OWWLAC Meeting, Tuesday, June 23, 2014

10:00-12:00 @PLSHQ


Rebecca Budinger-Mulhern (AVO), Sandra Hylen (ONT), Erin Robinson (CAS), Diana Thorn (BRI), Stackey Wicksall (MAC)


Chris Finger (Central), Lisa Gricius (WAR)


Outreach post-incarceration pilot program (guest speakers Pat Finnerty and Heidi Jensen)

PLS Outreach would like to provide a special, limited use library card to people being released from prison. The goal of this plan is to provide ex-offenders, who may not have a permanent address, access to a computer or the internet, the ability to come into their local library and be able to use computers for job, housing, or other applications, without the barrier of not having a card. Ideally, inmates selected for this card would be selected with input from the correctional facility, the account would be created by PLS, and the card would be distributed with the person's belonging on release. The card would have a limited expiration period - proposed 90 days, and be limited to providing computer access.

Outreach staff envision this card looking like the OWWL card, but with the text "Computer Use Only" on it.


OWWLAC members, and Outreach staff, would like to expand the idea of the limited use card to other people who do not have permanent addresses, who are not ex-offenders. All on the committee agree that this is a commendable idea.

Many libraries are already allowing similar sort of limited accounts. Sandra Hylen shared Ontario Public Library's Borrowing Privileges Policy, which includes the following:
Special Cardholder Library Privileges

Individuals who have requested cardholder privileges, but have been unable to obtain a NYS driver's license or ID, or establish an address or rental agreement as yet, may, at the discretion of the Library Director, be issued a three-month (90 day) duration, limited use card at the Ontario Public Library. The card holder may borrow up to two items.

Ontario, as are other libraries with similar policies/practices, are managing the limits manually. Sandra reports that there have been no abuses of this system at Ontario.

There are already 2 patron profile groups with similar limitations. The "Temporary" profile has a 6 month expiration, and the "Limited Use" profile

Review Patron Profile / Permission Groups


  • Review patron profile/permission groups available
  • Update documentation as needed

Agency accounts and user agreement

Patrons Agency User Records

  • Review agency accounts, purpose and use
  • Update Agency Card Letter and Agency Card Agreement (last revised 2011)

Temporary / Limited Use accounts

  • Role of these cards to be used for people living in temporary housing/halfway housing/etc
  • Issues: proof of temporary residence? how to get, what constitutes proof? require house administrator sign off? limits on checkouts/holds? local policy issues
  • Creation of computer-use-only account?

Follow up financial reports

Discussed the "Expanded Cash Report" options and "Monthly Billing Summary" reports that Lindsay has created and are available on demand.

The Expanded Cash Report duplicates the data available in the in-client Cash Report, but itemizes each payment, and includes patron barcode, last billing type, accepting user (staff login), and workstation. This can be used to reconcile problems that may be unexplained in the in-client Cash Report, such as payments for Lost Materials bills that were not coded as "Passthru" resulting in amounts that would be expected in the cash drawer but are not. This report currently has two versions, one itemizing monetary payments, the other itemizing forgiven payments.

The Monthly Billing Summary report is intended to provide general trend information about bills created and paid or unpaid during a particular month. It was created specifically for Macedon to monitor their fine free program, but could be run for any library interested in this view of billing information.

These reports are available on demand, and can be requested by sending an email to reports@pls-net.org

In general, the in-client Cash Report has so far been sufficient for libraries to reconcile their cash drawers.

Newsbank genealogy resources

Consortial purchasing possibility, special pricing only if all libraries contribute, coordinated purchase by PLS


Committee agrees that we are not in a position to invest a substantial amount in another genealogy service at this time. Expense is the major factor, recent investment in Ancestry is another. Members expressed an interest in focusing on local/regional resources. List of titles available via Newsbank did not include many titles from our communities/region. Members would prefer to see funds go toward digitizing local materials held by our libraries. General discussion of partnering with each other, local historical societies and museums to identify materials and pool resources to digitize materials. OWWLAC members would love it is there were digitizing equipment available within the system, and perhaps to collaborate with North Country on NYS Historical Newspaper projects.



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