Policies & Procedures

0 Vision, Mission, Values pdf

1 Confidentiality pdf

1.1 Copyright pdf

2.2 Emergency Closure Policy pdf

2.3 Technology Use pdf

2.4 Customer Conduct pdf

3 Eligibility for Borrowing Privileges pdf

5 Collection Management Policy pdf

5.1 Citizen Comment on Library Materials pdf

ALA Bill of Rights pdf

ALA Code of Ethics pdf

ALA Freedom to Read pdf

ALA Freedom to View pdf




Circulation of Materials

Most books may be checked out for 28 days.  Magazines and high demand items may be checked out for 14 days.  New adult materials may be checked out for 14 days.  If an item is not available for check out, up to 5 pages may be copied at no charge.  For reference material, patrons may photocopy the first five pages free of charge.  Each reference material photocopy after the initial free five pages is $.10 per copy for b&w and $.50 per copy for color.  Audiobooks may be checked out for 28 days.  All DVDs may be checked out for 14 days. All materials may be renewed if they are not overdue, provided there is no hold on the item. Two renewals allowed per item.  Interlibrary loan materials may be renewed if they are not overdue and the lending library will renew materials.

Adopted 5/90, Revised 1/93, Revised 11/97, Revised 1/04, Revised 8/08, Revised 6/12, Reviewed 3/17, Revised 10/19

Overdue Notices

Overdue Notices and Suspension of Borrowing Privileges

Patrons with an email address on file with the library will receive one overdue notice one week after the due date with a second notice to follow at two weeks if the material hasn’t been returned. In addition, courtesy calls are made one week and two weeks after an item is overdue for those patrons without an email address on file with the library.


After 90 days, the item is assumed lost and a bill notice will be sent out automatically.


Borrowing privileges may be suspended for the following reasons:

  1. Fraudulent information on the library card application
  2. Incomplete library card application at the end of the probationary period
  3. Patron refusal to provide library with current contact information
  4. Three or more items overdue, regardless of due date
  5. Fines totaling $10.00 or more
  6. Disruptive or threatening behavior in the library – Please see details under sections addressing disruptive and threatening behavior.

If a minor has their borrowing privileges suspended, the responsible party is restricted also.


Adopted 5/90, Revised 5/21/91, Revised 9/9/97, Revised 10/28/99, Revised 01/05, Revised 8/08, Revised 6/12, Reviewed 3/17

Lost/Damaged Library Materials

There will be a charge for lost materials and library materials damaged through unintentional or intentional neglect. The total charge will consist of the retail price of the material and any other related costs such as shipping charges from the vendor, plus a $10.00 processing fee.


In the event a patron returns material thought to be lost and has paid the lost/damaged materials cost, a credit or refund cannot be given to the patron. The item is considered owned by the patron and not by the library. At this time, the patron may decide to donate the item back to Lincoln County Public Libraries.


Barcodes from damaged library materials will be retained by the library so that materials can be be withdrawn from the collection. The damaged item may be retained by the patron if they want it.

Adopted 2/93, Revised 9/97, Revised 11/02, Revised 8/08, Revised 6/12, Revised 3/17

Library Service in Lieu of Fine Collection

In order to provide library patrons with an alternative means of satisfying a library fine obligation, the Library Director may approve an individualized program of library service in lieu of cash payment of a fine.


A request to discharge a library fine by providing authorized library service in lieu of cash payment will be initiated by an inquiry from the library patron with the fine obligation.


A member of the library staff will determine if there is an appropriate project for the library patron to undertake.  The nature and scope of the proposed library project will be reviewed by the Library Director, whose approval is required before any library service project is begun.


Supervision of the patron’s library service project will be provided by members of the library staff.  Scheduling of the dates and times for the performance of the library project require the prior approval of the library staff person providing the supervision.


