Saturday, April 7, 2012

April 2012

Community Liaison Contact: Carol Van Baalen


Des Moines Library News

Parkside Elementary in Des Moines was a finalist in the KCLS Global Reading Challenge last month.  Four teams from King County participated in the finals on March 23rd at the Service Center in Issaquah.  Parkside came in fourth place!  We congratulate them on their excellent showing.

Des Moines Library recently received a generous donation of children’s books in memory of baby Viviana Fratangelo.  Family and friends of Viviana gathered at the library on Saturday, March 17, to view the books which had recently arrived.

Kent Library News

Science Squad will be at the Kent Library on Saturday, April 7, at 12:30pm with a free program for children (target age is 8-12) and families.  This is a great opportunity to explore science and technology in a fun way.

SAT Preparation classes will be held at the Kent Library on five Saturdays, from April 21-May 19.  The classes are free, but registration is required, and students must commit to attending all five sessions.

Woodmont Library News

Woodmont Library is gardening this summer!  A small garden bed will be built on the north end of the library property this week.  Children of all ages and families are invited to help plant spring flowers and vegetables in the garden on Saturday, April 21.  There will be a gardening story time at 10:30am, followed by the planting at 11am.  More programs will be held throughout the summer.  This project is sponsored by the Friends of the Woodmont Library.

New at Des Moines, Kent and Woodmont:  Book a Librarian, 30-minute appointments to help you with your information needs.  Discover tools for job searching, do online research, download ebooks, use social media, and more.  Contact your local library to schedule an appointment.

Upcoming Meetings:

Friends of the Des Moines Library            Wednesday, April 11, 7pm
Friends of the Kent Library                     Thursday, April 12, 12noon
Friends of the Woodmont Library             Thursday, April 12, 6:30pm

For a complete list of library programs click on this link: Or download the attachment with this newsletter.

The InfoToGo topic for April is the Spanish Web pages.



KCLS has engaged Point B Consulting to improve workflow processes in the Selection & Order and Cataloging & Processing departments. Staff has already determined ways in which to substantially reduce the number of days between the point at which a materials request is received by KCLS and the time it takes for those items to reach a patron. They have also identified 53 different software improvements that could significantly improve the efficiency of the entire collection development process.

Circulation increased 7% for the month of February and 3% year-to-date compared to the prior year. Holds filled and placed increased 8% and eBook downloads continue to be robust, increasing 140% over the prior year despite the fact that several publishers are still not offering digital content to libraries.

The newly formed Social Media team has been selected and started work this month. They will present their strategies for increasing KCLS’ online presence at the March Board meeting.
Four teams of elementary school students will compete for first place in the 2012 Global Reading Challenge, which will be held at the Service Center on March 23. Finalists include students from Samantha Smith Elementary (Lake Washington School District), Lake View Elementary (Auburn School District), Grand Ridge Elementary (Issaquah School District) and Parkside Elementary (Highline School District.) Each year, schools bring parent and student supporters and, in some cases cheerleaders, as they face off against one another to test their knowledge of the books they have read.
The Community Center for Education Results (CCER) works with a coalition of school districts, city governments and public and private organizations to improve students’ success in schools across south King County. Having identified a loss of learning momentum in the summer as one of the key elements affecting student performance, CCER has asked KCLS to take the lead on developing a special program that is modeled after KCLS’ Summer Reading Program that can be delivered to community sites in low income areas. The concept is a perfect match for KCLS’ Library2Go outreach vehicles, which could visit these sites after they’ve made their runs to home daycares.


KCLS learned at the end of the regular Legislative session that House Bill 2602, which died in committee, was included in the House’s final budget so the study of junior taxing districts will likely go forward this year. While it appears that other taxing districts are the primary focus of the bill, KCLS will have to wait until the study is concluded to learn to what extent public libraries will be affected.

It appears that the final State budget will include the sales tax incentive for cities considering annexation of unincorporated areas. The City of Burien is so confident that funding will be available that the City Council will be considering whether to put a measure on the ballot to annex the remaining unincorporated area of North Highline. KCLS will know whether annexation will be placed on the ballot in August or November when the Council considers the matter at their last meeting in March.

