The most recent version of the Policy Manual of the Ferguson Municipal Public Library is available below for all to read. It covers a variety of topics related to governing the library, including our policies surrounding employment, library card registration, computer use, and much more.
Board Approved 1/23/2017
– Procurement Policy amended 3/26/2018.
– Staff Benefit Policy amended 4/23/2018.
– Donation Policy amended 9/24/2018.
– Employee Recognition Policy amended 5/21/2019.
– Behavior Policy amended 8/26/2019.
– Circulation Policy amended 2/24/2020.
– Behavior Policy amended 5/24/2021.
– Holidays amended 11/22/2021.
– Library Bill of Rights adopted 4/24/23.
Table of Contents
Rights of Management – Assignment of Staff
Family and Medical Leave
Military Service Leave
Employee Recognition Policy
Professional Development & Travel Reimbursement
Breaks and Lunchtime
Anti-Discrimination & Harassment Policy
Code of Ethics and Conflict of Interest Policy
Registered Sex Offender Policy
Exceptions to Fines and Renewal Restrictions
Request for Reconsideration of Library Materials
Library Bill of Rights
Donations of Materials to the Library
Internet & Network Resource Usage Policy
Library Programming & Facility Use Policy
Video, Filming & Photography in the Library Policy
Fund Balance Policy
Library District’s General Fund Balance
All employees are employees at will. Nothing in this Personnel Manual, or any additions or amendments thereto, shall be construed as an employment agreement or the basis of an employment agreement. This manual, and any additions or amendments thereto, and any portion thereof, may be changed or eliminated at any time by the Library Board of Trustees.
Job Descriptions shall be available for all positions. Producing the job descriptions are the responsibility of the Director with the exception that the FMPLD Board has the responsibility and final say over the job description of the Director.
The Library Director shall be selected in accordance with the bylaws of the Ferguson Municipal Public Library District (FMPLD) and governing state law.
In accordance with this manual and the direction of the Library Board of Trustees, the Library Director shall have full control over hiring and firing of the library staff, and shall regulate the hours of work, conduct of the staff, and other conditions of employment.
The FMPLD is an equal opportunity employer, and hires, trains, promotes, and compensates employees without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, marital status, or disability.
Job descriptions detail the qualifications for the various positions. Job descriptions are subject to review and may be changed or eliminated. Job descriptions are available from the Library Director.
Preference shall be given to residents of the City of Ferguson when the resident’s job qualifications are equal to the qualifications of other job applicants.
Members of the immediate family of any person serving on the Library Board of Trustees, the City Council, or the City Manager shall not be eligible for any position.
An employee shall serve a four (4) month probationary period before becoming a regular staff member. If the employee successfully completes the probationary period, the employee shall receive all benefits accrued from his/her date of hire (anniversary date).
The employee shall receive an evaluation from his/her supervisor at the end of the probationary period. The evaluation shall consist of a written evaluation and a discussion of the information on the written evaluation between the Library Director and the employee. At the discretion of the Library Director, the employee may receive a salary adjustment at this time.
Rights of Management – Assignment of Staff
The District reserves the right to assign staff to specific times and days of employment if such assignment is necessary to the mission and goals of the District or for the best utilization and development of the District’s employees.
Employee Dress/Appearance Code Policy
It is important that Library staff exhibit a professional appearance which conveys competence, respect, dignity, and efficiency. The community makes decisions based upon impressions formed during interactions with Library staff. Business casual attire is required to reflect an appearance of professionalism and attention by Library staff.
In all cases, staff is expected to be clean, well-groomed and wear clothes in good repair. Good judgment and discretion is expected. Clothing should not be lewd, offensive, ratty or filthy. Wear what is appropriate for the task you are performing, targeting a professional look.
The Director has full discretion as to staff compliance with policy, and is responsible for monitoring and communicating standards to the staff. All staff who report to work in violation of the Dress/Appearance Code will be sent home to change and will not be paid for the absence. Continued non-compliance will result in corrective action up to and including dismissal.
The library recognizes the following holidays: New Year’s Day, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day, President’s Day, Memorial Day, Juneteenth*, Independence Day (July 4th), Labor Day, Veterans’ Day, Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Eve Day, Christmas Day, New Year’s Eve Day. If a paid holiday falls on a Sunday, the library will be closed in observance of the holiday on the next day (Monday). All library staff, full and part time, will receive holiday pay for the hours they would have normally been scheduled.
*amended by Board 11/22/21
Full-time employees shall earn sick leave with full pay at the rate of eight hours for each calendar month of service. Part-time employees working 60 hour or more per pay period shall earn sick leave with full pay at the rate of 6 hours for each calendar month. Upon adoption of this policy, any part-time staff member who has a “senior staff” designation shall also receive this benefit as if they were regularly scheduled 60 hours per pay period. Other part time employees do not receive a sick leave benefit.
Sick leave will accrue from the date of employment.
Any employee who has taken three (3) consecutive sick days may be asked to obtain a physician’s release upon returning to work. Release should state nature of illness.
Full time employees may accumulate up to 480 hours of sick leave. Eligible part-time employees may accumulate up to 360 hours sick leave.
When an employee is dismissed, resigns, or retires, he or she shall not be entitled to compensation for sick leave accrued.
If an employee requests to return to work following an illness at less than their regularly scheduled hours held prior to the illness, the employee’s medical doctor must provide a certificate stating the employee is able to work, but at less than the regularly scheduled hours held prior to the illness. Any restrictions by the medical doctor must not conflict with essential functions of the employee’s position. If the medical doctor changes work restrictions, the employee must provide the updated medical information to the Director or Library representative by the next scheduled workday. The opportunity to return to work at less than the employee’s regularly scheduled hours does not obligate the employer to create work or to return the employee to work if there is no appropriate work available.
Full time employees other than the Director, as well as part time employees averaging 60 or more hours per pay period, are entitled to vacation leave with pay as follows:
- To accrue at rate of .0385 per hour paid for first 4 years
- To accrue at rate of .0577 per hour paid for 5th through 9th years
- To accrue at rate of .077 per hour paid from the 10th year on
Upon adoption of this policy, any part-time staff member who has a “senior staff” designation shall also receive this benefit as if they were regularly scheduled 60 hours per pay period. Other part time employees do not receive vacation benefit. Employees cannot use vacation benefit during the probationary period.
Absence on account of sickness, injury or disability in excess of that authorized for such purposes may, at the request of the employee and within the discretion of the Director, be charged against vacation leave allowance.
Vacation requests must be submitted to the Director far enough in advance for regular scheduling and normally shall be scheduled at least seven days in advance. Vacation requests will be approved with particular regard to:
- Operation of the facility
- The request of the employee
- Job level/ Seniority
Vacation time must be taken within one year of the date it was earned or the time will be forfeited. At the discretion of the director, an employee may be given a 3 month additional window to use the time, but after that point all time will be forfeited.
When an employee who has successfully completed the probationary period is dismissed, resigns, or retires, he or she shall be entitled to compensation for vacation accrued to the date of separation. If the probationary period has not been successfully completed, no such benefit shall be extended.
An employee shall receive up to three (3) days paid leave for a death of an immediate family member. An immediate family member shall mean his/her spouse, parent, mother-in-law, father-in-law, child, brother, sister, brother-in-law, sister-in-law, grandparent, grandparent-in-law, or other relative or dependent living in the employee’s home. Director has discretion to allow leave for other individuals in unusual family circumstances.
At the discretion of the Library Director, additional time may be granted for unpaid funeral leave. The employee may use vacation and sick leave before taking a personal leave of absence.
