Dr. Hommerding Plaque Presented to Library Board

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A light agenda at the Fort Myers Beach Library Board meeting Tuesday night was highlighted by the presentation of a plaque honoring Dr. Leroy Hommerding. Board Chair Sallie Seabury and her husband, Jim, donated the plaque.

“It is an honor and a privilege for the Seabury Family to be allowed to present this plaque to the Fort Myers Beach Library honoring the life and contributions of our late director, Dr. Leroy Hommerding. Leroy was a multi-talented leader who filled many roles that included management, art appreciation and community involvement. He dedicated his time and energy to the development of our library, making it a community asset of which we can all be very proud,” Sallie Seabury said.

The plaque will be installed in the entrance lobby of the Beach Library.

George Ballantyne, Treasurer, stated that the balance sheet was in order. After looking at the full fiscal year, his only question dealt with the tax collection fee from Lee County, which was higher than budgeted. However, Lee County has recently sent notification to the library that they had over-collected $9781 and would be refunding that amount.

The library had budgeted $1,377,970 in total income and ended the year with $1,613,818 of income. All expense categories ended the year under projections, leading to total expenses at the end of the fiscal year of $988,226, a total of $625,591 under budget. Reserves have not yet received their 2018-19 amounts. Ballantyne explained that the library uses those to cover expenses until the 2019-20 tax payments arrive. The 2018-19 budget calls for $245,900 in reserve payments, but they are expected to receive the $625,591 remaining funds.

The board also approved unanimously, with Jan Fleming absent, the Library Annual Plan 2019 – 2020 in which ten goals are set out including topics from e-book usage to the Total Solar plan to children’s programming to usage of the Southwest Florida Library Network.

During the Director’s Report, Library Director Cletus Poser told the board that training in use of the AED (Automated External Defibrillator) continues. Another training session will be held in November that will be open to Library volunteers and the community. Poser also summarized the Library Code of Conduct, which will be posted in the library and distributed to all employees and volunteers.

Sandra Walker, Treasurer of the Friends of the Beach Library, asked the Library Board to consider using some of the money the Friends donate to establish a scholarship for someone pursuing a degree in library science. She explained that their charter only allows them to give money to the Library Board for the board to use however they choose, so the Friends cannot establish a scholarship themselves. Seabury indicated that she would discuss the possibility with the Library Board’s attorney.

Library usage in September included 3,428 patrons and 2,372 items circulated. Internet usage totaled 513 hours by 468 patrons.

The next Library Board meeting will be held Tuesday, November 19, 2019 at 6:30 pm at the Beach Library.