A member of the library staff may terminate the library service project at any time, with verbal notice to the library patron providing the service.  Reasons for terminating a library service project may include inability of the library staff to sustain patron supervision, unsatisfactory performance of the project by the patron, lack of feasibility or appropriateness of project not foreseen at the time of original assignment by the library staff.


If a project is terminated, the patron remains responsible for the remainder of his/her fine obligation after the value of the library service project performed has been calculated and deducted from the total fine obligation.


Library service projects will be valued at minimum wage per hour of service performed, for purposes of calculating the reduction and/or elimination of the outstanding patron fine.  No other form of compensation may be provided to a library patron for the performance of library service project assignments.


It is the intention of the Library Board of Trustees to make this library service program in lieu of fine collection available to library patrons in order to provide an alternative opportunity of discharging a community obligation, similar to the program already existing at the library for assignees of the Lincoln County Court System.

Adopted 5/94, Revised 9/97, Reviewed 1/05, Reviewed 8/08, Reviewed 6/12, Reviewed 3/17

Interlibrary Loan

As noted in the National Interlibrary Loan Code, interlibrary loan service is essential to the vitality of libraries of all types and sizes. Lending between libraries is in the public interest and should be encouraged.  However, interlibrary loans should serve as an adjunct to, not a substitute for, local collection development.  Lincoln County Public Libraries are committed to fulfilling both its borrowing and lending roles in resource sharing on behalf of individual patrons and other libraries.


In meeting its resource sharing responsibilities, Lincoln County Public Libraries use the Montana State Library Interlibrary Library Loan (ILL) protocols. ILL is transacted through OCLC Worldshare. With its participation in resource sharing, Lincoln County Public Libraries adheres to established local, state, and national resource sharing protocols for both borrowing and lending.


Patrons may obtain materials from other libraries through the interlibrary loan process, which is available to any patron with a valid library card, and the willingness to abide by the following policies:

  1. A patron may have up to three interlibrary loans in process at one time. ILL service is not available to patrons whose library privileges are suspended.
  2. A patron is notified when an interlibrary loan is available for checking out. A patron shall have seven days to check out an interlibrary loan after notification.
  3. If an interlibrary loan is not picked up within 7 days, the requesting patron will accrue a charge of $5 per item.
  4. Patrons who have lost or damaged interlibrary loan material shall pay the fee assessed by the lending library.
  5. Fines for overdue interlibrary loan materials will be $1.00 per item per day.
  6. Patrons may request an interlibrary loan title once every three months.
  7. Renewals for interlibrary loans may be made only if the lending library offers the renewal service. Renewals are NOT guaranteed.

Adopted 5/90, Revised 10/92, Revised 9/97, Revised 01/05, Revised 8/08, Revised 6/12, Revised 3/17, Revised 7/18




The utilization of exhibit space by any group or individual shall not imply endorsement or approval by the Lincoln County Public Library.


As an educational and cultural institution the Lincoln County Public Libraries welcomes exhibits and displays of interest, information and enlightenment to the community. The director, with library board approval, reserves the right to reject any display or item, which in their judgment is illegal or which may interfere with normal operations of the library.


The library assumes no responsibility for the preservation, protection or possible theft or damage of any item displayed. All items placed in the library are done so at the owner’s risk.


Purely commercial use of the display space is prohibited.


Reservations are taken on a first-come, first-serve basis.  No exhibit may be on display for more than 60 days.

Adopted 4/93, Revised 11/97, Revised 5/05, Reviewed 8/08, Revised 6/12, Reviewed 3/17

Disposal of Surplus Property

The Library will dispose of surplus materials in a manner which is consistent with general principles of fairness in disposal of public properties and which maximizes library revenue.


The director, with library board approval, will consider requests to donate specific withdrawn items to other libraries or related agencies on a case-by-case basis.


