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Annual Report - Fiscal Year 2012 / 2013

The following report covers the time period of July 1, 2012 through June 30, 2013.

Library Usage | Administration, Budget and Finance
Public Relations and Community Outreach
Library Facility and Grounds | Library Automation
Adult Services | Children's Services

Library Usage Highlights

  • Library patrons visited the library this year 201,535 times, averaging 21,154 visits per month, 3,876 per week, and 545 per day.

  • There are a total of 147,562 items in the library's collection -- a net increase of 2,131 items since last year.

  • Checkouts of library materials totaled 600,025  this year -- down by about 1.4% from last year, due in part to a 7% decrease in checkouts by patrons from other library districts, fee-based online resources such as Netflix and Amazon, and likely due in part to the high price of gasoline.

  • 2,392 patrons registered for library cards this year, up by about 14% from the previous year.

  • Total reference and information transactions (262,873) were down by three percent.  Questions in Children's Services (42,863) were up by 3.4 percent.

  • The library hosted a total of 816 instructional or entertainment programs, with a total attendance of 30,286, averaging 37 attendees per program and up 16% over the previous year.

  • Library website (www.wauclib.org) usage remained high, with 289,336 online visits to the site and 280,655 logins to the library catalog system.

  • There were 32,227 online visits to the library-sponsored Wauconda Area Community Website (www.waucondaarea.info), up about 10 % from the previous year.

  • Online renewals of materials done by patrons themselves this year hit an all-time high of 53,344

  • The self-service checkout station greatly exceed expectations with 105,248 checkouts - nearly four times the previous year's total.

  • Library patrons logged on the library's Wi-Fi system 23,978 times - setting a new record for the library, about 27% higher than the previous year.

Administration, Budget and Finance

  • Successfully implemented a spending plan that left a cash reserve of $496,511 untouched while appropriating $395,000 to provide funding for improvements to the building and furnishings, and for technology improvements as budgeted for FY2012/2013.

  • The average FY2012/2013 salary or wage increase for each employee was 3 percent, as budgeted, while the actual total payroll increased by less than one percent.

  • The projected total cost of payroll and benefits for FY1213 wast $40,000 under budget, and only about $11,000 (0.8 percent) higher than the previous year’s actual total.

  • The library received $10,000 in developer fees from the Village of Volo.

  • the library applied for and was awarded 50% erate discount ($5,100) in FY2012/13, incorporating switchover to more cost-effective new telephone and internet service vendors (CallOne and Comcast). Application for 50% erate discount for FY2013/2014 was submitted, resulting in even lower costs for CallOne and Comcast services in the coming year.

  • Administered the budgeting and levy ordinance processes resulting in a 2.6 percent in tax revenue for FY2012/2013 and a 0.68% increase for FY2013/2014, keeping the library tax increase lower than ever before while enabling necessary improvements and maintenance of a healthy reserve fund.

  • Annual audit passed with no recommendations for procedural changes.

  • Requested and received $26,509 in funding from the Friends of the Library for a delivery van and a self-checkout station in Children’s Services during FY2012/2013.  The Friends also committed to donating $6000 each year for use at the library’s discretion for programming, equipment, staff expenses, and materials.

  • The library applied for and received payments totaling $8219 from the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, reimbursing the library for 50% of the cost of upgrading the parking lot lights and lower level lighting with more energy efficient lighting.

  • The library applied for FY2013 Per Capita Grant, and received $27,940.77 for FY2012 Per Capita Grant.

  • As the library’s Election Official for both counties, the Library Director administered the 2013 election of four full-term trustees.

