Library board approves budget

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Feature Writer

TELL CITY – The Perry County Public Library Board of Directors approved the library’s 2014 budget at its Oct. 2 meeting.

A public hearing held Sept. 4 brought no members of the public for comment and Library Director John Mundy said the county council approved the budget at its budget review Sept. 16.

Library-board members had the final budget sheet in front of them Wednesday and no final discussion was held. The budget passed unanimously.

In other business, board President Colleen Smith told the board she had been approached by Sarah Chinn of German American, who was requesting an opportunity to present a Worksite Life Insurance program to library employees.

In an email to Smith, Chinn wrote, “The program is particularly attractive because the life insurance is written on a guaranteed basis which means you cannot be turned down … This product is particularly attractive at this time because the cost to the employer is zero.”

“We’ve never had anyone approach us with this kind of stuff before,” Smith said. “I know we buy some insurance … but they just want to come in and see if any employee would want to buy more life insurance.”

“Currently the library provides (employees) with a small amount of life insurance for everyone who is at 30 hours or more. So this would be supplemental that they could buy,” Mundy explained.

Smith and board member Steve Upmeyer suggested that Mundy approach library employees to see what interest there was to hear about the program.

“As a board member, I don’t have a problem. If there is enough interest and they want to come in and make a presentation, that’s okay,” Upmeyer added.

The board decided to allow Mundy to inquire about the interest from employees and then revisit the issue at the next board meeting.

In his reports, Mundy told board members he broke down the library’s Overdrive stats this month to show how it fares with patrons each month. In September, the library had 674 items “checked out” of the system by 87 different users. Overdrive is a system which allows patrons to check out e-books through their e-readers, such as Kindle and iPads.

“It’s a pretty large number,” Mundy said, “when you considered how many patrons are only using their reading devices rather than walking into the library.”

Smith expressed concern the public wasn’t aware of the e-books available to them. Overdrive currently has a collection of 20,000 items in its virtual library. Brandi Sanders, the library’s bookmobile librarian, stated her staff was getting ready to pitch Overdrive to the county’s three high schools.

“It’s a growing collection,” Mundy added.

The board’s next meeting will be at 5:30 p.m. Nov. 6 at the Tell City branch.