COLLECTION OBJECTIVE –
To provide a collection of print, audiovisual, digital, and online materials which satisfies
the Library’s Mission, and achieves its goals. Troup-Harris’ service commitment is to
develop and market a collection of materials to people within our area of every age,
education, background, religious belief, occupation, economic level, ethnic origin, and
human condition.

PURPOSE OF POLICY –
The purpose of the Collection Development Policy is to guide staff and inform the public
about the principles on which selection and de-selection is based. The collection
contains information on a variety of subjects and views, and is organized to provide free
access to patrons within the limitations of space and budget. A complete collection of
all that is published is not a feasible goal. The Troup-Harris Regional Library (THRL)
seeks to include high-quality, beneficial, and popular materials. THRL makes efficient
use of financial resources, works closely with other PINES libraries to supply materials to
meet patron need, and provides appropriate and cost-effective formats.

RESPONSIBILITY –
Ultimate responsibility for the collection rests with the Regional Board of Trustees, who
helps craft and approves library policy. The Trustees delegate selection authority to
THRL’s Regional Director, who in turn delegates selection responsibility to members of
the Library staff. Staff uses this policy and their training and expertise in selecting
library materials. Patrons and staff are encouraged to recommend titles for
consideration, and the Library has set a procedure for suggestions to be made.

SELECTION CRITERIA –
The Troup-Harris Regional Library seeks to develop a highly-performing materials
collection for a diverse and growing population, within the allocations of budget and
space. Because the library serves a wide demographic, THRL strives to provide materials
reflecting a variety of perspectives. Materials purchased for the collection are not an
endorsement by THRL of either the content or viewpoint presented in them.
The following general criteria are used to evaluate potential purchases and gift
materials:

  • High demand, popular materials
  • Relevant to community needs and interests
  • Attention of critics, reviewers and the public
  • Artistic merit, literary value, or recognized award recipient
  • Local or national significance
  • Evaluation of titles relative to current holdings and availability elsewhere
  • Suitability of subject, style, and format for intended audience
  • Price of material and/or convenience of accessClarity, readability, visual appeal, quality of production

COLLECTION MAINTENANCE –
The number of copies that are purchased of any item varies with its expected
popularity. Demand for individual titles is monitored and additional copies are
purchased to meet that demand. The collection is subject to ongoing review, in order to
maintain its relevancy, accuracy, and physical condition. Staff uses the following criteria
in choosing materials for retention or withdrawal:

  • Usage data and/or circulation statistics
  • Condition: worn, missing or stained pages, water damaged, mildewed, or
    defaced
  • Relevance to community needs
  • Information: accurate, timely, up-to-date
  • Number of available copies in the collection

This policy does not apply to any research collection maintained by the system, such as
the local history, genealogy, or Georgia collections, in which inclusiveness without
regard to usage, condition, duplication, or quality is important. Materials withdrawn
from the collection are either sold, or if damaged or otherwise unsuitable for sale,
recycled or discarded. THRL does not intentionally remove materials from its collection
for the purpose of sale.


RECONSIDERATION REQUESTS –
The responsibility for customer’s choice of library materials rests solely with the
individual or with the parent or legal guardian of minors. While customers may freely
reject materials for themselves or their children, they may not restrict access to these
materials for others. The library encourages customers to express interest in its
collections and provides a materials review process for communicating formal
comments concerning materials to staff and members of the Regional Board of
Trustees, who retain responsibility for the final decision in materials reconsideration
requests.


THE LIBRARY BILL OF RIGHTS –
The American Library Association affirms that all libraries are forums for information
and ideas, and that the following basic policies should guide their services:

  1. 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.
  2. 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.
  3. Libraries should challenge censorship in the fulfillment of their responsibility to
    provide information and enlightenment.
  4. Libraries should cooperate with all persons and groups concerned with resisting
    abridgment of free expression and free access to ideas.
  5. A person’s right to use a library should not be denied or abridged because of origin,
    age, background, or views.
  6. 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 by the Council of the American Library Association, most
recently reaffirmed January 23, 1996

The Library is supported by the taxes of Troup and Harris citizens, who expect each of our facilities to be
clean, comfortable, and safe places for selecting materials, reading, researching, studying, writing, and
attending programs and meetings. To this end, the Library is responsible for establishing rules of
conduct to protect the rights and safety of Library patrons, staff, and volunteers, and for preserving
Library materials, equipment, facilities, and grounds.


