The following are Public Service Policies adopted by the Williams County Public Library Board of Trustees. Please contact the Director, Jeff Yahraus with any comments at 419-636-6734 ext 239 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org .
The Board of the Williams County Public Library advocates the impartial, internal review of challenged materials. However, the Board does endorse the concepts and guidelines of the Library Bill of Rights  and the Freedom to Read .
Members of the community who find materials in the collection which they consider objectionable are encouraged to make their concerns known to the Library Director, either through informal discussion, or in a more formal manner, by completing a Library Material Review Request.
In cases where the complaint is not satisfied by the initial review process, the Library Director will appoint an ad hoc committee comprised of him/herself, the person responsible for the area of selection in question, and a representative from the Library Board of Trustees. The committee will review the work in question, and submit a report on the matter within 30 days to the Library’s Board of Trustees.
Approved: April 15, 2002
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Mission Statement: The Williams County Public Library exists to enhance and enrich the lives of all citizens of the county through accessible and broad information services.
Materials selection is done by professional staff who are qualified by education or training. The aim is to maintain a well-balanced, vital collection, useful to the community as a whole. Achievement of this aim requires an on going process of examination, evaluation, and the use of professional reviews. Factors affecting materials selection are availability of funds, space, the continuous publication of new titles, and the need to weed collections of out-dated and worn materials.
Final responsibility for selection rests with the Library Director, who administers the library under the authority of the Board of Trustees. Suggestions for purchase are very welcome from the general public and the staff, and are given serious consideration.
General Selection Criteria
All acquisitions, whether purchased or donated, are considered in terms of the following criteria:
Approved: April 15, 2002
Since the Williams County Public Library is a community gathering place of learning for children and adults of all ages, the Ohio General Assembly has enacted the Concealed Carry Legislation to include an exemption for public libraries as a permissible location for concealed weapons.
The Board of Trustees of the Williams County Public Library, therefore, does not permit weapons of any kind, either concealed or in plain sight, on its property or in its buildings, unless the owner of the weapon is a law enforcement officer.
The library shall post signs notifying the public that the library is exempt from Ohio Concealed Carry law, as required by the Ohio Revised Code (ORC 2923.126 [B] ). The sign shall state: “Unless otherwise authorized by law, pursuant to the Ohio Revised Code, no person shall knowingly have under the person’s control, convey, or attempt to convey a deadly weapon or dangerous ordnance (military weapons) onto these premises.”
This is a sample of the sign to be posted:
Notice: It is illegal to carry a firearm, deadly weapon, or dangerous ordnance anywhere on these premises.
“Unless otherwise authorized by law, pursuant to the Ohio Revised Code, no person shall knowingly possess, have under the person’s control, convey, or attempt to convey a deadly weapon or dangerous ordnance (military weapons) onto these premises.” (ORC 2923.126 [B] 
Approved: April 19, 2002
The Williams County Public Library endorses the recommendation of the American Library Association according to Ohio Law, in its statement on the confidentiality of library records.
All circulation and patron records as well as other records identifying names of library users with specific materials or OPLIN/INTERNET transactions are considered confidential in nature. No such records shall be made available to any agency of state, federal, or local government, or to any individual, unless a court order requiring disclosure has been entered by a court of competent jurisdiction. All requests for such information must be referred by the Director or his designee.
When requested, records of minor children will be provided to their parents, guardians or caregivers, as defined by Ohio Law.
Approved: August 19, 2002
The Williams County Public Library is frequently asked to distribute posters, flyers, brochures and other miscellaneous announcements of community events. As part of its public service and information mission, the library does distribute materials that publicize activities of a civic, cultural, educational, or recreational nature produced by non-commercial groups located in the Tri-State area. Based on the appearance, contents, timeliness, local interest, and general suitability of the announcements, the Public Relations Coordinator or Branch Manager, operating under the delegated authority of the Director, approves the distribution and posting of such material. Unauthorized material will be discarded.
Approved: August 19, 2002
Photo copies [double sided = 2 copies] = $.15 per copy
Copied faxes for reference request = $.15 per copy
Microform copies = $.15 per copy
Fax machine – to send to receive fax = $1.00 per page / $.15 per page
Computer print outs = $.15 per page
Computer disks [word processing only] = $1.00 per disk
Lost card replacement = $1.00
Books and Magazines, Audio Visual [Books on tape/CD, Videos, Audios, Music CDs, Kits, DVDs] = $.15 per day
LOST/DAMAGED or ITEMS NOT RETURNED
Maximum charge is the cost of the item, a processing fee of $2.00 and any fines accumulated.
