Tag Archives: South Georgia Regional Library

Kelly Lenz resigns as Library Director

Via AP from VDT yesterday, Library director accepts new position,

The South Georgia Regional Library Board of Trustees announced the resignation Thursday of Director Kelly Lenz.

Lenz has accepted the position as the director of the Middle Georgia Regional Library System. Since 2008, she has served in various positions with the South Georgia Regional Library.

The Middle Georgia Regional Library System says it is headquartered at the Macon-Bibb County Public Libraries and serves Bibb, Crawford, Jones, Macon, Twiggs, & Wilkinson Counties.

The story says she will continue to work with SGRL until an interim director is named, and she starts her new job in Macon 4 August 2014.

The story doesn’t mention Continue reading

Transparency in government is essential to the public trust –VDT

VDT editorial yesterday, Violating public trust,

Georgia Attorney General Sam Olens successfully fought for and implemented changes to the state’s Open Records law, believing that transparency in government is essential to the public trust. The law passed in 2012 states, “The General Assembly finds and declares that the strong public policy of this state is in favor of open government; that open government is essential to a free, open, and democratic society; and that public access to public records should be encouraged to foster confidence in government and so that the public can evaluate the expenditure of public funds and the efficient and proper functioning of its institutions.”

The VDT asked for records from the Lowndes County school system and didn’t get them. Their experience sounds quite similar to many LAKE has had with the county government in particular, with records not being provided in the statutory three days, and sometimes not even an excuse or a list of what might eventually be available.

That plus failure to make even agendas for the Planning Commission available in a timely fashion so citizens can see whether they need to attend (somebody explain to me the expense of agendas; clearly I don’t understand this Internet suff), and even in response to open records requests returning paper when the documents are obviously composed in electronic formats, agendas for County Commission meetings that are just plain incorrect, resulting in people taking time off from work to show up unnecessarily for a Sabal Trail pipeline item that didn’t happen, a public hearing that wasn’t listed as such on the agenda, a secretive retreat “work session”, and not even being clear about what tax dollars for SPLOST would go for. That’s not even all; just a sample of county government lack of transparency.

And it’s not just the County Commission. Look at Continue reading

Videos: 3 appointments, 1 rezoning, 2 wastewater @ LCC 2013-06-10

Update 23 June 2013: Now with sound!
Update 24 June 2013: Added links to separate posts for the newly audible items.

Unscheduled: Emergency Director Ashley Tye said more about the proposed juvenile justice grant; Kevin Beals announced the winners of the county’s Wellness Weightloss Challenge; and three unscheduled Library Board applicants. You can hear starting with the third of those last, but you can’t hear the few potential appointees for KLVB, VLCCCTA, ZBOA, because the county’s sound system was out (due to a consultant or lightning, depending on who you ask) and Gretchen didn’t notice and go to the camera’s mic until a few minutes in. They did talk about fixing the sewer force main that spilled into the Withlacoochee River. Nothing was said about the exclusive franchise for solid waste services. Maybe you’d like to come tonight and say a few words.

Here’s the agenda, plus links to the videos and a few notes.

LOWNDES COUNTY BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS
PROPOSED AGENDA
WORK SESSION, MONDAY, JUNE 10, 2013, 8:30 a.m.
REGULAR SESSION, TUESDAY, JUNE 11, 2013, 5:30 p.m.
327 N. Ashley Street – 2nd Floor
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Harris resignation letter —Gretchen Quarterman

Some thoughts on the Kay Harris resignation letter.

  1. If the library building is going to fall down, move the library to another available building like the soon to be closed federal building downtown.
  2. Has she forgotten that the newspaper brags that SPLOST is paid half by people who don't even live in the county?
  3. If Valdosta had gone ahead with the MOST then for sure county residents would have been paying for something that they wouldn't get to use. How much "shopping" is outside the Valdosta city limits? Harvey's in Bemiss, Harvey's in Hahira and the stores in Lake Park.

Certainly a SPLOST is better than a MOST.

-gretchen

Kay Harris resigned as Chair and from Library Board

Received today: PDF, with transcription appended below. -jsq

Kay Harris talking about SPLOST VII March 15, 2013

Joe Pritchard
County Manager
Lowndes County
327 N. Ashley St.
Valdosta, GA 31601

Dear Mr. Pritchard:

It is with great regret that I find the need to step down from the Lowndes County
and South Georgia Regional Library Board of Trustees. I fear that I am no longer
capable of holding this position in light of the county’s recent actions.

As you are aware,
Continue reading

Members of the press or citizens are not welcome at library board? —George Boston Rhynes

Received today. To quote a VDT editorial of 3 March 2012:

When officials act like they have something to hide, they often do….

Here’s George’s Open Records Request. -jsq

George Boston Rhynes February 7, 2013

George Boston Rhynes (229-251-8645)
5004 Oak Drive
Valdosta, Georgia 31605

TO: Valdosta-Lowndes County; South Georgia Regional Library Director/Chair person along with Board Members Respectively, Georgia News Media Outlets concerned about open government and the sunshine brightness…

SUBJECT: An open records request on behalf of the general public right to know…

Continue reading

$30,000 saved by library furloughs, $millions for building construction —Idelle Dear @ LCC 2013-01-08

Idelle Dear noted we’re up to 12 library furlough days, and reported a flaw in that picture to the 8 January 2013 Lowndes County Commission Regular Session.

I looked across the street and there are millions of dollars being spent on the construction of the hospital, construction of the VSU Health Sciences building. And yet what is happening, because this is a mandatory furlough for all employees, is that people who are employed by the South Georgia Regional Library, most of whom are minimum wage, work part time, rely on the income: they are going to lose out….

We’d heard about these state-mandated furlough closings at a library board meeting. Idelle Dear spelled out some of the consequences, and made some telling comparisons.

Something is wrong with this picture, and I realize there are different kinds of money, but something is wrong with this picture if we can spend millions and millions of dollars on construction of these buildings and yet shut down the library and the employees who are in low income are going to be affected.

She said she wasn’t sure most people even knew about all this. And she heard somebody had said most people have Internet at home, but

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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.

-jsq

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:

RESERVATIONS

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:

Continue reading

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,

SOUTH GEORGIA REGIONAL LIBRARY
BOARD MINUTES
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.

-jsq