General Policies




Section I

The Towanda District Library is duly organized and constituted under Section 2-2 et seq., Chapter 81, Illinois Revised Statutes, 1988 State Bar Association Edition.



Section I

The meetings of the Board of Trustees of the Library shall be held at the Towanda District Library in Towanda, Illinois, except as otherwise provided by resolution adopted by the Board of Trustees.

Section II

The Board of Trustees shall hold monthly meetings on the third Tuesday of each month, at the hour of 7:00 P.M. The annual meeting shall be held on the third Tuesday in May of each Year.

Section III

Notice of special meetings shall be given by mail addressed to the individual Trustees at least three days prior to the special meeting called.


Order of Business

Section I

The Board of Directors shall follow the most recent edition of Robert’s Rules of Order at its proceedings.



Section I

A majority of Trustees shall constitute a quorum.



Section I

The Board of Trustees shall elect the President at its annual Meeting. The President shall be the Executive officer of the Board of Trustees, preside over all meetings of the Board, and shall be apprised of the business of the Library. The President shall see that all orders or resolutions of the Board are carried out. The Vice President shall preside at the meetings in the absence of the President.

Section II

The Secretary or a designated representative shall attend all meetings of the Board of Trustees and shall preserve in the books of the Board of Trustees the true minutes of the proceedings of all such meetings. The Secretary shall give all notices required to be given by the Board. The Secretary shall perform all other duties delegated by the board.

Section III

The Treasurer shall have custody of all funds and securities for the library. The treasurer shall deposit all monies and all valuable effects in the name of the Library in such depositories as may be designated by the Board. The Treasurer shall disburse the funds of the library as may be directed by the Board, and shall render an accounting to the Board on a regular basis. The Treasurer shall keep in force a bond in the form and amount with corporate surety satisfactory to the Board, conditioned for faithful performance of the duties of Treasurer Office.

Section IV

The Board of Trustees shall elect all of the above officers for a term of one year until the next annual election.

Section V

Any Board member absent from three consecutive meetings shall be eligible for removal from office by a majority vote of remaining Board members.



Section I

PNC shall be the depository of the funds of the library. Funds less than $1000 may be withdrawn upon the signature of the Treasurer alone. Amounts of and exceeding $1000 require authorized signatures.



Section I

The Board of directors shall pass a budget and a copy shall be filed with the CountyClerk by the fourth Tuesday in September. The said budget shall set for the estimated receipts and disbursements of the Towanda District Library for the coming fiscal year.


Fiscal Year

Section I

The fiscal year of the Towanda District Library shall be from July 1 through June 30.


Amendment of By-laws

These By-laws may be amended, altered, changed, added to or repealed by the

affirmative vote of a majority of the Board of Trustees at any regular or special meeting if

notice of the proposed amendment, alteration, change, addition, or repeal be contained in a

notice sent to each member of the Board of Trustees at the date of or prior to the

preceding monthly meeting, or in the event of a special meeting, by notice given with a

copy of the proposed change, thirty days prior to the special meeting.

The Board of Trustees duly passed the above By-laws of the Towanda District Library,

McLean County, Illinois at a Duly called and constituted meeting of the Board of Trustees, pursuant to April 10, 2006 Board Meeting.

Primary Roles:

  • General information
  • Basic Literacy
  • Lifelong learning


The library director may act as a proctor for Real Estate Exams during her normal working hours at the library. Appointments should be confirmed at least 48 hours in advance. There is a fee of $20 due to the library prior to the exam.


The Towanda District Library offers the same services to patrons with disabilities as to all other segments of the population. In addition to those services, the Towanda District Library acts as a facilitator between the patron and Services to the Blind and Physically Handicapped, offers home delivery to patrons with disabilities which prevent them from coming to the library, and welcomes service animals in the library.


The Towanda District Public Library is dedicated to providing access to knowledge and information through reading, writing, and quiet contemplation, providing patrons the right to use materials and services without being disturbed or impeded, and providing patrons and employees a secure and comfortable environment. The Public Library Act provides the Board of Library Trustees with the general power to carry out the spirit and intent of the Act in establishing and maintaining the library and providing library services and the specific power to “exclude from the use of the library any person who willfully violates an ordinance or regulation prescribed.”

