Monday Briefing - February 14, 2022

Legislative Updates

Advocacy Day

Save The Date: Library Advocacy Day is March 2nd

Learn how to participate here.

For the second year in a row, our Library Advocacy Day will be virtual.

While disappointed that we will not be able to advocate together in Albany, NYLA leadership and I feel that this is the best path forward given the current level of uncertainty.

I am currently working on scheduling Advocacy Day virtual meetings with our legislators for March 2, 2022.

Legislative Letter

Last week I sent a copy of this letter to all eight of our legislators. So far, it has been met with a fantastic level of enthusiasm.

Library Support 2022 Executive Budget.pdf

System Contact: Ron Kirsop

System Board Meeting Recap

The System Board had its first meeting of the year on February 9, 2022. Here is a highlight of the actions taken:
  1. Jennifer Tessendorf (Ontario County), Liz Smith-Rossiter (Livingston County), and Ron Kirsop (Executive Director) all took the Oath of Office.
  2. Letter to Legislators: Library Support 2022 Executive Budget.
  3. The Charter amendment and petition to formally change the System's name to "OWWL Library System" were approved (this does not take effect until approved by the Board of Regents later this year).
  4. Approved updated versions of the Annual Audit Policy, Budget Policy, Construction Aid Policy, Procurement Policy, Reduced Match Eligibility Policy, Whistleblower Policy, and Speaker Agreement.
  5. Approved the job description for a new System position, "Technology Systems Librarian;" this will add to the CANS department and will be posted this week.
  6. Approved Trustee Sexual Harassment Training for System Trustees.
  7. Approved 2022 Budget.
The full meeting agenda can be found here, Doc 2202-1 Agenda.pdf

System Contact: Ron Kirsop

Technology Systems Librarian

We have been looking at what position we would like to add to our Computer and Network Department, and we've settled on a position titled, "Technology Systems Librarian." This person will support technology in a handful of ways as well as specialize in tech training for member libraries. The goal is to have this position posted this week.

System Contact: Ron Kirsop and Bob Wicksall

Whistleblower Policy

Recently, we engaged Stephanie Cole Adams on the updates to Whistleblower law. Turns out, New York's Labor Law §740 was updated and New York's Not-for-Profit Corporation Law §715-b remained the same. In order to comply with both, Cole created a hybrid policy for us to use. She calls it the "Whistleblower Policy and Bar on Retaliation." Below is the color-coded Word version if you would like to use it for your library.

WB Bar on Retaliation Hybrid Template.docx

System Contact: Ron Kirsop

Conflicts of Interest and Whistleblower Policies

Speaking of Whistleblower Policies, this is typically the time of year when Trustees sign their Conflict of Interest and Whistleblower annual disclosure forms. The System's Whistleblower and Conflict of Interest are below, the forms are at the end if you would like to take a look.

The library board and staff must be transparent about conflicts of interest. A conflict of interest policy and disclosure form are now required for all libraries in New York State given the Department of Education’s Office of Counsel ruling on how the Non-Profit Revitalization Act applies to libraries. The Act specifies particular issues to be addressed in a library’s conflict of interest policy. More information is available on the New York State Library’s website ( Trustee Handbook, pg. 41.

System Policies with Disclosure Forms
  1. Whistleblower Policy and Bar on Retaliation
  2. Conflict of Interest Policy
System Contact: Ron Kirsop


The FEMA claims we submitted under the Major Disaster Declaration (DR-4480-NY) in August of 2020 to purchase materials and equipment for libraries to safely reopen under mandates outlined in NY Forward have been approved and funds will be disbursed shortly to the System. Of the $39,508.61 submitted, all but $1,151.18 was determined to be eligible for reimbursement. If your claim included an ineligible item or items, it was removed from your total.

Once we receive the funds, Kelly will issue your library a check for the amount submitted (or amount adjusted).

System Contact: Suzanne Macaulay

Official cover art now available for Melissa's story (George)

For those of you who own "George" (now officially "Melissa's Story") by Alex Gino, there is a new downloadable cover for your book:

You will find the new cover about halfway down the page.

The title on our catalog record (ID=532110) has been modified to reflect this change with additional information included in the 500 field of the record. Melissa's story now appears first (Melissa's story = George).

System Contact: Kathryn Riedener
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