Inappropriate or unruly behavior is defined as any behavior on Library 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.
Inappropriate library behavior includes, but is not limited to, the following:

  • Verbally or physically threatening behavior, or harassing patrons, volunteers, or staff.
  • Disobeying the reasonable direction of a library staff and/or library security officer.
  • Damaging, altering, stealing, or using Library property inappropriately.
  • Fighting or challenging to fight, running, pushing, shoving, or throwing objects of any kind.
  • Making loud disruptive noises of any kind.
  • Entering or being in the Library barefoot and/or without a shirt.
  • Blocking aisles, entrances, or exits or in any manner impeding access to public areas.
  • Engaging in any form of sexual misconduct, including exposure, offensive touching, or sexual
    harassment of other patrons or staff.
  • Misusing restrooms.
  • Neglecting to provide proper supervision of children.
  • Engaging in any activity in violation of Federal, State, local or other applicable law.
  • Drinking and eating food outside of designated areas for same, unless approved by library
    management.
  • Smoking, and use of any tobacco product, is prohibited inside buildings and on the grounds of
    all Troup and Harris County Libraries. The use of any kind of lighted pipes, cigars, or
    electronic smoking devices are all also prohibited.
  • Being under the influence of alcohol or illegal drugs, or selling, using, or possessing alcohol,
    illegal drugs or drug paraphernalia.


Enforcement of these rules will be conducted in a fair and reasonable manner. Library staff, security
personnel, and/or local officers will intervene to stop prohibited activities and behaviors. Failure to
comply with the Library’s established policies could result in removal from the premises, arrest, and/or
suspension from the Library for a period of time to be determined by the Regional Director. In
suspension cases, a written notice outlining the reason(s) for the suspension will be mailed to the
customer. Where the patron files a written request appealing the suspension, the matter will be
referred to the Regional Board of Trustees for a hearing and final decision.

The Troup-Harris Regional Library supports patrons’ informational, educational, and recreational
interests by providing materials in a wide range of formats. This includes free basic access to
information via the Internet.


The Internet is an important resource enabling library users to access information beyond the Library’s
own collection. Because not all sources on the Internet provide accurate, complete, or current
information, customers are advised to use information from the Internet at their own risk. The library
does not warrant or guarantee the reliability or truthfulness of information obtained from the Internet.
The library shall have no liability for direct, indirect, or consequential damages related to use of
information accessed via the Internet from library equipment.


The Internet is an unregulated and rapidly changing medium; it is possible to intentionally or
inadvertently find material that is offensive or disturbing to some users. In accordance with the
Children’s Internet Protection Act (CIPA), all library computers are equipped with software that is
designed to block access to sites that contain visual depictions and/or information which may
reasonably be construed as being obscene, child pornography or materials “harmful to minors” as
currently defined by law. Despite these provisions, customers may still encounter sites they find
personally offensive. For this reason, customers must assume responsibility for their own use of the
Internet. Parents who are concerned about the contents of the Internet are strongly advised to closely
supervise their children’s use of this service and assist them in selecting sites that are consistent with
personal and family values and appropriate for the age and understanding of their children. To help, the
library will provide a separate “Youth” login with sites determined by staff to be appropriate for youth.


In accordance with CIPA, the library will provide access to the unfiltered internet without significant
delay for bona fide research or other lawful purposes at the request of customers who are 18 years of
age or older. In addition, the library provides an administrative process by which customers may
request that specific sites be blocked or unblocked.


