Meeting Room Policy
By reserving a meeting room at the York Public Library for your group or event, you agree to abide by the following policy.
York Public Library Meeting Room Policy
The Board of Trustees views the use of Library meeting rooms as an essential library service. Rooms shall be available to the Library community in its broadest sense and shall reflect the educational, cultural, social and recreational roles the Library plays.
The Board subscribes to Article IV of the Library Bill of Rights, which states that facilities shall be made available to the public served by a given Library on an equitable basis, regardless of the beliefs or affiliations of individuals or groups requesting their use.
Use of a room by any group or individual does not in any way constitute an endorsement of the group’s policies or beliefs by the York Public Library, its Board, or the Town of York.
Rooms and Availability:
The York Public Library has three meeting rooms and two small study rooms. The Library welcomes use of these meeting rooms by community groups for civic, educational, and cultural activities, as well as for public discussion. Priority is given to programs, events, and activities sponsored by the Library and the Town of York. Otherwise, meeting rooms are made available to other groups or individuals on a first come, first served basis.
Meetings and events held at the Library are expected to be free, open to the public, and conducted in a manner that welcomes the expression of diverse opinions and civil discourse. The Library’s Patron Conduct Policy applies to all events, meetings, and activities held in the Library’s meeting spaces.
Meeting rooms are available at no charge for local, non-commercial, tax-exempt, religious, political, cultural, civic, and educational groups. For-profit groups may request use of a meeting room at the rate of $50 for each four hour block they require in the Wheeler Room, or $100 for each four hour block in the Community Room. Payment will be required to secure the reservation and only refunded if notice is given within three days of the scheduled event.
Reserving a Meeting Room – Online Requests and Responsibilities:
An online reservation system is available through the library’s website, and requests should be made at least three days in advance of a scheduled program. To reserve a room, a representative of the requesting group must read and accept all terms of the Meeting Room Policy; they will be responsible for assuring that all Library guidelines are followed. Reservation requests will be accepted for up to three months in advance of the scheduled event.
Staff will review and approve meeting room requests within two business days of the submission.
A meeting room cancellation should be made as early as possible to provide others with an opportunity to use the room. Reservations may be cancelled online, following the instructions sent in the confirmation email. Failure to notify the Library of a cancellation may jeopardize future reservations. The Library Director and/or Board of Trustees reserve the right to cancel a room reservation in special circumstances.
Groups serving populations outside the York area will be allowed to use the meeting rooms with prior approval from the Library Director or designee.
Except for Town boards and committees, the Library reserves the right to limit the number of meetings at its discretion.
The Library and its meeting rooms are ADA compliant.
Responsibilities of Meeting Room Organizers:
Any group using a meeting room shall be responsible for the proper supervision of attendees, the restoration of the room to a clean and orderly condition, and any costs arising from damage or loss resulting from their use of the room.
Groups are responsible for setting up chairs and furniture to meet their needs. If using the kitchen, groups are responsible for cleaning up all work areas and returning them to the condition in which they were found. If necessary, an organization or group will be charged at the commercial rate for any additional custodial services required, including cleaning of carpets, upholstery, etc., as well as for damage to any furnishings or equipment, including the technology in the Community Room.
For those using rooms after Library hours, all lights (except emergency lights) must be turned off. The doors must be locked and the building properly secured. Instructions will be provided along with a key as needed. It is the responsibility of the requesting group to get a key from Library staff during normal library hours the day of their meeting.
Meeting Room Regulations:
All meeting room attendees must observe the Patron Conduct Policy.
Children’s and youth groups may use the facility with adequate supervision by adult sponsors.
Light refreshments may be served. No alcoholic beverages may be served without prior approval of the Library Director/designee. Those wishing to serve alcohol must provide proof on insurance and the required state licenses to do so. Smoking is not permitted anywhere on the Library campus.
Maps, charts, etc. may be hung on walls using existing picture molding only. No adhesive material may be used to attach objects directly to the walls.
Groups may not store materials at the Library without prior permission from the Director.
Groups using the meeting rooms may not charge admission fees or solicit donations. Exceptions include registration for conferences, institutes, or education courses with advance permission from the Director. In accordance with the Solicitation Policy, no services or products may be sold.
The Community Meeting Room serves as the official meeting room for the Board of Selectmen, Appeals, School, Planning and the Budget Committee. It has audio/visual equipment and live cable television broadcasting and recording capabilities which are used to broadcast various town meetings over Channel 1302. When possible and when requested, the meeting room is also available to the Town of York for additional needs. Other groups may use the Community Meeting Room when not in use by Library or Town programming.
The Library is not responsible for damage or loss to equipment, supplies, exhibits, or other items owned by an individual or group and used in the meeting rooms. If insurance is necessary for any materials brought into the Library meeting rooms, the person or group using the rooms must provide that insurance.
Political rallies for the purpose of supporting or opposing a specific candidate or political party shall not be held in the Library.
Groups using the meeting rooms must clearly indicate their sponsorship of the program on their marketing and may not list the Library as a sponsor without prior approval of the Library Director or designee.
The Library Board and its employees or agents are not liable for any claims arising out of the use of Library meeting rooms.
Quiet Study Rooms:
Quiet study rooms may be used by patrons who are high school age or older.
Patrons must sign up at the circulation desk before using a quiet study room, and, when others are waiting, occupants will be limited to two hours in a study room.
Priority use of study rooms for educational activities such as adult education programs and proctored exams will be determined by library staff. They will try to schedule these activities ahead of time, but in certain circumstances they may have to ask study room occupants to move to one of the many tables available throughout the Library.
Approved by the York Public Library Board of Trustees May 13, 2021.
Amended and approved by the Executive Committee November 16, 2021