Meeting Room Policy

NEW MEETING ROOM POLICY, 2015

A. RULES AND REGULATIONS FOR USE OF THE MEETING ROOM

1. The Richton Park Public Library District provides meeting rooms as a limited forum to primarily meet the operational needs of the library and to support the educational, informational, cultural and civic functions of the library community.

2. The library will comply with all state and federal laws prohibiting discrimination in making its meeting room available and will not deny usage based on the viewpoints expressed by users.

3. Permission to use the meeting rooms does not constitute a sponsorship or endorsement of the users’ policies or beliefs. All groups wishing to meet at the library must use one of the meeting rooms unless otherwise authorized by the library. The Board of Library Trustees will review the meeting room policy and regulations periodically and reserve the right to amend them at any time.

4. Activities at a meeting room should not materially or substantially interfere with the proper functions of the Library. Applicant and his/her organization are responsible for conducting orderly programs and for ensuring that the attendees will not interfere with regular Library services or endanger Library employees, patrons, or property. Failure to comply will result in termination of the meeting and rejection of future applications for use of the meeting room.

5. The Board of Library Trustees reserves the right to amend this policy at any time. The Library reserves the right to revise any scheduled arrangements and to preempt established reservations on reasonable notice. The Library may also deny access to the meeting room to groups that have failed to follow the rules and regulations for the room’s use. The Library may waive portions of this policy to accommodate Library sponsored meetings and programs.

6. The Richton Park Public Library District encourages the use of its meeting rooms under conditions established by the Board of Library Trustees. The following rules, regulations, and fees will apply.

B. GROUP ELIGIBILITY

1. Priority for reserving the meeting rooms is given in the following order:

a. GROUP I: Library & Friends of the Library sponsored activities and programs.

b. GROUP II: Official government agencies and Boards of governments serving the Richton Park Public Library District community.

c. Group III: Richton Park Non-profit community organizations engaged in intellectual, charitable, civic, cultural, educational, and/or recreational activities that wish to hold meetings or programs where no admission fee is charged. The library reserves the right to request a copy of an organization’s 501(c)(3) for proof of non-profit status. Groups included are church, educational, homeowners, scouts, baseball, football and other clubs whose intent is not on making a profit. Some other groups may include study groups, literacy tutoring, exam proctoring, and AARP Tax assistance.

d. Group IV: Richton Park businesses for non-commercial use.

e. Group V: All non-Richton Park non-profits organizations and businesses for non-commercial use.

2. Except for the library or library related groups, the meeting room may not be reserved for social gatherings such as receptions, showers, birthday parties, dances, etc., nor for fundraising or money-making purposes such as bake sales or presentations of products or services. Non-Library sponsored groups may not charge admission nor solicit or require donations for attendance at the meetings, nor can they collect dues on premises. No product or services may be solicited or sold.

3. To use the meeting room, a representative of the group must take responsibility for the group’s use of the room by signing a Meeting Room Use Application and Agreement for each meeting room use. This person must be a Richton Park Public Library District cardholder in good standing, age eighteen years or older. Official government agencies and Boards of governments are exempt from the cardholder requirement.

C. MEETING ROOMS AND FEES

1. Rooms Available

The wall partition in the Full Meeting Room is not totally soundproof. There are two separate entrances to allow quick access to the sink and Vending Area to purchase snacks, beverages & coffee.

a. Full Meeting Room (A & B): Seating for 95 auditorium style or 48 at eight individual tables; built-in surround sound system, ceiling projector, large ceiling screen, AV operated podium.

b. Large Meeting Room (B): Seating for 50 auditorium style or 24 at four individual tables; built-in sound system, ceiling projector, large ceiling screen, AV operated podium.

c. Small Meeting Room (A): Seating for 30 to 40 people. Medium projector & white board screen.

2. Fee Structure

MEETING

ROOM

GROUP I

(Library)

GROUP II

(RP Gov’t)

GROUP III

(RP Non-Profit)

GROUP IV

(RP Businesses)

GROUP V

(All Non-Residents)

Full Room (A& B)-95

No fee

No fee

No fee

$20.00/hr

$30.00/hr

Large Room (B)-50

No Fee

No Fee

No fee

$15.00/hr

$25.00/hr

Small Room (A)-35

No fee

No fee

No fee

$10.00/hr

$15.00/hr

Audiovisual equipment. Changes in the set up or equipment must be requested at least three weekdays in advance.