The Library Director or the Library Board of Trustees reserves the right to request evidence of the death of the family member.
If an employee is selected to serve on jury duty, the employee shall notify the Library Director of his/her expected dates of service as soon as possible. The employee shall remit to the Library Director proof of jury duty service at the completion of the employee’s service. The employee may keep any remuneration received from the Clerk of the Court for his/her jury service. At the completion of the jury duty, the employee will return to his/her same position or a comparable position within the library.
If jury duty is ten (10) calendar days or less, the employee shall be on paid leave. After ten (10) calendar days, the employee shall be on unpaid personal leave. The employee may use vacation and sick leave before taking a personal leave of absence. Health care and pension benefits shall continue during the jury duty. No other benefits shall accrue during the leave.
Family and Medical Leave
Eligibility: To be eligible for family or medical leave, an employee must be employed with the library for at least 12 months and for at least 1,250 hours of service during that 12 months.
Reasons and Duration: An eligible employee may request up to 12 weeks of family or medical leave during any 12 month period for one or more of the following reasons. The leave must be requested and begun within 12 months of the reason for the leave.
- The birth of the employee’s child and in order to care for the child;
- The placement of a child with the employee for adoption or foster care;
- In order to care for the employee’s spouse, child, or parent, if the spouse, child, or parent has a serious health condition; or
- A serious health condition makes the employee unable to perform his/her job functions.
Benefits: The employee shall use all accrued sick leave and vacation time during the family or medical leave. If the employee does not have enough vacation and sick leave, the employee shall be on unpaid leave for the remaining family or medical leave. Health care and pension benefits shall continue during the family or medical leave. No other benefits shall accrue during the leave. So long as the employee returns to work at the end of the requested leave, the employee will return to his/her same position or an equivalent position within the library. All leave granted under this policy, including intermittent and/or reduced leave, will be applied against the twelve (12) week maximum.
Definitions: Serious health condition means an illness, injury, impairment, or physical or mental condition that involves care in a hospital, hospice, or residential medical care facility, or continuing treatment by a health care provider.
Spouse means the legal husband or wife of the employee.
Child means a biological, adopted, or foster child, a stepchild, a legal ward, or a child of a person standing loco parentis, who is under 18 years of age, or who is 18 years of age or older an incapable of self-care because of a mental or physical disability.
Parent means the biological or adoptive parent of an employee or an individual who stood in loco parentis to an employee when the employee was a child. Parent also includes the parent of a spouse.
Notice and Certification: If the need for family or medical leave is foreseeable, the employee shall provide the library with 30 days’ notice of the employee’s intention to take the leave and the expected duration of the leave, if known. If the need for family or medical leave is unforeseeable or if the birth or placement of a child or the health condition requires the family or medical leave to begin in less than 30 days, the employee shall provide the library such notice as is practicable.
The Library Director or the Library Board of Trustees may require a written certification issued by the health care provider of the employee or the employee’s spouse, child, or parent. The certification shall state the date on which the serious health condition commenced, the probable duration of the condition, and the appropriate medical facts within the knowledge of the health care provider regarding the condition.
At the discretion of the Library Director and the Library Board of Trustees, an employee may be granted unpaid leave for continued education that will improve skills and abilities that benefit the library. A request for extended leave must be approved by the Library Board of Directors. An extended leave shall mean thirty (30) or more days. The pension plan allows for uninterrupted time accumulation during the education leave, regardless of the break in regular schedule. Health care coverage may be continued at the employee’s expense. No other benefits shall accrue during the education leave.
Military Service Leave
An employee who enters the military service or extended active duty shall be granted a leave of absence without pay or benefits. The employee is entitled to reinstatement of his/her position upon discharge from military service. Any employee who needs a leave of absence for military service or training shall be given all rights required by law, including the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Act of 1994. The employee must notify the Library Director of the need for military leave as soon as possible. The Director will schedule a meeting with the employee to discuss the military leave.
A personal leave of absence may be granted to an employee at the discretion of the Library Director. The employee shall not receive his/her salary or wages during the personal leave. No other benefits shall accrue during this leave. If personal leave is denied, employee may appeal to the Library Board of Trustees.
The Library Director, or designee, may close the Library for emergencies, including but not limited to, severe weather, significant damage to the library facilities and property, disaster, and state or national emergency. If the Director, or designee, is not available, authorization for emergency closure shall be by an officer of the Board of Trustees.
Prior to closing the Library, or as soon thereafter as possible, the Director shall inform the Board of Trustees of the emergency and that the Library will be closing or has closed. A notice shall be posted on the front of the building informing the public that the Library is closed due to an emergency, if it is safe to do so. A message shall be placed on the telecommunications system notifying the public of the closure, as well as on other relevant communication tools.
The Director shall attempt to notify employees scheduled to work during the emergency that the Library has closed due to the emergency. The Director shall not be held responsible if s/he, or a designated employee, is unable to contact these employees.
Short Term Emergency Closing
If the library is closed for a partial day, or one day, or two days due to an emergency — including natural phenomenon, unsafe work environment, flooding, and so forth — it is considered a short term closing. Hourly employees will be paid according to the hours they had been expected to work. If the employee was scheduled to use vacation time, sick leave, or other leave, the employee will not be paid as if they had worked since the employee was not expected to work during those times. At the discretion of the director or Board President, some employees may be requested to report to work or remain at work even if the library is closed, in order to implement the emergency plan and assist in ensuring the safety of staff and the public. Those hourly employees who do so will be paid for the number of hours they were scheduled to work, or the number of hours they actually worked, whichever is greater.
Extended Emergency Closing
For the third and subsequent days of an emergency closure, hourly employees cannot expect to be paid for hours they were expected to work before the emergency. An interim work schedule may be developed to address library needs. Job descriptions or duties may be temporarily altered or reassigned, based upon library needs during the emergency. Reasonable efforts will be made to maintain a work schedule, in relation to library needs. At the discretion of the Director, depending on library needs, employees who have lost time due to emergency closings may be given the option to schedule makeup hours when the emergency is over.
Use of Vacation
Employees may draw upon the employee’s accumulated vacation benefit time, if applicable, to make-up non-paid hours lost due to the emergency. If there is no accumulated vacation time, or if the employee is not eligible for accumulated vacation benefit time, the employee will not be paid.
The Director shall establish procedures to notify the employees of the emergency, to secure the Library facilities and property, and, if necessary, to contact the proper authorities and involved parties.
Total compensation to the Director including salary, raises, and the cost-sharing percentages of healthcare will be determined yearly by the Library Board during the Director’s annual review, prior to the budgeting process. Total compensation to staff including salary, raises, and the cost-sharing percentages of healthcare will be determined yearly by the Director during the budgeting process within the line item approved budget set by the Board.
Full-time employees are eligible for health, dental and vision insurance benefits. For purposes of eligibility, a full-time employee is defined as an employee whose standard work schedule is seventy-five (75.0) hours or more per biweekly pay period, or minimum of 1,950 hours per year. Eligibility begins on the first day of the month following employee’s hire date.
The Library and the employee will share the cost of the health benefits which will be determined during the budgeting process. Dependent coverage may be offered likewise.
Missouri Local Government Employees Retirement System (LAGERS)
A part-time employee who meets the following criteria shall receive the following benefits, after the part-time employee successfully completes the four (4) month probationary period: Whose standard work schedule is 1,500 hours or more per year.
