Lake Forest Library adheres to these policies adopted by our Board of Trustees. These policies establish a standard for service that ensures equitable treatment for all and provide a framework for the delivery of services and resources that ensures we operate in a way that fulfills the Library's mission. Policies on this page are as of August 16, 2021.
It is the policy and practice of the Library to provide a professional working environment for its employees and trustees so that they may carry out their duties in productive and positive surroundings. A professional work environment includes, at a minimum, a workplace that is free of unlawful discrimination and harassment, including sexual harassment, which are all illegal under the Illinois Human Rights Act (IHRA) and Title VII of the U.S. Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Title VII). But the Library’s policy goes further. Any conduct of a harassing nature that adversely effects the work environment is unacceptable, even if that conduct does not rise to the level of being unlawful.
In keeping with this commitment, the Library will not tolerate discrimination against or harassment of the Library's employees by anyone, including any supervisor or co-worker, as well as non-employees, such as residents, public officials, suppliers and vendors, contractors and other third parties with whom our employees interact while performing their job duties.
Actions, words, jokes or comments based on an individual’s race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, national or ethnic origin, citizenship, ancestry, age, marital status, military status, veteran status, disability, genetic information, physical or mental disability, pregnancy, order of protection status, or other legally protected characteristic will not be tolerated.
This policy governs all aspects of employment, including recruitment, hiring, job assignment, compensation, promotion, discipline, discharge, leaves of absence, and access to benefits and training.
All employees are responsible for cooperating in any investigation of alleged harassment, and for participating in periodic training regarding this policy.
Harassment does not include the reasonable statements and actions of Supervisors and other managerial level employees intended to provide performance feedback or corrective action, such as performance evaluations, deficiency notices, warnings, counseling, reprimands, performance improvement plans and other actions intended to promote desired work performance.
Discrimination consists of employment actions taken against an individual based on a characteristic protected by law, such as sex, race, color, ancestry, national origin, citizenship status, religion, age, disability, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity, pregnancy, military or veteran status, genetic information, order of protection status, or any other category protected by applicable law. In other words, discrimination occurs when an individual is treated differently or unequally because the individual is a member of a protected group.
"Sexual harassment," as defined by the IHRA, means any unwelcome sexual advances or requests for sexual favors or any verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature when (1) submission to such conduct is made either explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of an individual's employment, (2) submission to or rejection of such conduct by an individual is used as the basis for employment decisions affecting such individual, or (3) such conduct has the purpose or effect of substantially interfering with an individual's work performance or creating an intimidating, hostile or offensive working environment.
Sexual harassment is unlawful and prohibited regardless of whether it is between or among members of the same sex or opposite sexes.
The following non-exclusive list sets forth examples of the conduct that violate the Library's policy against sexual harassment:
- Physical assaults of a sexual nature, such as rape, sexual battery, molestation or other unwelcome physical contact (e.g., touching, pinching, patting, grabbing, unwelcome hugging or kissing, rubbing or brushing against another employee’s body);
- Unwelcome sexual advances, propositions or other sexual comments, such as sexually-oriented gestures, sounds, remarks, jokes or comments about a person’s sex, sexuality or sexual experiences;
- Preferential treatment or promises of preferential treatment to an employee for submitting to sexual conduct; or subjecting or threatening to subject an employee to more onerous terms or conditions of employment because of that employee’s sex or rejection of sexual advances, propositions or comments; and
- Sexual or discriminatory displays or publications anywhere in the workplace, such as displays of pictures, posters, calendars, graffiti, objects, books or other materials that are sexually suggestive, demeaning or pornographic or viewing online pornographic material or websites.
- Sexually explicit letters, memos, poems, instant messages, texts, e-mail or voice-mail messages.
- Textual/Electronic: "sexting" (electronically sending messages with sexual content, including pictures and video), the use of sexually explicit language, harassment, cyber stalking and threats via all forms of electronic communication (e-mail, text/picture/video messages, intranet/on-line postings, blogs, instant messages and social network websites like Facebook and Twitter).
- Repeated requests for dates.
The most severe and overt forms of sexual harassment are easier to determine. On the other end of the spectrum, some sexual harassment is more subtle and depends, to some extent, on individual perception and interpretation. The standard of what would offend a "reasonable person" is used to determine whether a behavior or action is sexual harassment.
Other Forms of Harassment
The Library prohibits slurs or other verbal or physical conduct, relating to an individual's race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, national or ethnic origin, citizenship, ancestry, age, marital status, military status, veteran status, disability, genetic information, physical or mental disability, pregnancy, order of protection status, or other protected characteristic or other legally protected characteristic when
- such conduct may have the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with an individual's work performance; or
- such conduct may have the purpose or effect of creating an intimidating, hostile, or offensive working environment.
The conduct forbidden by this policy specifically includes but is not limited to: (a) epithets, slurs, negative stereotypes or intimidating acts that are based on a person's protected status; and (b) written or graphic material circulated within or posted within the workplace that shows hostility toward a person because of his or her protected status.
Reporting and Investigating Alleged Harassment
All Library employees and trustees are responsible to help ensure that harassment and discrimination do not occur and are not tolerated. An employee or trustee who believes that he, she, or they has been subjected to sexual or other types of harassment or discrimination, or who has witnessed harassment or discrimination, should immediately report the incident, preferably in writing.
Such incident should be reported either:
- to his or her Supervisor or anyone higher in the chain-of-command, who shall promptly report the matter to the Library Director; or
- if the Supervisor is the subject of the complaint or the employee believes that it would be inappropriate to communicate with the Supervisor, the employee should report the incident directly to the Library Director; or
- if the Library Director is the subject of the complaint, the employee should report the incident to the President of the Board of Trustees of the Library; or
- if the Trustee is the subject of the complaint, the trustee should report the incident to the President of the Board of Trustees of the Library or the Library Board’s attorney and request an independent third-party investigation.
