Board Minutes

To: MARINet Board and Interested Parties

From: MARINet Staff

CC: Val Morehouse; Glade Van Loan

Date: 07/20/99

Re: 06/24/99 Meeting at Marin County Civic Center, Room 410B, 9 A.M. (Approved).


Board Members---Mary Richardson, Board President (Sausalito Public Library); Anne Montgomery (Mill Valley Public Library); Sara Loyster (San Anselmo Public Library); Carol Starr (Marin County Free Library). Absent: Debbie Mazzolini, MARINet Board Secretary (Belvedere-Tiburon Public Library) and Vaughn Stratford (San Rafael Public Library). Staff present--Val Morehouse (MARINet Systems Administrator).

There were no guests at the meeting. There is no Automation Update this month. Next month's will cover May and June. Minutes for the April and May 1999 meetings were approved. Previous Minutes can be found online at under "About Us."

 Announcements: San Rafael Home Page, New Branch, Power Shutdown, System Librarian Interviews, JPA Oversight, ERAF, & Telephone Renewals.

 Val announced that San Rafael Public Library has a good looking new Home Page (, and that the MARINet Home Page link has been updated to connect. Val said Vaughn Stratford had mentioned that San Rafael will get a new branch in the Canal area. All were interested and requested that this item be included on the next meeting agenda. Val stated that electrical power will be shut off in the Civic Center for maintenance of the electrical system. This will bring everything down in the building. MARINet is located in a room partially wired to feed from a generator. We are resurrecting the old uninterruptable power supply from the previous computer to try to keep the system up. There will be about 30 seconds downtime between taking down vendor power and bringing up generator power. Such outages have caused problems bringing locations back online in the past, as older telecommunications equipment reacts badly to disturbance. MARINet will do a complete backup on Saturday in order to protect the database. There is a possibility that we could lose some equipment. We experienced that during the move into the computer room when a MICOM burnt out. The weekend Tech at Innovative will be warned about the power shutdown, in case he gets calls from staff. MIDAS will not be up, which means the MARINet Home Page and Internet connections will not be up. Civic Center Branch has cancelled their volunteer security stripping event as there will be no lights.

 Carol Starr announced that interviews to fill open positions were going forward, in particular the Systems Librarian. Mary Richardson alerted the members to possible ERAF dollars being returned by the State Legislature. Anne Montgomery discussed her visit with the Mayors' and Councilmembers' JPA oversight group. She has a letter from them which will need to be answered. The letter went to Val Morehouse who will dig out needed information. 

Sara Loyster asked for information on which libraries were doing telephone renewals, as San Anselmo is considering doing renewals again. They had done them under the manual system, but were told that no MARINet library did them; hoiwever, Mill Valley, Sausalito, and San Geronimo Valley do them. Carol Starr remarked that she would like the County branches to do this also in the future.

 Additions to the Agenda:

Val reminded everyone that a vote on the fiscal agent would be needed, and suggested this be added under the Budget area; however, Members decided to table this until the July agenda, because two members are absent. Discussion of the proposed Management Institute was added under New Business. Members requested that Library of California be a standing agenda item on future agendas so that developing news could be shared.

 Personnel Update:

 Val queried Board members about personnel changes. Carol Starr mentioned that Mary Brown had been added to Technical Services. There were no others. The Board then went into executive session to discuss a personnel matter.

 Budget Update, 1/8 Cent Sales Tax, Delayed Payment Request, Inventory & Audit:

There was nothing new on the 1/8 cent sales tax discussion. It will be held for a future agenda. Marin County Library has requested that the MARINet Board grant the Library a payment extension from the September JPA cost share payment requirement since the Library's taxes will not come in until later, causing a severe cash flow problem. The Board sub-committee has not yet met with Carol, and two Board members are absent; therefore, this agenda item was tabled until the July meeting. Val reviewed the Monthly Budget Report showing MARINet's expenditures and projected encumbrances as of May 30th. The report is cumulative from July 1st at the beginning of this fiscal year.