Fines are to be paid as they are incurred. Fines and fees exceeding $1.00 must be paid before other library items are checked out
Golden Buckeye card holders are exempt from overdue fines
Approved: November 20, 2006
The freedom to read is essential to our democracy. It is continuously under attack. Private groups and public authorities in various parts of the country are working to remove books from sale, to censor textbooks, to label “controversial” books, to distribute lists of “objectionable” books or authors, and to purge libraries. These actions apparently rise from a view that our national tradition of free expression is no longer valid; that censorship and suppression are needed to avoid the subversion of politics and the corruption of morals. We, as citizens devoted to the use of books and as librarians and publishers responsible for disseminating them, wish to assert the public interest in the preservation of the freedom to read.
We are deeply concerned about these attempts at suppression. Most such attempts rest on a denial of the fundamental premise of democracy: that the ordinary citizen, by exercising critical judgment, will accept the good and reject the bad. The censors, public and private, assume that they should determine what is good and what is bad for their fellow-citizens.
We trust Americans to recognize propaganda, and to reject it. We do not believe they need the help of censors to assist them in this task. We do not believe they are prepared to sacrifice their heritage of a free press in order to be “protected” against what others think may be bad for them. We believe they still favor free enterprise in ideas and expression.
We are aware, or course, that books are not alone in being subjected to efforts at suppression. We are aware that these efforts are related to a larger pattern of pressures being brought against education, the press, films, radio and television. The problem is not only one of actual censorship. The shadow of fear cast by these pressures leads, we suspect, to an even larger voluntary curtailment of expression by those who seek to avoid controversy.
Such pressure toward conformity is perhaps natural to a time of uneasy change and pervading fear. Especially when so many of our apprehensions are directed against an ideology, the expression of a dissident idea becomes a thing feared in itself, and we tend to move against it as against a hostile deed, with suppression.
And yet suppression is never more dangerous than in such a time of social tension. Freedom has given the United State the elasticity to endure strain. Freedom keeps open the path of novel and creative solutions, and enables change to come by choice. Every silencing of a heresy, every enforcement of an orthodoxy, diminishes the toughness and resilience of our society and leaves it the less able to deal with stress.
Now as always in our history, books are among our greatest instruments of freedom. They are almost the only means for making generally available ideas or manners of expression that can initially command only a small audience. They are the natural medium for the new idea and the untried voice from which come the original contributions to social growth. They are essential to the extended discussion which serious thought requires, and to the accumulation of knowledge and ideas into organized collections.
We believe that free communication is essential to the preservation of a free society and a creative culture. We believe that these pressures towards conformity present the danger of limiting the range and variety of inquiry and expression on which our democracy and our culture depend. We believe that every American community must jealously guard the freedom to publish and to circulate, in order to preserve its own freedom to read. We believe that publishers and librarians have a profound responsibility to give validity to that freedom to read by making it possible for the readers to choose freely from a variety of offerings.
The freedom to read is guaranteed by the Constitution. Those with faith in free people will stand firm on these constitutional guarantees of essential rights and will exercise the responsibilities that accompany these rights.
We therefore affirm these propositions.
We state these propositions neither lightly nor as easy generalizations. We here stake out a lofty claim for the value of books. We do so because we believe that they are good, possessed of enormous variety and usefulness, worthy of cherishing and keeping free. We realize that the application of these propositions may mean the dissemination of ideas and manners of expression that are repugnant to many persons. We do not state these propositions in the comfortable belief that what people read is unimportant. We believe rather that what people read is deeply important; that ideas can be dangerous; but that the suppression of ideas is fatal to a democratic society. Freedom itself is a dangerous way of life, but it is ours.
This statement was originally issued in May of 1953 by the Westchester Conference of the America Library Association and the America Book Publishers Council, which in 1970 consolidated with the America Educational Publishers Institute to become the Association of American Publishers.
Adopted June 25, 1953; revised January 28, 1972, January 16, 1991, by the ALA Council and the AAP Freedom to Read Committee.
Approved: April 20, 1998
The Williams County Public Library shall observe the following holidays.
When New Year’s Day, Independence Day, or Christmas Day falls on a Sunday, the following day shall be considered the official holiday.
When Christmas Eve day falls on a Sunday, the prior day will be considered the official holiday.
On the day before Thanksgiving libraries will close at 5:00 p.m.