The Board of Library Trustees of the Towanda District Library Public Library establishes its conduct ordinance as follows:

Section 1.

A patron who engages in any activity that disrupts the use of library facilities, collections, or services by patrons or materially disrupts the ability of the staff to perform its duties shall cease such activity immediately upon the request by

library personnel.

Section 2.

In such instances involving minors, identification will be requested and the incident will be reported to the parent or guardian.

Section 3.

If, following a request, the patron fails or refuses to comply or responds to the request in an abusive fashion, he or she will be required to leave the library premises immediately for the balance of that calendar day. If he or she refuses to leave, the police will be summoned.

Section 4.

Library personnel will record instances in which patrons are required to leave the library in a ledger maintained by the library for that purpose. Upon the third recorded instance in which a patron is required to leave the library premises within a thirty-day period, the Director shall bar the patron from use of library premises for a period of thirty days. Parents or guardians of minors will be notified in writing after the second recorded instance in which a minor is required to leave the library and advised of the consequences of any further recorded instances.

Section 5.

Parents wishing to appeal such action may do so upon written request to the Board of Library Trustees.

Section 6.

In the event a patron barred from the use of the library attempts entry to the library during any such period of exclusion, the police will be summoned to remove the patron.

Section 7.

In the event the patron persists in abusive conduct or disruptive behavior following such a period of exclusion, the Director shall report to the Board of Library Trustees such conduct following prior exclusion and the Board will consider a long-term exclusion of that patron.

Section 8.

This Ordinance shall take effect immediately upon enactment and approval according to law and be in full force and effect thereafter.   A copy shall be posted within three days of enactment at the library and the secretary shall maintain a certified copy in the official records of the library available for public inspection.

Section 9.

Smoking is never permitted inside the building


The Towanda District Library welcomes associations with library and non-library related groups. All fundraising and/or programming efforts of these groups benefiting the library must meet the goals stated in the library’s mission statement and must concur with the policies of the Towanda District Library.



We are pleased to share our facilities with small groups. Small recognized clubs or organizations or their committees may use the facilities during regular service hours or after hours at the discretion of the Library Director.  Due to our limited space we ask for strict compliance with these rules.  It is understood that the person who arranges the use of the library will be responsible for observing the rules.  Library sponsored activities and meetings are given priority in the use of the facility.

General Information

  1. All meetings must be open to the public. Fundraising, collections, admission charges, or other money raising activities are not allowed during facility usage unless all proceeds are donated to the library.
  2. Alcoholic beverages, illegal drugs, tobacco products, and firearms are prohibited. Group meetings at the library must comply with all applicable State and Federal laws and regulations.
  3. Light refreshments may be served upon approval of Library Director and must remain in the meeting area.
  4. The library can accommodate twenty people during the library’s scheduled hours or at the Library Director’s discretion after hours.
  5. Library meeting space must be booked at least 2 weeks in advance by a group member who is a current cardholder of the Towanda District Library. Reservation cancellations must be given within 48 hours of the scheduled reservation to the Library Director.
  6. The library has the right to cancel reservations due to extenuating circumstances.
  7. All publicity for the meeting using the library’s name must be approved by the Library Director before public posting. The library must not be listed as a contact for the scheduled event.
  8. Meeting places within the library will be determined with the Director. Groups will not have access to staff work areas.
  9. A library employee must be present during the group’s meeting. The group must pay a fee of $10 per hour for a prearranged meeting after regularly scheduled service hours of the library. This payment must be made at the time of the reservation for use of meeting space. Meetings held during regularly scheduled library service hours will not be charged a fee.
  10. The library will not store or be responsible for any items, goods, equipment, etc. left at the library. There is no storage room available for these items.
  11. Groups will return furniture to original placements and will do any clean-up needed to restore the area to normal.
  12. Attendees are responsible for supervision of all children.
  13. Groups who do not observe these rules will not be permitted to use the building thereafter.