If a Supervisor receives a complaint of harassment or discrimination directly from an employee, or becomes aware of such conduct, the complaint or conduct shall be immediately reported to the Library Director.
The Library Director or his or her designee shall promptly conduct an objective and impartial investigation of the allegations of a complaint and make all reasonable efforts to resolve the matter informally. These efforts may include, but are not limited to, convening conferences with the complainant and/or the accused harasser/discriminator to discuss the complaint and the results of the investigation. Consistent with the need to conduct a thorough and complete investigation, to the extent practicable, confidentiality will be maintained.
If the investigation leads to a determination that a complaint is substantiated, appropriate corrective action shall be taken. This may include discharge or other discipline. In the case of unlawful harassment by a non-employee, the Library will notify the person of the Library’s policy against harassment and take such other action as may be appropriate under the circumstances. In the event of unlawful harassment by a Library user, the Library Board of Trustees may take all appropriate action, including actions to ban the Library user.
If an investigation results in a finding that the complainant falsely accused another of harassment or discrimination knowingly or in a malicious manner, the complainant will be subject to appropriate discipline, including the possibility of discharge.
Reporting harassment or discrimination or participating in an investigation will not reflect adversely upon an individual’s status or affect future employment. Any form of retaliation against an employee who reports harassment or discrimination or participates in an investigation is strictly prohibited by the Illinois Human Rights Act, the Illinois State Officials and Employees Act, the Illinois Whistleblower Act, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, and Library policy. Any employee who retaliates against another for exercising his or her rights under this policy shall be subject to discipline, up to and including termination.
The Library is committed to promptly responding to and resolving sexual or other harassment complaints in a prompt and fair manner. It is hoped that such complaints of sexual or other harassment can be resolved within the Library through the internal procedures outlined above.
All Library employees, however, have the right to file formal harassment charges with the Illinois Department of Human Rights ("IDHR") and/or the United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC"). Such charges must be filed within a certain time period, usually within 180 days of the alleged harassing incident, if filed with the IDHR, or within 300 days, if filed with the EEOC.
It is unlawful for an employer to retaliate against an employee for filing a charge of harassment with the IDHR or the EEOC. An employee who feels that she or he has been retaliated against after filing a charge with the IDHR or EEOC has 180 days (IDHR) or 300 days (EEOC) from the alleged retaliation to file a retaliation charge.
To contact the IDHR write or call its Chicago or Springfield office. To contact the EEOC, write or call its Chicago office.
Illinois Department of Human Rights: 312.814.6200
Illinois Human Rights Commission: 312.814.6269
Equal Employment Opportunity Commission: 800.669.4000
Employees are required to attend an annual training on harassment in the workplace.
(Approved January 8, 2018; Amended September 11, 2018; January 14, 2020.)
Because of its limited display and storage areas, the Library does not normally accept gifts of art work; under unusual circumstances exceptions to this policy may be made only upon approval of the Board.
Any labeling of art works requires the approval of the Board. Information about art works in the Library will be developed by Library Staff. The booklet, Lake Forest Library Art: An Aesthetic Legacy, will be updated as needed. (Approved January 8, 1979; revised August 12, 1997; revised January 10, 2012.)
Audiovisual equipment owned by the Library is primarily for library-related use by members of the Library Staff. Equipment may be borrowed by city employees for work-related use. All equipment loans require prior approval by a member of the Children's Library Staff. The borrower must be knowledgeable about the proper use of the equipment, and sign the equipment loan sheet posted in the audiovisual closet. The loan sheet will state that the cost of any damage to the equipment will be paid for by the borrower.
When contracting for services, goods, or making capital expenditures where the cost may exceed $3,000.00, the Library shall obtain at least 3 bids, providing similar services or items are available. This requirement may be waived by a majority vote of the Board of Trustees. (Board policy approved October 20, 1986; revised February, 1997; revised November 8, 2005.)
Purchase orders shall be used for all purchases except when covered by specific written contracts.
All purchases or contracts involving an expenditure of $50,000 or more must be specifically approved by the Board of Trustees, and signed by the Board President, whether or not a sufficient budgetary allocation exists. Budgeted capital expenses over $25,000 or an unbudgeted capital expense over $10,000 must be signed by the Board President. (Approved August 12, 1997.)
Cards for Lake Forest Residents
Lake Forest Library cards are free of charge to all Lake Forest residents. Proof of identity and Lake Forest residency is required at the time of application. Cards are valid as long as the Cardholder remains a Lake Forest resident. Students attending and residing in the dormitories at Lake Forest College are eligible for a Lake Forest Library card at no charge. The card will be valid from September through May and may be renewed without charge at start the following academic year.
Cardholders may annotate their card records for purposes of allowing family members or caretakers the ability to pick up reserved or held items, pay fines or fees, renew items, or verify account balances or items checked out.
Nonresidents may purchase a Lake Forest Library card for the cost of taxpayer support. The annual fee reflects the amount paid in taxes by the average city family for library services, based on the State Library formula, or shall exceed it. The fee is set annually by the Lake Forest Library Board. This card entitles the Cardholder to all Lake Forest Library privileges. Immediate family members residing in the same household may be added to the card as authorized users. Proof of identity and home address is required. No refunds will be issued for non-use. Cards are valid for one year.
Reciprocal Borrowing for Non-Lake Forest Residents
Cardholders residing within the Reaching Across Illinois Library System (RAILS) with a valid library card from their home library can register for privileges at Lake Forest Library. Presentation of home library card and proof of home address is required.
