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Notes from the August 8, 2019 Library Board Meeting
By Editor Becky Watts

ZEBULON - The J. Joel Edwards Public Library Board of Trustees met on Thursday, August 8, 2019. There were a several missing members, but there was a quorum. In attendance were Secretary Anthony Vinson, Treasurer Curtis Ward, Patty Talley, Joy Walker, and Patsy Page along with Library Manager Rosemary Bunn, Flint River Regional Library System (FRRLS) Director Natalie Marshall. Rhonda Morgan and Becky Watts were also present.

[Note from the Editor: Member Tina Venus and Chairman Audrey Lanier both sent emails prior to the meeting advising that they could not attend this final meeting of their terms of office. The tone of both emails suggested that neither would be applying for reappointment.]

Patsy Page is going to be the President Pro Tem for this meeting. Anthony is going to take the minutes.

Secretary Vinson called the meeting and asked for a motion President/Chairman Pro Tem. Motion and 2nd.

Motion to approve the agenda and 2nd. Discussion: Joy asked to amend the agenda to include things that have happened in the past and what needs to happen in the future.

Curtis advised that two emails were sent in the past 24 hours and wanted to be sure that everyone was aware of it. There was an emailed farewell from Audrey and this would be her last meeting and she is not reapplying for her seat. Tina Venus also sent an email that said the same thing. She wished us well.

Natalie said that there needed to be a vote on the agenda before there could be a motion to amend it because there is already a motion on the floor.

Motion to approve the agenda as it is. In Favor of accepting the agenda as it is written. Curtis and Anthony said yes. Clarified that if members vote yes, they cannot add anything to it. Anthony and Curtis voted yes. Patty, Joy, and Patsy voted no. 2-3. The motion failed.

Motion by Joy to amend the agenda to discuss incidents in the past and things that have been done and how to make things better in the future under New Business. Patty gave the 2nd. Discussion of the motion? Anthony said that he doesn’t know how this falls under the approval of the agenda. Where would you add it? New business. Yes – Patty, Patsy, Joy. No – Anthony. Abstain – Curtis said that he doesn’t agree that this is as significant as others think that it is. He also said that it didn’t matter if he voted because of the vote already having enough votes to pass. It passed as a 3-2-1 vote. [Note from the Editor: I asked Natalie if it was required for someone to say why they were abstaining. Rhonda actually looked it up and showed me in Robert's Rules of Order where it said that this was not required. With 2 1/2 inches of paperwork here on the Library Board, I read something about it somewhere and thought it was required. Maybe it's just that the Commissioners usually state why they are abstaining and that is what I am used to.]

Patty asked about the President Pro Tem voting since Vice Chair Gillian Appleton did not vote by choice except in the case of a tie. It was pointed out that if Patsy doesn’t vote in this matter, it’s a tie. Curtis also said that he is leaving at 6 so there will be no quorum after 6 p.m.

Motion to approve the minutes. Anthony is going to change a typo. No vote needed on a spelling correction. In favor: 5-0.


The Georgia Public Library Service has launched a statewide digital program for children with 15,000 digital books. Click here to read this article.

The Governor has called for budget cuts with a 4% reduction this year and 6% last year.


The new hire left last week. Library Manager Rosemary Bunn is working with Interim County Manager Rob Morton on this. Rob has been working with her to clarify policy and library status as well as Clarifying her role as library manager as it pertains to the county. She said that this has been wonderful.

Fund balance of $4,036 remains out of the $30,500 that was set aside for Rosemary to buy specific items for the library. [Note from the Editor: This total amount has been changed from $30,000 to $30,500.]

Woodmen of the World sent $500 for use in the circulating kits.

She said that she asked Interim County Manager Morton about the building expansion update and said that Rob worked that out within about 5 minutes. Gail from the county came by to look at this, and the county is working through issues on this to be sure that policy and procedure are followed. This will be for enclosing the back room for storage and processing books. The finishing will be done by the library staff and volunteers. Shelving will be brought back here as needed from where it is being stored now. Library Board Member Patty Talley said that she will help paint and encouraged Rosemary to let the community know so others could help.

Home Depot is going to donate paint for the Steam Room. Thank you to Home Depot!

She thanked everyone who helped this summer and is working on financials for the upcoming year now. She also went to open house for two school systems.

She applied to use the Courthouse for September 21. 2 showings at the library before that. Includes a post meeting with the Producer Dick Atkins as well as the Director Gary Nelson. Friends of the Library is working on this. [Note from the Editor: This was change from showings 2 showings after to 2 showings before the Courthouse showing.]

There are three open seats right now. Audrey Lanier, Rhonda Morgan, and Joy Walker. One application has come in so far. There is a possibility of the Commissioners filling these open seats before the next meeting.


Treasurer Curtis Ward provided these to members through July. This is for the past fiscal year. Most of the expenses for summer reading have already gone through. Expenses for June are now showing in June and the expenses in July will show in July per the request of the auditor.

The checking and savings accounts have 2 signatures and since Rhonda Morgan has resigned, another member needs to be added to this account. This is necessary in case Curtis cannot sign a check. Natalie said that this could be tied to Board election discussion later in the meeting.




Anthony made a motion to table both items under old business because the Constitution and Bylaws need to be reviewed and the same goes for the 3 year strategic plan because Audrey is no longer on the board and it needs to be reviewed. 2nd given. Approved 5-0.


Confirmed that they will hold the actual election next month. If the 3 unfilled seats are not filled, this will be a problem because a full board is needed.

Discussion on needing a second signature on the checking and savings account as a signatory. It doesn’t have to be an executive member. More discussion shortly.


Flint River Regional Library System (FRRLS) Director Natalie Marshall said that since there will be new people on the board and the changeover to the county, it was asked if this training could be held again. Consensus to wait to decide when to hold this training until a full board has been appointed.

Curtis asked about clarification about the bank account situation. Wait until September until board elections? Anthony said that he would do it temporarily if needed. Curtis said that whoever this is probably won't have to do anything. Rosemary said that this has probably only happened once when someone had the flu. Anthony will do this for now until the September when he wants someone who is more qualified for this to take this position.

Motion to appoint Anthony as the 2nd signature on the bank account for now. 2nd given. Approved 5-0.


She said that the reason she wanted to speak was that the last meeting was unpleasant but that everything she said has been documented. The thing that upset her the most was the accusation that Rosemary’s finances were not reported correctly. Rosemary, Curtis, Edmund, and then the auditors had no findings in the current audit.

Joy said that Rosemary has not been off at all with any of the finances and that running down our manager is not nice and some pretty serious statements were being made about her. She said that going outside of the board to do things without board approval and talking to people is not good either. The Chairman has done this and caused dissension in the board. She said that the board is here to support the manager and not run her down, and that the board needs to be careful to stop actions like this in the future. She said that if anyone of the members steps outside of the rules, it needs to be stopped in its tracks.

She closed by saying that the board is here to support our manager and this library. She said that our library is one of the nicest in our district, and she's proud of it. She also wants to move forward without any dissension.


Motion to adjourn. 2nd. Approved 5-0.

Adjourned at 5:21 p.m.

[Note from the Editor: This meeting was fairly smooth and under and hour for the first time since I began attending meetings last November. I will probably attend next month's meeting and then be able to read the meeting minutes in the library foyer to keep up with what is going on from here on out. It has been very tumultuous for those attending these board meetings for quite some time, but I appreciate the hard work and determination of those who remained on this board even during the hard times. Being on a library board (or any other county support board) should not be a source of stress in anyone's life, and I predict that members will be able to work together much better now and support both the library and the library manager from here on out.]