  1. To reserve meeting space at the library, please ask the staff for a reservation form.

Public Participation at Library Board Meetings and Petitions to the Board

At each regular and special occasion open meeting, the members of the public and library employees may comment on or ask questions of the Board, subject to reasonable constraints.

The individuals appearing before the Board are expected to follow these guidelines:

  • Address the Board only at the appropriate times as indicated on the agenda and when recognized by the Board President.
  • Identify oneself by full name and address, and be brief. Comments shall be limited to 5 minutes.
  • The Board President shall have the authority to determine procedural matters regarding public participation not otherwise defined by Board Policy.
  • Individuals must submit a request for permission to address the Board twenty-four hours before the meeting. Requests must be in writing and include the speaker’s full name and address. All comments must relate to a specific agenda item.

Petitions or written correspondence to the Board shall be presented to the Board at the next regularly scheduled Board meeting.

Contact the Towanda District Library Board of Trustees:

By Email:

By Mail:
Towanda District Library, Attn: Board of Trustees
301 S. Taylor St.
Towanda, IL 61776-7582

Correspondence sent to the Board will be reviewed at a monthly board meeting. In the meantime, if there is anything a library staff member may be able to assist you with, please do not hesitate to contact us.


  1. It is the policy of the library not to advertise commercial endeavors unless the project is specifically related to the goals of the library, or a non-profit organization. No advertising of a political or controversial nature will be displayed.
  2. The library welcomes displays of general interest to the community as well as   materials having a direct relationship to the purpose of the library.
  3. All permanent or semi-permanent exhibits offered for display must be used at the discretion of the librarian.
  4. All materials displayed in the library will be given reasonable care and protection within the limits of the general operations of the library, but the library and the board do not assume responsibility for damage of loss suffered on its premises, not for the costs of insurance coverage. Such costs, losses, damages etc. are understood to be the responsibility of the organization or individual providing the display or exhibit. A signed statement of insurance coverage should be provided when the display is established or if it is uninsured, a statement releasing the library from any responsibility must be signed.


PURPOSE. The purpose of this policy statement is to outline the responsibilities, general objectives, and specific guidelines for management of public funds by the Towanda District Library.

RESPONSIBILITIES. All investment policies and procedures of the Towanda District Library will be in accordance with Illinois law. The authority of the Library Board of Library Trustees to control and invest public funds is defined in the Illinois Public Funds Investment Act, and the investments permitted are described therein. Administration and execution of these policies are the responsibility of the Treasurer, and, by designation, the Library Director acting under the authority of the Library Board of Library Trustees. Investments, fund balances, and the status of such accounts will be reported at each regularly scheduled meeting of the Library Board.

OBJECTIVES. In selecting financial institutions and investment instruments to be used, the following general objectives should be considered:

•Safety, maintenance of sufficient liquidity to meet current obligations, return on investment, simplicity of management

GUIDELINES. The following guidelines should be used to meet the general investment objectives:

A) Safety

  1. Investments will be made only in securities guaranteed by the U.S. government, or in FDIC or FSLIC insured institutions. Deposit accounts in banks or savings and loan institutions will not exceed the amount insured by FDIC or FSLIC coverage.
  1. Authorized investments include and will primarily consist of: Certificates of Deposit, Treasury Bills and other securities guaranteed by the U.S. Government, participation in the State of Illinois Public Treasurer’s Investment Pool, and any other investments allowed under State law that satisfy the investment objectives of the library district.

B) Maintenance of sufficient liquidity to meet current obligations

In general, investments should be managed to meet liquidity needs for the current month plus one month (based on forecasted needs).

C) Return on investment

Within the constraints on Illinois law and this investment policy, every effort should be made to maximize return on investments made. All available funds will be placed in investments or kept in interest bearing deposit accounts at all times.

D) Simplicity of management

The time required by library administrative staff to manage investments shall be kept to a minimum.


