January 2018 Minutes



The meeting was called to order at 6:03 pm at the library.

In attendance were: Library Director Marie Mueller, Trustees: Gloria Parkinson, chairwoman; Wendy Neil, vice chairwoman, Tracy Colangione, Karen Nugent, secretary; and Alex Zapantis.

There were no public comments.

A motion (made by Ms. Zapantis and seconded by Ms. Nugent) passed unanimously to take the agenda out of order to have a discussion about the library with Russell Karlstad, the new town facilities director, and Town Administrator Michael Ward. The Community Room Refurbishment Update, which was on the agenda, was also taken out of order as part of the discussion.

Mr. Karlstad agreed to take on the winterizing part of the Community Room project. The trustees have not yet received the check from the Clinton Home Foundation, but approximately $37,000 was approved as a “restricted gift” to upgrade the downstairs community room. Mr. Karlstad said the wooden parts of the windows should be preserved, and just the glass replaced. He knows window contractors, and will get estimates.

Mr. Karlstad noted that the window on the wall with the piano up against it (facing west) needs further investigation, because of earlier problems. Excavating and/or re-grading may be needed.  Also, Mr. Karlstad said plaster is falling off the ceiling in the Children’s Room, and the HVAC units need to be replaced. He said the library building had not been well maintained, but should be preserved.

Mr. Ward said the CHF gift money need not be used up on repairs other than the window/door replacement and other parts of the project, but it is unclear how much would be needed if the west facing wall poses a larger problem. Mr. Karlstad said he will try to recruit students from the Boston Architectural College to look at the wall.

There was a discussion about state grants for construction. A grant application has not been submitted to the state because a date for the next round of grants has not been announced.

Mr. Ward recommended getting a feasibility study of the building to determine a direction for further work: rehabilitation versus a new library.

A motion (made by Ms. Neil; seconded by Ms. Colangione) to authorize Ms. Mueller to research a feasibility study passed unanimously.

It was agreed to ask Roland Oscheinbein from Bolton, a member of the Mass. Board of Library Commissioners, to the next meeting to discuss the timeline for a feasibility study.

There was a discussion on what responsibilities Mr. Karlstad will take over in July, including: cleaning, maintenance, snow removal, lawn mowing and landscaping and the window replacement and wall plastering. Mr. Ward said a determination would be made about how much funding would be taken from the library budget to cover those tasks.


One amendment was made: A sentence on the report of a new library position was changed to: “A motion (made by Ms. Zapantis; seconded by Ms. DeVivo) to take the necessary steps to change the job title to “Head of Youth Services” (rather than director of youth services) passed unanimously.” The amended minutes were then approved unanimously.


Director’s Report:

  • Budget: The FY19 proposed budget was presented. A level funded budget would be $412,392; level services would be $420,734. They will be presented to the Finance Committee, along with a narrative that was given to trustees.
  • Ms. Mueller gave the dates and locations of upcoming library legislative breakfasts.
  • Ms. Mueller told the board Michelle Lupien, children’s library assistant, took an 8-hour mental health for teens workshop; and there is grant money available ($800) to offer the program to the public. A proposal to offer the program at the library was discussed. It was agreed to market the program to the public, and provide lunch for participants. This would need to take place by Sept. 1, 2018.


Trustees reviewed the evaluation done by Ms. Parkinson and Ms. DeVivo. Some minor changes in numerical values of duties will be made. A motion (made by Ms. Nugent; seconded by Ms. Zapantis) to accept the evaluation was unanimously approved.


1. Children’s Room Policy: Trustees disagree with some of the proposals made by the Children’s Room staff, including age limits, time limits and providing food, as there are already policies in place, and behavior rules for difficult situations. Ms. Mueller said she will make small “Hug Cards” outlining etiquette. Ms. Zapantis said she does not think it is the library’s responsibility to provide food, especially lunches, and clean up tables and trash. Trustees agreed, and will ask staff to check out a summer lunch program offered by the town Parks and Recreation Department, and possibly refer children there.

2. Publicity and Marketing: tabled.

The meeting adjourned at 8:39 pm.

The next meeting is scheduled for 6 pm, Feb. 27, 2018.

Minutes submitted by Karen Nugent, secretary.