The entire Indian River County Library System Policy is viewable below.
For purposes of this manual, policy is defined as: written statements of decisions made to implement the goals and to achieve the objectives of the Indian River County Library System, in compliance with Indian River County policies. Procedures are defined as detailed specifics stating how policies shall be implemented.
The importance of adopted policies is to provide consistency and direction for library services. Policies support the library system’s plans, goals, and objectives; reduce uninformed decision making and crisis response to problem situations; assure fair treatment; and protect the rights of the library patrons and staff.
The importance of specific procedures is also to provide consistency and direction as they apply to properly carrying out the adopted policies. The manual is designed so that it can be continuously updated.
The policies in the manual comply with the requirements set forth in the Florida Statutes (Chapter 257), with the Administrative Code of Florida (Chapter 18-2), and with the First Amendment of the United States Constitution.
Policies include these categories: management, services, registration/circulation, collection selection/development, and the use of library facilities by other groups.
Since all situations that might arise at the library cannot be anticipated, this manual cannot serve as a finalized code. It is hoped that the guidelines provided in this manual will allow the staff to resolve situations that arise that are not treated directly here.
Purpose of the Library System
Public libraries, through their service and facilities, contribute to the quality of life in the communities they serve. A public library system committed to excellence will assist in enhancing the quality of life for all of the residents of Indian River County. The mission of the Indian River County Library System is embodied in the Mission Statement (see Page 2).
The users of the Indian River County Library System deserve the highest quality service possible in order to fulfill their educational, informational, cultural, and recreational needs. High quality library service is dependent upon the following factors: well-selected and well-maintained collections of library materials in adequate numbers to respond to user needs, the availability of qualified and enthusiastic personnel, convenient hours of service, inviting physical facilities that are accessible to all segments of the county, and financial resources to meet library needs of the residents of the county. The Indian River County Library System subscribes to the principles and statements included in the Library Bill of Rights (Appendix A) and the Freedom to Read Statement (Appendix B), in the latest versions, as adopted by the American Library Association (ALA).
The Indian River County Library System recognizes the importance of standards appropriate to public library service, which standards are developed by the American Library Association, the Florida Library Association (FLA), the State Library of Florida, and other similar organizations and agencies responsible for the development of standards. Unless otherwise excepted, the Indian River County Library System uses such standards as guidelines for the system.
The mission of the Indian River County Library System is to provide the means by which people of all ages, interests, and circumstances may avail themselves of the recorded wisdom, experiences, and ideas of others. In support of this mission, library materials are assembled, organized, and made accessible to all. Opportunities for personal, educational, cultural, and recreational enrichment are offered. Collections of library materials, services, and programs are planned and developed to respond to individual and community needs. A trained and skilled staff and the latest technologies are employed to facilitate and enhance the use of the resources of the library system. By committing themselves to excellence in all facets of the library system’s services and operations, the library administration, and staff, reaffirm the democratic ideals upon which the American public library is founded.
Job descriptions and other relevant personnel matters are available in the Indian River County Human resources Department.
Emergency procedures to be followed are: any staff member may call 911 in the event of an emergency, the person in charge should be notified immediately, use the emergency call list to alert other appropriate persons. All accidents should immediately be reported to Risk Management.
An accident/incident report must be filled out and signed by the injured party (or responsible party) and by a library staff witness. All forms are available in the Administration office. The non-emergency police number is posted at all desks.
Hours of Service
Indian River County Library System hours of service are subject to change with the availability of staff. Visit our web site: www.irclibrary.org
Friends of the Library
The Friends serve as the support group for the libraries and are the lobbying arm of the libraries on the local, state, and federal government levels. The Friends may volunteer their services within the library and may raise funds for “special” projects (over and above county allocated funds). The Friends are a separate entity from the libraries with their own policies, procedures, and officers. Cooperation between the Friends and the libraries is essential. The Library Director serves as the liaison with the Friends organization.
The Friends may have an office, used book store, and/or a gift shop in library facilities. These spaces are contracted and allotted to the Friends by Indian River County with any restrictions required by Indian River County. Library staff is not involved with these decisions.
