC Convention and Expo; Michael Penrod seconded.

In discussion of the motion, there was a request for clarification concerning the name of the annual update session, formerly called the "Stakeholders Meeting," and the expected attendees. There was also a concern voiced that this expenditure might be viewed as a violation of state agency spending rules, since the motion does not specify how the funds would be used, but Stephen noted that the expenditure is really for one item — sponsorship of a convention — and is not a commitment to pay for other itemized costs.

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

Recorded vote: Marty Beets, aye; Jill Billman-Royer, aye; Susan Brown, aye; Karen Davis, aye; Joe Greenward, aye; Jamie Mason, aye; Chris May, aye; Travis McAfee, aye; Michael Penrod, aye; and Becky Schultz, aye.

7.2. Discuss simplification of OPLIN policies

Stephen Hedges presented a document listing all of the current OPLIN policies, which are currently located in different areas of the OPLIN website and are difficult to find. With this one page listing, however, it becomes clear that some policies have not been reviewed for a long time and may either need to be changed or rescinded. For example, the "OPLIN Disclaimer" deals with the OPLIN website when it was the public gateway to the information databases, so it is now obsolete. Stephen discussed a few other similar examples.

Stephen asked the Board if: they agreed that a review of the entire body of OPLIN policies is needed, and if so; does the Board want to undertake this project in stages throughout the coming year, or; does the Board want to dedicate some time at the April planning meeting to reviewing all the policies.

Jamie Mason noted that some of these documents are not really policies and wondered if Board action was needed to remove them, but while Stephen agreed, he noted that they had been adopted by Board action, so he felt Board action was necessary to rescind them.

Michael Penrod suggested that Stephen prepare a complete policy "manual" for Board review at the April meeting or as soon as possible thereafter, paying special attention to removing procedures from policies. The Board was in general consensus with this suggestion.


Stephen Hedges reported on a number of activities related to the DPLA-Ohio (Digital Public Library of America in Ohio) project, which has been occupying much of his time recently. He has also been busy working with Lorrie Germann on E-rate materials, since the new online system this year is requiring much more time and effort to get things set up properly. Stephen informed the Board that he has completed the staff evaluations for 2015 and will now move on to creating evaluation materials for 2016, which will need careful attention, since there is a possibility that at some point in the future the state may start awarding pay increases based on employee performance. Finally, Stephen announced that the Content Advisory Committee would be meeting on February 17 to prepare recommendations and suggestions for the Board regarding online databases. In particular, he plans to discuss the current process of selecting the Ohio Web Library databases with the committee. In response to a question asking if it still makes sense to buy the databases in partnership, Stephen replied that the basic concepts of the original partnership are still valid, but the database selection has evolved over the years to the point where the Libraries Connect Ohio partners are concerned that the needs of the largest contributors are not being met.

8.1. Library Services Manager report

Laura Solomon reported that she has been upgrading the website kits to add new features that libraries have inquired about, and has been testing some other new features. One of these is a module that allows her to include drop-down menus on the websites and still keep them accessible to those who have vision impairments and use special software to convert websites to speech. Finally, she reported that she will be a presenter at the Massachusetts Library Association 2016 Conference in May.

8.2. Technology Projects Manager report

Karl Jendretzky provided more details on the improved OpenDNS licenses now available to libraries through OPLIN. He also reported that the last of the old T1 lines has now been replaced, which makes some old hardware available for other uses, and he described new servers going into production at the network core.

Karl reported that he had investigated TV whitespace hardware, to be able to advise libraries, and found that one company dominates that market and that the bandwidth capacity of the hardware is rather limited. Karl also reported that Cleveland Public Library has begun using the OPLIN SMS notification system, boosting usage to about 77,000 patron notifications a month.

Karl updated the Board on progress toward installing network cards that can handle up to 100 Gbps in the OPLIN core router to accommodate VoIP traffic from libraries. The Board expressed concern that Karl could be spending a lot of time on a project that only served a few libraries and advised caution in that regard.

Karl also reported that networked printers in libraries have been hacked recently if they are using a public IP address, so he has been advising libraries on re-addressing their printers. Finally, Karl reported that the OPLIN office has started using Slack for intraoffice communication.

8.3. Database usage

Stephen Hedges reported that World Book statistics are still not available online, but World Book staff have been providing statistics spreadsheets to OPLIN, INFOhio, and OhioLINK. The database usage statistics in general have settled into a pattern that is almost identical to last year.


9.1. Board nominations committee

Becky Schultz noted that Jamie Mason will be leaving the Board after June, having served two full terms, and that Cindy Lombardo, Joe Greenward, and Michael Penrod are coming to the end of their first terms. She therefore appointed Jamie, Karen Davis, and Susan Brown to a committee to collect and review nominations for Board membership. Jamie asked that Stephen review last year's nominations as well.

9.2. Plans for April Planning Meeting

Becky Schultz asked Stephen Hedges to describe plans for the April 8 planning meeting. Stephen provided an overview of the meeting time, the agenda, and the lunch arrangements for the day.

9.3. Ethics form reminder

Becky Schultz reminded the Board that their annual Financial Disclosure Statements are due at the Ohio Ethics Commission by April 15.


On motion of Karen Davis and second of Travis McAfee the Board adjourned at 11:20 a.m.