Date of Meeting:  Tuesday, September 15, 2020 @ 7:00 pm

Board Members Present Nancy Heckel (Chair); Jen Call; Diane Lander; Marcy Vierzen, Yvonne Howard, Betsy Anderson (Alternate), Elizabeth Geraghty (Library Director)

Note: This meeting was conducted on ZOOM for all present. 

Public Present: No members of the public were present; No guests were present. 


In light of COVID-19 Concerns and applicable executive and emergency orders, this evening’s Sutton Free Library (SFL) Board of Trustees meeting is being held per the Governor’s Executive Order 2020-04, Section 8, Emergency Order #12 Section 3. 



Roll Call, Introduction of Guests

The Sutton Free Library Board of Trustees (SFL BOT) meeting was called to order at 7:12 pm by Board Chair Nancy Heckel and roll taken. No members of any households of Trustees or other members of the public were present within listening of this meeting. 

Review of August 2020 Meeting Draft Minutes

Minutes from the August 4th meeting were reviewed and corrections made. 

Heckel invited a motion to approve with revisions the minutes from the August 4th meeting. Board Member Jen Call made a motion to approve the corrected minutes, seconded by Board Member Yvonne Howard. The motion carried unanimously in the affirmative. 


Library Director Elizabeth Geraghty received correspondence from NHLTA; a donation of books by local authors; and four donation checks. Alternate Board Member Betsy Anderson offered to write follow up correspondence, which included thank you notes for the donation of books, as well as for the checks made in donation. 

Howard made a motion to accept the funds; seconded by Call. The motion carried unanimously in the affirmative. 


Financial/Treasurer’s Report

Heckel noted that the only charge to the Trustee account since the August Trustee meeting was a reimbursement check for the scanner. The current balance of the Trustee account is $9,690.59. 

Regarding the town budget, Geraghty noted that Town Administrator Elly Phillips had ascertained a reimbursement through state COVID funds in the amount of $346.39 for supplies spent by the SFL for COVID supplies . Geraghty also noted that $300 is still listed incorrectly under “Building Alarms and Safety” and will need to be moved to the correct line item category. 

Library Director Report


Regarding automation, Geraghty noted that approximately 1,800 items of approximately 10,000-12,000 items have so far been cataloged.

Interlibrary Loan

Geraghty noted that Interlibrary Loan restarted as of 9/15/20. SFL has not signed up to opt in at this point. The Board discussed the following: Risk of infection from books; quarantine periods; level of comfort with interlibrary policies during current COVID circumstances; the smaller size of the SFL collection as it pertains to lending more popular books out for longer periods of time; and the option and ease to opt in to the Interlibrary Loan program at any time.

Board Member Diane Lander made a motion for SFL to remain opted out of the state Interlibrary Lending program at this time, and to review whether or not SFL will opt back in at the next Trustee meeting in October, seconded by Call. The motion carried unanimously in the affirmative. 

There was discussion about the importance of consistency as it pertains to quarantining library books borrowed from SFL. It was agreed that even if patrons may express a willingness to bypass the quarantine period, the three day quarantine period of books will stand due to concerns of safety and consistency.

2021 SFL Budget

Geraghty noted that she has started a rough draft of the 2021 budget. 

With the exception of the automated subscription, and costs associated with supplies for automating the library, operational costs of the library will be approximately the same as in 2020.

SFL Trustee Appointments & Terms

There are several Trustee positions up for renewal in the near future. Heckel noted that these appointments are noted on the town website, and can be reviewed there. The Trustee positions that will be up for renewal are currently held by Howard and Lander. 

Book Sale Books

There was discussion by the Trustees about what to do about the books which have been taken out of circulation from SFL and placed into what was supposed to be short term storage in Call’s barn, and in the basement of the library. In the past, the Friends of Sutton Free Library typically host a book sale, with proceeds being used to benefit the library. However, the Friends of SFL will not be reconvening their meetings until sometime in 2021 due to concerns with COVID. There are approximately 30 boxes of books in Call’s barn, and approximately 50 boxes of books in the basement of the library. Call expressed concerns that her barn is not climate controlled, and the integrity of the books stored there may be compromised. There was discussion about what to do about these books, how to sort through them, which books are most “saleable”, who may be able to sort through them, and if it may be possible to generate some income from the sale or donation of these books, as well as how. The idea of students in need of community hours was discussed. Call noted that she will check on the integrity of the books stored in her barn, and let the Board know if they remain viable to sell or donate. Heckel and Board Member Marcy Vierzen agreed to sort through those books with some guidelines 

Building and Grounds Update

Geraghty noted that Heritage Plumbing had installed the iWave. 

Call noted that she had contacted a second company for a quote on the dehumidifier, and was waiting for that quote. 

Geraghty expressed a concern about the slate roof on the SFL. Research needs to be done on who may be able to inspect, quote, and work on slate roofs if necessary. 


Payroll/Accts Receivable

The Board had a discussion on how to proceed with regard to the handling of library finances, with various challenges and benefits discussed. Areas which need clarification are as follows: Rotation of volunteer Trustee members and the impact of that on keeping operations running smoothly and efficiently, additional costs associated with greater independence, such as responsibility for bookkeeping and auditing. Areas which remain vague in regard to the library considering independence include access to town counsel and insurance costs. 

Those present agreed that there may be benefit toward the library moving toward greater financial control, with payroll continuing to run through the Town for the sake of consistency and efficiency. Heckel will send a list of questions to the Selectboard for further clarification of questions from the SFL Board of Trustees; this includes the question of whether the budget committee is prepared to cover the additional costs that greater independence of SFL will involve.


Lander made a motion to adjourn the meeting; seconded by Call. The motion carried unanimously in the affirmative: The meeting was adjourned at 9:32pm.