KRLS & MELSA make it an even dozen!

Hand writing formula on blackboardWith board action by the Kitchigami Regional Library System (KRLS) and MELSA trustees, the library community has unanimous support by 12 regions for a 2017 legislative initiative to change the Regional Library Basic System Support (RLBSS) formula.

This new initiative will request a $3 million per year increase in the annual RLBSS appropriation, well as a change to the current formula.  The formula change will reduce the Equalization factor from 25% to 15% and increase the Basic System Services factor from 5% to 15%. The formula changes reflect increased costs in basic operation and use of public library service and lessens the volatility of the formula associated with Adjust Net Tax Capacity (ANTC). In addition, the proposal requests that the formula be based on the population and tax capacity figures as reported by the Minnesota State Departments of Demography and Revenue respectively by January 1 of the year in which the grants are awarded.  This will enable regional libraries to prepare budgets based on accurate calculations rather than estimates.

Proposal to amend current statutory language tied to a funding increase

More regional broadband support

By adding their names to the Minnesota Broadband Vision, regional library boards are showing their support for a future in which residents of all generations and backgrounds will have access to affordable, high-quality broadband. Included on the growing list:

MN Broadband Vision 2016Great River Regional Library (GRRL) – March 15

Kitchigami Regional Library (KRLS) – March 17

Lake Agassiz Regional Library (LARL) – March 17

Metropolitan Library Service Agency (MELSA) – March 17

Traverse des Sioux Library Cooperative (TdSLC) – March 17

Viking Library System (VLS) – March 15

With its many community interests, The Blandin Foundation initiated the Minnesota Broadband Vision campaign.  This includes sharing news and information on broadband use, policy and trends.  There is even an “I Endorse the Minnesota Broadband Vision” Facebook page to “like” as well as post local support.

Cow’s Finale: A year of MOO! comes to a close

Dear Once Upon a Reader fans,

All good things must come to an end, and that includes Cow’s MOO! Trunk Show in Minnesota. This past week Mike and I and Cow gave our last OUR shows in some beautiful north central towns. What a grand time of the year to be up north.

On Monday, September 28, we headed to the tiny library in Pine River where we presented to 13 attendees and the library cat, Browser. We then headed to Brainerd for an evening show where 100 folks turned up to see Cow (and to try their hands at the mechanical milkingcow on the library’s front lawn). Among the attendees were another Dairy Princess and two boys from dairy farms who came dressed in cow costumes.

On Tuesday morning we performed in one of our most unique venues, a church in Wadena. 25 attendees showed up for our show (and free books and milk). We had to restrain Cow from giving a sermon on the importance of pasteurization. In the evening we gave a presentation for 11 attendees at the Frank White Education Center in Park Rapids.

Mike, Cow & David with Paul & Babe the Blue Ox in Brainerd
Mike, Cow & David with Paul & Babe the Blue Ox in Bemidji

Cow was beginning to worry that she was losing her popularity, but we ended our tour on Wednesday with two full houses. Wednesday morning we performed for 170 attendees atthe Bemidji Library. Colleen the librarian had done an amazing job preparing for our visit, with “Cow Chow” snacks for the kids and bottles of “Thirsty Cow” water, not to mention clothespin cows to take home. It was a wonderful way to start our last day. Cow’s swan song was in the small library in Walker, but we filled the venue with 60 attendees. Carrie had lots of prizes to give away, and all the families enjoyed pizza after.

Wow. What a year this has been! We can’t thank you enough for giving us this opportunity. Over the past year we have met some magnificent librarians, seen some fascinating libraries, met lots of friendly families, and created enough memories to fill a silo. To sum it all up, there’s only one thing we can say:

Moo!

Ever your Bovine Buddies,
David LaRochelle, Author
Mike Wohnoutka, Illustrator
and of course, Cow, the star!

PS  – Click here for the 150 travelogue pictures from around Minnesota with Cow, Mike and David

Discover Five Practices Essential for Pre-Readers

The Minnesota Department of Education, State Library Services, with support from the Institute of Museum and Library Services, is excited to bring renowned early literacy educator Saroj Ghoting back to Minnesota for a series of workshops that will give librarians and early childhood educators tools to provide high-quality storytimes and early literacy interactions with pre-readers. The workshops are rooted in the Every Child Ready to Read 2nd Edition (ECRR2) research-based curriculum released by the Public Library Association.

Please visit the Supporting Libraries Serving Youth webpage to learn more about the training options and register for a workshop near you.

Storytimes for Everyone

  • Great River Regional Library – St. Cloud,  Monday, August. 24, 2015, 9 a.m.–4:30 p.m.
  • Headwaters School of Music and the Arts – Bemidji, Thursday, August 27, 2015, 9 a.m.–4:30 p.m.
  • Blue Earth County Library – Mankato, Tuesday, September 22, 2015, 9:30 a.m.–5 p.m.
  • East Central Regional Library – North Branch Area Library, Friday, September 25, 2015, 9 a.m.–4:30 p.m.

Training the Trainers

  • Great River Regional Library – St. Cloud,  Tuesday, August 25, 2015, 9 a.m.–4:30 p.m.
  • Ramsey County Library – White Bear Lake Library, Thursday, September 24, 2015, 9 a.m.–4:30 p.m.

There is no fee to attend – lunch arrangements vary by location.  Please email Jackie Blagsvedt or call 651-582-8805 or  for more information.

MILE Class of 2015 Announced

MLA logo 2014MLA recently announced the 2015 class for the  Minnesota Library Association Institute for Leadership Excellence (MILE)! The 25 selectees for this year’s class will meet their peers in a dynamic four-day retreat at beautiful Sugar Lake Lodge near Grand Rapids, MN from May 12-15, 2015. There they will learn about using improvisational humor and creative idea generation to foster approaches to problem solving and strategic planning, explore their personal strengths, and discover how they can be leaders no matter what their position in the library. Following the retreat, they will also benefit from having an 18-month mentorship with a current Minnesota library leader.

Congrats to the MILE 2015 class!

  • Carolyn Avair, East Central Regional Library System
  • Roxanne Backowski, St. Cloud State University
  • Trent Brager, Minnesota School of Business-Rochester
  • Adam Brisk, University of Minnesota-Duluth
  • Julia Carlis, Dakota County Library
  • Amelia Cohoes, Globe University
  • Allison Girres, Pioneerland Library System
  • Shelly Grace, SAMMIE
  • Sarah Hawkins, East Central Regional Library System
  • Stacey Hendren, Anoka County Library
  • Kristin Jones, Carver County Library/Pioneerland Library System
  • Richmond Kinney, Duluth Public Library
  • Kelly Kraemer, College of St. Benedict | St. John’s University
  • Stephanie Langer, Kitchigami Regional Library
  • Rachel Lockman, Minneapolis Community & Technical College
  • Sarah Lo Pinto, Washington County Library
  • Anne Lundquist, Traverse des Sioux Library Cooperative
  • Chris Magnusson. Arrowhead Library System
  • Amy Mars, St. Catherine University
  • Lisa Motschke, Scott County Library
  • Jake Odland, Douglas County Library
  • Michael Schnieder, Minnesota School of Business-Elk River
  • Christie Schultz, Dakota County Library
  • Jill Wujcik, Sanford-Brown College
  • Jessica Zillhart, Anoka County Library