Participation in the Missouri Local Government Employees Retirement System (LAGERS) is mandatory for full-time employees and qualifying part-time employees. With mandatory participation comes the requirement of an employee contribution rate of 4% of gross salary upon completion of six (6) months of service. The Library joined the LAGERS plan in 1969, and the 1,500 hour threshold cannot be changed due to Missouri Statute. The term “year” shall mean the Library’s payroll for fiscal year July 1 to June 30. LAGERS rates are applied on fiscal year basis.
Employees are covered by Workers’ Compensation.
Employees are covered by the Missouri Division of Employment Security.
Employee Recognition Policy
Recognition for Years of Service
Permanent full time and part time employees shall be recognized based on their years of service to the FMPLD. The Anniversary date will be considered for the Service Award if the anniversary falls between July 1 and June 30 in the fiscal year of the annual reception. The employee shall be recognized at the Employee Recognition Event, based on the criteria below.
Service Anniversary Recognition: Card and gift or gift certificate
5 years of service up to 8 hours of pay
10 years of service up to 16 hours of pay
15 years of service up to 24 hours of pay
20 years of service and up to 32 hours of pay
every 5 years thereafter
Recognition for Retirement
FMPLD shall recognize permanent full time and part time employees who retire from this Library. The employee shall be recognized on or about his/her retirement date based on the criteria listed below.
Years of Service Recognition: Card and gift or gift certificate
5 years or less up to 8 hours of pay
More than 5, less than 10 years up to 16 hours of pay
More than 10, less than 15 years up to 24 hours of pay
16 or more years up to 32 hours of pay
Annual Employee Recognition
FMPLD shall host an annual reception or other event to recognize the service of all the employees throughout the year. After consultation with the Board of Trustees, the Library Director shall establish the date and place of the event. The event will be open to all current library board and staff members as well as those members receiving a recognition award who may no longer be a current library board or staff member, as well as their spouses or guests, and others as invited.
Professional Development & Travel Reimbursement
The library encourages continuing professional development for its employees through conferences, workshops, seminars, training sessions, library meetings, and other development courses (hereinafter, seminars). The employee who wishes to attend a seminar shall submit a written request to the Library Director.
It is within the discretion of the Library Director to approve or deny the employee’s request to attend a seminar. When making his/her decision; the Library Director shall consider all relevant factors, including budgetary limitations of the library, the positive and negative impact on the library and other employees, and the benefits to the employee.
If the employee is approved to attend a seminar, the employee shall submit a written report to the Library Director that details the content of the seminar and evaluates the materials used.
The employee may be granted time off with pay to attend the seminar. The employee will receive regular, straight time pay. Care will be taken to make sure the employee does not go over their weekly hour maximums.
The library will cover the following costs to attend a seminar: registration and meeting fees, parking, mileage or transportation, and if the seminar is out of town, lodging and meals. Mileage will be paid in accordance with current IRS guidelines. Meals shall not exceed $50.00 per day, unless other arrangements have been approved, in advance, by the Library Director or the Board of Trustees. The employee shall submit receipts for all expenditures over $10.00.
Employees of the Ferguson Municipal Public Library District may be reimbursed for mileage expended in the pursuit of mandatory library business at the current IRS rate. A record showing dates, distance traveled, and purpose will be submitted by the employee. The Director may make exception or exclusion to this policy.
The pay period is every two (2) weeks. Paychecks are dispensed every other Friday.
The Library Director shall keep a record of time worked by all employees. The Library Director shall review all time sheets.
Each employee will sign in and out him/herself at the beginning and end of each shift worked. Breaks may not be used to leave early or come in late.
Time sheets shall be completed and signed by the employee. Time sheets are to be turned in to the Library Director each pay period on or before the time specified by the Library Director. If a time sheet is not received by the specified time, the employee will be paid at the end of the following pay period.
An employee receives time-and-a-half per hour for the hours worked beyond the 40 hour work week. An employee will not receive overtime for extra hours when vacation time, sick leave, or a holiday falls within the week. Overtime must be approved in advance.
Breaks and Lunchtime
Breaks– For every continuous four-hours worked, a 15 minute break may be scheduled, paid by the Library. Breaks are to be taken toward the middle of the four-hour shift. Breaks may not be accumulated or saved or added to lunch or used to leave work early or to cover for late arrivals. Breaks may not be taken at the expense of service to the public. When staff shortages occur, it may become necessary to reschedule or cancel break periods. Break time is considered work time, and the employee is considered “on call” during that time.
Lunchtime– If a minimum of a 7.0 hour day is worked, one half-hour will be scheduled for lunchtime, not paid by Library. One hour may be scheduled for lunch, as arranged with supervisor, not paid by Library. On Saturday, if a staff member works 9:00 a.m. to 4 p.m., a half-hour lunch is paid by the Library. If a longer lunchtime is required, the Library will make every effort to accommodate the staff request. If staff are working a shorter shift, for example 3:00p.m. to 8:00p.m. (5 hours), and want a half-hour lunchtime, the Library will make every effort to schedule the request. The lunchtime is not paid by Library. Note that in addition to breaks and lunchtime, Library Staff have access at any time to restrooms, drinking water, and emergency phone use. Snacks in the non-public, office areas are allowed. The Internet is available for personal use during non-work hours.
Anti-Discrimination & Harassment Policy
The Ferguson Municipal Public Library District does not tolerate discrimination or harassment in the work environment.
All Library District employees have a responsibility to keep the work environment free of discrimination or harassment. Any employee who becomes aware of an incident of discrimination or harassment, whether by witnessing the incident or being told about it, must report it as soon as possible to their immediate Supervisor or the Director.
An employee who feels he/she is being victimized by discrimination or harassment should immediately contact his/ her Supervisor or the Director. Any validated complaint of discrimination or harassment will result in immediate and appropriate disciplinary action to the offending party, up to or including possible termination or unpaid leave.
Some problems may not be satisfactorily resolved through this method; therefore, a formal grievance procedure exists. See Grievance Policy.
All complaints will be held in the strictest confidence to the extent it does not interfere with the investigation. Retaliation of any sort will not be tolerated. If it is found that a charge of discrimination or harassment is filed maliciously or with malfeasance, the person filing the complaint will be subject to disciplinary action, up to or including possible termination or unpaid leave.
This policy applies to all Ferguson Municipal Public Library District employees.
The Ferguson Municipal Public Library District recognizes that some problems may not be satisfactorily resolved through informal and open discussion. Therefore, a formal grievance procedure has been established to provide each employee an opportunity to present a written grievance for consideration and reply, without fear of reprisal.
A grievance is a written personal appeal presented by an employee to change a management decision or administrative practice affecting his/ her work, working conditions or employment status (including discharge). The grievance must state the reason for the belief that unfair or unequal treatment has resulted from the decision or practice.
An employee who elects to protest a discharge may submit a written grievance to the Director within five (5) working days of the date of discharge.
The initiation of the grievance process does not indicate that each grievance must go through all steps. Resolution of the grievance acceptable to all parties is always the goal.
Records and documentation related to grievances will not become part of the employee’s personnel file.
The following steps constitute the procedure for grievance resolution, if the grievance cannot be resolved informally:
Step 1) The grievant should present a written summary of the grievance to their immediate Supervisor. The Supervisor will review the pertinent information and discuss the matter with the employee within seven (7) working days of receipt of the written grievance. If the grievance is unresolved, or the grievance involves the Supervisor, the grievant will proceed to Step 2.
Step 2) If the problem has not been resolved at Step 1, or a decision has not been rendered within the stated time limit, the grievant should submit in writing, his/ her grievance to the Director. The Director will review the pertinent information and discuss the matter with the grievant within ten (10) working days of receipt of the written grievance. During the review process the Director will consider all supporting documentation, and may request additional information or testimony. If the grievance is unresolved, the grievant will proceed to Step 3.