 Marin County is going to accrual accounting this fiscal year, which means that MARINet will not be finished with its budget closing until mid-July. Glade has been busy resupplying our barcodes and mailers (two big supply items), and we have been gathering up all June outstanding bills, to be entered into MARS before deadline. The FY1998-99 budgeted sinking fund amount ($39,957.81) was transferred from the operating budget to the sinking fund. Val has presented the expected revenue and the approved FY1999-2000 budgeted amounts (line-by-line) to the Auditors Office for input into the MARS system and into printed budget materials for special districts. Val and Glade attended COLD training at Information Services to learn how to print out MARINet budget reports, as the County will no longer be supplying green bar printouts every month. One last thing which needs to be done, is to confer with the Auditor's Office about the actual carryover figure once all bills are entered.

Val stated that MARINet is behind on numerous projects due to the unexpected system security issue, which required immediate and extensive attention from the Systems Office, as well as the usual end-of-year budget closing. She and Glade will try to use July and August for catch up work: in particular the MARINet inventory, which must be redone before a new audit can begin. The Board discussed options for a new Audit: (1 use the same Auditor (resulting in the more delays and staff distress); (2 request a different Auditor (perhaps also unacceptable); or, (3 go outside and hire an independent Auditor. Val stated that system activity and growth precluded any further tolerance of a repeat of previous problems. She reminded the Board that MARINet's indirect overhead had been pegged at an outrageous $75,000 due to the Audit delays, until saner heads prevailed. The Audit choice for a two-year catch up will be delayed until the Board can visit with Marin County Auditor Richard Arrow about the unsatisfactory nature of the past one, and seek a possible solution. The Audit will return to next month's agenda.

Security Policy Approved:

Val presented an update on MARINet's efforts to improve system security. Passwords are being lengthened. Everyone is being required to have individual permissions for functions. Staff are being admonished about sharing passwords. The TUG group mentors will learn elements of a good password. Extra password changes have been required where appropriate. Val explained a long standing problem needs to be closed: remote logins, particularly by staff. One example, system email is really for library work, and is not intended for catching up on the news from Aunt Minnie. That type of email is not a valid reason for remote access. She presented two solutions: one absolute closure of remote staff logins, and another, on a need-to-have basis only. The Board chose the need-to-have basis and asked Val to produce a form for administering changes.

 Next Val presented copies of the California Penal Code dealing with computer tampering for the Board to peruse. The issue is serious both in terms of dollars and staff time. The draft of the MARINet Computer Security Policy was revisited in light of specifics in the Penal Code. The sentence, "You are responsible for the work done under your password," was added to the draft. The MARINet Computer Security Policy as revised was approved.

Clean masters will be provided to each Board member so that staff can sign it. Like the Confidentiality Policy, the signed copies will be placed in each staff member's personnel folder.

Internet Policy Revisited:

Board members revisited the proposed Internet Policy for MARINet (systems level). There are two types of usage: in-library and remote. After discussion, the Board decided that in-library use of the Internet is covered by the individual member library jurisdictions' Internet policies. A sentence was added covering remote use of the system as the responsibility of the individual, or in the case of a minor, the responsibility of parents or guardians. The revised draft will be held until all members can review it.

Status of Board Letter to Committees & Action Form:

The Board Letter to Committees, the Board's Annual Goals for MARINet, and a proposed Action Form for Committees has been sent out to each MARINet Committee Chair. They have been asked to put it on their agenda and to distribute copies to their membership.

Adding the SuperSearch Icon To MARINet Webpac Search

Following up on the Board decision to place the SuperSearch link at the bottom of the WEBPAC search screen, Val Morehouse contacted Sue at North Bay Cooperative about the problem error message showing up in the test URL. A solution was forthcoming, and Val will implement the link by the end of June. Val then reviewed proposed solutions to the SuperSearch response time problems from an all-systems meeting she attended at Rohnert Park. The operating system will be upgraded, doubling processing speed. The SuperSearch telecommunications link to the Internet router at Sonoma State, will be extracted from the campus network traffic and fed directly to the Internet router. Bottlenecks within individual member systems were identified for re-configuration. Val provided MIDAS network maps and library frame really speeds for each member and branch to NBC for their consultant to use in identifying MARINet response time issues.

