Date of Meeting:  Tuesday, February 2, 2021 @ 7:00 pm

Board Members Present: Nancy Heckel (Chair); Jen Call; Marcy Vierzen, Yvonne Howard, Betsy Anderson (Alternate for Diane Lander toward the end of the Trustee meeting when Lander exited the meeting), Elizabeth Geraghty (Library Director)

Board Members Absent:

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

Public Present: No members of the public were present for this meeting; 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 7:03 pm by Board 

Chair Nancy Heckel and roll taken. Heckel designated Board Member Betsy Anderson to sit for Board Member Diane Lander during the portion of this meeting that Lander would not be present. No members of any households of Trustees or other members of the public were present within listening of this meeting at the beginning of the meeting. 

Review of Draft Minutes

Minutes from the January 5, 2021 meeting were reviewed, and corrections made. Board member Jen Call made a motion to approve, as revised, the minutes from the January 5th Board of Trustees meeting, seconded by Heckel. The motion carried in the affirmative, with Lander, who had been absent from the January 5th meeting, abstaining from the vote.

Minutes from the Board of Trustees Special Meeting on January 19, 2021 were reviewed, and corrections made. Heckel invited a motion to approve as written the minutes from the January 19th Special meeting. Call made a motion to accept the minutes, seconded by Board Member Yvonne Howard. The motion passed unanimously in the affirmative. 


Library Director Elizabeth Geraghty noted that she had received the bank statement. 

Financial/Treasurer’s Report

Heckel reviewed the deposits for the month of January 2021, including the $500 donation from the Prime family to unrestricted funds; the deposit reimbursement of $153 correcting a duplicate payment inadvertently made to Awl & Awl, and $70 deposit restricted for books. 

A small error in restricted book funds was noted and fixed.


Library Director Report

Geraghty noted that Marcia Stansfield, a substitute librarian for Sutton Free Library prior to COVID, has moved out of the area. Alternate Board Member Anderson offered to write a thank you note to her for her service.

Geraghty noted that the State has not yet opened up the portal for library directors to complete their annual reporting through; this portal should be open by the end of February. The state annual report will be updated with consideration to COVID and its impact on library usage.

Geraghty had forwarded a copy of the Town Report submission to all Trustees for review prior to the Trustee meeting. Geraghty requested that the Trustees move to approve the submission. Heckel made a motion to accept the report as submitted to the town. Call seconded the motion. 

Geraghty noted that it is time to renew the library domain names, in the amount of $28.32, by February 15th, paid to Namecheap. Anderson volunteered to take care of this. Ideally, these funds would be budgeted into the municipal budget, and not be taken out of the Trustee account. This is also the case for the Zoom account, at approximately $14/month, which Heckel has personally been paying for. It is important that these fees be considered in crafting the library budget in the future.  

Geraghty made a request to pay for three separate book orders totaling $359.08. Heckel moved to take $359.08 from restricted funds for these book orders. Lander seconded the motion. 

MOU With the Town of Sutton

Heckel reviewed the feedback on the MOU submitted to the Select Board by the Trustees. Items discussed included: 

  • The Town will provide a lump sum of 25% to cover SFL costs until the March Town meeting, at which time the rest of the funds will be provided. 
  • The maintenance of the town building within the MOU continues to be a concern for the Trustees in terms of supporting the operations of the Library within a usable structure;
  • The Town of Sutton will provide payroll services;
  • The Town agreed to extend notice to 60 days for providing notice of changes to the MOU;
  • In terms of heating, electric and IT, the Town maintains a 3-year contract with providers, and contracted rates will be passed on to SFL as well. 

Geraghty suggested that the formatting of the MOU be double checked prior to submission to the Town. 

Heckel made a motion to accept the MOU as corrected, and Call seconded the motion. Heckel invited all Trustees to sign the MOU prior to submission to the Town. 

In taking over the finances for SFL, the budget submission would be increased from the proposed amount of $69,355 to approximately $71,762 to cover extras, such as additional hours, fees and supplies, incurred in such a move. 

Heckel invited a motion for the SFL Trustees to move forward with the added financial responsibility and increased budget necessary to support this move. Call made a motion to move forward with the Trustees taking on the financial responsibilities for the library with the additional expenses necessary to do so. Lander seconded the motion. 

Anderson agreed to submit the updated budget information, based on this vote.

With Lander leaving the Trustee meeting at 8:22pm, Heckel designated Anderson as Lander’s alternative. 


Board Member Marcy Vierzen noted that she, Heckel and Anderson had met to review the pertinent information to gather on a survey/questionnaire to review, evaluate and improve the SFL experience to patrons. A PDF and a link for a rough draft of the questionnaire questions had been sent to Director Geraghty and Trustees for review. Vierzen reiterated that rather than focus the evaluation process on a single person, evaluated by a specific group of people, that the focus of evaluation be on improvement of the library through the feedback and evaluation of usage, and of both users and non-users of SFL; with a focus specifically on Sutton residents. Qualitative and quantitative information will be considered. 

Maintaining multiple ways to request and receive feedback on an ongoing basis is vital to continuous quality improvement of SFL. A discussion ensued of locations and methods of distributing and receiving feedback which allows access to and from all potential patrons. Included were some of the following:

  • Website and Social networks;
  • Post Office
  • Books checked out of SFL
  • Elementary school
  • Sutton Town Meeting
  • Town Office with envelope for collection
  • Friends of the Library
  • Distributer to: Select Board, etc.
  • Hand out 20 surveys to various people with the goal of getting a certain number of surveys back from each “representative.” Consider various demographics to get well represented feedback.

As well, Vierzen suggested that a timeframe be established for the initial review of surveys, with ongoing solicitation of feedback in various places that allow feedback from every person. A shorter time frame of review for results is important, as is an ongoing basis. 


Geraghty requested that current Trustees consider, prior to the March meeting, what will be discussed at the April Trustee meeting following the elections for the Town of Sutton. At the March meeting, Trustees can pull this information together, and move forward in more efficient ways. As well, Trustees can compile a list of the responsibilities, items, resources and methods inherent in their roles on the Trustee Board for SFL. This may shorten the learning curve for incoming Trustees, and act as a valuable resource during transitions. 


Vierzen made a motion to adjourn the meeting; Anderson seconded this motion. The meeting was adjourned at 8:45 pm