Acceptable Use Rules:

  1. Transmitting and/or receiving of obscene materials and/or child pornography is a violation of law
    and is not permitted under any circumstances.
  2. (a) Customers shall not use computers for any illegal activity or to access child pornography or
    materials that are obscene or harmful to minors.
    (b) Minors, whether or not accompanied by a parent or guardian, shall not use computers for any
    illegal activity or to access illegal materials, child pornography, obscene materials, or materials “harmful
    to minors” as currently defined by law.
  3. Branch supervisors and library administrators are authorized to take prompt and appropriate
    action to address reported instances of inappropriate internet viewing. If content is displayed, the
    supervisor will, to the extent possible and referring to the legal definitions of “child pornography“,
    “obscene” and “harmful to minors,” determine whether the content appears to be illegal or otherwise
    prohibited under CIPA legislation. Actions may include:
    • Insuring that the user has a clear understanding of the legal requirements and library
      expectations as to internet viewing,
    • Offering a user who is 18 or older unfiltered access for bona fide research or other lawful
      purposes (if content is thought to meet the definition of harmful to minors),
    • Advising the user to cease and desist (if content is thought to meet the definition of
      obscene),
    • Calling the police and capturing browsing history (if content is thought to meet the definition
      of child pornography).
  4. Installation or modification of software is prohibited. Downloading software with the intent to
    harm the computer or network is prohibited.
  5. Users shall respect all copyright laws and licensing agreements.
  6. Users shall not make any attempt to gain access to restricted computer files or networks or to
    damage or modify computer equipment or software.
  7. Users are required to utilize all measures put in place by the library to reduce inadvertent
    viewing of internet content that, while legal, may be offensive to others.
  8. Users shall respect the privacy of other users and shall refrain from attempting to view or read
    material being used by others.
  9. Public library computers are neither private nor secure. Users are warned that library personnel
    may capture an internet session’s browsing history to aid in the investigation of a suspected crime in
    progress.
  10. Users are financially responsible for any charges that they may incur from their use of the
    Internet.
  11. Users should exercise extreme caution about revealing any personal identification information
    (such as name, address, telephone number, email, social security number, age, or credit card number.)
    Financial information should not be entered without verifying that the destination website provides its
    own security mechanism, such as Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) encoding, usually indicated by a small lock
    icon displayed along the lower edge of the browser window.
  12. Minors should NEVER disclose any personal identification information over the Internet.
  13. Customers are not permitted access to chat rooms.
  14. Parents and/or guardians are responsible for monitoring the use of computers by their minor
    children.
  15. Definitions:
    1. 1. “Minor” is a person under 18 years of age. O.C.G.A. § 16-12-102O.C.G.A. § 16-12-100.1
    2. “Harmful to minors” as defined in federal and/or state law 47 U.S.C.A. §16-12-100.1
    3. “Obscene” is defined under Georgia law, O.C.G.A. §16-12-80.
    4. “Child pornography” is defined under federal and/or state law (18 U.S.C. § 2256; O.C.G.A. §
      16-12-100).
    5. “Inappropriate matter” is defined as visual depictions deemed harmful to minors, child
      pornography, or obscene material.


Misuse of the library computers will result in the loss of computer privileges, potential loss of library
privileges, and possible criminal prosecution. Such misuse includes but is not limited to using the
computer for illegal activities, hacking into the library computer system or any other computer system,
damaging or attempting to damage computer equipment or software, interfering with system’s
operations, integrity or security, gaining unauthorized access to another person’s files, computer
settings, and violating copyright laws and software licensing agreements.

Click here to download the Meeting Room Policy form.

PURPOSE:
This policy governs the use of library meeting rooms regarding who may use
them and how they may be used.


POLICY:
The library provides meeting rooms for library-sponsored programs. These
functions are given priority in booking the rooms, but will not pre-empt previously
scheduled groups. The library welcomes the use of meeting rooms by non-profit
or not-for-profit organizations and government/public education agencies for
activities of a civic, cultural, or educational nature that are consistent with the
library’s mission. These activities may include board meetings, trainings,
planning sessions, civic activities, neighborhood informational meetings or
activities of a comparable nature. The meeting rooms are not available for purely
social purposes, or for the benefit of private individuals or commercial concerns.


