Friday, December 18, 2009

New Library Launched in Kingston ACT

I just got this email from Janice - one of our previous Library Managers here:

Hi Everyone

I’m bragging to you all about our latest “baby” – Kingston opened yesterday and everything went beautifully!! A 6 month timeframe – fantastic builders and suppliers working in sync - and this is the result! Make sure you pop in and enjoy the “NY Loft” feel – and bring your coffee!



Janice Biggin
Manager, Library Services
ACT Library & Information Service
Phone: 61 2 6207 5721
Mobile: 0419 424 439
Fax: 61 2 6207 6461
Address: Level 7, Macarthur House
12 Wattle Street, Lyneham. ACT 2602
PO Box 158 Canberra City. ACT. 2601
Visit our website: our blog:

Friday, December 4, 2009

Public Libraries Consultative Committee

The PLCC held its quarterly meeting on Monday 16 November 2009.

The main issues considered at the meeting were:

- Public Library Funding Strategy 2009/10 - the meeting recieved a report confirming that current model is being utilsed for the allocation of public library funding to NSW Councils for the 2009/10 financial year. The report also advised that the Premier has endorsed the new funding model recommended by Library Council in response to the Parry Review, noting that it is to be introduced only when new additional funding becomes available to ensure no council is worse off. The State Library has submitted a Maintenance of Effort bid for the 2010/11 Forward Estimates to address the issues of population growth and CPI on the Public Library Grants and Subsidies.

- Review of the Library Regulation 2005 - the current Library Regulation expires on 1 September 2010. The remaking of a regulation requires the preparation of a Regulatory Impact Statement (RIS) and a period of public consultation in accordance with s5 of the Subordinate Legislation Act 1989. The Premier’s Memorandum M2008-05 requires a public consultation period of 28 days. This will occur in the first half of 2010, during which all NSW local authorities will be consulted as part of the review process.

- Development of a NSW Public Library Sector Strategic Plan - the meeting considered a report from Public Libraries NSW - Metropolitan proposing the development of a 10 year strategic plan for the NSW public library sector.

- an update on the Public Library Network Research Program 2008/09 projects - Scenarios for the Future NSW Public Library Network; Cost Benefit Analysis of Models for Collection Management: acquisitions, cataloguing and processing in NSW public libraries; update of Living Learning Libraries: standards and guidelines for NSW public libraries.

- Legal Information Access Centre (LIAC) and drug info @ your library Branch Report 2008-09 - the meeting was provided with a presentation outlining the achievements of these programs during 2008-09

- Service Delivery and Marketing Strategy - the meeting was provided with a progress report on the rollout of the Service Delivery and Marketing Strategy July - December 2009

- Library Council Report - the Chairperson provided an update on PLCC matters that had been considered by Library Council since the previous PLCC meeting

- information reports were received from Public Libraries NSW - Metropolitan; Public Libraries NSW - Country; and Anne Hall (Manager, Library & Museum Servicves, Fairfield City Council) detailing her attendance at the World Library & Information Congress: 75th IFLA General Conference & Assembly and the IFLA Satellite Meeting: Library Services to Multicultural Populations.

Please contact Cameron Morley (Manager, Funding & Advisory Services) on or 02 92731483 for further information on any aspects of the 16 November meeting.

The agenda and minutes from previous PLCC meetings are available on the State Library website:

Minutes from the November 2009 meeting will be accessible once they have been endorsed by Library Council and any required matters are actioned.


Robert Knight

Chairperson - Public Libraries Consultative Committee

PO Box 5186
Wagga Wagga NSW 2650

þp: 02 69269777
f: 02 69269779
m: 0408 285724

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Chiefs predict service area cuts (from UK Libraries)

I worked in the CIPFA Library when I was in London in 1993 - I'll bet by the sound of this, there is no Corporate Library in that organisation now! Read below:

17 September 2009 | By James Illman

Adult social care, planning and library services are those most likely to be provided at lower levels in the future, council chiefs have predicted.

Nearly a third (27%) of upper-tier respondents to the LGC/Liberata Future of Local Government Survey predicted their council would only be able to supply library services at “absolute minimum service level” over the next five years.

Forty per cent of upper-tier respondents said that levels of adult social care would be “a little less than now” while 42% of district council chiefs expected planning services would be provided at below current levels.

Both the Local Government Association and the Chartered Institute of Public Finance & Accountancy were swift to draw a distinction between actual cuts and scenario planning.

LGA director of finance and improvement Stephen Jones said: “The survey shows that local authorities are engaging in some very responsible scenario planning, but there is a very big difference between scenario planning and actual decisions. A lot of these decisions will be political and taken by elected members.”

CIPFA chief executive Steve Freer echoed Mr Jones’ sentiments. “Closing or curtailing library services may look like an easy option for officers but elected members may take a different view,” he warned.

LGA improvement board chair and Leicestershire CC leader David Parsons (Con) called for councils officers to show “imagination” to avoid slashing frontline services.

“What we want is imagination at the top of local government,” said Cllr Parsons. “I do not know if cuts are necessary or not, but we want to see councils innovating rather than just cutting.”Cllr Parsons said that libraries were a good example of a service that could be used more innovatively.

“In Leicestershire we are looking at providing more services, including health and police, through our libraries. We have had one of the largest expansions of library services in the country.”