  • New library policies or policy revisions:

    Personnel Policy (second draft – review in process)

    Meeting Room Policy

    Lincoln Room Art Exhibit Policy

    Online Social Media Policy for STAFF

    Online Social Media Policy for PATRONS

    Lower overdue fines for DVDs

    Elimination of $25 meeting room fee for groups of less than 50 people

  • At a cost savings of $1700, the Treasurer’s bond was folded into a new Employee Dishonesty policy that covers everyone on the board and staff, eliminating the need for an individual trustee to apply for the bond while greatly broadening the coverage that protects the library against monetary loss cause by criminal activity on the part of staff or trustees.

  • Trustee Training – Library Director instructed the board about programming standards, state grant eligibility and alternative sources of tax revenue, and the Village of Wauconda’s plans for establishing a T.I.F district.

  • Established Makeover Team for brainstorming ways to re-brand the library and improve its “wow” factor. This committee has already played an important role in making some key changes, including the library’s newsletter, e-News, library card, the self-check station in Children’s services, various library furnishings, wall colors, and more.

  • Established 75th Anniversary Committee for planning how to celebrate the library’s 75th throughout 2014

  • Conducted staff institute day December 14.  library Director presented his State of the Library “address”; Leah White (Northbrook Public Library) presented training in social media; Wauconda Police Dept. presented lockdown procedures.

  • Coordinated a comprehensive training program to prepare all staff for the transition to radio frequency identification (RFID) system.

  • By switching from Allied/Aetna to Blue Cross Blue Shield (BCBS), there was a significant cost savings for the group and for the library, while at the same time improving the services available to employees.  As of 9 months into the fiscal year, there had been an actual cost savings of $24,400 or 17%, relative to the same period   the year before. The transition to the new insurance provider could not have gone more smoothly. The Head of Administrative Services played a vital role in this transition, as well as in the selection of BCBS.

  • AHuman Resources attorney presented to library managers an overview of the current requirements of the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) and the American Disabilities Act (ADA) with respect to personnel policies and procedures.

Public Relations

  • Library Director worked with the Friends to ensure that they continue to thrive and grow, attending key meetings, assisting them with their web presence, and facilitating their interface with other organizations and government agencies as necessary. The library facilitated and helped promote the 2012 and 2013 Bunny Hop 4-Mile Runs, both of which were huge successes.

  • Library Director planned and implemented the purchase of a delivery van with full-body graphics wrap, as well as the installation of new book returns in Island Lake and Volo, greatly improving library access and visibility in those towns.

  • Established the library’s first annual One Book, One Community program, which was well received and will be repeated next year with new titles. About 450 adults and 150 children participated.

  • United Partnership for a Better Community -- Library Director served on the Cultural Diversity Committee again and administered the Partnership’s website, including the posting of a new HELPS services directory compiled by Love, Inc., with the sponsorship of the Partnership. At the group’s October 18 meeting, he discussed the library’s retrofitted LED lights in the parking lot, its plans for the new van, the 3M Cloud Library, and how the library is adapting to take better advantage of technology in order to change with the times. The library hosted the May 23 meeting of the Partnership.

  • The Library Director worked with the library's Program Coordinator to ensure that there would be programs that would draw large numbers of people to the library, and that the programming budget is would be spent effectively. The Great Picnic at the Library, the summer concert series, and the Bunny Hop succeeded in doing this, to name just a few.

  • The library hosted a pizza party for the Friends of the Library as a show of appreciation for all they have done recently

  • The library hosted a breakfast meeting with all the school library staff members

  • Library Director and trustees attended several meetings of the Elected Officials Roundtable, providing updates of library news for the other attendees

  • Updated the 2-page article in the Wauconda Area Community Guide published and distributed by the Wauconda Chamber of Commerce.

  • The library was well represented at the Wauconda Chamber of Commerce’s Expo 2013 held at Wauconda High School, again including the participation of the Friends of the Library.

  • Added Teachingbooks.com to the library’s online resources in response to the recommendation of District 118.

  • Added Zinio for Libraries, providing patrons with free unlimited online page-by-page access to 55 popular magazine titles, with the potential to add more

  • Established a new bi-weekly eNews for teachers, titled Teacher Features, to heighten local teachers’ awareness of all the resources the library offers that are particularly useful for teachers and their students.