Permission to use a meeting space does not constitute endorsement of a group’s
policies or beliefs by the library. The library reserves the right to revoke
permission for the use of any meeting rooms. Organizations using the
meeting/community rooms must observe the following policy regulations:

  1. No admission fee may be charged, and collections or donations are prohibited.
    Dues and materials fees are permitted.
  2. No product or service may be advertised or sold without the permission of the
    system director or his or her designee, with the exception of book sales.
  3. All meetings must be open to the public, and all attendees must adhere to the
    library’s Code of Conduct.
  4. Youth organizations must have at least one adult (21 or over) present at all
    times.
  5. All publicity (e.g., posters, brochures, flyers, radio or TV announcements) must
    carry the name of the organization sponsoring the meeting.
  6. Neither the name nor the address of the library may be used as the official
    address or headquarters of the organization.
  7. No organization using the meeting rooms will discriminate on the basis of
    race, color, national origin, sex, religion, age or handicapped status in the
    provision of services.
  8. Parents/caregivers attending meetings with their minor children are
    responsible for supervising them in the library meeting room.
  9. Organizations using the meeting rooms are responsible for all damages,
    losses, replacement costs or injuries resulting from use of the facilities.
  10. It is the responsibility of each group to arrange the chairs and tables in the
    room to fit the needs of the meeting. The room must be left in a neat and
    orderly arrangement. Materials and equipment brought by a group must be
    removed at the end of the meeting.
  11. Meeting rooms are provided “as-is” without warranty of any kind that
    the facilities are suitable for any particular use or function.
  12. The library and/or local fire department reserve the right to cancel an event or
    program at any time if reasonably deemed in the best interest of the library
    and/or fire department. Maximum seating capacity for meeting rooms in each
    library is posted in the room.
  13. Groups and individuals are limited to one reservation per month per location
    to ensure that rooms are available to as many organizations as possible.
    Reservations must be made in person using the reservation form provided by
    the library. Temporary reservations made by telephone will be held for 48
    hours. If the reservation form has not been signed by that time, the
    reservation will be canceled. Rooms will be available for booking 90 days in
    advance.
  14. Notification of any cancellation of use should be made as soon as possible
    so the room can be made available to others. If a group regularly schedules
    the use of the meeting room and does not notify the library of cancellation,
    they may lose the right to use the meeting room.
  15. When deemed advisable by the system director or his or her designee, police
    protection shall be required as part of the facility use contract. In such case,
    the contracting organization shall be responsible for furnishing the police
    protection and paying for the service directly to each police officer employed.
  16. The Library reserves the right to take photographs of events for its own
    records and for future promotional materials.
  17. Public meetings may only be scheduled during library open hours. Private
    events may be scheduled after regularly scheduled library hours for a fee (see
    “After Hours Guidelines”).

AFTER HOURS GUIDELINES:

  1. Library facilities may be used for private events after regularly scheduled
    library hours for a fee.
  2. Financial cost of the use of the library after regular library hours will be
    paid by the user, unless in system director’s judgment special
    circumstances dictate otherwise. The costs may include but are not limited
    to the following:
    • Rental fees
    • Service costs
    • Equipment costs
    • Custodial personnel
    • Security
    • Administrative personnel
  3. Application and approval for after-hours private use must be obtained from
    the system director or his or her designee.
  4. Whenever a library is used after hours by another agency or private
    individual, a library employee must be on site.

Personnel Policy


Recruitment and Selection

Adopted by the Troup-Harris Regional Library Executive Board January 23, 2012


Equal Opportunity Employment
The library supports Equal Opportunity Employment designed to insure that all persons have
opportunities in recruitment, selection, appointment, promotion, training, discipline, and related
areas. All actions are governed by the principles of selecting the best-qualified person for
employment without regard to race, color, religious creed, sex, age, national origin, handicap, or
veteran status.


The library does not discriminate against a qualified individual with a disability in regard to job
application procedures; the hiring, advancement, or discharge of employees; employee
compensation or job training; and other terms, conditions, and privileges of employment.
Reasonable accommodation will be provided in accordance with the provisions of the
Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990.


We trust that all employees of the library will act responsibly to establish a pleasant working
environment free from discrimination. The library encourages any employee to raise questions
he or she may have regarding discrimination with the Director or appropriate supervisor.


