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Advisory Committee to the Nebraska Library Commission Talking Book and Braille Service

Nebraska Library Commission
1200 N Street, Suite 120
Crane Room
Lincoln, Nebraska
Tuesday, June 5, 2012, 1:00 p.m.

All committee members attended the meeting and included: Jim Berryman, Kate Borchman, Shelly Gray, Susan Ledder, Linda Mentink, Brad Meurrens, Beth Pakiz, Kristal Platt, John Wick. Kate and Linda attended via conference call.  

Staff members in attendance included: Annette Hall, Scott Scholz, and David Oertli.


Dave Oertli welcomed committee members. Committee members introduced themselves.

Minutes of the last meeting were read by Shelly Gray, the committee secretary. The minutes were approved as read.

Election of Chairperson and vice chairperson

        Dave Oertli explained the the past chairperson and vice chairperson had both completed their second terms and were no longer on the committee. Beth was unanimously elected as Chair person. Shelly Gray was unanimously elected as Vice Chairperson. Kristal Platt offered to serve for one year as Secretary and was unanimously elect to the position.

Consideration of BARD Policy for Schools and Other Facilities

       Committee members were forwarded a draft policy to review, Some committee members reported that they had difficulty opening a docx document and would prefer documents in the doc formal. Linda noted some inconsistencies in hyphenating words. BARD can be discussed at the fall conference.

       Discussion of the committee concerned:

  • How many libraries are aware of BARD?
  • Are branches knowledgeable of BARD?
  • Brad suggested developing a YouTube video of BARD so individuals could find the information on BARD when it is relevant.
  • Committee members would like to see many formats to explain BARD.
  • The draft policy was formally accepted a corrected.

       The pre-meeting agenda item was advanced allowing Richard Miller to gather feedback. The Library Commission is drafting its five-year plan (2013-2017) as required under a federal program known as the Library Services and Technology Act. An exercise to discuss Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats was conducted and is attached.

       John Wick passed out a brochure developed by the Vision Coalition as a means to make people aware of services for blind adults; TBBS will be added.

 Decreased circulation of the library newsletter.

       All new borrowers are initially set up to receive large print, audio, or Braille embossed Interchange newsletters. The circulation of the newsletter containing new releases and library announcements has dropped by 25%.

  • Several committee members felt that borrowers may have particular books that they like to read or may rely on library staff to select their books. Some patrons may not be interested in new productions.
  • The committee suggested trying to send information via email, perhaps in short announcements.

 Other items

       The Committee’s bylaws were last revised in October, 1993. Linda, Shelly and Brad volunteered to assist Dave in reviewing and updating the By-Laws.

        Staff highlights of the National Conference of Librarians Serving Blind and Physically Handicapped Individuals. The conference was held in Newport, RI, with nearly all 57 regional libraries represented.

  • Scott presented on TBBS’ digital mark-up system at the pre-conference. Libraries had not been instructed on how to mark up digital files for navigation purposes. Two primary software packages are used: Low Complexity Mastering and a package developed by APH. Within a Windows program, the reduplication of digital cartridges tends to result in a problems with the registry.
  • NLS has a new director, Karen Keninger, who is former Director of the Iowa Department for the Blind as well as director of Iowa’s Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped. She has five main goals. 1. More and better ways of technology. 2. Revive Braille. 3. Increase the scope of the collection. 4. Increase readership by 20% in the next five years.
  •  Nationally there was a loss of 6,100 borrowers in the past year. NLS expects the federal budget to get worse.
  • Two national committees will meet every other year instead of every year to save on funding.

       There was some discussion regarding the difficulties of being able to search various databases for books. Sue stated that she would prefer to be able to see all the formats of a book at one time.

 Date for fall meeting:

       Sue asked that a meeting not be scheduled between the middle of October and the end of the year.

 The meeting was adjourned.

Respectfully submitted by Kristal Platt Secretary

For more information contact

Scott Scholz, Director
Nebraska Library Commission Talking Book and Braille Service.
Scott Scholz

For more information, contact Scott Scholz.