Internal organization of the Friends groups is not an Indian River County decision. The Friends establish their own procedures for their own operations.
Any problems that may arise concerning the allotted space or spaces, the use of, and/or the restrictions set by Indian River County shall be handled through the General Services Department, as the library facilities are county owned. Because of liability, accountability, and insurance factors, the Friends must request in writing permission to place items in the libraries. No action should be taken by the Friends before written permission is received.
Literacy Services of Indian River County
Literacy is considered in the Florida Long Range Plan as a natural extension of library services to the public, stating that our mission is to provide library services to all segments of the population. On the national and state levels, literacy has become an integral part of public library services. LSCA (Library Services and Construction Act) funds were allocated to public libraries in Florida who requested and qualified for the funds to combine efforts with local literacy services to combat illiteracy in their communities. One of the requirements for receiving and expending these funds for the grant time period was to pick up the core of the service locally at the end of the funding (four years in Indian River County).
To continue cooperative efforts to combat illiteracy in Indian River County, the Indian River County Library System may contract with the Literacy Services of Indian River County for allotted space in the libraries for an office. The Library may also provide available space for tutors to teach their students to read (prior arrangements will be made in accordance with meeting or study room policies). The libraries may also purchase and make available to the public, materials which further this cause. As a logical extension of public library services and to adhere to the State plan, the Indian River County Library System will strive to meet the needs of all segments of the county’s population.
As with the Friends, the Literacy Services of Indian River County will establish its own policies and procedures and will follow the contractual agreements/restrictions the county establishes for its facilities.
The information demands of modern society have made it impractical to operate a public library solely through the use of donated labor; however, the use of volunteers can be a means of supplementing the library’s services. Effective volunteer programs generally require that the individuals offering their talents to the library should, as far as possible, be treated as if they were paid staff. Volunteers working in library programs should be recruited for specific positions with properly developed job descriptions and should regularly be evaluated on the effectiveness of their service.
The Indian River County Library System encourages interested persons to volunteer at the libraries. Appropriate forms should be filled out for the library files and for the volunteer to choose the best days/times to volunteer and to select tasks preferred. Every effort will be made to accommodate the preferences.
After proper training, the volunteer may begin work.
Volunteers must understand that the libraries follow Indian River County policies and procedures. Volunteers should never become involved with the daily operations of the libraries or with management decisions. Any suggestions are welcome and should be directed to the Library Director or Volunteer Coordinator.
The objectives of the Indian River County Library System are to select, organize, preserve, and make easily and freely available to the people of the county printed and other materials (within the limitations of space and budget) which will aid them in the pursuit of education, information, research, and recreation.
Intellectual Freedom and Censorship: The library system preserves the rights of citizens to obtain information on all sides of potentially controversial issues, so that individuals can decide for himself/herself the value of opposing ideas. In representing various sides of a question, the public library thus provides the citizen with reliable sources of information on which to base intelligent decisions.
The library has a responsibility to protect the rights of mature and sophisticated readers; materials which may be considered frank or offensive to some are included if review material and/or staff opinion suggests that the work makes a significant contribution either to the literary or informational complexion of the collection or to contemporary thought and style.
Parents and legal guardians are responsible for the reading habits of their children and young adults. Selection of materials is not inhibited by the possibility that particular materials may inadvertently come into the possession of children and young adults.
Responsibility for Selection: The Library Director has the ultimate authority for selection with cooperation of the library staff within the system.
General Principles: Selection will be based on the following:
Materials will be selected in a variety of formats as best represents the message of the author.
Suggestions for additions to the collections from the public are welcome.
Adult Applications: An application for a free library card must be completed by residents and/or property owners of Indian River County. A card applicant must provide one of the following forms of identification:
Children’s cards for children and youths (under age 16) must be co-signed by a parent/guardian/grandparent. The home or work telephone number of the parent/guardian/grandparent must be on file in the library. The responsibility for what a minor borrows rests with the parent/guardian/grandparent. All costs associated with fines, replacement, lost, or damaged items are the responsibility of the parent/guardian/grandparent.
Library cards are valid for two years from the patron’s birthdate. Patrons must bring library cards into the library to be updated.