  • Updated and expanded the library’s History of the Library web page.  This is still a work in progress, but the now mentions many of milestones through the library’s history, including photographs and illustrations, from its beginning in 1939 to the present.

  • Worked with the Makeover Team to come up with the library’s new motto, “Start here.Go anywhere.” This motto will get a lot of visibility as we continue with the re-branding of the library as an up-to-date, future-oriented library and community center. 10,000 new library cards were purchased, each with corresponding key tag.

  • New library card design incorporating the new motto.  This new design was used as the center piece of the graphic wrap design on the van.

Library Facility and Grounds

  • Parking lot lighting upgrade – project was completed as planned, with additional light added at crosswalk and retrofitting of existing lights with special energy-efficient LED lights, increasing brightness from 250 watts to 400 watts per light.

  • Children’s Services and staff work area lighting upgrade was completed as planned, greatly improving the lighting of those areas at minimal cost.

  • After requesting RFPs and polling area library directors, the library hired Murphy and Miller to replace one of the library’s two main air conditioning compressors. Their price was a fraction of next lowest price. Other incidental repairs were made, also at very reasonable prices.

  • Changed some of the wall colors throughout the building in order to present a new look and to use color more strategically in re-branding the library. The color behind the Circulation Desk, for instance, is one of the main colors on the new library card.

  • Added 6 shopping carts to make the library more user-friendly those who need them

  • Continued the addition of effective, attractive library signage at minimal cost

  • Gathered information and pricing for replacing the main library sign with a digital LED sign to be funded in part or entirely by the Friends within the next year or two

  • Gathered information, pricing, and samples for blocking coming through Lincoln Room clerestory windows and irritating sun glare coming through clerestory windows above the Fiction area (still in process)

Library Automation and Technical Services

  • Successfully planned and implemented conversion of the library from barcode-based to RFID-based circulation/security system, enabling the installation of much more user-friendly, cost-saving technology, greatly improving access to the library materials, streamlining portions of the circulation process, and laying the groundwork for installing a more accurate, labor-saving automated handling system in FY2013/2014. This conversion was a major technological shift for the library – a milestone transition that positions the library very well for the future

  • Successfully planned in implemented the installation of two state-of-the-art self-checkout stations that have already proven to be well used by patrons, not only for checking out materials but for privately paying fines using credit cards.

  • Planned and successfully coordinated the switchover from the outdated, more costly Internet access provided by Illinois Century Network to the new cable-based cost-effective high-speed access provided by Comcast. Resulted in annual pre-erate cost savings of $4800.

  • Negotiated switchover from AT&T to CallOne for telephone services, cutting annual pre-erate telephone costs by more than $4400.

  • Negotiated purchase and installation of a new debit system from TBS for the photocopy machines that utilizes library card barcodes rather than anonymous magnetic stripes, eliminating the old technology and making the system more user-friendly.

  • New more powerful, more cost-effective printing center installed in Children’s Services, similar to the Printing Center in Adult Services, equipped with the new library card payment system

  • Negotiated purchase and installation of Envisionware’s eCommerce, enabling library patrons to pay fines using their credit cards at the Circulation Desk. This system is fully integrated with Polaris, so payments are credited automatically to the patron’s account immediately and accurately.

  • Negotiated purchase and installation of Simple Scan Station, a touch-screen workstation that allows users to easily scan photos and documents as PDF files, jpegs, or Word documents for free.

  • Added 3M Cloud Library to the library’s eBook services, greatly improving access to ebooks and laying the groundwork for integration of ebooks in the library catalog. Took advantage of a $2000 (40%) 3M discount for Polaris customers only and a Polaris discount that enabled the library to do this with a cost savings of $5625 (75%) for the required Polaris Application Programming Interface (API) that will ultimately be used for other innovative services as they become available.