Taxpayer Non-Resident Cards
Those who own property in Lake Forest, but do not reside in Lake Forest, are eligible for a Lake Forest Library card. The most recent property tax bill showing the owner’s name and property address is required at the time of application. Proof of identity and of home address is also required. Cards issued are valid for one year. The library card is good only at Lake Forest Library and may not be used as a reciprocal card at other libraries.
Businesses located in Lake Forest or who are members of the Lake Forest Chamber of Commerce are eligible for a Business Library card. Proof of identity and address such as a current utility bill or property tax bill is required at the time of application. Cards are valid for one year.
Lake Forest residents with a valid Lake Forest Library card may add a nanny, au pair, or caregiver as a user. The Lake Forest resident will be responsible for all materials checked out on the card and for any and all assessed fines and fees.
City Employee Cards
Employees of the City of Lake Forest are eligible for a Lake Forest Library card. Proof of identity and Lake Forest employment is required at the time of application. Proof of address such as a current utility bill or property tax bill is required at the time of application.
Teacher Cards/School Cards
All teachers in local schools are entitled to the full benefits of the Lake Forest Library and teachers are encouraged to register their local library card and achieve reciprocal borrowing privileges at the Lake Forest Library. To further enable this support, Lake Forest Library cards are issued to the institution upon completion and submission of a letter request. Institutions should contact the Head of Circulation for the form and requirements.
Cardholders may have their cards linked to other family members for purposes of picking up reserved or held items, paying fines or fees, renewing items, or verifying account balances or items checked out.
Replacement cards will be issued for lost or damaged Library cards at replacement cost. Cardholders remain liable for materials borrowed on a lost card until notice of the loss is provided to the Library and the card cancelled.
Responsibility for Card Use
Cardholders are responsible for all use of their card (or cards to which they are responsible) unless the card is reported as lost or stolen to the Library.
Expiration of Cards
Unless otherwise noted, all Lake Forest Library cards issued to an adult over the age of 18 automatically expire every three years. The account must be in good standing and proof of identity and residency must be presented to reactivate expired cards. Inactive library cards in good standing are deleted every three years as part of ongoing database maintenance. Cards issued to patrons under the age of 18 expire on the Cardholder's 18 birthday, at which point the 18-year old may sign the application accepting responsibility for their own card.
Cardholders who wish to borrow library materials without their cards may be asked for identification.
An item containing multiple parts cannot be checked in until all the parts are returned. If a part is lost or damaged, the entire item will be considered lost and the replacement cost will be assessed. When possible, the Library will attempt to replace the lost or damaged part and assess the Cardholder a fee based on the replacement option.
The Cardholder will be responsible for damage occurring to items marked with special return instructions if the return instructions are not followed. For example, an item marked "Please do not return this item in the book drop" is found damaged in the outside book drop.
Cardholders are responsible for damage to items they borrow including cases, containers, parts, security strips or additional contents. Damaged items are billed to the patron account at the replacement cost. The damaged item will be offered to the patron to keep. Replacement copies are not accepted in lieu of payment. The Library is not responsible for any damage to a user's personal equipment, such as a DVD player or video game console, as the result of the use of library materials.
Items not returned after being overdue for 45 days will be considered lost and the Cardholder account billed. Cardholders are responsible for lost items including cases, containers, parts, or additional contents. Lost items are billed to the patron account at the replacement cost. Replacement copies are not accepted in lieu of payment. The lost item may not be returned at a later date for a refund.
Cardholders who fail to either return or pay for borrowed materials may be submitted to an attorney for further action. Attorney fees and other materials recovery costs will be assessed to the Cardholder.
Lake Forest Library is fine free on most materials (see exceptions in Loan Periods, Limits, Renewals, Holds, and Fine Table below). Each item still has a due date and Cardholders are responsible for honoring the due date. If an item is more than two weeks (14 days) overdue after all permitted renewals are exhausted, Cardholders will be restricted and will not be able to check out any additional items. Once the item is returned, the restriction is removed from the Cardholder's account.
Cardholders will be blocked and not be able to check out any additional items if the account
- has accumulated fees and charges in excess of $10;
- has lost items on the account ;
- is associated with an account that is blocked;
- when combined with an associated account that has accumulated fees and charges in excess of $10 or has lost items on the account.
When another library informs the Lake Forest Library that a Lake Forest Cardholder is delinquent at that library, no service will be available at Lake Forest Library until such delinquency is cleared.
A Cardholder's library card will be revoked it if is determined that the card was obtained fraudulently. For example, using an incorrect address or name.
Library materials are loaned, renewed, and holdable as set forth below:
|Item||Loan Period||Renewals||Holdable||Checkout Limits||Fines/Day|
|Books & Audiobooks||21 Days||2||Yes||None||—|
|Most Wanted items||7 Days||1||No||None||—|
|Hot Items||21 Days||1||Yes, for Lake Forest residents||None||—|
|Audiobooks & Playaways||21 Days||2||Yes||None||—|
|NEW Feature Film DVDs||7 Days||0||Yes, for Lake Forest residents||None||—|
|Feature Film DVDs||7 Days||2||Yes||None||—|
|NEW DVD Series||14 Days||0||Yes, for Lake Forest residents||None||—|
|DVD Series||14 Days||2||Yes||None||—|
|DVD2GO movies||3 Days||0||Can be reserved up to 12 hours prior to pickup||20||—|
|NEW Nonfiction DVDs||14 Days||0||Yes, for Lake Forest residents||None||—|
|Nonfiction DVDs||14 Days||2||Yes||None||—|
|Great Courses DVDs and CDs||21 Days||2||Yes||None||—|
|NEW Video Games (excluding Nintendo Switch)||21 Days||1||Yes, for Lake Forest residents||None||—|
|Video Games (excluding Nintendo Switch)||21 Days||1||Yes||None||—|
|NEW Nintendo Switch video games||21 Days||1||Yes, for Lake Forest residents||None||—|
|Nintendo Switch video games||21 Days||1||Yes, for Lake Forest residents||None||—|
|Music CDs||21 Days||2||Yes||None||—|
|Magazines||14 Days||0||Yes, for Lake Forest residents||None||—|
|Takeout Tech items (Circulate only to Lake Forest residents)||14 Days||1||Yes, for Lake Forest residents||1 per type, 3 total||$2.00|
|NEW Children's DVDs||14 Days||2||Yes, for Lake Forest residents||None||—|
|Children's DVDs||14 Days||2||Yes||None||—|
|Launchpads and Views||21 Days||0||Yes, for Lake Forest residents||None||—|
|Exploration Kits||21 Days||0||Yes, for Lake Forest residents||None||—|
|Children's Puzzles, Puppets, Toys||21 Days||2||Yes, for Lake Forest residents||None||—|
|Golden Tote Bags||21 days||3||No||None||—|
See CCS Consortium Member Library Loans and Interlibrary Loan Materials below for loan periods and fines associated with these materials.