Non-Residents of Indian River County: Anyone who is unable to meet one of the necessary residency requirements as stated above may apply for a non-resident library card. The fee for a non-resident card is $10.00 for a 3 month card, $20.00 for a six month card, and $30.00 for a 12 month card. These cards may be renewed at the end of the appropriate time period at the same cost.
Computer only cards may be purchased for $5.00 annually. An application must be filled out and appropriate identification shown.
Lost or stolen library cards should be reported to the library system as soon as the loss is noted. A $2.00 replacement fee will be charged.
Card Holder’s Statement of Responsibility:
Borrower’s must understand their responsibility as stated here (and as printed on each library application): “I understand when I receive my Indian River County Library System library card that I am responsible for following all library policies and procedures with regard to the borrowing and returning of library materials. I am responsible for all materials checked out of the library system on my library card and will pay all appropriate charges for lost or damaged materials and for materials returned after their due date. Failure to return library materials may also be in violation of local ordinances and could result in a misdemeanor charge being filed.” Adults co-signing a minor’s application are also subject to the above.
Library materials are available to be borrowed by persons who hold a valid library card:
Circulating books, magazines, and audiobooks
eBooks & eAudiobooks
One Week Wonder books
Book Club in a Bag
Reference books (requires a deposit set at the Director’s discretion)
All audiovisual materials (CDs, DVDs)
Circulating items may be renewed unless there is a reserve from another patron placed on the items. Patrons may renew online.
Circulating items may be reserved. Items may be reserved online.
One Week Wonder books may not be reserved or renewed
Items are considered overdue or late when they are returned one or more days following the due date. Fines will be charged and collected. Fines will be attached to the patron’s card when late items are returned and fines unpaid.
Books and Magazines
25 cents per day
50 cents per day
$25.00 per day
Fines will not exceed the cost of the item.
Lost or damaged items are the responsibility of the borrower. Costs associated with replacing the items lost or damaged are determined by the replacement cost and any re-processing fees. (If the item is part of a set and the entire set must be re-purchased, than that is the replacement cost.)
Emails are sent one day prior to the due date as a reminder. Emails are sent to inform patrons that their items are overdue at the 2 week mark and another email at one month. Then a bill is emailed at 6 months.
Fines and other fees may change due to budgetary issues.
Failure to Return Indian River County Property
Failure to return county property could result in the negligent borrower being charged with a misdemeanor offense. Legal action could be taken by the Indian River County’s State Attorney’s Office.
The Indian River County Library System will make every reasonable effort to obtain for its users library materials that may be borrowed from other libraries. Users must have a valid library card in good standing in order to use the interlibrary loan service. The library system recognizes that interlibrary loan is a service that always requires the cooperation of another library and that the cooperating library’s policies and procedures must be followed.
Requests are limited to 3 active requests at a time, no audiovisual materials are loaned by other libraries, and no items published in the current year are loaned by other libraries.
If the lending library levies charges for postage, handling, or the copying of materials, that charge will be passed on to the borrower requesting the material.
Lost or damaged materials will be charged to the user to reimburse the lending library. Failure to pay for overdue, lost, or damaged interlibrary loan materials will result in a “stop” on the patron’s library card to discontinue future use.
Public Service Guidelines
It is the policy of the Indian River County Library System to provide the highest quality of user-oriented library service possible within the resources available.
Service to the public should be a cooperative effort of the entire library staff. The system’s objective is to satisfy the library needs of the user so well that he/she/they will continue to use the services of the library system.
As is the case with all subject areas, the basic obligation of the library staff is to point out the sources that are available to library patrons and to instruct them in how to find the information they seek. If the library patron is unable to obtain the needed information sought from the Indian River County Library System, he/she should be referred to other sources.
It is the general policy of the Indian River County Library System to always strive to have current, factual, relevant materials in its collections for the users of the Library System.
Gift materials must meet the following criteria before they can be accepted by the Library System collections:
By law the Library System cannot, under any circumstances, endeavor to provide an appraisal or place a value on a proposed gift of books, art objects, or other materials. The Library System will provide to the donor a signed statement acknowledging receipt of the item(s) and that the value placed on the item(s) was determined by the donor.
