Patron Behavior Statement of Policy
Mountain Regional Library System (MRLS) is committed to providing all patrons an atmosphere and environment free from unnecessary distractions and spaces where patrons, library staff, and volunteers are respected and courteous to all others. Patrons, staff and volunteers are entitled to a relative expectation that visits to any MRLS library will be free from harassment, physical or mental discomfort, and danger.
Inappropriate or unruly behavior is defined as any behavior on MRLS premises which infringes on the rights of others to use the library in relative comfort and safety, behavior which could result in injury to oneself or others, or behavior which could result in damage to library materials or property. When patron behavior disrupts the use of the library for library staff or other patrons, staff will take one or more of the following steps appropriate to the situation:
- Issue a verbal warning
- Ask the patron to leave for the remainder of the day
- Call law enforcement
- Restrict library privileges – time and severity determined by infraction and previous incidents by the Director
This policy lists some examples of inappropriate or unruly behaviors, which are disruptive to or interfere with the use of the library by other patrons but is not exhaustive.
- Any act or conduct in violation of Federal, State, or local law, ordinance, or regulation
- Any act or conduct in violation of other MRLS policies
- Use of abusive or obscene language
- Any behavior that constitutes a nuisance or disrupts the use of the library by others
- Threatening the safety or rights of another person including bullying and the physical, psychological, or verbal harassment of staff, patrons, or volunteers. MRLS has a policy of zero tolerance for threats and acts of bullying and violence. Any person engaging in such behaviors will be removed from library property.
- Neglecting to provide proper supervision of children
- Damaging or defacing the library property or materials.
- Using language or gestures that incites violence or prejudicial action against a group or individual on the basis of race, religion, ethnic or national origin, disability, sexual orientation, or gender identity.
- Using library parking lots for recreational purposes
- Soliciting, distributing materials of any kind or petitioning of any kind without the prior authorization of the Director.
- Bringing animals other than service animals into library buildings without authorization.
- Entering a non-public area without permission from a staff member.
- Refusing to comply with requests of any member of the library staff.
Collection Development Policy
The purpose of this document is to help our patrons understand why certain materials are added to the library’s collection and others are not. It also serves as the guide for library staff for collection development and maintenance.
The Mountain Regional Library System provides the materials, services, and facilities necessary to meet the current and future informational and recreational reading needs of mountain regional residents. Special emphasis is placed on offering popular materials, and reference materials and services. Resources for independent learning, as well as current, and historic local information are also important. Materials and services appropriate to all ages are available.
This mission statement is implemented through five goals. The goals are:
Goal i: the library provides high-demand, high-interest materials of a popular nature in a variety of formats to meet the entertainment and recreational needs of the community.
Goal ii: the library provides reference materials and services that answer the informational needs of the community, or that provide direction to additional sources of information.
Goal iii: the library provides materials and services that enable community members of all ages to pursue practical and/or intellectual self-directed learning independent of the formal educational process.
Goal iv: the library collects, preserves, and provides access to a variety of types of materials that are by and/or about our communities and its citizens in both a current and historic context.
Goal v: the library evaluates current services and makes plans for new services that will meet the community’s needs now and in the future. The materials selection policy is based on the mission statement and the five goals.
For budget reasons we can acquire only a limited number of the thousands of books published annually. Due to budget constraints, we select carefully. Our selection is based upon principle rather than personal opinion, reason rather than prejudice, and judgment rather than censorship.
Responsibility for Selection
The board of trustees of the mountain regional library system determines the collection development policy for the library system. The responsibility for administering this policy rests with the director of the library system and the individual branch managers.
Each resource must be considered for its value, its format, and the audience for which it is intended. No single criterion is applicable to all purchase and access decisions. Some resources may be judged primarily for their artistic merit, scholarship, or value to humanity; others are chosen to satisfy the informational, recreational, or educational interests of the community.