Step 3) If the grievant is not satisfied with the Director’s response, he/she should submit in writing, his/her grievance to the President of the Board of Trustees. Officers of the Board will review the grievance with the Director. If meeting in a group, the closed session will be publically posted before the meeting. During the review process Officers of the Board will review all documentation of the grievance proceedings, and may request additional evidence or testimony. After the review, the Officers of the Board shall approve, modify, or disapprove the Director’s recommendation. A report shall be given to the full Board of Trustees at the next scheduled meeting and a written decision mailed to the grievant.
This policy applies to all Ferguson Municipal Public Library District employees.
The telephone numbers and other personal information about staff members should be considered private and not available to members of the public.
The Library Director shall maintain detailed records or reports on all accidents, illnesses, and other significant incidents involving library patrons or employees and occurring on the library property or at a library-sponsored event.
The library endeavors to encourage volunteerism at the library among Ferguson residents. Volunteers benefit the library, learn more about the library’s methods and purpose, have a growing investment in the library and community, and are generally developing their best selves.
Short term, one-off, or occasional volunteers do so at the discretion of the Director, and are to be closely supervised. The director or a trusted proxy will conduct an interview with the volunteer as he or she sees fit, and has the option of requiring a background check.
Volunteers who work often or on a consistent schedule will do so only after interviewing with the Director or trusted proxy and filling out a volunteer information sheet. Adults, over age 17, will submit to a background check if there is any chance of working with or near patrons, especially children. The Director will use his discretion regarding judging the interview and the background check, based, in part, on potential risk to patrons if the volunteer were to repeat harmful behavior that might be revealed in a background check. All volunteers must be supervised.
The library strongly encourages juvenile and teen volunteers, recognizing the added benefits to the development of the child as a member of the community, and the need to encourage positive and sustaining interactions with each new generation of patrons. Juveniles under 17 do not need to submit to a background check unless the Director requests one. However, any child in the library will be subject to the Unattended Children Policy, including volunteers. All volunteers must fill out a volunteer information sheet, with or without a caregiver’s help. All volunteers must be supervised.
The library can allow volunteers who are working off community service hours for certain offenses, but must be very careful in doing so. It is recognized that the library is providing a service to the community by allowing a means of rehabilitation for sincere applicants, but reserves the right to reject the applicant for any reason or none, and requires that the applicant be able and willing to perform a service of value to the library. The Director will interview the candidate, and will reject a candidate whose established crime is of a nature that would be harmful if repeated in the library, such as theft or assault. The director may require court documents regarding the crime and sentence, discussion with representatives of the criminal justice system involved in the case (like Parole Officers), or further background checks. These volunteers will be closely supervised and may be restricted from parts of the library. The library further reserves the right to end the relationship at any time, as is true with any volunteer.
Nothing in this policy creates a contract between the volunteer and the Library. Both the volunteer and the Library can terminate their association at any time, for any reason, without any cause being stated. The Library does not provide any medical, health, accident or worker’s compensation benefits for any volunteer.
Volunteers are expected comply with all Library Policies and Procedures and to reflect positive customer service attitudes to all Library patrons.
Code of Ethics and Conflict of Interest Policy
All staff, trustees, and volunteers of the Ferguson Municipal Public Library District must comply with all federal, state, and local laws governing ethical behavior and conflict of interest, including but not limited to:
- Missouri Revised Statutes Chapter 105 – Public Officers and Employees
- Missouri Revised Statutes Chapter 182 – County and City Libraries
- Bylaws of the Board of Trustees of the Ferguson Municipal Public Library District
- Missouri Ethics Commission requirements http://www.mec.mo.gov/.
All staff, trustees, and volunteers of the Ferguson Municipal Public Library District will act with honesty, integrity and openness in all their dealings as representatives of the Library District.
All staff, trustees, and volunteers must avoid situations in which personal interests might be served or financial benefits gained at the expense of library users, colleagues, or the institution.
Any business or service relationship with a Trustee or company substantially owned or run by a Trustee shall comply with Missouri Revised Statues Section 105.458.1 and said Trustee will recuse self from any votes related to the project.
It is incumbent upon all staff, trustees, and volunteers to disqualify themselves immediately whenever the appearance of a conflict of interest exists.
All staff, trustees, and volunteers must distinguish clearly in their actions and statements between their personal philosophies and attitudes and those of the Library District, acknowledging the formal policies of the Library District even if they personally disagree.
All staff, trustees, and volunteers must respect the confidential nature of library business while being aware of and in compliance with applicable laws governing freedom of information.
Proof of identity and property information: Anyone applying for a Ferguson Municipal Public Library card must provide sufficient proof of who they are and where they live. They must present a picture ID, such as a state identification card, driver’s license, passport, or University ID card. In addition, they must provide proof of where they live by providing a document with both name and address, dated within the last year, and indicating that a governmental entity or utility company has verified residency. This can include first class mail, unpaid utility bill (in paper or digitally), occupancy permit, rental agreement, or mortgage. The valid state ID, Driver’s License, or Passport that was used for picture ID can also establish residency if that document has the current address and has been issued within the last year.
Residents: Anyone who lives in or owns property in the Ferguson Municipal Public Library District is eligible, with proper identification and proof of residency, to receive a Ferguson Library card, along with family members who live with them. This card shall be free of charge.
Juvenile card: For a juvenile under 18 years of age, a parent or guardian shall agree to oversee card use. That parent or guardian is ultimately responsible for any activity on that card, including all fines and fees. That parent or guardian must also have a Ferguson Municipal Public Library card in good standing; this requirement is in place regardless of what category of user (resident, city employee’s child, reciprocity agreement, etc.) the child is. When a juvenile patron ages into qualifying for an adult card, that patron shall no longer be held responsible for fines and fees on the juvenile card. The fines and fees shall be waived, and, when possible, those obligations will be moved to the card of the adult who agreed to be responsible when the patron was a juvenile.
In the unusual circumstance that a responsible adult cannot come to the library to sign for the juvenile card, the juvenile may be allowed, at staff discretion, to take the application home to the parent for signature, especially if this is the only means for the child to have access to library materials. When bringing the application back for processing, the juvenile must also bring proofs of identity and residency for the responsible adult. If the responsible adult does not have a card, this process will include the adult completing their own card application along with the juvenile card application.
Juvenile cards allow access to materials from all sections of the library. The library respects the right of parents and caregivers to determine what is or is not appropriate for their own child. Parents and caregivers are therefore responsible for monitoring card use and applying any restrictions they deem appropriate on their own child’s access to library materials.
City Employee: Anyone who works for the City of Ferguson, including the Ferguson Police Department and Ferguson Fire Department, shall be eligible, with proper identification and proof of employment, for a free library card. Their family members are also eligible, if the employee is present with proper identification and proof of employment at the time the card is issued.
School employee: Any employee of a public school district or private school, that also primarily works from a school building situated within Ferguson, or who works primarily with children who are residents of Ferguson, shall be eligible for a free library card. This benefit does not extend to family members who would not otherwise qualify for a free card. Proof of employment is required, in addition to proof of identity and residency.
Reciprocity agreements: Pursuant to established reciprocity agreements, a patron who lives, or owns or leases property in, St. Louis Public Library District, St. Charles City-County Library District, or St. Louis County Library District is eligible to apply for a free library card.