Recruitment for Vacant Position
The library is committed to developing a diverse workforce. As professional and nonprofessional
positions become vacant, the library will seek to attract the best qualified candidates available.


Application forms are available at the headquarters office and at all branches. Vacant positions
will be posted in the libraries and for current staff, listing required qualifications, and duties.
Current staff wishing to be considered for the position will be interviewed if they meet all job
requirements. Applicants may be required to furnish proof of education, librarian certification for
the State of Georgia, military service or any other documentation necessary.


The current application file will be searched for candidates meeting job requirements.
Applications are kept on file for a minimum of one year from the date the application is
completed. Positions will also be advertised as widely as appropriate for the position. For
professional openings, ads may be placed in professional journals, and positions may be
announced statewide to public libraries.


Exceptions to this policy could include approved departmental reorganization, lateral transfer
recommended by a supervisor, upgrade or elimination of a position, or naming an employee in
an “acting” capacity.


A minimum of three (3) candidates will be interviewed for each available position, provided there
are three qualified candidates. Positions will be offered in writing. It is our policy that all
candidates interviewed will be notified of the results of the search.


Selection of Director
The Director shall be appointed by the Troup-Harris Regional Library System Board of Trustees
in accordance with the laws of the state of Georgia, the regulations of the Georgia Public Library
Service of the Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia, and the System Board of
Trustees Policies.


Employment Records
The personnel records of all employees are kept in the Headquarters Business Office. Access
to these records is limited to those with a business need-to-know: Library Board (in the case of
the Director’s file), Director, Assistant Directors, Bookkeeper, Business Manager, employee’s
immediate supervisor, and employee. All information contained in these files is strictly
confidential. The Business Manager maintains the following employment records as appropriate
on employees:

  • Application, cover letter, and/or resume
  • Job offer and any response from employee
  • Federal and State Tax Withholding Declarations
  • Employment Eligibility Verification Form or appropriate INS ID card
  • Georgia Professional Librarian Certification and work history paperwork, if
    applicable
  • Health Insurance and benefits forms, if applicable
  • Teachers Retirement forms, if applicable
  • Employee Information Sheet
  • Signed statement acknowledging receipt and understanding of library personnel
    policies
  • Employment and salary history
  • PINES Code of Ethics
  • Performance evaluation reports
    Other documents that may be found in the file include:
  • Written grievances and reports of grievance hearings
  • Commendations, reprimands, letters and memoranda relating to performance
  • Memoranda relating to health
  • Records of attendance at job-related workshops and courses of study
  • Letters of reference
    Relatives in Employment


The library will not knowingly employ close relatives (by blood or marriage) of current
employees. Close relatives are defined as spouse, children, parents, parents-in-law,
grandparents, grandchildren, sisters, brothers, sisters- and brothers-in-law, aunts and uncles, or
any other person who is acting in one of the above capacities. Two persons residing in the
same household who present themselves to the community as “a family” may not be employed
by the library at the same time, although they may not be legally related.
Should a close relative of a trustee be a candidate for a position, the trustee will not take part in
any voting or discussion of the position. Should a trustee wish to apply for a job at the library, he
or she must first resign from the Board.


Appointments


Permanent Appointments
Permanent appointments for full-time and part-time positions are made following a successful
probationary period of six (6) months or more.


Temporary Appointments
Temporary employees may be engaged in the event of extended absence of permanent
employees or increased workload that is expected to be limited in duration. Temporary
employees do not accrue leave, nor do they receive any benefits. Federal and state taxes may
be withheld at the employee’s request.


Promotions
A promotion is advancement of any eligible staff member to a higher position where the
maximum salary is greater. Promotions will be subject to the same interview requirements as
other vacant positions unless occurring through reorganization or appointment to an “acting”
position. Promotions are based on qualifications and on how well duties are performed. While
there are several factors that influence promotions and advancement, ability to perform the
work, support of library’s philosophy and goals, and attitude are the most important factors. The
employee’s work record and dependability are very important and will be considered.