Librarians apply their judgment and experience in selecting materials according to the criteria listed below. All criteria do not apply to each item. Works of imagination are judged by different standards than are works of information and opinion. Works that present an aspect of life honestly are not necessarily excluded because of frankness of expression. Materials are judged as a whole rather than on isolated passages. In considering individual titles in the selection process, librarians consult reviews, bibliographies, and other evaluative sources. However, the library generally purchases current best sellers, giving higher priority to demand than to reviews or other relevant criteria.
The criteria include:
• suitability of physical form for library use;
• suitability of subject and style for intended audience;
• present and potential relevance to local interests and needs;
• appropriateness and effectiveness of medium to content;
• number and nature of requests from the library users;
• historical significance;
• importance as a document of the times;
• relation to existing collection, alternative formats, and other material on the subject;
• reputation and/or significance of the author/artist and publisher/producer;
• authority, competence, and purpose of the author/artist;
• attention of critics, reviewers, and the public;
• comprehensiveness and depth of treatment;
• clarity, accuracy, logic of presentation, and/or ease of use;
• representation of a minority point of view;
• relevance to the experiences and contributions of diverse populations;
• artistic presentation and experimentation;
• quality of illustrations;
• vitality, readability, or ability to sustain interest;
• effective characterization; • authenticity of historical or social setting;
• value of resource in relation to its cost
• award winning
• absence of what might be considered erotica or pornography
The public has a right to request additions to the collection and to question material now in the collection. During the process of reconsideration, questioned materials remain in the active collection until an official decision is made.
The collections are designed to serve the residents of MRLS within its primary role as a popular materials library. These collections can be used by individuals either directly, through the branch library, or through outreach services. They are intended to provide a generally high level of subject strength supporting the broad scope of user interests.
Collection development focuses on the needs of specific demographic groups, with an emphasis on materials in high demand by these user groups.
Definition of selection levels--the following terms are used to define both the extent of the existing collection in given subject fields (collection density) and the extent of current collection activity in the field (collecting intensity):
1. Introductory: the fundamentals of a subject, which provide the main theories and referrals to other sources.
2. Basic: overview of a subject, adequate to meet general demand.
3. Extended: expanded collection with sufficient depth to allow for independent study and practical applications.
4. Comprehensive: major source material and a broad range of specialized monographs necessary to sustain in-depth study.
The nonfiction collection emphasizes timely, accurate, and useful informational materials to support individual, business, government, and community interests. It also emphasizes materials that are current and high-demand. Materials are available for all ages and reading levels and in a variety of formats.
Materials are selected to represent a continuum of opinions and viewpoints when available. Titles with continued value and those of current, accepted authority are part of the library collection. Textbooks are included when they are the only source available on a subject, when useful to those doing independent study, or when they give an overview of a subject, but are not added in support of a specific curriculum. As a new field emerges, the library attempts to respond with timely additions.
While most non-fiction materials are selected for their utility, others are acquired for their capacity to enrich and entertain.
When choices exist, selection is based on readability, clarity, and appeal. Requests from library users are given high priority.
The collection focuses on twentieth century literature including classic and standard titles. There is no single standard for inclusion in the fiction collection. Each work is evaluated in comparison with other fiction works or authors of similar type. Because of the large volume of fiction published, it is possible to purchase only a representative selection with emphasis on major authors and the most popular examples of a genre. Patron requests for materials of this type influence the addition of multiple copies.
An effort is made to insure access to the titles on required reading lists issued by school systems within the region. Hard copies are preferred to paperback because of durability. However, the paperback fiction collection continues to expand because many titles are available only in this format. The fiction collections at the branch library reflect that which is currently popular with its users
The Mountain Regional Libraries maintain special collections, the development and management of which differ from the general statements in this collection management plan. Special collections include the genealogy/local history collection, the periodical collection, the reference collection, nonprint materials.
The Mountain Regional Libraries collect genealogy materials and house them in the genealogy room or area. The library acquires materials, in all formats, dealing with local history.
The library seeks to acquire county histories of Towns, Union and Fannin. Examples:
• city documents
• yearbooks, histories such as churches, social service organizations, clubs, etc.
