Old Bridge Library Board of Trustees Deliberate on Technology Upgrades and Renovations, Table Major Decisions for Improved Review Process

In the most recent meeting of the Old Bridge Library Board of Trustees, the board emphasized due diligence and review in decision-making regarding the library’s technology needs and renovation plans. The most notable discussions were centered around a proposed $35,000 allocation for technology upgrades, and the initiation of a phased renovation process.

The board’s deliberation over technology needs revealed a balance between urgency and due diligence. A significant portion of the meeting was dedicated to debating whether to allocate $35,000 for immediate technology upgrades, driven by the pressing need to replace outdated equipment that was no longer being serviced. Despite the urgency, there was a call for a more comprehensive review of these items, with Library Board member, Sara Marino, advocating for technology-related proposals to be examined by the technology committee prior to being put up for approval by the full board. This proposal was supported by other members, including Frank Weber and Zainab Syed, who suggested tabling the discussion until more information, including an inventory of all computers and rationale for proposed changes, could be provided.

The timeline for resuming this discussion was also a point of contention. While some members proposed revisiting the issue in a January meeting, others, including Library Director Dawn Jenkin, suggested waiting until February, citing the upcoming holiday season. The Board ultimately agreed to defer the discussion until February, with an emphasis on the importance of having the newly hired technology employee present to provide additional insight.

In parallel to technology-related discussions, the meeting also saw the board engage in a discussion about renovating the library. Library Director Jenkin presented a plan to renovate the library in stages, focusing first on creating quieter spaces, and later updating the circulation desk and Idea Farm. The board agreed on the need for a committee to oversee this process, with the chair of the Buildings and Grounds Committee, Kevin Borsilli, expressing interest in leading the efforts.

The board also discussed the library’s programming, including the Idea Farm’s sewing, quilting, and embroidery courses. Questions were raised about the age range for participants, with discussion touching on the potential involvement of parents and the use of machines versus hand sewing. The library’s new doors and the satisfaction with changes to the front entrance were also remarked upon positively.

The board approved the structure of payments for a programming vendor, deciding on a monthly basis payment system, which will be voted on 12 more times through the billing cycle. A report on the ESL graduation event and potential space limitations for future growth also featured in the discussion.

Did we get something wrong? Let us know.
Owen Henry
Library Board Officials:
Kevin Borsilli, David Cittadino (Superintendent of Schools), Dr. Joan M. George, Sara Marino, Frank Weber, Rosemarie Rivoli, Zainab Syed, Estee Spiegel, Maria Nowak, Rocco Celentano (Superintendent of Schools’ Alternate), Owen Henry, Christopher Parton (Board Attorney), Dawn Jenkin (Library Director)

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