Meanwhile, an upper-tier/district council split was evident when respondents were asked who they thought would be delivering services in their area in five years’ time.

Three-quarters of district chiefs said they foresaw non-public-facing functions such as HR and IT services being carried out “with another local authority”, while 22% thought they would be outsourced.

However, more than double (50%) that proportion of upper-tier respondents thought these services would be outsourced, with 37% of this group predicting that such back-office functions would be shared with another council.

Mr Freer urged councils to move swiftly to get the most of shared options. “Shared services take time to put in place,” he warned.

For more information on CIPFA go to their website:

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

New role for Blue Mountains Library Manager (no, not going anywhere....just adding to my responsibilities!)

9 November 2009

***To PLM Members***

The Annual General Meeting of Public Libraries NSW - Metropolitan Association (PLM) was held in the Metcalfe Auditorium at the State Library of New South Wales on Friday 6 November 2009, 3pm to 5pm. During the AGM, the PLM President Cr Win Gaffney, Mayor of Lane Cove Council, delivered the President's Annual Report. This report is attached to this email, and is also found on the PLM website under Reports on the Submissions, Reports and Presentations web page.

Below are listed the PLM Office Bearers/Executive for 2010.
President: Cr Win Gaffney, Mayor, Lane Cove Council
Vice-President: Clr Anne Connon, Mayor, Mosman Council
Secretary: Jennifer Bice, Manager, Lane Cove Library
Treasurer: Susanna Waller, Manager, Rockdale City Library
Library Manager for the President: Jennifer Bice, Manager, Lane Cove Library
Library Manager for the Vice-President: Linda Horswell, Manager, Mosman Library
Regional Representative: Central/South East: Mark Norman, Manager, Kogarah Library
Regional Representative: North: Cheryl Etheridge, Manager, Hornsby Library
Regional Representative: West South West: Vicki Edmunds, Manager, Blue Mountains Library
PLM Representative to the PLCC: Lyn Barakat, Manager, Sutherland Shire Library.
PLM President and Vice-President Profiles:

Cr Win Gaffney:
Cr Gaffney was first elected to Lane Cove Council in 2004, was the Deputy Mayor in 2007/08 and was recently elected the Mayor. Cr Gaffney has represented Lane Cove Council on the Shorelink Library Network Committee during which time she has served as both Chairperson and Deputy Chairperson.

Cr Anne Connon:
Cr Connon has a background in the Finance and Investment industries, has experience as a Company Director, and is the newly elected Mayor of Mosman Council. Cr Connon has also represented Mosman Council on the Shorelink Library Network Committee.

With kind regards,

Robert McEntyre
Executive Director
Public Libraries NSW Metropolitan Association (PLM)
Mobile: 0407 208 364
Business: 02 9489 2310 (+61 2 9489 2310)
PLM Website:

Phone box has new life as library

The traditional phone box was bought from BT for £1

A traditional red phone box has been recycled into one of the country's smallest lending libraries - stocking 100 books.

Villagers from Westbury-sub-Mendip in Somerset can use the library around the clock, selecting books, DVDs and CDs.

Users simply stock it with a book they have read, swapping it for one they have not.

"It's really taken off. The books are constantly changing," said parish councillor Bob Dolby.

He added: "It is completely full at the moment with books. Anyone is free to come and take a book and leave one that you have already read.

"This facility has turned a piece of street furniture into a community service in constant use."

A resident dreamed up the idea when the village lost its phone box and mobile library in quick succession.

Westbury-sub-Mendip Parish Council bought the phone box from BT in a national scheme for a token £1.

BT has received 770 applications for communities to 'adopt a kiosk', and so far 350 boxes have been handed over to parish councils.

Phone boxes have been turned into art installations, a shower and even a public toilet.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Local government mergers and the future of libraries in Western Australia

Funding challenges in WA compounded by fears of what local government mergers could mean for libraries in the state

Public library managers in Western Australia are working flat out to put together a business case for an alternative funding model, to replace the one that has been in operation since 1954. Until the new funding agreement has been signed off, the State Government has capped its contribution to the annual library budget at $6.5 million. There had been a further $10 million in top-up funding spread over the previous four years.

A library manager told ALN, ‘A report was prepared for the joint advisory committee on libraries a couple of years ago and it made 111 recommendations. Because of all the changes, we’re about 12 months behind where we thought we would be, but there are lots of working groups tackling the top 10 recommendations and the big one is the funding model.’

If the new funding model is finished in time, there is a chance that the State Government could be persuaded to grant additional cash in years two and three of the current three-year plan.

At the start of the year, there was nervousness about what local government amalgamation in WA might mean for public libraries, and the situation has not improved. Our source said, ‘There is still a great deal of uncertainty around amalgamation'.

In February this year the minister for local government announced the Liberal-National government package of local government reform strategies. The principle strategies in the package focus on voluntary structural reform of local government.

Specifically, the strategies encourage local government to take steps voluntarily to amalgamate and form larger local governments to reduce the total number of elected members to between six and nine, and for local governments to form appropriate regional groupings of councils to assist with the efficient delivery of services.

‘Local government was invited to submit proposals to a steering committee by the end of September 2009. The steering committee is due to submit a report to the minister for local government next month [December2009]. There is still a great deal of uncertainty, particularly for the regional areas, as to whether there will be mandatory amalgamations, with little information, apart from speculation, being forthcoming.’

Source: Australian Library News 19 November 2009