The Library's ILS system will attempt to renew items three days prior to the date the item is due. Renewable items will automatically renew provided there is a renewal option available and no one has placed a hold on the item.
CCS Consortium Member Library Loans
Loans from CCS Consortium Member Libraries (Intra-CCS Loans) are subject to the loan periods and fines of the lending library. CCS Consortium Member Library loans may be returned to any member library. The Lake Forest Library fine free policy applies to CCS Consortium Member Library materials checked out at Lake Forest Library. Cardholders are liable for lost or damaged materials as assessed by the owning CCS Consortium Member Library.
Availability of Materials
No materials may be taken out of the Library until they have been completely processed.
Lake Forest Library Cardholders may check out up to 100 items on their card.
Lake Forest residents with a valid Lake Forest Library card may request materials from other libraries that are not part of the CCS Consortium. Materials borrowed via interlibrary loan are subject to the circulation rules of the lending library, including renewals, overdue fines and fees, and in-library use limitations. Cardholders are responsible for all fines and fees associated with interlibrary loan materials, including replacement costs for lost and damaged materials. Requests for interlibrary loan materials may be made at the Adult Services desk.
Approved December 10, 2019, amending and incorporating the following policies: Business Patrons, City Employee Patrons, Damaged Materials Policy, Fines, Forgotten Card Policy, Loan Periods, Limits, Renewals, and Holds Policy, Lost or Damaged Patron Cards Policy, Lost Books and Other Materials Policy, Reference Collection Policy, Rental Collection Policy, Resident and Non-resident Patron Policy, and Teacher Patrons.
In order to provide a safe and secure environment for residents and Library Staff, video surveillance of Library property may be used.
Video surveillance records are the sole property of Lake Forest Library.
Cameras are positioned to monitor public areas.
Signage disclosing the use of video surveillance is posted.
Video surveillance records are intended for protection of public property and for providing information for review in the event of an incident or accident in the Library.
Video surveillance records are not to be used directly or indirectly to identify the activities of individual library patrons unless those patrons are involved in a library incident or accident.
Video surveillance will be monitored by authorized Library Staff.
Video Surveillance records may be used to assist law enforcement agencies in accordance with applicable laws. (Approved November 10, 2009.)
Lake Forest Library endorses the American Library Association's Bill of Rights, Freedom to Read Statement, and Freedom to View Statement, which protect the right of persons to free and convenient access to information and ideas, even when the content may be controversial or unacceptable to others.
The Library's collection is thoughtfully curated. The Library strives, within the limitations of budget and space, to provide a wide range of materials in a variety of formats which meet the educational, informational, cultural, recreational, and accessibility needs of the community. Reasonable efforts will be made to build balanced collections without favor given to specific causes or viewpoints. Each item considered for acquisition is judged individually according to its intrinsic merit, the subject treated, user interest, and the collection needs.
When evaluating materials for purchasing, selectors seek to advance the Library’s mission of Inspiring lifelong learning, promoting the free and respectful exchange of ideas, and building community.
Selection and Maintenance
A variety of factors influence the selection of library materials. These include accuracy of information, interest, authority, demand, value to the existing collection, timeliness, significance of the subject, format, and cost. After assessing these factors and studying professional review sources, material selectors add print, media, databases, resources, and technology to the Library’s collection if community demand, space, and budget warrant the purchase.
Donated materials are evaluated for addition to the collection on the same criteria. Materials meeting the criteria may be added to the collection; items not added to the collection are considered deselected (weeded) items.
The Library does not collect textbooks, workbooks, highly specialized or technical materials, or materials designed for one user/home use only. No attempt will be made to supply the textbooks used in K–12 schools, colleges, and universities, although no materials will be excluded simply because they are used as textbooks or assigned reading.
From time to time, the Director, in consultation with staff, will determine that a new format is needed. These new formats will be added based on patron need, availability, ease of upkeep, and general community interest.
To maintain a current and viable collection, ongoing maintenance is necessary to ensure the collections are maintained in good condition with relevant and up-to-date information. Withdrawal of items is done continuously, and selectors are expected to review their assigned areas of the collection every two years. Lake Forest Library adheres to the widely adopted standard CREW: A Weeding Manual for Modern Libraries. Deselected (weeded) items may be given to the Friends of Lake Forest Library, donated to other libraries, educational, or non-profit organizations, or discarded.
Interlibrary loan is a resource sharing process by which a library requests material from, or supplies materials to, another library. The Library is fully committed to resource sharing and strives to be a responsible interlibrary loan borrower and lender. The Library affirms that interlibrary loan is an adjunct to, not a substitute for, the Library's collection. (See Reference Services Policy.)
