Trustee Newsletter March 2020

Trustee Workshops 2020

Happy March everyone. Remember to sign up for this year's Trustee/Director Workshops. The two upcoming sessions include a primer for the NYS Construction Grant Program on March 5, 2020 (Today), and Running Effective Board Meetings on March 18, 2020 (Ontario Public Library).

For a complete list of this year's Trustee/Director workshops visit

Advocacy Day Recap

A big thank you to everyone who attended this year's Advocacy Day in Albany. It is always a fantastic experience to see so many library supporters coming together under a united cause. The meetings with our legislators went well; all were supportive of our efforts and understood the critical role libraries play in our communities. However, the fight for our budget restoration and increases is not over, if you attended Advocacy Day please send a follow-up thank-you note to the representatives that you visited. If you were unable to attend, letters showing support from libraries is a great way to help the cause. Using NYLA's form letter on their Advocacy page is great, or you can send your own message. You can find the contact information by clicking on the "Find My Senator" and "Find My Assemblymember" link below.

Find My Senator

Find My Assemblymember

Advocacy Day Image 2020.jpg

Start Updating Your Policies and Bylaws ASAP!

I know I keep mentioning the updated Minimum Standards that go into effect on January 1, 2021, but it is critical to keep in mind that your library's policies, bylaws, long-range plan, annual report to the community, and budget all need to be put on your website by the end of the year. Policies and bylaws also need to be reviewed and re-approved every five-years. This means if you have a date before 2016 as a review date, they will be out of compliance with the updated Minimum Standards.

Policy development and review can take time, so if your library hasn't updated these items in a while you're going to want to start working on this project right away. A best practice is to appoint a Policy Committee to work through your policy index and bring them to board meetings for review. This project will be much more manageable if it is spread throughout the year.

The full list of updated Minimum Standards can be found on page 11 of the Trustee Handbook. You can also visit the Division of Library Development's Helpful Information for Meeting Minimum Public Library Standards website for more information (I helped create this so you know it's good). Please let me know if your library needs help getting these items in place by January 1, 2021.

Here is a handy checklist that you can use to keep track of everything that needs to be done for compliance - Minimum Standards Checklist 2020.pdf

Construction Grant Intent to Apply

If your library is interested in applying for an NYS Public Library Construction Grant this year, the Intent to Apply is due on May 22, 2020 . Libraries must complete this form if they would like to be considered for a grant. For more information about the program, visit

Last Month's Issue

February 2020 Trustee Newsletter
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