Consortium agreements: Pursuant to the policies of the Municipal Library Consortium, of which Ferguson Municipal Public Library is a member, anyone with a valid library card from one of the other MLC member libraries (Brentwood Public Library, Kirkwood Public Library, Maplewood Public Library, Richmond Heights Memorial Library, Rock Hill Public Library, University City Public Library, Valley Park Community Library, or Webster Groves Public Library) is eligible to borrow materials from the Ferguson Municipal Public Library using the card from their home library. Patrons living in these communities need to obtain a card from their own library prior to borrowing materials from the Ferguson Municipal Public Library.
Temporary card: Individuals who qualify for a free card, but know they are in the area temporarily, may receive a free card with an adjusted expiration date, reflecting their expected stay.
Other circumstances: In unusual circumstances, the library director has discretion to issue free cards to individuals who do not otherwise qualify for a free card, such as with giving an honorary library card to a visiting dignitary or librarian. That card may have limited privileges or expiration date, and the individual is still responsible for items checked out on the card, as with any card.
Paid card: An individual who does not qualify for a free card must pay an annual non-resident fee of $50 to obtain a Ferguson Municipal Public Library card. Expiration dates will be adjusted to end before next payment is due.
Institutional cards: Public or private schools, licensed daycare providers, managed care facilities, non-profit organizations, and similar institutions may apply for a free institutional card if they are situated within Ferguson. This card shall be signed by the leader of that institution, and the library shall maintain a list of individuals who work for the institution that have been granted access to the card. The institution is ultimately responsible for any fines or fees on the card.
These privileges allow the institution to check out materials from the Library for use in the institution’s official work. Institutional cards should not be used for personal checkouts; individuals should use their own personal card for items checked out for reasons other than institutional use. However, the institution is responsible for any materials checked out on the institutional card, regardless of use. The director may approve multiple cards for an institution or adjust checkout limits for the institution, if necessary for the library to properly support the institution within the library’s mission.
Patron records are accessible only when compelled by law. Patron information shall only be shared with third party vendors when necessary to perform library functions.
If there are inquiries about access to patron records, these inquiries should be referred to the Director or designee.
Hard copies of Library Card applications are to be retained for two (2) years after the expiration date, after which time they will be destroyed if there are no fine and fees $5.00 and above.
Unpaid charges for fines, damages, or lost materials will be entered against the library patron. When these charges accumulate to $5.00 or more, the library patron shall lose the privilege of checking out library materials or using the public access computers within the library.
Cardholders who have filed for bankruptcy, where the Library District has received valid court bankruptcy discharge documents, shall have outstanding balances of fines and fees removed from their Library District account, which exist as of the court discharge date. Any new fines and fees incurred after the bankruptcy date are not discharged.
Fines and fees do not include the cost of the lent item, if it is lost and not returned or damaged. Items borrowed must be returned undamaged before removal of the material cost on the cardholder’s account. Borrowing privileges are suspended until the items that were lent are returned undamaged. Bankruptcy does not discharge the obligation to return borrowed materials from the Library District, a governmental agency, unless stipulated in the bankruptcy documents. The person that borrowed the materials from the Library District is responsible for returning the materials undamaged. If the bankruptcy documents state that the material cost of the lost/damaged item(s) is to be discharged, the cost of the item(s) will be removed from the cardholder’s account.
Minor children of the bankrupt patron who are Library District cardholders, who are fully documented and residing at the same address as the parent or legal guardian of the cardholder, and who are so indicated in the Library District’s records at time of the parent or guardian’s court discharge date, shall also have outstanding balances of fines and fees removed from their Library District account. Items borrowed must be returned undamaged before removal of material cost on the child’s record. The child’s borrowing privileges are suspended until the items that were lent are returned undamaged.
The Library District reserves the right to refer cardholders who do not return borrowed items to a collection agency which may report their debts to applicable credit bureaus. The Library District may work with law enforcement authorities if the person has committed the crime of library theft as described in RSMo 570-210.
Purpose: The Ferguson Municipal Public Library is supported by the taxes of the people of Ferguson who expect the library to be clean, comfortable, and safe. To this end, the Library is responsible for establishing rules of conduct to protect the rights and safety of Library patrons, volunteers, and staff, and for preserving and protecting the Library’s materials, equipment, facilities, and grounds.
Statement of Policy: Library patrons are expected to use the Library, including its facilities, grounds, resources and materials, in a responsible, appropriate, and courteous manner. Appropriate library conduct includes activities such as reading, studying, properly using library materials or computers, and attending library or community sponsored programs and
meetings. Illegal acts or conduct in violation of Federal, State, or local laws, ordinances or regulations are prohibited. Behavior that disturbs or infringes on the rights of other Library patrons and staff and which damages library materials and property are not permitted. This policy applies to patrons of all ages.
Rules and Regulations: Actions prohibited include, but are not limited to:
- Loud talking or other noise which is disturbing to others.
- Using profanity or other language that is abusive to other patrons or staff, including but not limited to abuse related to race, religious affiliation, sexual orientation, etc.
- Blocking or in any way interfering with the free movement of any person or persons.
- Harassment, threats, or repeated unwelcome advances to library staff or patrons.
- Stalking and similar unwanted watching or tracking of movements or behavior of others.
- Sexual harassment of any kind, or other unwanted behavior that includes a sexual or gender-based element.
- Possession or consumption of alcoholic beverages or illegal drugs.
- Abusing library furniture, equipment, or materials.
- Fighting on library property.
- Loitering around entrances or other areas.
- Running in the building.
- Removal of any library property from the building without authorization or through established lending procedures.
- Damaging or defacing library materials or property.
- Use of false identification to obtain a library card.
- Use of another person’s library card without permission.
- Animals are prohibited except those needed to assist a disabled person.
- Misusing the restrooms (i.e., using as laundry, bathing or other uses).
- Not wearing shirt or shoes while on library property.
- Personal hygiene that interferes with the orderly operation of the library.
- Interfering with the operation of the library by sleeping.
- Carrying weapons of any sort by an individual except law enforcement officers, unless approved by the Director or designee.
- Soliciting or selling of any kind, unless approved by the Director or Library Board of Trustees.
- Distribution of leaflets or posting of notices without authorization.
- Entering staff and other non-public areas without permission.
- Rearranging furniture or equipment from one location to another without permission.
- Consumption of food or beverages except where permission has been obtained to serve refreshments.
- Smoking is prohibited within the building and within 25 feet of an entryway. All tobacco products must be disposed in proper containers.
- Use of emergency exits at times other than during an emergency.
- Use of library telephones except patron designated telephones without permission.
- Displaying other behaviors inappropriate in a public library setting.
Response to Noncompliance
Minor Violations or Repeat Violations: Minor violation of the rules of conduct will first result in library staff attempting to educate or warn individuals about inappropriate library conduct. If an individual continues to violate the policy, staff may order the offender to leave for the day. After the second repeated violation, the offender may be banned from the library for longer, such as a week or a month. For the third repeated violation, the repeat offender may be banned from the library as long as seems appropriate. The Library Director or designee may respond to inappropriate patron behavior by advancing more quickly through these stages of consequence, especially when the behavior is intimidating or threatening, is likely to result in disruptions at every visit of that patron, targets children, or targets staff members and/or volunteers. A written banning letter will be sent to the offender by the Library Director, whenever accurate contact information can be obtained, and the Library Board of Trustees so informed. The offender may submit a written appeal to the Library Board of Trustees for reinstatement of library privileges. Patrons who have been banned from the Library forfeit all privileges for the period during which they are banned.
