Tag Archives: South Georgia Library Board

Library Board this afternoon @ SGLB 2013-05-21

1PM-3PM today, according to the VDT calendar. Who’s running it now that Kay Harris isn’t chair? And will whoever it is welcome video cameras?

The South Georgia Regional Library Board of Trustees will be meeting Tuesday, March 19 at 1PM in the Folsom Room of the Valdosta-Lowndes County Public Library to conduct regular business.The meeting is open to the public and all are welcome to attend. For more information call 333.0086.

Yes, that says March, but the calendar entry says May 21, today. And it says “open to the public and all are welcome to attend”. But are all welcome to record? Or do all have to stay inside an 8×4 foot blue rectangle next to a loud air cleaner? Was that just Kay Harris’ policy and will it change now that she has resigned as chair and from the board?

If there’s anything about this meeting on the library’s website, I can’t find it.


SPLOST, media, southside library: videos @ SGLB 2012-11-20

Here’s a video playlist of the 20 November 2012 South Georgia Regional Library Board meeting. And here’s George Rhynes’ editorial on what he saw, heard, and was asked at that meeting. He’d prefer SPLOST being spent first on sidewalks than on moving the library where people would have to go farther to get to it. Also, like many of us, he’s tired of a few people controlling the purse-strings without input from the rest of us. He gave an example:

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SPLOST VII @ SGLB 2012-11-20

SPLOST on the ballot again? --Willis Miller @SGLB 2012-11-20 At Tuesday’s South Georgia Library Board meeting. a board member (his nameplate said Willis Miller) wanted to know about SPLOST:

How we know it’s going to come up next November or at another time?

Good question.

Here’s video of the discussion as it resumed later in the meeting:

SPLOST VII discussion at Monthly Meeting, South Georgia Library Board (SGLB),
Video by George Boston Rhynes for K.V.C.I. and bostongbr on YouTube,
Valdosta, Lowndes County, Georgia, 20 November 2012.

Kay Harris said there had to be a minimum of twelve months, so November 2013 would be the next possible time. She said County Commissioner Richard Raines had expressed full support for the new library, and she was talking to the other commissioners. She was asked whether the SPLOST lists would be the same, and said there might be some changes, but she hadn’t heard anyone suggest that the Five Points property might be deleted. That’s curious, because she quoted Valdosta Mayor Gayle in the VDT 7 November 2012 as saying:

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Library Architect Submissions (part 3)

Here are the submissions from the final four architects that were considered for the new Five Points Lowndes County Library. This continues the series with Library Architect Selection Documents (part 1) and Library Architect RFP and “Bible” (part 2) which presents documents received by LAKE from SGRL in response to an open records request.

The four architect submissions are linked on this LAKE web page. Here they are separately:

If we missed anything please let us know.

Architects: feel free to put your submissions on your own web pages and send us a link.


Library Architect RFP and “Bible” (part 2)

Here is the Request for Proposals and the “Bible” of related documents that served as background for the architect selection process for the new library at Five Points. These were received on a CD as part of the library architect selection documents in the very organized open records response from the South Georgia Regional Library; see the previous post for related agendas and minutes.

Included in the RFP (which was issued by the County, not by the Library Board), is a list of fourteen numbered submittal instructions that looks like it might have been the basis for the list of 90 items on the Library Scoring Worksheet.

The RFP also includes this interesting section:


Lowndes County Board of Commissioners reserves the following rights:

Rejection of any and all submittals
Negotiate changes in the Scope of Work
Negotiate services to be provided
Negotiate fee proposal
Waive any and all technicalities

That last line basically seems like it could be interpreted to mean they could select whatever appealed to them no matter what the fit (or not) with what was asked for in the RFP.

The “Bible” includes a cover sheet that says:

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Library Architect Selection Documents (part 1)

Thanks to a very organized open records response from the South Georgia Regional Library, we have available agendas and minutes of the SGRL Board and other materials related to the selection of an architect for the new library at Five Points. Here is a first batch of those materials, which sheds a little light on the library architect selection process.

SGRL Minutes 2012-07-17 According to the SGRL Board minutes of 17 July 2012 as approved at the SGRL Board meeting of 18 September 2012,

July 17, 2012

V. Architectural (Building and Grounds Committee)

The Firm of Clemons, Rutherford and Associates (CRA) was approved as the architectural firm for construction of the Five Points Library.
Moved: Ray Devery Second: Wyn Miller
Ayes: All Nays: None

No further detail is provided in those minutes.