Promoted employees have a six-month probationary period in the new job. If at any time during
this probationary time the supervisor decides the employee is not suitable for the position, the
employee may be offered a transfer to one that he or she is qualified for. This position will not
necessarily be the same one held before promotion.


The promotion policy does not apply to temporary openings or reassignments.


Demotions
If an employee is moved to a position with a maximum salary lower than that for the previous
position, this is considered a demotion. If the move was not voluntary, the employee may appeal
it per policy. If the employee has asked to be assigned to another position in a lower
classification, this is still defined as a demotion. If an employee appeals a demotion on the basis
of educational training, certification and experience, said employee is required to present proof
of educational qualifications and documented evidence of past experience and areas of past
management and supervision.


Lateral Transfers
A lateral transfer is a move to a position similar to the one presently held and at the same job
classification and salary range. An employee may apply for a lateral transfer within the library
system if there are openings. Lateral transfers may not be subject to interviewing requirements
as are other vacancies.


Administrative Reassignment
The Library Director has full authority to make transfers of personnel within the library system
where needs of the system are paramount. The library director reserves the right to issue
mandatory reassignment to any employee when it is determined to be in the best interest of the
library to do so.


Administrative reassignment shall not be used for disciplinary or capricious reasons, and may
be temporary or permanent. Employee(s) and supervisor(s) affected by the reassignment will
receive as much advance notice of the transfer as possible.

Patrons are responsible for taking care of the materials they check out, and for returning them
in a timely manner so that others can use them. If an item is lost, the patron is expected to
reimburse the Library for that item. If the lost item was originally owned by the Troup-Harris
Regional Library, and was not on loan from another PINES library or some other lending agency,
a patron may replace it with an exact copy in the same format and in excellent to new
condition.


The Library recognizes that items do wear over time and heavy use. Therefore, a patron will
not be charged for damage that can be attributed to normal wear and tear. However, patrons
are held responsible if an item is destroyed or so badly damaged that it can no longer be used,
due to neglect or abuse.


All payments for Lost/Damaged Materials are final. Once paid for, the item belongs to the
patron. Refunds will not be issued for Lost/Damaged Materials payments.

The Troup-Harris Regional Library welcomes and encourages children and their caregivers to visit
the library, use library resources and services, and attend library programs. Caregivers must be
mindful of the fact that the library is an open, public building. The well-being and safety of young
children left alone raises serious concerns.


Parents, guardians, and/or caregivers are responsible for the safety, behavior, and supervision of
children at all times in the library and on library property. Library staff cannot assume
responsibility for any child, even for a very short period of time.


It is not the intention of the library to seek out unattended children, but rather to have a reasoned
policy in place that ensures the safety and comfort of all library patrons. Failure to act in
accordance with this policy will result in disciplinary action as outlined by the Library Board
approved Code of Conduct.


While acknowledging that children mature at different rates, these provisions are based on
guidelines from the Georgia Division of Family and Children Services:

  1. Children ages 8 and under should not be left alone in the library. Responsible parents
    or caregivers must remain within sight or sound range of their children at all times to
    ensure safety and appropriate behavior. Caregivers must be 13 or older, able to
    effectively supervise young children, and must be willing and able to provide contact
    information for a parent/caregiver upon request. If library staff deems a child under 8
    years old to be in need of supervision and no parent/guardian can be located/contacted,
    police will be contacted.
  2. Children between age 9 and 12, based upon maturity and ability to act in accordance
    with the Code of Conduct, may use the library unattended. Children in this age range
    must be willing and able to communicate parent/caregiver name and telephone number
    upon request. If library staff deems a child between age 9 and 12 years old to be in
    need of supervision and no parent/caregiver can be located/contacted, police will be
    contacted.
  3. Children ages 13 and older who comply with the Code of Conduct may use the library
    without parent/caregiver supervision. While the police may be called if warranted by
    the seriousness of Code of Conduct infractions, less serious infractions may be handled by
    staff asking minors age 13 and older to leave the premises. The library does not assume
    responsibility or liability for children asked to leave the property.
As a precaution to help limit the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19), all THRL locations are temporarily closed indefinitely. Learn more about how you can help stop the spread of COVID-19here.
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