Major Violations: For any conduct that threatens the life or safety of any person or that is damaging to library property, equipment or facilities, staff are authorized and expected to immediately contact law enforcement officers. The offender will be banned from the library permanently, and/or arrested. At the discretion of the Library Director or designee, egregious
minor offenses may be treated as a major offense, especially when the behavior is intimidating or threatening, is likely to result in disruptions at every visit of that patron, targets children, or targets staff members and/or volunteers. A written banning letter will be sent to the offender by the Library Director, whenever accurate contact information can be obtained, and the Library Board of Trustees so informed. The offender may submit a written appeal to the Library Board of Trustees for reinstatement of library privileges. The offender may be prosecuted to the full extent of the law.
Any person who is asked to leave the Library as a result of violation of policy and refuses to do so will be considered to be trespassing. The Library will contact law enforcement officials in all such cases. Trespassers may be arrested and prosecuted. Staff members may also contact police or other authorities for any person who comes on library property during the duration of a ban.
The library staff will immediately contact law enforcement officials when deemed necessary or prudent.
If a patron openly displays symptoms of contagious illness, such as coughing or mucus discharge, library staff may require the patron to either put on a face mask or leave the building, in order to prevent transmission of illness. (amended added 5/24/2021)
Unattended Children Policy (Minors to Age 17)
The Ferguson Municipal Public Library District encourages and welcomes children of all ages to use the resources and services of the library. Responsibility for the safety, behavior, and care of children using the library rests with the parent, guardian, or adult caregiver.
The Ferguson Municipal Public Library District cannot provide care and supervision for an unattended child. The Ferguson Municipal Public Library District does not assume responsibility for children left at the library.
Therefore, to protect children while using the library and to provide all patrons with a facility that is safe, pleasant and conducive to library use, the following policy has been established and must be observed:
- While in the library, the parent, guardian, or adult caregiver is responsible for monitoring and regulating the behavior of their children.
- Children age 9 and under must be accompanied by a parent, guardian, or adult caregiver at all times. The library may demand to see a valid Ferguson Library card, Municipal Library Consortium card, or School ID. If a child age 9 and under is found to be unattended in the library, staff will try to locate the parent, guardian, or adult caregiver to correct the situation. If the parent, guardian, or adult caregiver can not be located, law enforcement officers, child protective services, or other appropriate government agency will be contacted.
- Children ages 10 to 17 may be permitted to stay unattended if they are behaving in an appropriate manner. The library may demand to see a valid Ferguson Library card, Municipal Library Consortium card, or School ID. The library does not assume responsibility for any unattended child. The parent, guardian, or adult caregiver is responsible for monitoring and regulating the behavior of their children. Any person behaving in an unacceptable manner in violation of the Ferguson Municipal Public Library District Behavior Policy may be asked to leave the premises. Library privileges may be revoked. If the parent, guardian, or adult caregiver cannot be located, law enforcement officers, child protective services, or other appropriate government agency will be contacted.
- Teachers, daycare providers, or other youth leaders may not leave groups of unattended children in the library. If a child exhibits inappropriate behavior, staff will ask the teacher, daycare provider, or youth leader to correct the situation. If the teacher, daycare provider, or youth leader does not correct the situation, the family or school group will be asked to leave the premises.
- If an unattended child is found frightened or crying, or is perceived to be endangering him or herself, or others, law enforcement may be contacted. Two staff members will wait with the child until law enforcement officers arrive.
- If a child age 9 and under is found alone at closing time, the staff will attempt to call the parent, legal guardian, or adult caregiver. If no one can be reached, the staff will contact law enforcement officials to assume responsibility of the child. Two staff members will remain with the child inside the library entrance until law enforcement officials arrive.
Under no circumstances shall a library staff member transport or take a child away from the library building.
Library staff will report known or suspected abuse or neglect of children. See procedure regarding this topic.
Registered Sex Offender Policy
Pursuant to City of Ferguson Ordinance 2008-3353, the Ferguson Municipal Public Library District will prominently post in the Entryway to the Library the following:
City of Ferguson
Ordinance 2008-3353, Section 29-93
Offenses Against Public Order
(f) Any person who has pleaded guilty or nolo contendere to, or been convicted of, or been found guilty of violating any of the provisions of RSMo Ch. 566, or the provisions of RSMo 568.020(2), incest; RSMo 568.045, endangering the welfare of a child in the first degree; RSMo 568.080(2), use of a child in a sexual performance; RSMo 568.090, promoting a sexual performance by a child; RSMo 573.023, sexual exploitation of a minor; RSMo 573.025, promoting child pornography; or RSMo 573.040, furnishing pornographic material to minors; shall not enter, be present in or loiter within five hundred (500) feet of any child-care facility, a public library, a public park, or a pool open to the general public.
(g) Any person violating any of the provisions of this section shall be punished as provided in section 1-15 of this Code of Ordinances.
If deviant behavior is observed, such behavior will promptly be reported to the City of Ferguson Police Department. The Library District’s Behavior and Unattended Children policies and procedures shall be followed.
The Library District acknowledges, per City of Ferguson Section 30-8, that:
The director of parks and recreation shall promulgate such rules and regulations to enforce section 29-93 of this Code which prohibits sex offenders, as defined in that section, to enter, be present in or loiter within five hundred (500) feet of any child-care facility, a public library, a public park, or a pool open to the general public.
After notification, the Library District will respond to such promulgation in a timely manner.
Loan Period: All materials owned by the Ferguson Municipal Public Library shall be loaned for 14 days.
Patrons may check out up to thirty (30) library books and/or materials during any one period of time. An adult library patron may not check out additional books and/or materials from FMPLD if that patron has checked out and not returned thirty (30) library books and/or materials. If a library patron has checked out and failed to return one or more library books and/or materials, the Library Director may suspend that patron’s privileges until that patron returns the missing library books and/or materials, or compensates the Library for the books and/or materials. The Library Director, or designee, has the discretion to permit a library patron to check out more than the allowed number of library books and/or materials during any period of time.
Overdue Fees: Beginning 7/1/2020, the library will not charge overdue fees on large collections, and shall generally work under the principle that materials shall generally be free from overdue fines. All materials may be renewed three (3) times unless requested be another patron or material is designated as non-renewable.
Overdue Items: If a sufficient number of items are in overdue status, the patron’s account will be suspended until the number reduces, with the threshold number being set universally by the Library Director.
Special Collections: Staff may designate collections with special lending rules, including overdue fines and lending periods. Examples may include reference materials, expensive equipment, specialized collections, or particularly high-demand items. The rules of a given collection or items shall be established before items are to be offered under the rule set.
Exceptions to Fines and Renewal Restrictions: At the discretion of the Library Director, fines may be waived for snow days and other extenuating circumstances
Other Fees: The Library director shall establish fees for faxes, photocopier use, printer paper, and other supplies and services offered to Library patrons. All fees established shall be published for the community. The Director shall report all changes in fees to the Board of Trustees.
Damages: Damages to any library material will be assessed according to the extent of the damage and replacement cost. A supervising staff member will make the decision for all materials. When library material has been judged too damaged to remain in circulation, the material shall be removed from circulation. The price to replace will be charged.
Lost Material: For each lost material the patron shall be charged the replacement price for the material.
Exceptions: Director or designee may make individual exceptions to the circulation policy in special circumstances.
Also see Patron policy.
Collection development is the responsibility of the Library Director. Final authority for the determination of the policy in the selection and acquisition of materials is vested in the Library Board of Trustees.
Selection Policies: The Ferguson Municipal Public Library District acknowledges that free communication is essential to the preservation of a free society and a creative culture. To that end, the Library District will select and acquire a wide variety of library materials.
- The Ferguson Municipal Public Library District shall acquire and make available materials that will meet the educational, informational, cultural, and recreational interests and needs of the community.