Request for Reconsideration
The Library does not endorse the opinions contained in its materials. Patrons are free to enjoy, dislike, or ignore any item in the collection. However, no one is free to restrict another's use of library materials. A request to remove library materials creates legal and ethical questions for both the Library and the community. Consequently, this issue is taken very seriously by the Library. To initiate a request, a Request for Reconsideration form should be filled out completely and given to the Director. The Director will appoint a committee to review the challenged material and prepare a written report. Until a decision is reached by the Director, the item in question will remain available. Patrons who do not accept the Director's decision may appeal to the Board of Trustees. The reconsideration process will be completed in a reasonable amount of time. Staff is available to assist in preparation of the required form.
(Approved January 12, 2020, incorporating and replacing the following polices: Children, Materials, Materials Selection Policy, and Young Adult.)
Circulation records and other records identifying the names of library users are privileged information. No such information will be released to any individual or agency except upon the receipt of an official Court order. Upon the receipt of such an order, the legal counsel for the Library must be consulted to determine its proper form. (Approved September 15, 1980; revised November, 1988; revised March 13, 2007.)
Board members shall not use e-mail in their official capacity to conduct board business. E-mail to, by and between Board members shall be limited to the dissemination of information and may not include deliberation, debate, or decision-making. Acceptable e-mail subjects are:
- Agenda item suggestions
- Reminders about meeting times, dates and places
- Board meeting agenda or public record information concerning agenda items
- Responses to questions posed by residents, administration or staff, as points of information
Any e-mail sent among trustees regarding library business shall be copied to the Administrative Librarian. There is no expectation of privacy for any messages sent or received by e-mail. (Approved January 13, 2004.)
These procedures are meant to provide guidance for staff and Board members in their use of e-mail in regard to the requirements of the Open Meetings Act and the Local Records Act, as they apply to communication among Board members outside of library board meetings.
Most e-mail messages about library business sent among Board members fall under the definition of "public records" as defined by state law. The Board of Trustees will follow these procedures in an effort to comply with the Open Meetings Act.
- Electronic "chat rooms" are inherently detrimental to the open meetings process and will not be used to conduct library business or deliberations.
- "Bulletin boards" or other similar formats, which permit the development of "discussion threads" among Board members, will not be utilized.
- The Administrative Librarian may provide information relating to library business to Board members using e-mail, attachments or other electronic methods. Any response from Board members about these communications must be sent only to the Administrative Librarian (no "reply to all" responses). An appropriate record of these communications will be maintained in the Library files to assure compliance with open records laws.
- Board members may send e-mail items to all other Board members with items of interest provided that no response is requested or required. Such e-mails should clearly state that no response should be made. It is required that any such e-mails be sent to the Administrative Librarian for storage.
- A Board member may send e-mail to all other Board members regarding scheduling issues. Board members may reply to the sender provided that their response is limited to the subject of the original message and does not include items of substance.
- E-mails to Board members will be copied to all trustees and the Administrative Librarian. When e-mails from the public require Board response, the Board President or his/her designee will respond and will copy other trustees and the Administrative Librarian.
- Any item of business for a Board agenda will be directed to the Board President and the Administrative Librarian so that it can be included in the Board’s agenda according to normal procedures. Action items will be prepared and distributed by the Administrative Librarian in accordance with established procedures.
- The Administrative Librarian will maintain a separate e-mail address to store official e-mail records as described above. This record will be maintained indefinitely. If software changes require the records be transferred to paper, the paper records will be maintained for ten years or such time as may be established by the State of Illinois. (Approved January 13, 2004.)
The Library may be closed early if severe weather is likely to seriously endanger employees returning home. The Library may open late if roads are impassable. If the Library must be closed for heat loss, power failure, bomb threats and similar situations, staff should remain available to come in if called. The responsibility for closing the Library rests with the Administrative Librarian, or if he/she is not available, with the department head on duty who has the most service at the Library. All closings must be reported immediately to City Hall and to the Board at the next Board meeting. (Approved October 22, 1979; revised November, 1988.)
Trustees in the capacity of trust upon them, shall observe ethical standards with absolute truth, integrity, and honor.
Trustees must avoid situations in which personal interests might be served or financial benefits gained at the expense of library users, colleagues, or the institution.
It is incumbent upon any trustee to disqualify himself/herself immediately whenever the appearance of conflict of interest exists.
Trustees must distinguish clearly in their actions and statements between their personal philosophies and attitudes and those of the institution, acknowledging the formal position of the board even if they personally disagree.
A trustee must respect the confidential nature of library business while being aware of and in compliance with applicable laws governing freedom of information.
Trustees must be prepared to support to the fullest the efforts of librarians in resisting censorship of library materials by groups or individuals.
Trustees who accept library board responsibilities are expected to perform all of the functions of library trustees.
This statement was developed by the American Library Trustee Association (ALTA) and the Public Library Association (PLA) Common Concerns Committee. It was adopted by both the ALTA and PLA Boards in July 1985, amended by ALTA in July 1988 and approved by PLA in January 1989. (Approved November 8, 2005.)
The Library requires compliance with the Local Government Travel Expense Control Act for reimbursement of expenses, including transportation, meals, and lodging expenses incurred when traveling on Library-business (e.g. to attend Library-related conferences while representing the Library). All such expenses must generally be preapproved. Employees are expected to exercise the same care in incurring expenses for official business as a prudent person would in spending personal funds. If unsure whether an expense is reimbursable, contact the Library Director prior to incurring the travel related expense.
Maximum Reimbursement Rates for Expenses
Airfare: 100% of lowest reasonable rate (e.g., coach, economy, or web-fare) for air travel will be reimbursed. Flights should be booked in a timely manner to avoid premium airfare pricing.
Automobile Rentals: 100% of the lowest reasonable rate automobile (economy or mid-size) including gasoline and insurance expenses for the time period used for Library business will be reimbursed. Employees using rental cars are required to purchase insurance through the rental agency for the entire rental period. The vehicle must be refueled prior to returning it to the rental company.