System Update:

Based on a survey completed by MARINet, Innovative sent back revised quotes for the acquisition of Millennium modules. Val explained the economic advantages of package purchase of Millennium modules over purchasing modules individually. The savings are considerable. The Board decided that short descriptions of each module would be helpful; thus, the matter was tabled to allow time for MARINet to gather some module descriptions.

Both the Web Access Management, the Third Party Output software and the re-indexing were ordered but things don't seem to be moving very fast. The end of the fiscal year could be a contributing factor with a sudden glut of orders due. MARINet will check the status of these orders if there is no action by the end of the month.

Val indicated the handout of the Intranet Private side index showing how much work has been done to develop this resource. Mary Richardson commented on how much fun the Fugitive Facts File is for Reference. She located a Latin saying there that a patron had requested. Someone else stated that Ask Jeeves could also be a link to explore.

 Both Val and Glade have been working on the holds problem with the WEBPAC. The text-based and web catalogs do not behave in a similar fashion. Val went into the WEBPAC control files and changed a command line on the advice of Innovative. Glade researched the status codes that had been receiving holds, that in fact should not be receiving holds. Examples: reference materials, billed materials, lost materials, etc. These have been sent to Innovative to make "not holdable". Wording is being developed to fit these new blocks. Innovative has stated that MARINet has become the beta test site for WEBPAC holds by default. Belvedere-Tiburon has been getting many holds due to being first in the WEBPAC's library arrangement. Since users are assumed to be remote, the system currently is assuming no association with a particular library. Instead libraries are displayed in alpha order unlike the way the text-based catalog handles display. Val asked the Board to have staff watch for improvements based on the changes so far, and to report any new bugs they find. The situation will only get better with feedback.

Val asked again about counts for the EM320W licenses. She has not received numbers from everyone.

Committee Updates: Circulation, Bibliographic Standards…

Val complimented the MARINet Circulation Standards Committee on their development of written procedures for troublesome areas such as rush phone holds, changed pick up locations, and associated forms. These forms and procedures will be uploaded onto the Intranet under the Circulation Standards Committee area so that staff can easily refer to them. One issue discussed at the Better Committees workshop was communication to committees about proposed actions which need to be addressed at the MARINet committee level, since there is potential that actions may affect other libraries and/or the functioning of the system. An example of a decision with the potential to affect other libraries, and which appears to be missing some critical steps, has not been communicated to the MARINet Circulation Standards Committee. The example came from the Minutes of the County Library Circulation Committee, and involved use of review files for long periods, suppression of records, and checking in items from bad borrowers. Since the patron database and review files are shared assets, this has potential for major problems. The Board requested that Val refer this scenario to the MARINet Circulation Standards Committee for testing for problems and missed steps.

Anne Montgomery brought up the decision made by the Bibliographic Standards Committee concerning the handling of Nolo Press editons. She feels that that decision should have been brought to the Board because of its effect. The Board discussed how to define which cataloging issues should be brought to the Board, but reached no conclusion. Val will pull the May 20th committee Minutes to shed light on this issue at the next meeting.

 Management Institute Preliminary Discussion:

Board Members had copies of possible presenters for a Management Institute, which Sara Loyster had collected. It was mentioned that Diane Mayo from the NBC Technology Planning Working would also be a good name to add. Everyone agreed that a facilitator would definitely be necessary to focus the Institute. Who should attend? Library managers. Numerous ideas were brought up: gear the Institute to what we have; discuss the "Future of MARINet" organize by topic such as 856 field or WEBPAC; get buyin by staff; train staff how to do "vision" and "planning". Biographical writeups on possible presenters were discussed.

The next meeting will be July 22nd at Civic Center, Room 410 B, 9:00 AM. MALC Directors need to be invited to a future meeting.


 Agenda for the Meeting

 MARINet Monthly Budget 98-99 Report by Category.

 MARINet Draft Minutes for April and May Board Meetings.

 Draft MARINet Computer Security Policy

 David Burt Filtering Facts

 Innovative Millenium Quote

 Intranet Private Side Index with samples of documents.

 Facilitators for a possible Management Institute.

 C:\data\board\990624m.doc vm


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