Library Board Meetings

The Contractual and Jasper Library Boards met for their monthly meetings in the Annex building across from the Jasper Library Thursday afternoon.

The library recently held a safety and security meeting with State Police Sergeant Chad Dick of the Jasper post.  From that meeting came a discussion in the Contractual Board meeting as to what policy should be put in place regarding the carrying of firearms into the library.

The Board acknowledged that a person who has a concealed carry permit couldn’t legally be prevented from entering the library.  Dick’s advice to the library was to ignore the person carrying the firearm – which would hopefully be kept out of sight – but also said that library staff members could initiate a call to police if the person is displaying the weapon in a flamboyant manner.

Both boards tabled the discussion about firearms to allow further study on the topic and create a firearms policy for future consideration.

Jasper Library Board President Bill Hewitt announced the newest board member, but as of the meeting last night it was not clear if the person had been contacted by the Dubois County Commissioners as to their appointment.

The name of the new board member: Pamela Catt.  She was appointed by the Commissioners to fill the seat of Dr. Karin Gray.

WITZ News spoke with Pamela this morning and verified that she had been notified of her appointment.  Dubois County Commissioner Larry Volmer confirmed her selection by the Commissioners this morning as well.

Gray passed away on March 23rd after a long battle with cancer.  She had been a member of the Jasper Library Board for 8 years and was in the final year of her term.

Cat begins to fill the vacant seat on the board immediately and will serve out the remainder of the term of Dr. Gray.

Board Treasurer Debra Stemle reported to the board that they have a balance of almost $1,500.00 in a fund called the Dr. Karin Gray Memorial.  No plans have been announced for the use of those funds.

The board elected Dean Vonderheide to the position of Board Secretary until the end of this calendar year.  Board officers are elected every January, and the position of Secretary needed to be filled as a result of the passing of Dr. Gray.

The Personnel Committee presented several items for discussion including the topic of insurance for employees.  The Board acknowledged that the Affordable Health Care Act is forcing them to review their benefits package to determine what they can offer going forward due to cost issues and federally mandated requirements and the existing benefits policy that is applied to all of the full time employees.

The topic was tabled to allow for further investigation.

The Board also re-worked the Tuition / Certification reimbursement policy by eliminating mandatory requirements for certain training and the need to cover the cost of that education and added localized training instead.

The Jasper Board heard that 10 tables will be purchased from The Home Depot in Jasper and 40 chairs will be ordered from Hoffman Office Supply to help fill the need for them in the Annex building.

Finally, a quick discussion ensued about the Jasper Golf Course Property that was recently closed on by the City of Jasper.  Hewitt said that nothing has been decided by the Mayor’s Advisory Team about the use of the property, but questions exist about the viability for a new library – or any building for that matter.

Specifically, Hewitt talked about the potential problem of underground mines that are reportedly in the area and the instability that those pose to any building project; making any future uses of the property unclear at this point.

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