3. Meeting room users are responsible for operating any audiovisual equipment they require. Instruction in operating library-owned audiovisual equipment is available from the Technical Staff. This instruction must be scheduled with the Technical Librarian well in advance of the date needed to ensure that tech staff is available at a mutually convenient time.

E. APPLICATION PROCEDURE

1. Application, Documents & Fees

a. The official Richton Park Public Library District Meeting Room Use Agreement application must be completed by a group representative who is over 18 years of age with a Richton Park library card in good standing. Official government agencies and Boards of governments are exempt from the cardholder requirement.

b. The application must be submitted to the library at least seven (7) working days prior to the event and signed by the Library Director. Applicants will be notified within three (3) days about the acceptance or rejection of their applications.

c. Meeting room fees, if required, must be paid at the time of application.

d. Proof of 501(c)(3) non-profit status or state non-profit certification and/or a certificate of insurance may be required.

e. The use of the meeting room shall be scheduled in order by priority and then by date on the application.

2. Frequency/ Scheduling Blocks

a. Reservations will not be accepted more than four (4) months in advance. Groups will be booked in order of priority (see D1/B) and then by the date the application was received.

b. No group or organization other than the Richton Park Public Library District may use a meeting room more often than four (4) times a month or a total of ten (10) hours a month (MAX: twice a week for 1.25 hrs).

c. In the case of groups scheduling monthly meetings, applicants are limited to filling out meeting room applications three (3) times per year, in accordance with the tri-annual library newsletter (Scheduling Blocks: Jan-May/ June-Aug/ Sept-Dec). A group may make a maximum of twelve (12) meeting room reservations per year.

3. Responsible Party

a. The representative who signed the Meeting Room Use Agreement must be present at the Library before staff will open the meeting room to the group, and he/she must be present throughout the scheduled meeting. It is the responsibility of the person who signed the application to ensure compliance with the code restrictions relating to the meeting room occupancy limits and with fire and safety regulations. The person signed the form shall be responsible for the willful or accidental damage to the Library for any damage to the Library building, grounds or equipment.

b. The person who signed the application and any group or persons using the meeting rooms must indemnify and hold harmless the Board of Library Trustees, its officers, employees and volunteers for damages, causes of action, judgments, settlements, cost and expenses, including reasonable attorney’s fees, arising from physical injury to persons, including death, and or loss or damage to property related to the use of the Library’s meeting room, building, parking lot or facilities by the group or persons.

c. Authorization to use the meeting room is not transferable to another organization or individual not listed on the original application.

d. Library staff will not be available to make room arrangement changes or to provide support service such as carrying equipment or materials into or around the Library, operating audio-visual equipment, making photocopies or handling attendee registration for a scheduled meeting.

e. The failure to comply with the library rules and regulations will result in the loss of meeting room privileges. The applicant will be responsible for the payment of any fines that result from damage to the meeting room/s; and in the case of a serious disturbance, the police will be called.

4. Cancellations

a. Immediately contact the Head of Adult Services when it is necessary to cancel a reservation for a meeting room. Meetings cancelled by an individual or group at least five (5) working days before the meeting will receive a full refund.

b. Groups who neglect to cancel in advance on more than one occasion may be restricted from reserving a room for the rest of that calendar year.

c. Repeated cancellations or unused reservations (2 or more within a 12 month period) will result in denial of future meeting room use.

d. The library reserves the right to cancel any reservation due to unforeseen circumstances.

e. In the event of an emergency closing of the Library, all reservations are automatically cancelled and any fees will be refunded. Library staff will attempt to inform the contact person of the closing.

f. Added Library programs or functions will take precedent over previously scheduled groups. The library may also cancel a reservation if library policies or procedures are violated. In the event the library cancels a reservation, fees will be refunded.

g. The Library reserves the right to request any group to change its approved schedule to another date. Notice will be given to the person signing the application.

F. GENERAL MEETING ROOM RULES

1. Meetings shall be held during regular library hours and rooms cleared at least 15 minutes before closing time.

2. Setup and cleanup must be accomplished during regular library hours. The meeting rooms are to be left as found.

3. The library is a smoke-free building.

4. The library does not provide refreshments, office supplies, or service to carry supplies, make coffee or photocopies.

5. Minors may use the meeting rooms with adult supervisors (at least one adult per 10 children) who will assume complete responsibility for the activities in and conditions of the premises.

