Baxter County Library
Facilities Use Policy
The Donald W. Reynolds Public Library was built, furnished, and equipped by a grant to the Baxter County Public Library Foundation from the Donald W. Reynolds Foundation. The operating entity for that building is the Baxter County Library, governed by the Baxter County Library Board in accordance with state law. The Baxter County Library Board, which strives to ensure that the Library system operates and is administered in the best interests of the public it serves, establishes the following policies governing the use of the Donald W. Reynolds Public Library and other branches of the Baxter County Library.
The Baxter County Library recognizes citizens' fundamental right of political expression. As a politically neutral institution, the Library does not endorse or oppose political issues, views, or candidates.
No soliciting or selling of products or services not directly connected with the Library can take place.
Library staff may photograph and/or film Library events and those using the Library or attending Library events for public relations and archival purposes.
Food & Drink
The Library strives to provide a clean and comfortable environment where people can enjoy the materials and services provided by the Library. Food and beverages from the Coffee Shop may be consumed in meeting and conference rooms. Beverages purchased from the Coffee Shop in lidded containers (covered coffee, soda, and juice containers, and plastic beverage bottles with caps) can be consumed in designated public areas of the Library. No food or beverages from outside sources may be brought into the public areas of the Library. Spills should be immediately reported to a staff member to avoid damage to Library property.
Patron Code of Conduct
The Baxter County Library encourages people of all ages to visit the Library. Those using the Library and its resources have the right to expect a safe, comfortable environment that supports appropriate Library services. The Baxter County Library seeks to foster a quiet and orderly environment that is conducive to reading, acquiring information, and study.
People entering the Library are expected to respect the rights of other patrons to use the Library. No person shall harass or annoy others by being noisy or boisterous, playing audio equipment so that others can hear it, or by behaving in a manner that reasonably can be expected to disturb other persons.
Personal appliances, such as computers, audio devices, and calculators, may be used if the noise level is low and use does not interfere with others. Cellular telephones and pagers should be switched to a non-audible signal and, if answered, conversation should not disturb others.
People demonstrating disruptive behavior will be asked to leave the Library after one warning from Library staff. Disruptive behavior includes, but is not limited to, noisy, boisterous actions; inappropriate behavior, including running, loud talking; misuse of Library property; uncooperative attitude; and actions that deliberately annoy others or prevent the legitimate use of the Library and its resources. Abusive language and behavior toward staff will not be tolerated. If any person is violent or threatens violence, Library staff will call local law enforcement to remove the person from the Library.
Harassment & Lewd Conduct
Patrons and staff have the right to enjoy an environment free from harassment or lewd conduct. Harassment is defined as persistent and unwelcome conduct or actions. Sexual harassment includes unwelcome sexual advances, unwelcome requests for sexual favors, unwelcome physical contact of a sexual nature, or unwelcome verbal, nonverbal, or physical conduct of a sexual nature.
Anyone, including patrons, who harasses staff or another patron will be asked to leave the Library and a report will be filed with the Baxter County Librarian. Repeated acts of harassment or acts that appear to have the potential to escalate into violent or illegal actions will also be reported to local law enforcement.
Lewd acts, sexual misconduct, and sexual harassment are not acceptable actions. Those who commit minor acts, such as teenagers who “make out” in the Library will be given one warning and then will be asked to leave.
Weapons of any kind are prohibited in the Library. Any person who is in possession of a dangerous weapon will be provided with a copy of this policy and asked to remove the item from the building. If the person does not comply with the request, Library staff will call local law enforcement.
This policy does not prevent legally licensed weapons from being stored in a vehicle that is parked on Library property as long as the weapon is stored in accordance with applicable state laws. This policy does not apply to law enforcement officers who are carrying weapons while on duty.
Theft of materials
All items removed from the Library must be checked out. The Library reserves the right to request that patrons open purses, briefcases, packages, and parcels. If staff believes that, due to the large volume of materials and/or value of materials, theft was intended, local law enforcement will be called.