On New Year’s Eve libraries will close at 5:00 p.m. or their regular closing hour if it is prior to 5:00 p.m.
Approved: September 19, 2011
The Williams County Public Library will issue a library card at no charge to any resident of Ohio upon proof of residency and identification.
Non Ohio residents can also be issued a card for an annual fee of $25.00
As a member of the SEO (Serving Every Ohioan) Library Consortium, the WCPL will accept other SEO library member cards and treat them as if they were our own.
Approved: May 18, 2009
The American Library Association affirms that all libraries are forums for information and ideas, and that the following basic policies should guide their services.
Books and other library resources should be provided for the interest, information, and enlightenment of all people of the community the library serves. Materials should not be excluded because of the origin, background, or views of those contributing to their creation.
Libraries should provide materials and information presenting all points of view on current and historical issues. Materials should not be proscribed or removed because of partisan or doctrinal disapproval.
Libraries should challenge censorship in the fulfillment of their responsibility to provide information and enlightenment.
Libraries should cooperate with all persons and groups concerned with resisting abridgment of free expression and free access to ideas.
A person’s right to use a library should not be denied or abridged because of origin, age, background, or views.
Libraries which make exhibit spaces and meeting rooms available to the public they serve should make such facilities available on an equitable basis, regardless of the beliefs or affiliations of individuals or groups requesting their use.
Adopted June 18, 1948
Amended February 2, 1961, and January 23, 1980,
Inclusion of “age” reaffirmed January 23, 1996 by the ALA Council.
Approved: April 20, 1998
Books, audio books, and music CDs: 28 days
Magazines, videocassettes & DVDs (limit of 6 titles per patron): 7 days
NON-CIRCULATING MATERIALS include Reference, Ohio Collection, and the current issue of all adult magazine titles. The Library has the option to make books non-circulating for special school projects or programs.
RENEWAL OF MATERIALS
Patrons may renew items in person or over the phone or online. Renewals might not be granted for in-demand materials. The renewal date begins the day a renewal is requested. Materials can be renewed once. Items with holds cannot be renewed.
Patrons must be 18 years or older and have an adult library card in order to check out Music CDs which are labeled with a Parental Advisory.
The following age requirements apply when checking out video materials:
Rating: Age Requirement:
Approved: November 20, 2006
The Local History and Genealogy Department of the Williams County Public Library acquires, preserves, and provides access to primary sources and rare materials that support the history of Williams County and its people.
The Local History and Genealogy Department of the Williams County Public Library collects and makes available genealogy resources, histories, photographs, recordings, business and organization records, oral histories and memoirs, county newspapers, and other written or recorded information pertaining to the history of Williams County and the Williams County area.
Ephemera or other artifacts may be collected at the discretion of the Local History Coordinator and/or the Director of the library.
Materials donated to the Local History and Genealogy department become the property of the library which reserves the right to determining the materials retention and processing, disposition, or transfer to other institutions
Approved: September 15, 2008
Donations of books or other materials will be accepted when space allows. Books donated to the Library will be processed and placed on the shelves, used in book sales, or discarded in a manner determined by the Director or Branch Manager of the Williams County Public Library. All gifts must be unqualified. Materials not added to the collection will not be returned unless requested by the donor.
The Williams County Public Library will not determine a monetary value for gifts. The appraisal of a gift to the library for tax purposes is the responsibility of the donor, since it is the donor who benefits from the tax deduction.
A Donated Materials Acknowledgement Form will be filled out when accepting gift donations so that thank you letters can be sent.
Any staff member can accept donations however, the Director or Branch Manager has final approval in deciding whether or not to add an item to the collection.
Criteria for accepting donations:
Approved: April 15, 2002
Meeting rooms are available at some Williams County Public Library locations. Use of these rooms is free to non-profit organizations and individuals.
Requests for use of meeting rooms will be approved by a Library Manager or Coordinator of the Administrative Assistant.
Reservations are required and a Meeting Room Agreement form must be filled out.
Organizations may be required to verify non-profit status.
Use of meeting rooms is available during the library’s public hours of service, unless outside access is available. Requests for use of meeting rooms during non-public hours may be made. A fee for library staff to be present and to secure the building/room and for janitorial services may be assessed. Some library locations have meeting rooms that have outside access and do not require a staff member to be present. Check the library’s website for a list of all meeting rooms.