Automobile Use: Any employee driving on Library business must file a copy of their car insurance with the Library Director every six months (January and July).
Personal Automobiles: 100% of mileage will be reimbursed based on the distance from the Library to the work-related event, not from the employee's residence. When travel to the event is directly from an employee's residence, no reimbursement will be made if the distance is less than the mileage of a normal commute to the Library. If the distance is higher than the employee's normal commute, reimbursement will be paid based on the differential of the commute to the event less the mileage of a normal commute to the Library. An employee will be reimbursed at the prevailing Internal Revenue Service standard mileage rate. The same procedure will be used for those employees that typically use public transportation to commute to work if public transportation is used to commute to the event. If the cost is higher than the employee’s normal commute, reimbursement will be paid at the differential of the commute less the cost of a normal commute to the workplace. Mileage reimbursement will be limited to the price of a coach airfare ticket if the employee chooses to drive to an event for which the airfare would have been less expensive.
Local Transportation: 100% of the actual reasonable rate shall be reimbursed for the use of taxi, shuttle, rideshare, or public transportation services.
Other Transportation: 100% of the lowest reasonable rate, not to exceed the cost of air travel, shall be reimbursed. Employees should utilize the most economical transportation.
Lodging Accommodations: 100% reimbursement of the lowest reasonable rate. Lodging must be preapproved by the Library Director. In the event of a change in plans or a cancellation, the employee must cancel the reservation so as not to incur cancellation charges. The Library will not reimburse lodging expenses incurred due to a failure to promptly cancel a reservation.
Meals: Meal reimbursement is limited to the lesser of (i) the lowest reasonable rate as preapproved by the Library Director or (ii) the current U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) regulations in place at the time the expense is incurred. Prior approval by the Library Director and submission of receipts are required for per diem allowances. Meals provided by the conference or seminar must be deducted from the per diem allowance. Partial reimbursement may be made for departure and return days based on travel time. Meals during in-state travel that is not an overnight stay will be reimbursed for actual cost not to exceed the GSA regulations.
Parking: 100% of lowest reasonable rate parking fees at a hotel/motel, conference center, or other site will be reimbursed provided receipts are submitted.
Registration/Conference Fees: 100% of the actual rate when attendance is approved by the Library Director.
Vacation in Conjunction with Business Travel: In cases where vacation time is added to a business trip, any cost variance in airfare, car rental, lodging, and/or any other expenses must be clearly identified on the Travel, Meal, and Lodging Expense Report form and paid by the employee.
Accompanied Travel: When an employee is accompanied by others not on Library business, any lodging, transportation, meals, or other expenses above those incurred for the employee will not be reimbursed by the Library.
Entertainment: The Library will not reimburse an employee or member of the Library Board of Trustees for any entertainment expense.
Tax Exemption: The Library has a governmental exemption from payment of the Retailers' Occupation Tax, the Service Organization Tax, the Use Tax, and the Service Use Tax. A copy of the letter is available from the Library Director and should be provided to any vendor when making purchases for goods and services for the Library and/or to be reimbursed by the Library.
Approval of Expenses
Expenses for Members of the Library Board of Trustees. Travel, meal, and lodging expenses incurred by any member of the Library Board of Trustees must be approved by a roll call majority vote at an open meeting of the Library Board of Trustees.
Expenses for Employees Other than Members of the Library Board of Trustees. Travel, meal, and lodging expenses incurred by any employee in excess of a maximum reimbursement amount stated in this policy must be approved must be approved by a roll call majority vote at an open meeting of the Library Board of Trustees.
Documentation of Expenses
Before an expense for travel, conference/registration fee, meal, or lodging may be paid to an employee or member of the Library Board of Trustees under this Expense Reimbursement Policy, the following minimum documentation must first be submitted, in writing, to the Library Director on a Travel, Meal, and Lodging Expense Form:
- an estimate of the cost of travel, meals, or lodging if expenses have not been incurred or a receipt for the travel, meals, or lodging if expenses have already been incurred;
- the name of the individual who received or is requesting the travel, meal, or lodging expense reimbursement;
- the job title of the individual who received or is requesting the travel, meal, or lodging expense reimbursement; and
- the date or dates and nature of the official business for which the travel, meal, or lodging expense was or will be expended.
At the discretion of the Library Director or Library Board of Trustees, additional documentation relevant to the request for reimbursement may be required. All documents and information submitted in connection with this policy are public records subject to disclosure under the Freedom of Information Act. Contact the Business Office for a copy of the Travel, Meal, and Lodging Expense form or for any questions related to this policy.
(Approved January 10, 2017; amended September 11, 2018.)
The Board of Trustees of the Lake Forest Library authorizes the Library Director to implement the Library's administrative and compliance activities relating to the Freedom of Information Act, 5 ILCS 140, in accordance with this Policy, including the development and maintenance of procedures and forms for the implementation of such activities. (Approved October 13, 2020.)
The freedom to read is essential to our democracy. It is continuously under attack. Private groups and public authorities in various parts of the country are working to remove or limit access to reading materials, to censor content in schools, to label "controversial" views, to distribute lists of "objectionable" books or authors, and to purge libraries. These actions apparently rise from a view that our national tradition of free expression is no longer valid; that censorship and suppression are needed to counter threats to safety or national security, as well as to avoid the subversion of politics and the corruption of morals. We, as individuals devoted to reading and as librarians and publishers responsible for disseminating ideas, wish to assert the public interest in the preservation of the freedom to read.
Most attempts at suppression rest on a denial of the fundamental premise of democracy: that the ordinary individual, by exercising critical judgment, will select the good and reject the bad. We trust Americans to recognize propaganda and misinformation, and to make their own decisions about what they read and believe. We do not believe they are prepared to sacrifice their heritage of a free press in order to be "protected" against what others think may be bad for them. We believe they still favor free enterprise in ideas and expression.
