Monday Briefing - August 16, 2021

New York State Updates

As you have all probably heard, next week Andrew Cuomo is scheduled to step down as Governor due to sexual harassment allegations and a pending impeachment. Kathy Hochul, who has served as Lieutenant Governor for the past seven years, will replace him. So far, she seems to be coming in strong with mask mandates for schools. I'm not sure how this will impact the State's response to other COVID-19 variants, but it is certainly something to keep an eye on just in case guidance changes. So far, New York has continued to support the CDC guidance from July 27, 2021.

CDC Guidance

  • If you are fully vaccinated, you can participate in many of the activities that you did before the pandemic.
  • To maximize protection from the Delta variant and prevent possibly spreading it to others, wear a mask indoors in public if you are in an area of substantial or high transmission.
  • Wearing a mask is most important if you have a weakened immune system or if, because of your age or an underlying medical condition, you are at increased risk for severe disease, or if someone in your household has a weakened immune system, is at increased risk for severe disease, or is unvaccinated. If this applies to you or your household, you might choose to wear a mask regardless of the level of transmission in your area.
  • You should continue to wear a mask where required by laws, rules, regulations, or local guidance.
Source:,layered%20prevention%20strategies%20in%20place. (Retrieved on August 16, 2021)

Level of Community Transmission

  • Ontario - Substantial
  • Wayne - Substantial
  • Wyoming - Moderate
  • Livingston - Moderate
Source: (Retrieved on August 16, 2021)

NYLA Situation

Another situation that you may have read about is that Jeremy Johannesen has left NYLA. There was a contentious meeting of NYLA Council that seems to have preceded as well as followed this announcement and several council members have also resigned for various reasons. There are many different stories out there right now, but I think the main point is that NYLA is going through a difficult time and will most likely need some rebuilding time.

Health and Safety Guide for the 2021-2022 School Year

Directors' may find the Health and Safety Guide for the 2021-2022 School Year helpful. This is released by the New York Education Department.

Nominations for the 2nd Annual OWWLie Awards are Now Open! from Suzanne

While details are still being worked out for Pioneer Library System's 32 Annual Meeting, we are excited to open nominations for the 2nd Annual OWWLie Awards!

For all the system newbies and as a refresher for the not-so-newbies: The OWWLies honor those who made interesting, entertaining, innovative, inventive, and/or fun contributions to their library or the Pioneer Library System. Just like last year, the OWWLie Award categories will be created by YOU! Decide who you believe deserves recognition for whatever reason and fill out a nomination form. Creativity and silliness are welcomed and encouraged! For inspiration, click here to view last year's award winners.

Nominations are due by Friday, September 10. The OWWLie Awards will be presented on Wednesday, October 13, 2021.

OWWL2Go Funding Commitments

Next week Kelly will be sending out the 2022 OWWL2go Funding Commitment notices to directors. In preparation, I wanted to let you all know that we changed the calculation used in previous years. This year we have used three-year circulation averages (excluding 2020) and broken the funding down proportionately by checkouts. This offers a fair funding scheme based on usage. With this, some libraries will notice that the cost has increased while others will decrease, the fluctuation is based on how much your patrons use the collection. Also, rather than having three separate amounts, there will be one figure that will be used to keep our collection growing at a reasonable pace. Once the information is sent, feel free to reach out to Kelly and I with any questions.

Director Search Update

  • Geneva Public Library (Promoting Civil Service Exam)
  • Dansville Public Library (Interviewing Candidates)
  • Lyons Public Library (Hired Joe O'Toole. Congratulations, Joe)
  • Bristol Library (Promoted Jessica Winum. Congratulations, Jessica!)
  • Perry Public Library (Collecting Applications)

Trustee Workshops

Thank you to everyone who attended the Differences in the Four Types of Libraries. If you missed it and would like to watch the recording or read the notes you can visit

Upcoming Workshops

Key Laws & Regulations for Libraries - Wednesday, September 15 at 5:00 PM

Discussion Points:
  • Some of the laws that should be thinking of regularly
  • How your library type determines the laws you need to follow
  • How laws, regulations, policies, and procedures interact with one another
Click here to register

Trustee Handbook Bookclub - Tuesday, October, 19 at 5:00 PM

Duties & Responsibilities | Register Here

Before the event:

1) Read the chapter: Duties & Responsibilities

2) Thoughts to consider before the program:
  • What is your purpose as a Library Trustee?
  • What do you believe is the mission of your Library in the community?
  • Have you received a thorough orientation about the Library, it’s services and how it functions?
  • How can the Board be most effective as the public body entrusted with the future of the community’s library?
3) Submit your questions here.

For a complete list of Trustee Handbook Bookclub dates, click here.
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