Keeter-Dryer Children’s Library
The Donald W. Reynolds Library is a public facility that offers services to a wide range of citizens, and children are especially welcome. The Library has the responsibility to provide an environment that is safe and comfortable for every patron who is appropriately using its services and facilities. Children and young people are expected to adhere to the same standards of patron conduct expected of adults. Parents, guardians, or assigned chaperones are responsible for the behavior of their children while in the Library.
Children may not be safe when left unattended in the Library. Library staff will not know if children are leaving with a parent, a friend, or a stranger. Library staff will not deliberately seek out unattended children; however, unattended children frequently become disruptive when they are bored. If a parent or other responsible adult cannot be located, unattended children who are disruptive will be placed under close supervision until the parent or responsible adult can be contacted or placed in the care of local law enforcement, depending on the severity of the situation. Under no circumstances will Library staff take a child out of the building or transport children to another location.
Library sponsored programs and events will receive priority.
Meeting rooms at the Donald W. Reynolds Library are available during normal Library hours for use by community, non-profit organizations engaged in educational, cultural, intellectual, or charitable activities and whose primary membership includes residents of Baxter County.
Nonrecurring meetings can be scheduled in the Knox Community Rooms when the Library is closed with advance approval of the Baxter County Librarian. Such meetings will incur an hourly fee, limited to a maximum of three hours. (See attached fee schedule)
The Library reserves the right to relocate a group to a different meeting room.
Library Meeting rooms may be reserved by Baxter County businesses for a fee. (See attached fee schedule)
The computer lab may be reserved by businesses for training during normal Library operating hours for a fee. See attached fee schedule.
Purposes, objectives, or views of groups using meeting rooms shall not be advertised in any way that suggests that the Library endorses them.
Groups may reserve a meeting room once each month.
Conference and study rooms may be reserved. The number of times these rooms may be scheduled each month will be based on demand.
Any group using a meeting room is expected to conduct its proceedings in a quiet, orderly manner, not disruptive of normal Library functions.
Groups are to set up and take down tables and chairs as needed. Trash must be placed in receptacles and the room left clean.
The Library will not store items for groups using the meeting rooms. The Library is not responsible for damage to, or loss of, personal items used or left in the meeting rooms. Tobacco use is prohibited on Library premises.
The Coffee Shop vendor has the right of first refusal on any catering of meals and/or refreshments in the Library.
Use of the Library's audiovisual equipment must be arranged at the time the room is booked. Arrangements for training on how to use equipment must be made in advance. Groups will be held responsible for any damage to, or theft of, Library properties.
The Library reserves the right to refuse future bookings to groups that fail to appear on scheduled meeting dates or do not abide by the above policies.
EXHIBITS AND DISPLAYS
Display and exhibit space is available within the Donald W. Reynolds Library for sharing educational, artistic, and cultural materials that promote interest in the use of books, Library resources, and education, or that share information about art and cultural organizations. The Library staff has the primary responsibility for developing displays and exhibits using Library resources. However, exhibits that are related to public events and timely topics may be scheduled. Preference for exhibit and display space is given to local nonprofit organizations. Exhibits that are solely for commercial purposes, including the sale of goods and services, will not be considered.
Displays are generally changed monthly, and no exhibit that will be relevant for less than two weeks will be considered. Groups desiring to provide a display or exhibit should contact the Library at least two months in advance. A group or organization may not exhibit items or display materials more frequently than once in a 12-month cycle.
Exhibits and displays may not contain dangerous or hazardous materials, any device that creates noise while on display, firearms, or perishable materials. The Baxter County Librarian may also exclude other items if they are determined to be illegal or would pose a health hazard to Library patrons. The Baxter County Librarian will consult with appropriate public agencies as part of the decision process.
Displays should be arranged in a neat and attractive manner with printed labels that are legible. The Library will take reasonable care to ensure the safety and security of items displayed; however, the Library will not purchase additional insurance to cover loss, damage, or theft.
Display or exhibit of items in the Library does not indicate endorsement of the issues, events, items, or services promoted by the displayed materials. Organizations that are denied the use of exhibit areas or display cases or that disagree with the Baxter County Librarian’s decision regarding items to be displayed may appeal the decision to the Library board.