  • While normal library operations are not likely to involve circumstances exposing employees or users to bloodborne pathogens, the Towanda District Library complies with Illinois Department of Labor regulations and therefore the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration regulations relating to occupational exposures to bloodborne pathogens that have been incorporated by administrative actions.
  • Exposure Determination: No particular job classification of the Library has occupational exposure (meaning “reasonably anticipated…contact with blood or other potentially infectious materials that may result from the performance of an employee’s duties”), however, emergencies may occur with staff or patrons, particularly youth or elderly patrons, to which library employees in all classifications may be called upon to respond with assistance. Or emergencies with “out of control” individuals (e.g. biting, spitting, etc.) could present an individual threat.
  • Universal Precautions: All potential circumstances of exposure must be taken into account by the Library and its employees to protect against exposures. Hepatitis B (HBV), human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), and other bloodborne pathogens found in human blood and other body fluids cause life-threatening diseases. In emergency or other such circumstances, when contact with blood or other potentially infectious materials may result, the Library’s approach to infection control requires all human blood and body fluids to be treated as if known to be infectious for HIV, HBV, and other bloodborne pathogens. Engineering and work practice controls shall be used to eliminate or minimize employee exposures, and if a possibility of exposure remains, personal protective equipment shall also be used.
  • Exposure Control Plan: At any time within the Library environment that human blood, human body fluids, or other potentially infectious materials are presented, the area contaminated shall be immediately cordoned off and quarantined, even if the entire library must be closed to accomplish this completely. Personal protection clothing, such as gloves, gowns, masks, etc., shall be provided and used in the cleanup and safe disposal of contaminated waste such as diapers, blood-tinged materials (e.g. Band-Aids, gauze, cotton, clothing, etc.), etc. If advisable, a professional hazardous/contaminated cleanup firm shall be contacted and retained for complete cleanup and decontamination. The quarantine shall be effective until complete cleanup and disposal is obtained. Hand-washing facilities are provided by the Library and must be used by the employees as soon as feasible, including following the removal of personal protective equipment. A complete record of all incidents, exposures, cleanup, and disposals shall be kept as required by the regulations.
  • Training and Immunizations: The Library shall provide directly or through System, State, or associational programs, annual in-service training/educational programs for all affected employees. Any employee who has an occupational exposure shall be offered, at no charge, the hepatitis B vaccine series, in accordance with the regulations. Following the report of an exposure incident, the Library will make immediately available to the exposed employee or employees a confidential medical evaluation and follow-up as provided in the regulations.


The Towanda District Library has long recognized that the non-medical use of controlled substances is hazardous to the health of the patrons and employees of the Library. Additionally, the use of alcohol by patrons is recognized as both hazardous and often illegal, and the irresponsible use of alcohol by employees is detrimental to the library environment. The illicit manufacture, use, possession, or distribution of controlled substances, look-alike drugs, drug paraphernalia, and the manufacture, use, possession, or distribution of alcoholic beverages, marijuana, and its derivatives as defined by Illinois and Federal statute, at any time, is not permitted at any library location.

“Library location” means in any library building, on any library premises, in any library-owned vehicle, or at any library-sponsored activity where patrons or employees are engaged in activities under the jurisdiction of the Library. This shall include any period of time when an employee is supervising students on behalf of a school district or is otherwise engaged in library business.

Any employee who violates the term of the Library’s drug and alcohol policy may be suspended or terminated pursuant to the rules and regulations of the Library and applicable state statutes. The Library may in its discretion refer incidents to appropriate legal authorities for prosecution when this policy is violated. Sanctions against employees shall be in accordance with prescribed library regulations and procedures. The Library’s employees, as a condition of their employment, agree to abide by the terms of this policy and to notify the Library, no later than five (5) days after a conviction, of any criminal drug or alcohol statute conviction for a violation occurring at a library location. The Library, if or when required by law, shall report such conviction to the appropriate authorities.

A patron who violates the terms of this policy may be expelled from the library location involved or any library location at the discretion of the Library, and use privileges may be suspended for a specified period of time. The Library may, in its discretion, refer incidents to appropriate legal authority for prosecution when this policy is violated. Sanctions against patrons shall be in accordance with prescribed library regulations and procedures.

The Library shall obtain and make available materials from local, system, state, and national anti-drug and alcohol abuse organizations and, where appropriate, enlist the aid of community and state organizations with drug and alcohol information and rehabilitation programs to provide information to the Library patrons and employees.