• newspapers and other serial publications
• pictures, postcards, photographs.
The materials in the genealogy room may only be used within the library. Periodicals are serials that are issued at stated intervals, generally more frequently than annually, and which contain separate articles, stories, and other writings. Periodicals are an important source of new ideas and topics before such information is available in book form. In addition they provide recreational, how-to, and consumer information. Indexing is an important factor in selecting periodicals. The mountain regional libraries seek to acquire periodicals indexed in Galileo. While periodicals are originally used for their current informational value, they become a reference source when indexed. Periodicals represent an ongoing commitment in terms of subscription cost and storage.
Single subscriptions of a title are maintained. The periodical collection is reviewed annually for additions and deletions. Local newspapers are the priority purchases.
Reference materials are for use in the library. They provide quick, concise, and up-to-date information and index other material in the collection. Inclusion in the reference collection is determined by factors such as cost, complexity, format, authoritativeness, frequency of use, and indexing. Reference works include such standards as encyclopedias, dictionaries, handbooks, directories, bibliographies, etc., as well as more specialized materials which directly support the various information needs of library users. When demand dictates and cost permits, additional copies are purchased for lending.
Video materials are currently selected in DVD and Blu-ray format. They are acquired by purchase and gifts. The library makes a concerted effort to purchase a wide variety of video materials to meet the needs of a broad cross section of users. The aim is to acquire time-enduring titles, and selections are made in these areas: non-theatrical--general interest non-fiction and short fiction works produced for the education and home video markets including items such as documentaries, how-to, self paced learning and instructions, sports, entertainment, health, etc. Feature--full-length fiction dramatizations including foreign, classic, award winning, children’s features.
The acquisition of valuable or rare books is not a function of the mountain regional libraries. An exception is made when an item is of bibliographic importance to a particular area of the collection wherein the library has a special responsibility, e.g., the genealogy collection. The retention of such items already in the collection is governed by the item’s bibliographic importance to the library’s collection. This does not preclude the library’s acceptance of gifts that might be valuable or rare. Acceptance, however, is made with the understanding that for inclusion in the collection the item must meet the criterion stated above. (see our mrls donation policy)
To maintain the vitality of the collection, materials are regularly weeded. This is the process of withdrawing materials which no longer meet the criteria for inclusion in the library’s collection and is an integral part of collection management.
Factors involved in the decision to weed materials are:
• poor physical condition
• superfluous because of duplicate titles or because demand no longer exists
• obsolete, superseded edition, no longer accurate.
• lack of storage/shelving space
This does not sanction the removal of materials because of controversy. If suitable, discarded materials may be given to the friends of the library to sell with income to benefit the library.
- The Mountain Regional Library System welcomes the donation of funds to purchase new items for the collection or the donation of items such as books, paperbacks, and DVDs.
- All materials presented to the library as gifts are subject to the same selection criteria as purchased items. The library retains unconditional ownership of all donated items and reserves the right to use or dispense with the donated items in any manner.
- Due to the high volume of donations received, the libraries are not able to notify donors as to the specific disposition of their materials or to return materials not selected for addition to the collection.
- Due to space limitations, libraries may be unable to accept large quantities of materials at one time. Please call ahead if you have more than three boxes of items to donate.
- Please do not leave donated items outside libraries during closed hours. Damage due to weather, insects, vandalism or theft could make your donations unusable.
- Please note libraries cannot accept books in damaged, soiled, mildewed or otherwise poor physical conditions.
Staff will search the library building and/or grounds in an effort to locate the responsible party.
If they cannot be located, a staff member will monitor the person until the parent, legal guardian, or caregiver returns to the library.
When the responsible party is located, the Safe Child and Dependent Persons Policy will be explained and a copy given to them.
Staff will record the parent’s, legal guardian’s, or caregiver’s name, address, and telephone number and the name of the unattended person.
Staff will refer any additional incidents to law enforcement.