The Board may approve such donations if:

  1. The items are being requested for use rather than resale
  2. The benefits of cooperation and good will outweigh any anticipated Library revenue

Adopted 2/93, Revised 11/97, Reviewed 5/05, Reviewed 8/08, Revised 6/12, Reviewed 3/17


The Board of Trustees and the Library recognize the services provided by volunteers as important in supplementing Library staff and meeting the Library’s public service objectives. Volunteers will be adequately trained, supervised, and recognized for their performance. On-site volunteer activities are limited to the open hours of the libraries. No Library unit shall be dependent on volunteers for its daily operation.


The Library staff will supervise all volunteer activities under the direction of the Library Director.

Adopted 2/93, Reviewed 10/97, Reviewed 5/05, Reviewed 8/08, Reviewed 6/12, Revised 3/17


Unattended Minor or Vulnerable Adult Policy

While the library encourages visits by children and all community members, the library staff cannot watch, supervise, or otherwise be responsible for children or vulnerable adults. This remains the responsibility of the parents, guardians or caregivers.  The library and library staff do not serve under any circumstances in loco parentis.  Simply put, library staff does not and cannot legally assume authority in place of a parent, guardian or caregiver.


Situations with an unattended minor or vulnerable adult will be evaluated. Staff will attempt to contact the parent, guardian or caregiver.  Situations may include illness, anxiety, misbehavior, or being left unattended at closing time.  If the responsible party cannot be contacted, the matter will be immediately referred to the police or sheriff department or other legal authority.  Under no circumstances will staff offer a ride or give a ride to any patron of any age.

Adopted 11/06, Revised 6/12, Revised 3/17


General Public/Patrons

Note that any persons filming or photographing on library premises have sole responsibility for gaining all necessary releases and permissions from persons being filmed or photographed. Lincoln County Public Libraries takes no responsibility for obtaining these releases. Persons who wish to photograph individuals or groups inside the library must seek verbal permission from the subject before doing so. Staff will terminate all photography, videotaping, or recording session that appears to compromise the safety and privacy of library patrons or otherwise violates this policy.

Library Staff Photography/Filming

The library reserves the right to document its services and the public’s use of the library. Official representatives of the library may take photographs, film or use other recording devices within the library and at library-related events with verbal permission from the subject.  These photographs or films may be copied, displayed, published (including to the library website) in a newsworthy context to inform the public about the library.  Use of photos for publicity or marketing purposes must be accompanied by a release form.

Adopted 3/17

Lincoln County Public Libraries Board of Trustees Public Participation Policy and Participation Form

The Lincoln County Public Libraries Board welcomes public input at its meetings. Each agenda item (unless specified otherwise) will be open for public input before the Board deliberates on that item.  In an effort to assure adequate notice and assist in public participation; the board will post their agenda in each library and other public locations the board may deem appropriate.  The agenda will be posted at least 72 hours before the meeting.


The board meets six times per year on a bi-monthly schedule, rotating meetings between all libraries. On occasion the board may call a special meeting or need to change the time and date of the monthly meeting.  Notice of such changes will be given at least 48 hours before the changes take place.


While it is recommended that anyone wishing to address the Board notify the director at least 48 hours before the meeting so that time may be reserved for such input, it is not absolutely necessary.


Everyone wishing to speak must fill out a Participation Form. The form will provide accurate identification of those speaking for inclusion in the official minutes of the meeting. The form is available on the table at the rear of the meeting room.


Meeting time is limited. The Board chair reserves the right to set reasonable time limits for public input on each topic. Speakers will be limited to five minutes per agenda item.  Comments may be given orally or in writing.  Written comments should be submitted to the library director at least 24 hours prior to the meeting.


The public is asked not to make any comments during Board deliberations unless responding to a specific question asked by the Board chair.


Thank you for your interest in the library and the Board, and for your assistance in keeping our meetings orderly.


Public Participation in Lincoln County Libraries Board of Trustee Meeting

Name ___________________________________________________________________________

Address _________________________________________________________________________

______ County Resident         _____ Non County Resident

Brief description of topic to discuss:




Adopted 4/08, Revised 6/12, Revised 3/17