In order to make patrons and employees aware of the dangers of drug and alcohol abuse, notice of the Standard of Conduct imposed by this policy and the sanctions imposed for violation of this policy shall be distributed to all employees and prominently posted at the Library for patrons and employees to see. Patrons and, in the case of minors, their parents shall be advised of this policy in the same manner as they are advised of the general disciplinary policies and procedures. Employees shall receive copies of the notice attached as an appendix to this policy.

The Library shall conduct a biennial review and evaluation of the measures taken by this policy to determine its effectiveness and to implement changes to the program where needed. Additionally, the biennial review and evaluation shall determine whether or not the sanctions required by this policy are consistently in force.


The Towanda District Library strongly opposes sexual harassment in any form. Sexual harassment is against Library policy and is a violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of l964 as well as the Illinois Human Rights Act as amended on January 7, l993. It is also unlawful to retaliate against a person who has lodged a complaint of sexual harassment.


It is the policy of this Board that all employees have a right to work in an environment free of sexual harassment. Sexual harass­ment in the workplace includes unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature when:

  1. Submission to such conduct is made, either explicitly or implicitly, a term of condition of an individual’s employment,
  2. Submission to or rejection of such conduct by an individual is used as the basis for employment decisions affecting such individual, or
  3. Such conduct has the purpose or effect of substantially interfering with the individual’s work performance or creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive working environment.

Any employee who believes that he or she is being subjected to sexual harassment is urged to immediately report such conduct to the Administration in accordance with the Sexual Harassment Reporting Procedure.


The Board affirms its commitment to ensuring an environment for all patrons free of sexual harassment. The Board views sexual harassment of patrons by Library employees as an abuse of authority and, therefore, such harassment will not be tolerated.

Sexual harassment of a patron by a Library employee means:

  1. Any sexual advance by an employee toward a patron,
  2. Any request by an employee to a patron for sexual favors,
  3. Any acceptance by an employee of a sexual advance or request for sexual favors from a patron, or
  4. Any conduct of a sexual nature by an employee directed toward a patron when (i) the patron’s submission to or rejection of such conduct is either explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of a patron’s participation in any library-sponsored activity, or (ii) such conduct has the purpose or effect on a patron of reasonable sensibilities, of creating an intimi­dating, hostile, or offensive library environment for the patron.

Any patron who suspects that she or he has encountered sexual harassment should report the incident to the director or, if not immediately available, to her as soon as possible. Any employee who witnesses or has knowledge of sexual harassment by a Library employee against a patron shall immediately report it to the director or to their immediate supervisor.


Sexual harassment prohibited by this policy includes verbal, non-verbal, or physical conduct. The terms “intimidating,” “hostile,” or “offensive” as used above include conduct, which has the effect of humiliation, embarrassment, or discomfort.

Examples of verbal sexual harassment include: explicit sexual propositions, sexual innuendo, suggestive comments, foul or obscene language, insults of a sexual nature, and humor or jokes about sex or gender-specific traits.

Examples of non-verbal sexual harassment include: suggestive or insulting sounds, leering, whistling, obscene gestures, display of foul or obscene printed or visual material.

Examples of physical sexual harassment include: sexual touching, patting or pinching of a sexual nature, intentionally brushing the body, coerced sexual intercourse, and sexual assault.


All Library employees have the affirmative duty to report incidents of sexual harassment perpetrated by patrons upon fellow patrons, whether witnessed firsthand or reported to them. Such incidents must be reported to the director or to their immediate supervisor.


It is a violation of this policy to retaliate or to take reprisal in any way against anyone who has articulated any concern about sexual harassment or discrimination against the person raising the concern or against another individual.


The following procedure shall be used by any patron or employee who suspects that he or she has been subjected to sexual harassment.

Step 1:

Reporting by Patrons

Any patron who suspects that he or she is the victim of sexual harassment by a Library employee or a fellow patron is to report it to the director as soon as possible.