Library Scoring Worksheet A Library Scoring Worksheet for the design and construction of the “Lowndes County Library” was included in the materials received in response to the open records request (it’s the extra item in the left edge of the picture in the previous post). It lists 30 topics with a potential score of 3 points each for a total of 90 points, grouped in categories of “Responsiveness/Quality of Presentation/Capabilty”, “Experience, Design Concept and Creativity”, and “Personal Overall Impression of the architectural team”. However, no marked-up worksheets with scores for any architecture firm were included.

The complete agenda packets for the SGRL board meetings of 18 September 2012 and 17 July 2012 are available on the LAKE website where more will be added later.

Next: the RFP.


Library open records request 2012-10-26

The most-organized open records response ever! Well, that we’ve asked for, anyway. Sure, sometimes local government bodies deliver a three-ring binder of papers. Sometimes they deliver a CD. Sometimes they deliver on a USB stick. Nobody ever delivered all of the above. OK, I brought the USB stick and the scanner (not pictured), but look at that CD lying on top of the really thick binder: the CD contains everything that’s in the binder, and that saved us a lot of scanning time.

Thank you, Kelly Lenz, Patrick Spurlock, and Tom Gooding!

It will take a bit of time to process all this information; stay tuned.

Kelly Lenz, Library Director, Tom Gooding, Attorney

Kelly Lenz, Library Director, Tom Gooding, Attorney
Left to right: an extra item, the four architect presentations, the “bible” of what the new library should be (the thick binder and the CD), and agendas, minutes, and board packets (the other two binders).
Picture by Gretchen Quarterman for Lowndes Area Knowledge Exchange (LAKE),
at South Georgia Regional Library, Valdosta, Lowndes County, Georgia, 26 October 2012.

I know of at least one open records request somewhere else that, two years later and counting, Continue reading

South Georgia Library Board @ SGLB 2012-09-18

The library board heard citizens at length about a problem that was apparently news to the board, later considered the problem at length, came up with an interim solution, and formed a committee to examine it longterm.

Citizen concerns about rules against after hours library use

Concerns were raised about hours at the southside library at the monthly meeting of the South Georgia Library Board, 18 September 2012. Apparently rules have recently been changed for all library branches so that meetings can no longer be held after library hours. This is a problem for volunteer groups composed of working people. It was unclear what the latest version of the rules is. And the library board appeared unfamiliar with the hours of its own libraries. However, they did at the end of their meeting extensively consider the issue and apparently come to an interim solution with a path to a more general solution.

The rules change may have been due to one incident at one branch (not the southside branch) for which the library board knew the sponsoring organization. Questions were raised as to why a blanket rules change ensued. One citizen pointed out that taxpayers pay for the library buildings so it’s not clear why they should be prevented from using them; school buildings, too. Another consideration was elderly parent care, because it’s hard to get help for that any time other than during the day. Kay Harris wanted to be sure everyone who wanted to speak had spoken. At least one citizen left a written statement for the record, which is always a good idea. Then all the citizens who had spoken left the meeting, apparently uninterested in anything else the library board was doing. Interestingly, a southside library support group was in one of the regular report items.


After the other citizens left, one of the library board (his nameplate said Ray Devery) asked whether Gretchen could stay. Kay Harris without hesitation said yes and moved on to approval of the minutes. Congratulations to Kay Harris on knowing the open meetings law and sticking to it! Speaking of the minutes, where are they so the taxpaying public can see them?

Regular business

Regular board business included circulation, story time, and carpet restoration.

Lanier County “volunteered” prison labor for library uses, a technology report (which included nothing about Internet access), finances revenues exceeded expenditures, yet the state cut more than $86,000, payroll, insurance webinar, and staff turnover.

There was a community relations development report, including festivals, kindle use, 751 total facebook likes and 200,000 reach.

Regarding the planned Five Points library, Kay Harris clarified that staff are not supposed to help promote that “in any way, shape, or form.” During paid hours. After hours is different.

Board discussion of after hours library use

A library board that is approving furlough days is not in a good position to extend library hours. Kay Harris proposed suspending the rules for southside library and revisiting the general rules at next month’s board meeting. They considered leaving after hours use decisions to local branches. They wanted to know how much after-hours use is there, anyway? They discussed fiduciary responsibility for library branches. They discussed lead time for approving new groups for after-hours use. As near as I can tell, they decided to suspend the current after-hours rules for southside library, have Kay Harris appoint a committee to look into the situation, and revisit the rules in general at their next meeting. I can’t tell when they actually voted on any of that. However, library director Kelly Lenz has confirmed by telephone that that’s what they decided.

Here’s a video playlist:

South Georgia Library Board
southside library hours,
Monthly Meeting, South Georgia Library Board (SGLB),
Video by Gretchen Quarterman for Lowndes Area Knowledge Exchange (LAKE),
Valdosta, Lowndes County, Georgia, 18 September 2012.

Who’s who

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