Space is available for community organizations engaged in educational, cultural, intellectual, or charitable activities to disseminate information on the Library’s display monitor(s) in the Donald W. Reynolds Public Library. An online form for information can be found on the Library website www.baxtercountyLibrary.org, or a paper form is available at the Library. Display monitors may not be used for personal or commercial advertisements. Items may be displayed for a maximum period of one month.
Community organizations engaged in educational, cultural, intellectual, or charitable activities may place informational brochures in the brochure racks provided for that purpose. Items that may be distributed in the brochure racks include flyers, brochures, leaflets, newspapers, and pamphlets that provide information about nonprofit civic, educational, cultural, or recreational organizations and events. Materials that promote programs or projects of a personal or commercial nature may not be distributed in the Library. Items may be distributed for as long as they are valid. If space becomes limited, preference will be given to items of a timely nature and to organizations or groups that have not recently distributed items.
Distribution or posting of information by the Library does not indicate endorsement of the issues, events, or services promoted by those materials. Items for posting that do not meet the criteria outlined in this policy will not be displayed. No soliciting or political campaigning is permitted.
Questions about the policy and its application can be addressed to the Baxter County Librarian.
RELIGIOUS PROGRAMMING AND DECORATIONS
As part of the Library’s vision to expand horizons and open minds, the Library may sponsor or present programs on a variety of topics, including holiday celebrations representing the diversity of world religions and cultures. Whenever possible, publicity will include details about the program so that parents may make decisions about attendance for themselves and their children. Decorations in the Library, except at nonpublic staff desks, will be limited to secular seasonal or patriotic items, such as winter greenery, spring flowers, autumn harvest, and American flags. The Library does not determine the content of programs presented by persons using the meeting room (refer to the policy on Use of Meeting Rooms), and information presented or opinions expressed by outside speakers do not necessarily represent the views of the Library.
PARTNERSHIPS & SPONSORSHIPS
The Baxter County Library welcomes the opportunity to partner with private and public agencies and organizations when doing so benefits the Library and the community it serves. Partnerships are considered to be long-term relationships with specific responsibilities and outcomes assigned to each partner. Sponsorships are considered as a means for agencies and organizations to support specific Library projects, services, or programs and are short-term.
Each opportunity will be evaluated by the Baxter County Librarian to determine the short- and long-term costs (including staff time) and benefits. Based on the scope of the partnership or sponsorship, the Baxter County Librarian will determine whether a formal agreement or contract is required. The Baxter County Librarian may enter into formal agreements or memos of understanding. Contracts for more elaborate partnerships or sponsorships require approval of the Library Board.
The mission and policies of potential partners and sponsors must be compatible with the policies, vision, mission, and goals of the Library. Partners and sponsors agree to act in ways that are mutually beneficial and adhere to oral or written agreements. Priority will be given to organizations, agencies, and businesses that help the Library extend or enhance services to the community.
The Library will develop each partnership individually, documenting the terms and conditions. If deemed appropriate by the Baxter County Librarian, these terms will be formalized in a written agreement or contract. The Baxter County Librarian will assign a staff member to be the primary liaison for the partnership and expects the partner to do the same.
Monetary gifts, bequests, and memorial or honorary contributions are particularly welcome. If requested at the time the donation is made, notification of memorial or honorary contributions will be sent to the family of the person being recognized.
All donations of works of art will be evaluated by the Art Committee based the criteria for selection of local and regional art established for the Donald W. Reynolds Public Library.
Donations of artifacts, collections, etc., will be based on suitability to the purposes and needs of the Library, laws, and regulations that govern the ownership of the gift, and the Library’s ability to cover insurance and maintenance costs associated with the donation. The decision will be made by a committee made up of the Baxter County Librarian, two Library Board members and three Library Foundation Trustees. Once donated, items become the property of the Library and may be transferred to other libraries and nonprofit agencies, sold, traded, or discarded.
Donations of real estate, stock, and estate jewelry would be more appropriately directed to the Baxter County Library Foundation.
Violation of Policy/Regulations
For any violation of these policies and/or regulations, the Library board or the Baxter County Librarian may exclude any member of the public from the Library premises for a specified time period and/or withdraw Library privileges.