Reporting by Employees

A complaint by a Library employee that sexual harassment has occurred shall first be presented to either the director or to the employee’s immediate supervisor. If the director or supervisor is the subject of the complaint, then the complaint is to be presented to the President of the Board

Step 2:

If the alleged perpetrator of sexual harassment is a Library patron, normal disciplinary procedures should be followed. In all other cases, the head librarian shall meet with the complainant within three (3) days of receiving the complaint to discuss the allegations. If the complainant chooses to have a representative, then the director may also have a representa­tive; such meeting, however, shall be informal. The director shall issue a written decision within five (5) days of the meeting.

Step 3:

If the complainant is not satisfied with the director ‘s decision, within five (5) days of the date of that decision, an appeal may be taken to the Board President or his designee (hereinafter the words “Board President” shall include designee).

The appeal shall be in writing and shall state the reasons for appealing the director ‘s decision. Within five (5) days of receiving the appeal, the Board President shall meet with the complainant, any representatives, and the director to resolve the matter. The Board President shall issue a written decision within ten (l0) days of this meeting. Any employee found to have sexually harassed a patron or another employee, or retaliated against a patron or employee who alleges sexual harassment, will be subject to discipline up to and including discharge.

Step 4:

If the complainant is not satisfied with the Board President’s decision, then within ten (l0) days, an appeal of that decision may be made to the entire Board of Library Trustees. Such an appeal shall be instituted by filing with the Secretary of the Board a statement setting forth the reasons for the appeal. Within twenty (20) days of receiving an appeal, the Board or a committee hereof shall meet with the complainant, the director, and any representatives to discuss the allegations of discrimination. The hearing with the Board shall be informal, however, the complainant and the adminis­tration may present evidence, call, and cross-examine witnesses. The Board may ask questions of the complainant, the administration, and any witnesses. The rules of evidence shall not apply, however, hearsay evidence shall not be presented for proof of any ultimate facts.

Within ten (l0) days after the hearing, the Board shall issue its written decision.

All hearings shall be held in private and at times convenient for the parties. In the event that the person designated to hear a complaint is the alleged offender, then the employee may immed­iately move to the next step of the procedure. At any step, the person hearing the complaint may conduct or direct such investiga­tion as they deem appropriate, including obtaining a response from the alleged offender. There shall be no harassment or retaliation by any person involved in the process for any reason.


Any Library Patron or employee may also use the legal recourse, investigative, and complaint process through the Illinois Department of Human Rights and Human Rights Commission.

The address and telephone number are:

Illinois Department of Human Rights

222 S. College, Rm. l0lA

Springfield, IL 62700

(217) 785-5l00


In accordance with the State Statute and the Illinois Department of Labor Regulations, the Towanda District Library annually adopts and files an Ordinance that establishes the prevailing rates of wages. Certified copies of our compliance are sent to the Secretary of State and Illinois Department of Labor. A newspaper publication notifying area residents is also made.


The Towanda District Library complies with the requirements of federal immigration law, and for all employees hired after 1988, the Library shall have a properly completed Form I-9, which shall be kept as part of its –permanent personnel records.

Copies of Form I-9 (Employment Eligibility Verification) can be obtained through the U.S. Department of Justice, Immigration and Naturalization Service or through the personnel office of your library system.


Staff will be acquainted with the following procedures and with the library’s alarm system in case of emergency. The librarian has the initial responsibility for training staff response to emergencies.

The President of the library board will be notified of any emergency as soon as possible. If unavailable, the vice president or secretary will be notified.

Medical emergency

1. Patron

a. If serious, call 911 (rescue squad)

b. Identify victim if possible and obtain contact information of witnesses.

c. Offer to contact a family member or call a parent if it is a child who is involved.

2. Staff Member

a. Follow steps listed above.

b. Enlist the aid of another employee or board member if a staff member must leave

abruptly due to illness.


1. Remove all patrons from the library.

2. Call 911 (fire department)


1. If the weather looks threatening, a staff member will turn on the radio to listen for a weather forecast.

2. If a siren is sounded:

a. Quickly announce that a tornado has been sighted.

b. If children are involved, keep them in the library until a parent arrives.

c. Take cover in restrooms.


In case of severe that could endanger staff or patrons on their journeys home, the employee in charge of the building at that time may close the library for the remainder of the day.