- Materials will cover general information on as broad a range of topics as may be available and will represent all points of view including those that may be unpopular with various segments of the population. On controversial topics, an attempt will be made to achieve some sort of balance between divergent views.
- Selection Criteria: All materials, whether purchased or donated, are considered in terms of the criteria listed below. An item need not meet all of these standards in order to be added to the collection.
- Popular interest
- Contemporary significance or permanent value
- Currency of information
- Local emphasis
- Readability or ability to sustain interest
- Treatment of subject to age of intended audience
- Reputation of author, publisher, producer or illustrator
- Creative, literary or technical quality
- Critical assessments in a variety of journals
- Format and ease of use
- Circulation as monitored through the automated system
- Cost and availability
- Relationship to existing materials in collection
- Relationship to materials in other area libraries
- Materials of a highly specialized or ephemeral nature will not be collected. Textbooks or other curriculum related materials will not be acquired, unless they are the only source for general information. Materials shall be chosen on the basis of recommendations from library journals, and criteria listed in section II. Suggestions from the public will also be given consideration. Format, price, and space considerations may be deciding factors as to whether material may be acquired.
- The Library acknowledges a particular interest in local and state history and will try to make available a broad range of materials pertaining to Missouri and the metropolitan area.
- The Director, or designee, may make exceptions to the criteria stated above.
- Weeding Guidelines: Materials no longer meeting the stated objectives of the Library District will be discarded according to accepted professional practices. Materials being considered for withdrawal are reviewed on the following criteria: Age, Circulation, Condition (misleading, ugly, superseded, trivial, no use in the collection), Uniqueness or rarity.
Request for Reconsideration of Library Materials: The Library District selects and acquires a wide variety of materials for access by library patrons. The Library District seeks to provide information on all sides of every issue, including controversial issues. The Library District values opinions of patrons. If a patron objects, the patron may complete the Request for Reconsideration of Library Materials form, outlining concerns as concisely as possible. The Director will respond to the inquiry. If a patron is unsatisfied with the Director’s response, the patron may appeal in writing to the Board of Trustees.
Library Bill of Rights: The FMPLD Board of Trustees 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.
- All people, regardless of origin, age, background, or views, possess a right to privacy and confidentiality in their library use. Libraries should advocate for, educate about, and protect people’s privacy, safeguarding all library use data, including personally identifiable information.
Donations of Materials to the Library: Donations of materials are accepted with the understanding that there are no restrictions regarding their disposition. Monetary donations are accepted with the stipulation that the wishes of the donor will be carried out.
Internet & Network Resource Usage Policy
By offering our patrons access to the Internet, the Ferguson Municipal Public Library accepts no responsibility as to the content of the connection points, which contain a wide variety of materials and opinions and often change rapidly and unpredictably.
The library staff will assist users in locating information on the Internet just as they currently do in response to reference queries. The library staff, however, cannot be responsible for training patrons on the many uses of the Internet, nor can they censor access to materials of a controversial nature.
Parents of minor children are responsible for their children’s use of the Internet through the library’s connection. Children under 12 years of age must be accompanied by a parent at all times when accessing the Internet via the library’s connection. Children 12 to 17 years of age do not need to be accompanied by a parent if they have signed parental permission on file for access to the Internet at the library.
The library provides Internet Content Filtering Service as required by Federal and State law. This filtering service is provided with the understanding that no filter is perfect in blocking all Internet sites that are in conflict with federal or state law.
If a group of patrons becomes loud and uncivil, the computer privileges for the entire group are revoked immediately.
Users must abide by the Missouri Research and Education Network’s (MOREnet) Acceptable Use Policy for the network. Patrons will be asked to relinquish use of the library’s computers or network resources if the Acceptable Use Policy is violated. Violation may result in forfeiture of library privileges. Criminal charges may be applicable.
Patrons must present a valid library card when requesting use of those computers established for patron use. A patron’s fines and fees must be below $5.00 for computer or network resource use. A short session computer is available for patrons who do not have a card. Out of town visitors may be given computer sessions upon presenting identification with an out of town address. Director, or designee, may make exceptions on a case by case basis.
Use of library computers or network resources through the library’s connection shall be dependent on queue and bandwidth availability. Patrons will be requested to relinquish their use of the library’s equipment or network resources if allotted time is exceeded, or in the event of technical difficulties.
Regular use of library computers or network resources through the library’s connection shall be limited to normal business hours Monday through Saturday.
The Ferguson Municipal Public Library assumes no responsibility for any damages, direct or indirect, arising from use of its computers, networks, or from its connections to Internet services.
Users agree to Indemnify and Hold Harmless the Library, its employees, and agents from any claim, demand, liability, cause of action, suit, judgment, or expense (including attorney’s fees), arising out of any breach of this policy statement.
Library Programming & Facility Use Policy
As many library programs as possible shall be free and open to the public, but some programs may be designed with specific audiences in mind, i.e., children’s programs, toddler’s programs, and parenting programs. Programs targeted toward specific audiences will be publicized as such.
Every attempt will be made to accommodate all who wish to attend a program, including patrons with special needs. However, when safety or the nature of the program requires it, attendance may be limited. When limits must be enforced, attendance will be determined on a first-come, first-service basis or by pre-registration. All of the Library’s public meeting rooms have a posted capacity as determined by the Ferguson Fire Department.
Acceptance of a program topic by the library does not constitute an endorsement by the library of the group’s or individual’s policies or beliefs. Programs endorsed by the Library will have the Library’s logo or be otherwise marked as a Library program in publicity.
Unsolicited offers, including author events, from individuals or organizations to present programs will be evaluated by the same standards used by staff when planning programs. All programs will be vetted and pre-approved by Library staff.
Where necessary, a performer may be asked to provide a copy of his/her certificate of insurance. Programs must be done for a non-profit or community service purpose. Library policy prohibits any solicitation for services or the sale of products while on Library property unless explicitly approved by Library staff.
All Library policies and procedures must be followed.
Programs must not interfere with normal library operations.
The Director has the option of charging a use fee for after-hours programming, sufficient to cover costs.
The Ferguson Municipal Public Library District prohibits the possession and/or consumption of alcohol on FMPLD property except at events approved by the Library Director. The Library Director shall not allow alcohol at events targeted toward children or families.
Video, Filming and Photography in the Library Policy
The purpose of this policy is to establish the terms and conditions under which Library space may be used for video, filming, and photography.
The Library is a place for community use of information resources and services, study, and education. No video, filming, or photography may occur without permission from the Director or Library Board of Trustees.
The person wishing to use the Library space for video, filming, and/or photography must complete the Application for Video, Filming and Photography in the Library. Permission may be denied or be revoked for any activity whose purpose has the potential to cause, or causes, substantial disruptions or material interference with the functions of the library, or may violate patron confidentiality.
The person signing the application form is responsible for any liability with the video, film, or photo crew, and any costs associated with damage to the Library. The Library is not liable for any loss/theft/damage of personal property of the producer or damage to equipment. Library property must not be moved or rearranged without specific permission to do so. All Library policies and procedures must be followed. Permission to video, film or photo shoot on Library premises is conditional upon user agreement to save, hold harmless, and indemnify the Ferguson Municipal Public Library District, Directors and Officers from any claims, lawsuits, or judgments arising from loss, damage to property, injury to persons from or during the video, filming, or photography shoot. The Library retains the right to review and submit final approval of the product prior to release.
The Ferguson Municipal Public Library District strives to maintain a safe and secure environment for the public and staff. In pursuit of this objective, selected public areas of the library are under continuous video surveillance and recording. This policy is in force to deter theft, vandalism, disturbances, and/or policy violations in unsupervised areas and to identify those individuals involved in such activity for law enforcement purposes.
