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System Director’s Report:

December, 2006

It is hard to believe the year is almost over, but this is my twelfth report. One of the best things about 2006 for me has been the opportunity I’ve had to work more closely with the SCLS Board and to meet local library trustees throughout the system. Bob Blitzke and I have met with more than a quarter of our member library boards in 2006 and hope to meet with the rest in 2007.

The past year has given me a deeper appreciation for how essential library trustees are to all of us. Our member library boards are diverse groups that share a deep dedication to service and to improving libraries. We have seen trustees hurrying into meetings after work or over their lunch breaks, taking time out of their busy lives to serve their communities. Whether planning for a new building, fighting budget cuts, doing strategic planning, hiring a new director or dealing with routine issues, their plates are very full. The breadth of trustee responsibilities is illustrated by the fact that there are 27 library “trustee essentials,” each covering an issue of importance to library board members, in Trustee Essentials: A Handbook for Wisconsin Public Library Trustees.  Thanks to all of you for taking on this responsibility.

In 2006 we have had to say goodbye to some long time members of the SCLS Board. Bill Zimdars, Jack Taft, Tom Brown, Tony Patton and Kristi Williams deserve our thanks for their service to SCLS and to our member libraries.  We've been very fortunate all these years to have them.

New Staff
I am very pleased to announce that Jean Anderson, currently at the Sun Prairie Public Library, will become the Continuing Education and Multitype Coordinator for SCLS on February 1, 2007. That leaves us with one vacancy in the Automation office, one in Administration and some part-time openings in Delivery.

Charter Update
As we discussed at our last meeting, when SCLS first contacted Charter.net about our problem with email notice delivery, they assumed we were being blocked for exceeding their messaging cap. After several rounds of tests and much discussion with SCLS, Charter engineers have determined that LINKcat notices were being blocked based on the inclusion of LINKcat Web's URL within the notices. The www.linkcat.info URL had somehow found its way onto their list of banned message content. This resulted in the automatic blacklisting of all senders of messages containing that URL.

Charter removed our URL from their content blacklist, and they added the IP address of the SCLS mail server to their whitelist. Our notices are now being delivered without a hitch, and the changes at Charter should prevent the problem from recurring.

I’ll see you on the 8th!