  1. The board is the legal policy making body.
  1. The board shall select and employ the director.
  1. The board shall participate in positive library public relations and shall be an advocate of the library and its programs.
  1. The board shall assist the director in planning, supporting, approving and maintaining an adequate budget that will enable the library to meet its needs for service.
  1. When a member assumes the responsibility of a trustee, s/he declares interest in the library to the extent that s/he is willing to serve without compensation for the period of election, to attend board meetings regularly, to accept an office or membership on a committee if called upon to do so, and to fill that office credibly and efficiently without expecting special privileges. Trustees will inform themselves/be informed of library trends and of challenges of neighboring libraries as well as of the Towanda District Library.


1. All new board members will receive a tour of the library and the library website.

2. All new members to the board will be made aware that election to the library board is a public trust and that trustees are a policy determining body for the library. The primary     responsibilities of the trustees include the following:

  • to ensure that everyone in the community is aware of the resources available at the library.
  • to secure adequate financial support for the operation of the library,
  • to encourage continued growth and development of the library staff.

3. Board members will determine the goals and activities of the library, what policies will guide them, and what finances will support them. The director is charged with administrating the day-to-day operation of the library.

4. All new board members will be given both verbal and text orientations that include overviews of the regional library system, the state library, and affiliated organizations. New board members will be made aware of resources that are pertinent to their responsibilities.   New board members will also be given specific information about the Towanda District Library, including briefings of the following:

  • the value of property, such as book collection, building site, etc.
  • brief history of the library
  • The financial status, with source of income including local, state, and federal grants, a copy of the budget, list of personnel and salaries, and the latest annual report,
  • agendas of previous meetings;
  • brief review of state library laws;
  • brief review of the library system.


The Council of the American Library Association reaffirms its Belief in the following basic policies that should govern the Services of all libraries:

  1. As a responsibility of library service, books and other library materials selected should be chosen for values of the community. In no case should library materials be excluded because of the race or nationality or the social, political or religious views of the authors.
  1. Libraries should provide books and other materials presenting all points of view concerning the problems and proscribed or removed from libraries because of partisan doctrinal disapproval.
  1. Censorship should be challenged by libraries in the maintenance of their resisting abridgment of free expression and free access to ideas.
  1. Libraries should cooperate with all persons and groups concerned with resisting abridgment of free expression and free access to ideas.
  1. The rights of an individual to the use of a library should not be denied or abridged because of age, race, religion, national origins, social or political views.

Adopted June 18, 1948. Amended February 2, 1961, and June 27, 1967 by the ALA Council.


The Freedom to View, along with the freedom to speak, to Hear and to read is protected by the First Amendment to the Constitution of the United States. In a free society, there is no Place for censorship of any medium of expression. Therefore, We affirm these principles.

  1. It is in the public’s interest to provide the broadest possible access to films and other audiovisual materials, because they have proven to be among the most effective means for the communication of ideas. Liberty of circulation is essential to insure the constitutional guarantee of freedom of expression.
  1. It is in the public interest to provide for our audiences, films and other audiovisual materials that represent a diversity of views and expression. Selection of work does not constitute or imply agreement with or approval of the content.
  1. It is our professional responsibility to resist the constraint of labeling or pre-judging a film on the basis of the moral, religious, or political beliefs of the producer or filmmaker or on the basis of controversial content.
  1. It is our professional responsibility to contest vigorously, by all lawful mean every encroachment upon the public’s freedom to view.

Adopted or Endorsed By: The Educational Film Library Association, 2-79 and the

American Library Association Council 6-79 Board of Directors of the Association of Educational Communications & Technology, 12-79, Illinois Valley Library System Board of Directors, 3-80.


A statement prepared by the Westchester Conference of the American Library Association and American Book Publishers Council, May 2 and 3, 1953.

The freedom to read is essential to our democracy. It is 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 the sue 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 ordinary citizen, by exercising his 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 obscenity. 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 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 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 reader to choose freely from a variety of offerings.

The freedom to read is guaranteed by the Constitution. Those with faith in free men will stand firm on these constitutional guarantees of essential rights and exercise the responsibilities that accompany their rights.

