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Meetinghouse Library Supplies

Posted: Sun Jun 28, 2020 12:38 pm
by drepouille
I just sent the message below to our Primary and Sunday School leaders. I wonder if every meetinghouse has this same problem of supplies migrating to organizational closets?

I have a bit of a problem, and could use some advice. I was looking in the library for some "mounting putty" to stick signs to doors, but I couldn't find any. I thought for sure that we had some, since I remember buying some a couple years ago. I looked in the library as well as the Primary closet. (I did not look in the Primary teacher bags, though.)

This leads to a larger discussion as to why so many supplies seem to migrate from the library to the Primary closet. It's been that way forever, so I'm not blaming anyone. I'm just wondering if we really need more than just the one central location for all classroom supplies. Is it better for Primary, Sunday School, and Relief Society to have their own supply stashes? If so, I don't mind buying whatever supplies each organization needs to stock their own supply closets.

What do you all think?

Re: Meetinghouse Library Supplies

Posted: Sun Jun 28, 2020 1:16 pm
by russellhltn
I'd look at the "convenience" factor. Having it in the organizational closet means that it becomes a "one stop shop". And, everyone who needs access has access. I suspect having to go to the library adds a hassle factor and having to deal with the librarians.

I'm not sure as this is a battle worth fighting. Let everyone get and stock their own supplies and limit the library to the more expensive things that need to be shared.

Re: Meetinghouse Library Supplies

Posted: Sun Jun 28, 2020 2:04 pm
by davesudweeks
I second with Russell's advice. When I began serving many years ago as ward clerk, we found a ton of unused materials in the library and a large library budget. In our case, since the library "covered" everything, there was much waste as organizations over-ordered supplies and handbooks. For materials, rather than check the library, they just asked for more of what they wanted and that was never questioned. Since it did not come out of "their" budget anyway, there was little incentive to be frugal. With three wards sharing the library and a rotating head librarian, it was a big mess most of the time.

After securing approval from the bishop, we cut our ward's library budget way back (pretty much just enough to cover our portion of the copier costs and a few small things like chalk, pencils, etc). We added the extra the funds to the organization budgets. Then we told the organizations that they were responsible to cover the cost of their own handbooks, bulletin board materials, etc. from their budget. For the annual order, I would make the order for them, but deduct their portion of the handbooks from their individual budgets.

There were some grumblings at first, but we were able to show them that the amount we had been spending through the library was now available to them and if they would only order what they needed, they would find we actually increased their budget by cutting the waste.

Re: Meetinghouse Library Supplies

Posted: Sun Jun 28, 2020 3:00 pm
by drepouille
We are the only ward in our meetinghouse, and we have traditionally operated without any librarian. Everyone just goes to the library and gets what they need.

I have the opposite problem as Dave. Our Primary president has often purchased supplies from Amazon or where ever, and asked for reimbursement. Or the EQ president buys things from the Distribution Center, and asks for reimbursement. I happily reimburse them from their budgets, but I also tell them that I can order anything they need from either Staples or the Distribution Center, so they never have to be reimbursed. I just pull the expense from their budget. Fewer reimbursements mean fewer expenses for the auditor to complain about.

Re: Meetinghouse Library Supplies

Posted: Sun Jun 28, 2020 3:05 pm
by drepouille
russellhltn wrote:I'd look at the "convenience" factor. Having it in the organizational closet means that it becomes a "one stop shop".

Funny thing is that the library is less than 50 feet from the Primary and Relief Society rooms, which have become something like library annexes, but literally just a few steps away.