If necessary at any time, staff will contact the appropriate law enforcement or social services authorities to assume responsibility for the welfare of a child or dependent person in need of attention.
One half hour prior to closing time, staff will make an effort to ascertain that any minors or dependent persons of any age have arrangements for transportation from the library.
If no ride has arrived by closing time, staff will call the Police Department. Police and staff together will monitor persons left unattended until transportation arrives.
Staff will record the parent's, legal guardian’s, or caregiver's name, address, and telephone number and the name of the unattended person.
Staff will refer any additional incidents to law enforcement.
Under no circumstances will library staff members provide transportation to unattended minors or dependent persons, or leave them alone in the building or on the library premises.
Devices, Kits, and Equipment Lending Policy
The Mountain Regional Library System (MRLS) is proud to offer free access to a variety of equipment, kits, and devices to the public for their educational, informational, and recreational purposes.
The following outlines the lending policy for specific equipment, kits and devices determined by MRLS staff to be included under the umbrella of this policy:
- Patrons will need an active MRLS library card and state-issued picture ID to check out items listed on the Borrower’s Agreement; parents or legal guardians may present their ID on behalf of a juvenile user.
- Failure to comply with the Rules of Conduct listed on the Borrower’s Agreement may result in the restriction or loss of a user’s borrowing privilege at the discretion of MRLS staff.
- Chromebooks and/or laptops or other electronic devices will be managed and maintained by the Library system and/or the Georgia Public Library Service.
- MRLS is not responsible for damage to an external device (i.e. a flash drive or other external device) or for the loss of data that may occur. Please be aware when downloading data to removable media that software or files downloaded from the Internet, or from any unknown computer, may contain viruses or malware.
- Patrons should not be required to create an external user account to use a device or equipment borrowed from MRLS
- MRLS is not responsible for any objectionable material that may be found on the Internet while using a borrowed device
- MRLS is not responsible for any personal information a user willingly posts or transmits, nor the security of any online personal or financial transactions.
- Patrons should not assume MRLS owned Chromebooks will have adequate virus checking software on them to protect all data. MRLS does not warranty against data loss or damage to your personal devices while using a MRLS Chromebook and installed software.
- Some items listed as Device, Kit, or Equipment in the online catalog may be exempt from this policy as determined by MRLS Administration
Adopted May 19, 2021 by MRLS Regional Board of Trustees
Public Access Computers are to be used in a courteous, appropriate and lawful manner.
Public Access Computers are provided primarily for educational and informational purposes.
Use by children 17 years and younger must be approved in writing by a parent or legal guardian.
Public Access Computer users must agree to abide by the Library's Internet Acceptable Use Policy each time they initiate a computer session.
Public Access Computer sessions are one hour long. A computer session may be extended if no one else is waiting.
Public Access Computer workstations are not to be shared, with the exception that parents or legal guardians may work together with their minor children at the same workstation. Regardless of whose account is used to log in to a Public Access Computer, all users agree to comply with the Internet Acceptable Use Policy.
Your PINES patron record must be clear of fines and fees before access to a Public Access Computer will be granted.
The use of chat or instant messaging software or services such as AIM, Yahoo or Windows Messenger on Public Access Computers is prohibited.
Minors should not disclose personally identifying information, such as name, school, address, and telephone number to strangers on the Internet.
Minors should never arrange a face-to-face meeting with someone via the Internet without their parents’ or guardians’ approval.
All users are encouraged to notify staff of any online communication or Internet site that makes them uncomfortable.
Minors are strongly encouraged to not respond to any online communication or Internet site that makes them uncomfortable, and to notify their parent or guardian and library staff as soon as possible.
All users are to respect the privacy of others.
No user may send, receive, view, download or display obscene or disruptive messages, files or images.
Users may not misrepresent themselves by access code, password or signature.
Users may not alter or attempt to alter Library hardware or software, or attach peripheral devices to Library equipment without staff permission.
Users may not use Library equipment in violation of Intellectual Property laws, including, but not limited to making illegal copies of copyrighted or licensed software or data.