We therefore affirm these propositions:

  1. It is in the public interest for publishers and librarians to make available the widest diversity of views and expressions, including those which are unorthodox or unpopular with the majority.
  1. Creative thought is by definition new and what is new is different. The bearer of every new thought is a rebel until his idea is refined and tested. Totalitarian systems attempt to maintain themselves in power by the ruthless suppression of any concept that challenges the established orthodoxy. The power of a democratic system to adapt to change is vastly strengthened by the freedom of its citizens to choose widely from among conflicting opinions offered freely to them. To stifle every nonconformist idea at birth would mark the end of the democratic process.

Furthermore, only through the constant activity of weighing and selecting can the democratic mind attain the strength demanded by times like these. We need to know not only what we believe but why we believe it.

3. Publishers and librarians do not need to endorse every idea or presentation contained to the books they make available. It would conflict with the public

interest for them to establish their own political, moral or aesthetic views as the sole standard for deterring what books should be published or circulated.

Publishers and librarians serve the educational process by helping to make available knowledge and ideas required for the growth of the mind as mentors the patterns of their own thought. The people should have the freedom to read and consider a broader range of ideas, than those that man be held by any single librarian or publisher or government or church. It is wrong that what one man can read should be confined to what another thinks proper.

4. It is contrary to the public interest for publishers or librarians to determine the acceptability of a book solely on the basis of their personal history or political affiliations of the author.

A book should be judged as a book. No art or literature can flourish if it is to be measured by the political views or private lives of its creators. No society of free men can flourish which draws up lists of writers to whom it will not listen, whatever they may have to say.

5. The present laws dealing with obscenity should be vigorously enforced. Beyond that, there is no place in our society for extra legal efforts to coerce the taste of others, to confine adults to the reading matter deemed suitable for adolescents, or to inhibit the efforts of writers to achieve artistic expression.

To some, much of modern literature is shocking. But is not much of like itself shocking? We cut off literature at the source if we prevent serious artist from dealing with the stuff of lie. Parents and teachers have a responsibility to prepare the young to meet the diversity of experiences in life to which they will be exposed, as they have a responsibility to help them learn to think critically for themselves. These are affirmative responsibilities, not to be discharged simply by preventing them from reading works for which they are not yet prepared. In these matters taste differs, and taste cannot be legislated, nor can machinery be devised which will suit the demands of one group without limiting the freedom of others. We deplore the catering to the immature, the retarded or the maladjusted taste. Bu those concerned with freedom have the responsibility of seeing to it that each individual book or publication, whatever its contents, price or method of distribution, is dealt with in accordance with due process of law.


75 ILCS 70 (formerly Ill. Rev. Stat. 1991, ch. 82, 1202

An act regarding the Confidentiality of various types of information held by certain Libraries P.A. 83-179. Approved August 30, 1983 effective January 1, 1984.

70/1. Registration and circulation records – Statistical reports

Sec. 1.

(a)   The registration and circulation records of a library are confidential information. Except pursuant to a court order, no person shall publish or make any information contained in such records available to the public.

(b)   This Section does not prevent a library from publishing or making available to the public reasonable statistical reports regarding library registration and book circulation where those reports are presented so that no individual is identified therein.

(c)   For the purpose of this Section (i) “library” means any public library or library of an educational historical institution, organization or society, (ii) “registration records” includes any information a library requires a person to provide in order for that person to become eligible to borrow books and other materials and (iii) “circulation records” includes all information identifying the individual borrowing particular books or materials.

P.A. 83-179, Sec. 1, eff. Jan. 1, 1984.

Formerly Ill. Rev. Stat. 1991, ch, 81, Para. 1201

Title of Act:

An Act regarding the confidentially of various types of information held by certain libraries. P.A. 83-179, approved Aug. 3, 1983, eff. Jan. 1, 1984.

70/2. Short Title

Sec. 2. This Act may be cited as the Library Records Confidentiality Act

P.A. 83-179, Sec. 2, eff. Jan. 1, 1984. Amended by P.A. 86-1475, Art. 4, ch. 4-43, eff. Jan. 10, 1991.

Formerly Ill. Rev. Stat. 1991, ch. 81, para 1202.