Signage in Areas under Surveillance: The public will be notified using clearly worded signs prominently displayed at the main entrance and other areas that library premises are under video surveillance. However, the absence of such signage will not affect the validity of or operation of the video surveillance system.
Security Camera Locations: Reasonable efforts shall be made to safeguard the privacy of the public and staff. The video security cameras will be positioned to record only those areas specified by the Library District, and will complement other measures to maintain a safe and secure environment in compliance with library policies. Cameras may be installed in locations where the public and staff would not have an expectation of privacy. Examples include common areas of the library such as entrances, near book and media collections, public seating, computer areas, delivery areas, hallways, exits and parking lots. Cameras will not be installed in areas where staff and public have a reasonable expectation of privacy nor to reveal the specific material which a person may elect to read, view or listen to while in the library.
Use of Video Records: For purposes of this Policy, the term “video records” includes still shots, streaming live and recorded video and selected portions of recorded data.
- Video records may be used by library staff or law enforcement personnel (i) to identify, prosecute or take other action against the person or persons responsible for library policy violations, damage to library property, criminal activity on or near library property or actions disruptive to normal library operations or (ii) to identify and take action with respect to any person who had been previously suspended from or denied access to library property.
- Video records may be used by library staff for the purpose of assessing risks or other problems and establishing new policies or rules and regulations relative to the operation and use of library and to maintain a safe and secure environment.
- Video records may be used by law enforcement personnel for law enforcement purposes.
Disclosure of Video Records
Requests by Law Enforcement Personnel: All requests by law enforcement personnel for video records derived from use of surveillance cameras shall be referred to the Director, or if unavailable, to senior administrative staff, or the Board of Trustees. It is the policy of the Board that staff should, under typical circumstances, cooperate with law enforcement without need of further documentation or warrant. When presented with a search warrant, staff shall comply with such warrant.
Release Pursuant to Subpoena: Upon receipt of a subpoena seeking video records, the subpoena shall be immediately delivered to the Director, or if unavailable, to senior administrative staff, or the Board of Trustees. The Library District may consult with legal counsel, if necessary, and may request legal counsel to file a motion to quash the subpoena if there are questions about the propriety of releasing the records or the subpoena itself. The District shall comply with any validly-issued and served subpoena to the extent that the records sought have been retained and are available.
Requests from the Public: The District acknowledges that the video records may be covered by Missouri’s “Sunshine Law”. The District also acknowledges that there are exceptions to such law which preclude release or disclosure of the records. Upon receipt of any written Sunshine Law request for video records derived from use of surveillance cameras, the request shall be immediately forwarded to the Director, or if unavailable, to senior administrative staff, or the Board of Trustees. Legal Counsel shall be consulted to determine if the records sought are covered by the Sunshine Law and if such records are open or closed records. If the records are considered open records, they shall be made available in accordance with the Sunshine Law and upon proper payment of the appropriate fees.
Retention and Storage of Digital Images: Images from the library video security system are stored digitally on hardware in the library. All equipment and storage hardware shall be kept in a secure area to avoid access or tampering by unauthorized persons.
Logs showing access to and use of recorded data will be kept by any person accessing or using such data in order to provide a property audit trail.
The District acknowledges that the Public Record Retention Schedule promulgated by the Missouri Secretary of State (GS 088) requires that “Security Camera Video Recordings” must be retained for a minimum period of 30 days and for a longer period in the following cases:
“Managers should extract significant information involving criminal or other liability issues prior to deleting video/reusing tap. Extracted video must be maintained until administrative/judicial proceedings are complete.”
Recordings will be kept in accordance with the Secretary of State’s Record Retention requirements or the library’s approved records retention schedule, whichever is longer.
The Ferguson Library shall follow the retention schedule in compliance with the MO Revised Statutes, Chapter 109, Section 255. www.sos.mo.gov/archives/localrecs/schedules
- Comparative Pricing: For purchases above $5,000 with the exception of utility services, purchases via broker, single-sourced items, or contracted services, staff shall compare across 3 or more vendors to choose the best value and fit for the Library. During the solicitation of bids, preference will be given to minority and Ferguson owned businesses whenever possible. For less expensive purchases, staff shall seek the best value and fit at any given time.
- Purchase Orders: The Library shall use numerical purchase orders. Both Library and vendor shall have a record of items purchased and prices. That PO shall be used by the Library to manage payments and to show purchase information. The Library Director, or a designee, shall authorize all purchase orders.
- Receiving/ Packing List: Packing lists or receiving slips will be retained for all items received by the Library. No invoice will be paid in full unless item or service is rendered.
- Library Credit Cards: Due to the nature of credit card purchases, a PO is not required; however, the designated signee of the Library Credit Card shall retain all receipts to be attached to the credit card invoice before payment is made.
- Petty Cash: The Library Director shall authorize all disbursements of Petty Cash.
- Checks: All checks issued by the FMPLD shall require two (2) signatures. One signature shall be an officer of the Board of Trustees for the FMPLD.
- Transfers: The Library Director has the authority to make intra-system transfers.
Investment Policy: The Ferguson Municipal Public Library District will invest and manage all accounts according to the provisions of the Revised Statutes of Missouri, RsMO 182 or other laws as appropriate. Reference RsMO 182.800 for more investment details.
Accounts in excess of amounts federally insured shall be collateralized.
Fund Balance Policy: The Ferguson Municipal Public Library District believes that sound financial management principles require that sufficient general fund balance be available to fund all cash flows of the Library District, to provide funds for unanticipated expenditures and/or revenue shortfalls of an emergency nature, to provide funds for capital improvements, and replacement of equipment, and to avoid debt.
The purpose of this policy is to specify the constraints imposed upon the use of resources in the Library District’s general fund balance in support of the following period’s budget.
Library District’s General Fund Balance
The Library District’s General Fund Balance consists of an Unassigned Fund Balance and an Assigned Fund Balance.
- Unassigned Fund Balance – Unassigned fund balance is the classification for the general fund that includes all amounts not contained in other classifications. The Library District maintains an unassigned fund balance for cash liquidity purposes that will provide for sufficient cash flow in support of the operating budget in order to minimize the potential of short term tax anticipation borrowing.
- Assigned Fund Balance – Assigned fund balance is the classification for the general fund that is intended to be used by the Library District to fund capital improvements, the replacement of equipment, and emergency needs, in order to avoid short-term tax anticipation borrowing, long-term debt, and/or to avoid solicitation of tax levy increases. The Library District will not assign amounts that would cause a deficit in the unassigned fund balance.
The Library Director shall annually prepare a report to the Library District’s Board of Trustees documenting the status of the fund balance, in conjunction with the presentation of the annual budget. Should the report disclose that funds are available to assign, a recommendation for future use of said funds shall be presented to the Library District’s Board of Trustees in the report. Assigned amounts must be approved by the majority of the Board of Trustees. Release of the assigned amounts shall be through authorization of the budget, or authorization for emergency needs by the majority of the Board of Trustees or Officers.
Account Balances: In order to assure sufficient funds for operations in November and December of a given fiscal year, in anticipation of property tax receipts, whose proceeds may vary in amount and day of receipt, and given no emergency or capital improvement expenditures during the time period, on November 1, among all bank assets and easily liquidated investments, the Library shall have at least 3 months’ worth of operating expenses, calculated from average monthly expenses for the past year, excluding major capital improvement projects.
Monetary donations are accepted with the stipulation that the wishes of the donor will be carried out.
All requests for memorials and naming opportunities will be reviewed and approved by the Board. (added 9/24/2018)