Users may download legally obtained software, files, etc. to their personal floppy disks, USB memory sticks, or CD-ROM’s, but may not download or install software on Library computers without staff permission.
Late Fees for Books and CDs are .20 per day
Lost books will be charged the price of the book plus $10 processing fee
Replacement library cards are $2.00
Out of state resident Library cards are ($12.50 for six months or $25.00 for the year)
Students in Georgia and those employed full time in the state of Georgia get free library cards even if they live in another state.
Copies are .15 each for B&W, .50 each for color.
Notary services are available for 2.00 per notary
Faxes for long distance numbers are $1.50 for first page, .50 for each additional page.
Faxes to local and toll free numbers are free, but there is a .25 charge for the confirmation page if you need it.
Lamination is available at some branches and the price varies based on size.
$20 for juvenile fiction books and music CDs
$25 for adult fiction or juvenile non-fiction books and VHS tapes
$25 for large print and adult non-fiction books, DVDs, and audio book items on cassette or CD
A $10 processing fee set by PINES policy will also be assessed for each item in addition to the replacement cost or minimum assessment.
Meeting areas are provided as a public service and the Mountain Regional Library System (MRLS) Board of Trustees establishes usage regulations. Library can refer to MRLS or any of the member libraries.
For the purpose of this policy, meeting rooms, community rooms, conference areas, boardrooms, or other designated interior or exterior spaces will be considered meeting areas.
Use of the meeting areas by outside agencies or organizations does not constitute the Libraries’ endorsement of the viewpoints expressed by the participants in programs. No advertisement implying endorsement will be permitted.
In order to maintain building security, all public meetings must be held during regular Library business hours and must end no later than 20 minutes prior to the posted Library closing time. All activities in the meeting areas are subject to supervision. All state and local fire codes must be observed in addition to all other City Codes and Ordinances.
Any person can freely and openly attend all meetings held in any meeting area.
Those using the Library's meeting areas are subject to the rules set forth in the MRLS Patron Behavior Statement of Policy.
Library sponsored activities take precedence over all other requests for reservations.
Educational, cultural and civic programs, local government agencies, and advocacy groups are also given priority over other reservation requests.
Meeting areas will not be used for private gatherings (wedding receptions or showers, birthday parties, reunions, etc.) political rallies or activities, or commercial gatherings, which advertise a product or service.
All other meeting requests from groups are considered on a first come, first served basis.
If necessary, the Library reserves the right to revise any schedule of meetings and to preempt established reservations upon reasonable notification of the group(s) involved.
A representative of the organization or group using a meeting area is required to sign an agreement assuming responsibility for the use of the area. That representative must be at least 18 years of age and provide identification.
It is not the intent of MRLS to provide ongoing, regular meeting space for any organization or individual. Therefore, standing reservations are not commonly made. A group may reserve a meeting area up to twice a month. The Director reserves the right to allow a group to reserve an area beyond twice a month if the reservation is deemed beneficial for both parties.
Reservations will not be accepted more than two (2) months in advance without approval of the branch manager and Director.
The organization / group using the meeting area will not:
a. charge or accept any fee for attendance to the event
b. solicit any products or materials in the Library facility or on Library grounds. The Director reserves the right to allow solicitations of products or materials for specific events beneficial for both the Library and the host organization or presenter(s).
c. solicit personal information from attendees for subsequent marketing or financial transactions
d. use any materials in the room that would be hazardous, for example, flammable materials such as candles, incense, light strips, etc.
A cleaning fee, up to $100.00, may be assessed if special cleaning is required after a group has used the meeting area.
Continued non-compliance of this policy can lead to being denied privileges to use any meeting area in the future.
Neither the Library Board of Trustees nor the Library Staff assume any responsibility for loss, theft or damage incurred to personal or rental property brought into the building or on the grounds nor do they assume any liability for any injury to any person (persons) during the time the premises are used.
is the service dog required because of a disability, and
what work or task has the dog been trained to perform. 28 CFR 35.136 (f)