These efforts at suppression are related to a larger pattern of pressures being brought against education, the press, art and images, films, broadcast media, and the Internet. The problem is not only one of actual censorship. The shadow of fear cast by these pressures leads, we suspect, to an even larger voluntary curtailment of expression by those who seek to avoid controversy or unwelcome scrutiny by government officials.
Such pressure toward conformity is perhaps natural to a time of accelerated change. And yet suppression is never more dangerous than in such a time of social tension. Freedom has given the United States the elasticity to endure strain. Freedom keeps open the path of novel and creative solutions, and enables change to come by choice. Every silencing of a heresy, every enforcement of an orthodoxy, diminishes the toughness and resilience of our society and leaves it the less able to deal with controversy and difference.
Now as always in our history, reading is among our greatest freedoms. The freedom to read and write is almost the only means for making generally available ideas or manners of expression that can initially command only a small audience. The written word is the natural medium for the new idea and the untried voice from which come the original contributions to social growth. It is essential to the extended discussion that serious thought requires, and to the accumulation of knowledge and ideas into organized collections.
We believe that free communication is essential to the preservation of a free society and a creative culture. We believe that these pressures toward conformity present the danger of limiting the range and variety of inquiry and expression on which our democracy and our culture depend. We believe that every American community must jealously guard the freedom to publish and to circulate, in order to preserve its own freedom to read. We believe that publishers and librarians have a profound responsibility to give validity to that freedom to read by making it possible for the readers to choose freely from a variety of offerings.
The freedom to read is guaranteed by the Constitution. Those with faith in free people will stand firm on these constitutional guarantees of essential rights and will exercise the responsibilities that accompany these rights.
We therefore affirm these propositions:
It is in the public interest for publishers and librarians to make available the widest diversity of views and expressions, including those that are unorthodox, unpopular, or considered dangerous by the majority.
Creative thought is by definition new, and what is new is different. The bearer of every new thought is a rebel until that idea is refined and tested. Totalitarian systems attempt to maintain themselves in power by the ruthless suppression of any concept that challenges the established orthodoxy. The power of a democratic system to adapt to change is vastly strengthened by the freedom of its citizens to choose widely from among conflicting opinions offered freely to them. To stifle every nonconformist idea at birth would mark the end of the democratic process. Furthermore, only through the constant activity of weighing and selecting can the democratic mind attain the strength demanded by times like these. We need to know not only what we believe but why we believe it.
Publishers, librarians, and booksellers do not need to endorse every idea or presentation they make available. It would conflict with the public interest for them to establish their own political, moral, or aesthetic views as a standard for determining what should be published or circulated.
Publishers and librarians serve the educational process by helping to make available knowledge and ideas required for the growth of the mind and the increase of learning. They do not foster education by imposing as mentors the patterns of their own thought. The people should have the freedom to read and consider a broader range of ideas than those that may be held by any single librarian or publisher or government or church. It is wrong that what one can read should be confined to what another thinks proper.
It is contrary to the public interest for publishers or librarians to bar access to writings on the basis of the personal history or political affiliations of the author.
No art or literature can flourish if it is to be measured by the political views or private lives of its creators. No society of free people can flourish that draws up lists of writers to whom it will not listen, whatever they may have to say.
There is no place in our society for efforts to coerce the taste of others, to confine adults to the reading matter deemed suitable for adolescents, or to inhibit the efforts of writers to achieve artistic expression.
To some, much of modern expression is shocking. But is not much of life itself shocking? We cut off literature at the source if we prevent writers from dealing with the stuff of life. Parents and teachers have a responsibility to prepare the young to meet the diversity of experiences in life to which they will be exposed, as they have a responsibility to help them learn to think critically for themselves. These are affirmative responsibilities, not to be discharged simply by preventing them from reading works for which they are not yet prepared. In these matters values differ, and values cannot be legislated; nor can machinery be devised that will suit the demands of one group without limiting the freedom of others.
It is not in the public interest to force a reader to accept the prejudgment of a label characterizing any expression or its author as subversive or dangerous.
The ideal of labeling presupposes the existence of individuals or groups with wisdom to determine by authority what is good or bad for others. It presupposes that individuals must be directed in making up their minds about the ideas they examine. But Americans do not need others to do their thinking for them.
It is the responsibility of publishers and librarians, as guardians of the people's freedom to read, to contest encroachments upon that freedom by individuals or groups seeking to impose their own standards or tastes upon the community at large; and by the government whenever it seeks to reduce or deny public access to public information.
It is inevitable in the give and take of the democratic process that the political, the moral, or the aesthetic concepts of an individual or group will occasionally collide with those of another individual or group. In a free society individuals are free to determine for themselves what they wish to read, and each group is free to determine what it will recommend to its freely associated members. But no group has the right to take the law into its own hands, and to impose its own concept of politics or morality upon other members of a democratic society. Freedom is no freedom if it is accorded only to the accepted and the inoffensive. Further, democratic societies are more safe, free, and creative when the free flow of public information is not restricted by governmental prerogative or self-censorship.
It is the responsibility of publishers and librarians to give full meaning to the freedom to read by providing books that enrich the quality and diversity of thought and expression. By the exercise of this affirmative responsibility, they can demonstrate that the answer to a "bad" book is a good one, the answer to a "bad" idea is a good one.
The freedom to read is of little consequence when the reader cannot obtain matter fit for that reader's purpose. What is needed is not only the absence of restraint, but the positive provision of opportunity for the people to read the best that has been thought and said. Books are the major channel by which the intellectual inheritance is handed down, and the principal means of its testing and growth. The defense of the freedom to read requires of all publishers and librarians the utmost of their faculties, and deserves of all Americans the fullest of their support.