Food and beverages are allowed in library meeting rooms with prior approval. Cleanup is the responsibility of the group holding the meeting. Some rooms have limited kitchen facilities, except for the Conference Room at the West Annex, which has complete kitchen facilities. No alcohol is permitted.
All meeting rooms must be returned to original setup and cleaned or a $25.00 fee will be assessed.
Cancelled meetings require a minimum notice of one business day. Less notice may result in a fee of $25.00.
WiFi and Internet Access is available at select locations during regular library hours
Approved: April 19, 2010
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Memorials are an important part of our mission of service at the Williams County Public Library. The deep meaning and wonderful gesture associated with memorials and gifts must be held in high regard. The Director or Branch Manager will work closely with those wishing to place materials in memorial. The following procedures will be followed when accepting and processing memorial materials.
Memorial materials are subject to the same weeding criteria as used for all other library materials. However, if an item is removed due to damage, wear, or age, the donor will be notified when possible and a new item may be chosen for its replacement.
Staff should refer monetary memorials to the Director, Assistant Director, or Branch Manager when at all possible, who will contact the person wishing to give memorial funds.
If the Director or Assistant Director/Branch Manager is unable to speak directly with the donor, staff should have them complete the memorials and Gifts form and submit it to the Director, who will then contact the donor.
Approved: April 15, 2002
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The Library gratefully accepts monetary gifts from individuals, businesses, or organizations in order to help supplement the Library’s budget and increase our service capabilities.
Gifts of these types include bequests, charitable trusts, and monetary donations and may be given as unrestricted funds or with stipulations on their use.
It is the responsibility of the staff to inform the Director of the library when donors wish to give gifts of this nature. Staff can accept monetary gifts contingent upon final approval of Director.
Approved: April 15, 2002
Under the 1976 Copyright Act, libraries may provide limited copying services for their patrons. The following guidelines must be followed for the library to comply:
Approved: August 18, 2003
Courteous, efficient and effective service to all patrons of the Williams County Public Library is expected and required of all Library employees. Failure to provide this level of service will be viewed by the Library administration as just cause for disciplinary action which could include suspension or dismissal.
Courteous service includes politeness, civility and discretion.
Efficient service includes timely delivery of sought information to the patron; effective service includes provision of information that is as correct and complete as can reasonably be deemed possible.
Other components of courteous, efficient and effective service to Library patrons may be established at the discretion of the Library administration as those components may manifest themselves on a case by case basis.
Approved: March 16, 1998
Integral to the Mission of the Williams County Public Library (WCPL) is the provision of information to meet the needs of our patrons. WCPL endeavors to develop collections, resources, and services to fulfill this mission. It is within this context that WCPL offers access to the Internet and office productivity applications.
WCPL supports the concepts of intellectual freedom and of equitable access to information, and does not control or censor databases or services available through the Internet.
WCPL respects the rights and responsibilities of all parents to guide their children’s education and does not restrict access to any materials, including the Internet.
Approved April 16, 2007
Public Terminals Procedures
Williams County Public Library (WCPL) provides free Internet access points or "hot spots" at select locations of its facilities during normal library business hours for users with portable computers or devices capable of receiving wireless signals. These access points will allow users to access the Internet from their laptop computers when sitting within range of the access points.
All users are expected to use the Williams County Public Library (WCPL) wireless access in a legal and responsible manner, consistent with the educational and informational purposes for which it is provided.
By using this wireless access network at WCPL, the customer acknowledges that he ⁄she is subject to, and agrees to abide by all laws, and all rules and regulations of the State of Ohio, and the federal government that is applicable to Internet use.
Terms and Conditions of Use
Wireless access is by nature an insecure medium. As with most public wireless networks, any information being sent or received over the WCPL wireless network could potentially be intercepted by another wireless user. Cautious and informed wireless users should not transmit their credit card information, passwords and any other sensitive personal information while using any wireless "hot spot".
Anyone using the wireless network provided by WCPL is forewarned that there can be no expectation of privacy when using the wireless network, whether accessed from an external or internal site. Users assume all associated risks and agree to hold harmless the WCPL and its employees for any personal information (e.g. credit card) that is compromised, or for any damage caused to users' hardware or software due to electric surges, security issues or consequences caused by viruses or hacking. All wireless access users should have up-to-date virus protection on their personal laptop computers or wireless devices.