  • Polaris Upgrade from Version 4.0 to 4.1 is scheduled for April 9. The various improvements incorporated in this upgrade confirm what a wise decision we made when we chose Polaris as the library’s integrated library system. The new version includes first-of-its-kind integration that will allow our patrons to browse and check out both physical and e-Books.

  • CVI, Inc. upgraded library’s Wi-Fi network from Wireless-G to Wireless-N technology with new equipment, providing “blazing” throughput speeds and advanced enterprise capabilities for security and optimizing connectivity for Wi-Fi users.

  • Continued improvements to the library website and increased development of the library’s online social media presence.

Adult Services Department

  • The department maintained the library’s social media accounts on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Foursquare and Instagram.

  • The library’s digital sign and website were updated daily with programs, events and services.

  • The library continued to maintain the Community website, highlighted events from organizations, clubs and businesses in the library district.

  • 26 issues of the library’s enewsletter were created and distributed to thousands of subscribers.

  • Staff developed the 3M Cloud Library ebook collection.

  • Three Nooks were preloaded with young adult titles and made available for circulation.

  • A format was added, The Great Courses, which provides lectures and courses on non-fiction topics, including history, science, math, religion, reading and more.

  • xBox 360 games were added to the video game collection.

  • Shelves were added to the DVDs and audiobooks to make more room for those collections as well as the young adult book collection.  Materials were shifted accordingly.

  • Staff made 20 homebound deliveries to patrons who were unable to physically come to the library for materials.

  • The library worked with the Wauconda Township and Wauconda Park District to host a senior picnic and senior holiday party.

  • Tax forms and AARP tax assistance was provided in the spring.

  • The department hosted 229 adult programs with an attendance of 9,927 people.  There were 96 programs for teens with 2,287 people.

  • The annual summer concert series held in conjunction with the Wauconda Park District and Friends of the Library.

  • Over 1,0000 hundred people enjoyed “A Great Day at the Library” picnic.  There were pony rides, face painting, music, games, and a visit by Cha Cha, the Rainforest Café frog character.

  • The library kicked off the first One Book, One Community in the fall with The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern.  Book discussions and supporting programs were held in the fall, including The Essential PT Barnum, Dark as Night: A Program for Chocolate Lovers, Tarot by Numbers, Magic and Illusions by Paul Lee, and the Fall Circus Festival.  Contests were held on Facebook to giveaway copies signed by the author.

  • Staff regularly participated and represented the library at various community events and meetings, including parades, Trick or Treat on Main Street, the Wauconda Chamber of Commerce Business Expo, the Wauconda Farmer’s Market, Wauconda Chamber of Commerce, Wauconda Park District, Wauconda Township, Wauconda Women’s Club, and Main Street Attraction.

  • Staff created 54 thematic book displays during the year, highlighting different subjects and collections.  We started “Blind Date with a Book” in February, which was a hit.  People checked out wrapped books and then filled out a form with their thoughts about it.

  • Several reading clubs were held throughout the year, including summer and winter reading clubs for teens and adults, the Rebecca Caudill reading club for grades 6-8, and the Abraham Lincoln reading club for grades 9-12.

  • School outreach initiatives continued.  Staff hosted the annual librarian’s breakfast in October.  The library hosted student displays, including the District 118 Art Show and 8th Grade Social Studies Fair.  Staff attended curriculum nights at Wauconda High School, Wauconda Middle School and Matthews Middle School.  Staff attended the career fair at Wauconda High School to talk to students about working in a library.  We hosted class visits and book discussions from Wauconda High School.  Van deliveries of materials were made throughout the school year to various teachers.  Fourteen issues of the “Teacher Features” were created and distributed to District 118 to promote library services to teachers.  The library purchased multiple copies of the Wauconda High School’s required summer reading so students were able to check out and read over the summer.  Copies of the assignments were also provided.


Children's Services Department