The Friends of the Indian River County libraries are the most appropriate organization to accept donations. All their proceeds benefit library programs and services.
The Indian River County Library System respects the opinion of those who may find reason to disagree with its choice of titles for the collections of the library system and therefore has established procedures for such disputes if and when they occur.
A library patron may initiate a review of any title (item) by completing a reconsideration form. Upon completing the form, the Library Director will communicate with the patron and a decision will be made. Should it become necessary, the decision of County Administration will be sought.
The library is open to all for reading and research. Library users are expected to respect the rights of others. Library users are expected to:
The following are prohibited within the library.
Unattended or Disruptive Children
The Indian River County Library System welcomes children to use its facilities and services. The system emphasizes children’s programs. However, responsibility for children using the library rests with the parent/guardian/grandparent or assigned chaperone, not with library personnel.
For the purposes of this policy, and as defined in Chapter 1.01 of the Florida Statutes, a minor is any person under 18 years of age.
Preschool age children (children ages 8 and under), may not be left unattended in the library; they must be accompanied by a teenager or an adult. Responsible parties not attending a program with a preschooler must remain in the library building.
If a child is left unattended and it is 30 minutes or less until closing time, or if an unattended child becomes distraught, library staff may, if necessary, use the following procedures in order to resolve the situation:
Children who remain outside a library facility at closing time are not necessarily covered by the above procedures unless, depending on the circumstances, it is apparent to library staff that a child is distraught or in obvious trouble. Library staff may use the above procedures and best judgment in dealing with such situations.
Disruptive behavior is any behavior on library premises that infringes on the rights of others using the library. Disruptive children will not be allowed to interfere with library service to others. Disruptive children will be approached in the following manner by library staff:
Library staff should document any and all incidents involving unattended and/or disruptive behavior and submit a report to the Library Director.
Use of Library Meeting Rooms
Meeting rooms may be used by organizations and businesses for programs and meetings when such use does not conflict with the library’s programs and services, Constitutional Officers or Indian River County business. The library system reserves the right to determine whether a proposed use of its facilities is appropriate, and to give or withhold permission for such use. The sale of merchandise/services and solicitation are not allowed.
A prospective user of library system meetings rooms may:
The following conditions for use must be followed by all who wish to use a meeting room of the library system:
A responsible party from the organization must sign a meeting room contract.
Seating capacity is governed by the Fire Marshall. Additional seating may be provided by the organization reserving the room, with the organization being responsible for delivering, setting up, and removing the seating, and as long as seating does not exceed the Fire Marshall limits.
Any violation of the above could result in denial of future meeting room use.
In the event publicity concerning the meeting is circulated which lists the library address, the following disclaimer must be included:
"This event is not sponsored by the Indian River County Library System.”
The user shall be responsible for any and all loss, accident, neglect, injury, or damage to person, life or property that occurs while using the facilities or premises.
The group’s responsibility for the room shall be terminated only when they have informed an authorized staff member that they have vacated the room and that it is ready to be secured. Youth or children’s groups must be supervised at all times by responsible adults provided by the sponsors of the activity.
Meeting Room Charges:
Half day is 4 hours or less. Please include your set-up and clean-up in your scheduling.
Bulletin Boards and Community Announcements
The Indian River County Library System maintains several community bulletin boards throughout the library system in its buildings. In its capacity as a public institution, the library system schedules educational, cultural and recreational activities for the community. The library system has priority access to bulletin board space within and without its buildings. Any remaining space is available for use by the public at the discretion of the Library Director.
A sample should be brought in for library staff to review and sign off on before any information is posted on the bulletin board. The purpose of the bulletin boards is to display public service information. No solicitation is allowed.
Exhibits function as an integral part of the Indian River County Library System’s total program of service and are planned to direct the attention of the public to the library materials, services, and aims of the library system.
The library system shall control the content and arrangement of all exhibits. Exhibits of materials by individuals or groups should first be presented to the appropriate library staff with regard to exhibit content, theme, number and size of articles to be exhibited, and desired running time of the exhibit.