WCPL is providing wireless connectivity in this facility as a public service and offers no guarantees or representations that any use of the wireless connection is in any way secure, or that any privacy can be protected when using this wireless connection. Use of this wireless connection is entirely at the risk of the user, and the Library is not responsible for any loss of any information that may arise from the use of the wireless connection, nor is WCPL responsible for any loss, injury, or damages resulting from the use of the wireless connection.
Approved: February 25, 2008
The Library’s administrative and financial records shall be retained in accordance with the following criteria. A file shall serve as the official record of all actions taken by the Records Commission. The file shall contain all disposal lists and approvals. Records shall fall into two (2) categories, permanent and non-permanent. The following show the retention period of specific types.
NON-PERMANENT RETENTION PERIOD
Approved: May 18, 1998
All Williams County Public Library buildings and property are designated as smoke-free environments. Smoking is prohibited within any building or vehicle or on any property operated by the Williams County Public Library System.
Approved: June 17, 2002
The Williams County Public Library may approve, on a limited basis, to area groups the right to sell or solicit funds or collect donated items for their organization or group.
All solicitations will be based on the following criteria:
For further information also refer to the Distribution and Posting of Non-library Materials policy.
Approved: January 28, 2008
Trustees must promote the highest level of library service while observing ethical standards.
Trustees must avoid situations in which personal interests might be served or financial benefits gained at the expense of library users, colleagues, or the institution.
It is incumbent upon any trustee to disqualify himself/herself immediately whenever the appearance of a conflict of interest exists.
Trustees must distinguish clearly in their actions and statements between their personal philosophies and attitudes and those of the institution.
A trustee must respect the confidential nature of library business while being aware of and in compliance with that particular state’s freedom of information act.
Trustees must be prepared to support to the fullest the efforts of librarians in resisting censorship of library materials by groups or individuals.
Trustees who accept appointment to the library board are expected to perform the duties and responsibilities of a trustee.
Endorsed by the Board of Directors of the American Library Trustee Association and the Public Library Association, July 1985.
Approved: May 18, 1998
The purpose of Teacher’s Card Collections and Assistance is to facilitate the use of the Library and local resources and to provide curriculum support for the teachers in the Williams County Public Library’s service area.
Teachers and Homeschoolers are required to complete a teacher application form and a personal application form and receive two Williams County Public Library cards. The teacher card will allow the following privileges:
Guidelines for use:
Approved: September 18, 2006
The Williams County Public Library welcomes children to its facilities and services. However, responsibility for the behavior and well-being of children using the library rests with the parent, guardian, or assigned caregiver, not with the library’s personnel.
Library staff members cannot accept responsibility for the safety, care, or entertainment of unsupervised children in the library. Children under the age of seven (7) years may not be left unattended by a parent or caregiver in any part of the building.
During story times or programs, parents or caregivers who do not attend the program with the child must remain in the building and must return to the programming area by the end of the program.
If children under the age of seven (7) are found without a parent or caregiver, the staff will attempt to locate the parent or caregiver. If the parent or caregiver cannot be located either in the building or at home within one (1) hour, or if the building is closing, Job and Family Services or the local police will be contacted to pick up the child.
The public library is not a child care provider, but a public institution where all patrons have an equal right to quality library services in a safe and relaxed environment.
Approved: September 20, 2004
The Williams County Public Library has, on occasion, special projects to which members of the community may be interested in volunteering their time and talents.
Volunteers may apply to the Director, or any supervisor, who will supply information regarding current needs of the Library, a schedule of hours volunteers are needed, responsibilities of volunteers, and necessary paperwork. Parental permission is required for volunteers under the age of 18.
Volunteers are expected to comply with the Employee Code of Conduct.
The Library is under no obligation to make use of the services of any volunteer who does not meet the needs of the Library, as interpreted by the Director.
Approved: August 19, 2002
Weeding shall be defined as the process of withdrawing materials from the Library collection. Weeding shall be done by or under the supervision of the Director, Assistant Director, or Branch Manager. All weeded material shall be previewed by the Director before final withdrawal from the collection.
Criteria for weeding shall be as follows:
Weeded materials may be sold at book sales. All gifts and donations are subject to the same weeding criteria as purchased materials. Weeding shall be an on-going project so that the collection is maintained in an orderly, up-dated and attractive condition.
Approved: April 15, 2002
The library will make every effort to have word processing computers at every location of the library, contingent on adequate funding.
All word processing computers will be loaded with software chosen by the library.
Staff are not expected to train patrons on the use of software.
Time limits may be imposed if other patrons are waiting to use the word processing equipment.
Approved: September 16, 2002