As reported last month, a citizen’s petition requesting that the decision to relocate the Renton Library be put to a vote failed to gather the required number of signatures. Petitioners were given ten more days to gather more signatures but those have yet to be verified by King County Elections. KCLS should know the status of the petition by next month’s Board meeting.

The City of Enumclaw’s intent to annex to KCLS is on the April 17 ballot. The City has clearly stated that Library operations will not be funded next year if the measure fails. If the Enumclaw Library closes, the current reciprocal borrowing agreement terminates, which means that City of Enumclaw residents will not be able to obtain a KCLS library card and residents who currently have a KCLS library card will no longer be able to use it. The same holds true for residents seeking library cards from the Pierce County Library System. In effect, citizens of Enumclaw will be voting on April 17 whether or not to have any library service at all.

KCLS recently learned that the City of Bothell plans to again pursue annexation of a portion of Snohomish County. If the measure passes, it could mean up to $1.5 million in additional revenue to KCLS starting in 2013.

The King County Council confirmed Robin McClelland’s appointment to the KCLS Board of Trustees. She will begin in her official capacity at the March meeting.


KCLS had a significant presence at the 2012 Public Library Association Conference in Philadelphia. Staff presented a number of programs covering such topics as collection development, Take Time to READ and “Creating the Library of the Year.” The building design presentation by Dri Ralph and Miller-Hull Architects was so popular that it was taped for inclusion in a virtual conference. There was a good deal of discussion about eBook vendors that are reluctant to sell digital content to libraries. A group of public libraries is exploring the establishment of a research and advocacy group to confront the issue and KCLS has been asked to participate. The American Library Association and Urban Libraries Council are also engaged in similar efforts. Ultimately, it may require congressional involvement to ensure that the public have the same access to both print and digital content.

It was a year of firsts for the Literary Lions Gala held March 10: a new venue at the Bellevue Hyatt Regency, a record crowd of nearly 500 guests and significantly more donations than ever before. The event raised over $200,000, which will help fund literacy and lifelong learning programs.

Keynote speaker and bestselling author Lee Child was gracious and funny. He spoke highly of KCLS’ impact and congratulated KCLS and audience members for their passion and commitment to libraries, noting the “fantastic resource’” we have in our community. Earlier in the day, he toured the Sammamish Library and was complimentary of its design and collection. Staff showed him how the Automated Materials Handling system works, and on this very rainy day, he even ascended the ladder to check out the green roof.

Emcee Nancy Pearl introduced the event’s 30 popular Northwest authors and delighted the crowd with her remarks. KCLS Foundation President Kari Glover told of her personal experiences in the library as a young reader and talked about the library’s value in our community. Bill Ptacek delivered his annual State of the Library report to applause and cheers from the crowd.

Tickets sold out for the Author Salons. More than 160 avid readers will enjoy a rare opportunity to dine or attend events with 11 authors, including Sherman Alexie, Paul Gregutt, David Horsey, Art Thiel, Valerie Easton, Tom Douglas, Bob Dugoni, Garth Stein, JA Jance, Nancy Pearl and Greg Atkinson.

KCLS Foundation Executive Director Jeanne Thorsen, Keynote Speaker Lee Child, Emcee Nancy Pearl, KCLS Director Bill Ptacek and KCLS Foundation President Kari Glover

Lee Child signs his book “The Affair” for a guest.                                Guests sign up for Author Salons.
Earlier in the day Lee Child toured the Sammamish Library                        Lee climbs the ladder to the
with KCLS Foundation Executive Director Jeanne Thorsen.                    Sammamish Library’s green roof.
      (Photo courtesy of The Sammamish Patch)


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Upcoming Dates

There next Planning Committee Meeting takes place on Thursday, April 12, Noon at the Mercer Island Library.

The next Finance Committee Meeting takes place on Tuesday, April 24, 4pm at the Maple Valley Library.

The next KCLS Board of Trustees Meeting takes place on Tuesday, April 24, 5pm at the Maple Valley Library.