6. Children of the attendees may not be left unattended during meetings and should remain in the meeting room unless properly supervised. (see Policy E6-Unattended Children).

7. No prohibited activities (see Policy D1/G)

G. PROHIBITED MEETING ROOM USE AND ACTIVIES

Library meeting room cannot be used for the following purposes:

1. The sale, promotion, endorsement or advertisement, whether directly or indirectly, of a commercial product or service. This includes organizations or businesses that intend to generate future revenue based upon “free” educational programs promoting products or services offered by the sponsoring party.

2. Learning institutions, instructors or tutors conducting classes or study sessions that involve a fee for participation and groups or individuals promoting future courses or services entailing fees.

3. Employee recruitment, training, or staff meetings.

4. Gambling activities.

5. Strictly social functions; defined as an event intended for entertainment through companionship with friends and associates, including, but not limited to, weddings, anniversaries, showers, card parties, birthday parties and social club events.

6. Benefits for private individuals, organizations and charities.

7. Legal depositions, proceedings or meetings pertaining to a lawsuit or civil action.

8. Activities that advocate the election or defeat of a candidate for public office or which advocate affirmative or negative votes concerning any political proposition.

9. Storage space for equipment or supplies for groups using the meeting room is not available.

10. Smoking, alcoholic beverages and/or illegal drugs are not permitted.

11. No flames of any kind are permitted, including lit candles, and sterno cooking fuel.

12. Nothing can be attached/applied to the walls without express written permission given by the Library’s Director.

13. No animals may be brought into the meeting room.

14. In case of serious disturbance the police will be called.

H. PUBLICITY

1. Individuals and organizations reserving use of the meeting room are responsible for their own publicity.

2. All publicity must state that the RPPLD is not a sponsor of this organization and its programs.

3. The location of the Library may be publicized, but the Library’s telephone number shall not be used for any purpose.

4. The Library will not handle attendee registrations or take messages for those interested in attending the meeting or participating in the program.

5. All users are responsible for complying with applicable American with Disabilities Act (ADA) requirements when using the room. Therefore, users are required to add a notice to their publicity for an event asking for any person who plans on attending and who needs ADA-type assistance to call the sponsoring organization to request accommodation.

6. The library is not to be included as a source of further information.

A copy of all fliers, advertisements, announcements, press releases, invitations, etc. relating to the meeting must be given to the Library Director.

I. FOOD

1. Food preparation is not permitted. Only non-alcoholic beverages and cold foods, such as light snacks or box lunches, may be served in the meeting room.

2. Hotplates, sterno cooking fuel, and other products that are used to heat food are prohibited. All supplies must be provided by the organization.

3. Snacks, beverages and coffee are available for purchase in the library’s Vending Area.

J. CLEAN UP

1. The meeting room must be returned to its original condition at the end of the meeting.

2. A fee commensurate with the work required, but not less than $25, will be charged if the room is not left in its original condition.

3. The organization will be barred from further use of the room and the meeting room applicant’s Library card will be blocked until any such fees are paid. Long-term unpaid fees will be submitted to the credit collection agency.

K. DENIAL OF USE

1. Groups or organizations not adhering to the rules and regulations for use of a meeting room or falling into categories excluded from use may be denied access to the meeting rooms. The library reserves the right to refuse the use of the meeting rooms to any group or individual for any activity deemed unsuitable for the library’s facilities, incompatible with its purposes or which may interfere with the ordinary functions and activities of the library by causing excessive noise, safety hazards and/or threat to public health, safety and property.

2. Written notification will be sent to groups or organizations being denied use of a meeting room, stating the reasons for denial and outlining an appeal process. This notification will be sent within 48 hours of the receipt of the application.

3. A group, which has been denied permission to use a meeting room by the Library Director, may appeal such denial to the Board of Trustees at the Board’s next regularly scheduled meeting. Written notice of that appeal and all written documentation supporting that appeal must be delivered to the Library Director at least seven (7) business days before the board meeting. At the Board meeting the Applicant may be granted up to 15 minutes for a presentation to support the group’s position.

L. NON-COMPLIANCE

Failure to comply with the above library rules and regulations will result in the loss of meeting room privileges.

Updated: 6-15-2015

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