The library system reserves the right to reject any part of an exhibit or to change the manner of display if the items to be exhibited are contrary to the library’s community responsibility, or if the actual exhibit is different than what was actually proposed, or if public complaints are voiced. Every item used must meet the library system’s standards of value and quality. All exhibits must be scaled in size and form that complement the normal service of the library system.
Booklists, posters, signs, brochures, publicity, and all materials relative to the exhibit must also be approved by appropriate library staff.
All exhibits and displays shall be coordinated and approved by the applicable library and library department staff.
The library system may utilize materials from its own holdings in order to publicize its own collections and services.
The library system may invite, or accept offers, from outside exhibitors (individuals or groups) to display their own materials in the buildings of the library system. The materials to be exhibited must be acceptable as outlined above. Outside exhibitors must request in writing in order to exhibit. The request should include a list of the contents and description of the exhibit. Final authority rests with Indian River County Management.
The Indian River County Library System does not carry specialized insurance that covers all types of exhibits. The library system is protected against fire and other natural occurrences, vandalism and malicious mischief, but the replacement value of specific items cannot be guaranteed. The library system requires the use of the LIABILITY RELEASE FORM on all non-library materials.
The Indian River County Library System shall in no way act as an agent for the sale of items from an outside exhibit. The following conditions apply:
Essential to the purpose of the Indian River County Library System is to enhance through its services and facilities, the quality of life for all residents of Indian River County.
To fulfill our mission, Indian River County Library System provides access to a broad range of information resources, including those available through the Internet. We make this service available as part of our mission to offer a broadly defined program of informational, educational, cultural, and recreational enrichment opportunities for people of all ages and background which reflect the diversity of interests and opinions in our communities.
In offering Internet, the library system cannot control access points which change rapidly and unpredictably. The Internet is an unregulated medium and while it offers access to a wealth of material that is personally, professionally, and culturally enriching to individuals of all ages, it also enables access to some materials that may be offensive or disturbing.
The library system does not offer e-mail accounts to library customers; however, customers may be able to access their e-mail accounts. Wireless access is available. Ask library staff for information.
Users of the Internet Public Access Computers shall:
Any violation of any of the above will revoke a customer’s library card and the use of library equipment.
Youth Access to the Internet:
Please be aware that some information on the Internet is of a mature nature and may not be suitable for children. Parents and/or guardians/grandparents are responsible for information selected and accessed by children. The best way to ensure that children are having a positive online experience is for parents/guardians/grandparents to know what their children are doing.
Parents concerned about their children’s use of the Internet are solely responsible for setting standards and establishing guidelines for their own children, understanding that other parents are solely responsible for their children.
It is impossible for Indian River County Library System staff to control or monitor the flow of information or to control or monitor children’s use of the library system’s resources.
Internet Use Procedures and Rules of Conduct:
Since the Internet is a global electronic network, there is no local/state/federal control of its users or content. The Internet and its available resources may contain material of a controversial nature. The library system cannot censor access to material nor protect users from offensive information. Parents of minor children must assume sole responsibility for their children’s use of the Internet through the library system’s connection.
Library system staff cannot guarantee the availability or reliability of information links on the Internet. Not all sources on the Internet are accurate, complete, or current; therefore, patrons need to be responsible consumers.
Library system staff are not always readily available to train the public on Internet use. It is the sole responsibility of library customers to receive Internet training and/or expertise on their own.
Parents and children are encouraged to ask for Internet Safety web sites at the reference Desk.
All Internet activity is monitored by the Internet server. All visited sites are logged daily. Some site access may be denied. URL request forms are available at the Reference Desk.
3D Printer Policy and Procedure
The Library desires to offer community access to new and emerging technologies such as 3D printers to inspire a new interest in design and help the community to bring their creations to life. This policy establishes how and under what circumstances the public may use the Library’s 3D printers.
All forms referenced in this policy such as the Request for Reconsideration of Materials or Meeting Room Applications are available to be picked up at the library.
Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions or issues.
Friends of the Library
Friends of the North IRC Library
Clerk of the Court
Supervisor of Elections