We state these propositions neither lightly nor as easy generalizations. We here stake out a lofty claim for the value of the written word. We do so because we believe that it is possessed of enormous variety and usefulness, worthy of cherishing and keeping free. We realize that the application of these propositions may mean the dissemination of ideas and manners of expression that are repugnant to many persons. We do not state these propositions in the comfortable belief that what people read is unimportant. We believe rather that what people read is deeply important; that ideas can be dangerous; but that the suppression of ideas is fatal to a democratic society. Freedom itself is a dangerous way of life, but it is ours.
This statement was originally issued in May of 1953 by the Westchester Conference of the American Library Association and the American Book Publishers Council, which in 1970 consolidated with the American Educational Publishers Institute to become the Association of American Publishers.
Adopted June 25, 1953, by the ALA Council and the AAP Freedom to Read Committee; amended January 28, 1972; January 16, 1991; July 12, 2000; June 30, 2004.
A Joint Statement by: American Library Association and Association of American Publishers
The Lake Forest Library (the "Library") in accordance with its mission to make accessible to all Lake Forest residents, as economically and effectively as possible, books and other information resources and services welcomes donations, including revenue and/or in-kind contributions. Such donations shall be used to enhance the collection, events, programs, activities, and services the Library provides to the Lake Forest community.
This policy addresses
- the acceptance of gifts by the Library, and provides guidance to prospective donors;
- individual, foundation, business, and community organization sponsorships; and
- foundation and corporate grants.
Gift Defined. A gift is a voluntary, non-reciprocal transfer of money or property from a donor to the Library. Although the Library welcomes gifts, certain gifts may be unsuitable for the Library because of the nature of the gift, its conditions, or the ongoing cost of managing the gift.
Acceptance of Gifts. The Library will accept unrestricted gifts, and gifts for specific programs and resources, provided such gifts are not inconsistent with the Library's stated mission and goals.
If the Library accepts a gift, the gift shall be final and no restrictions on the Library’s ownership, possession, use or disposition of the gift shall be effective other than restrictions approved by the Board of Trustees and documented in writing. All gifts will be accepted only with the donor’s full agreement that the Library has the right to handle or dispose of the gift in the best interests of the Library.
The Library cannot provide appraisals of gifts it accepts for income tax or other purposes.
The Board of Directors, acting in the best interests of the Library and in its sole discretion, shall have the right to accept or refuse any gift on behalf of the Library. Notwithstanding the preceding sentence, acceptance of Library Materials is at the sole discretion of the Library Director.
The Library shall seek the advice of legal counsel in matters relating to the acceptance of gifts when appropriate. The Library urges all prospective donors to consult with personal legal and financial advisors in matters relating to their gifts and any resulting tax and estate planning consequences.
Gifts of Library Materials will be evaluated using guidelines set forth in the Collection Development Policy and are accepted with the understanding that items which are not added to the collection will be disposed of at the discretion of the Library. The donor should understand that the materials donated become the property of the Library, and their ultimate disposition will reflect library needs as interpreted by the Library Director. Suitability, extent of duplication, physical condition, copyright dates, and costs of processing and housing are factors in making decisions about the disposition of gifts. Acceptance of any gift is conditioned by its active value to the Library which does not include the museum function. It is the policy of the Library not to accept special collections of books to be kept together as a separate physical entity. Gift collections may be accepted only with the understanding that they may be integrated into the general collection.
Contact the Library Director with questions regarding specific donations. All final decisions on the restrictive nature of a gift, and its acceptance or refusal, shall be made by the Board.
Acknowledgement of Donors. The Library Director will acknowledge all gifts, regardless of value. All capital gifts will be noted in the historical documentation of Library property. In addition, the Board President will acknowledge all gifts of $500 or more, including gifts from the Friends of Lake Forest Library. All gifts of significant importance will be noted in the minutes of the Board subject to the discretion of the President of the Library Board.
Donors sponsoring specific events and programs will be recognized on the related marketing materials.
The anonymity of the donor will be respected upon request. This request will be reflected on any published lists and other forms of donor recognition.
A notice will be posted annually, and included in the minutes, at the end of each fiscal year listing all contributions to the Library. A news release will be issued at the end of each fiscal year noting the donors to the Library for the past year. No monetary amounts will be listed.
Corporate, business, and individual sponsorships
This policy identifies general conditions under which an individual, foundation, corporate, business, or community organization may become sponsors of specific library collections, programs, services, and/or events ("Sponsor").
Sponsorship Defined. Sponsorships create a mutually beneficial exchange, whereby the Sponsor receives a benefit or reciprocal value in return for providing cash or in-kind gift to the Library. Sponsorships do not imply Library endorsement of the Sponsor's product or service.
Acceptance of Sponsorships. The Board of Trustees has concluded that sponsorships of this sort are consistent with the Library’s mission and will help the Library maintain or increase its level of service to the Lake Forest community. Moreover, Sponsorship entitles the sponsoring individual, foundation, corporate, business, and community organization with recognition, which may be expected to enhance its image in the community.
Potential sponsorships will be evaluated by the Library Director and the Board of Trustees on a case‐by‐case basis. The particular conditions under which a sponsorship may be agreed upon and carried out will be determined by the Board of Trustees and implemented by the Library Director and Library staff.
The Board of Trustees of the Library reserves the right to refuse any sponsorship it feels is inappropriate or unsuitable to its goals and mission, and to cancel the agreement at any time.
General Terms and Conditions. All decisions, determinations, and actions taken by the Board of Trustees or Library Director with respect to the implementation of a sponsorship agreement are final and not subject to review by the Sponsor.
A written agreement, signed by the Library and the Sponsor, will be entered into to set out the terms of the sponsorship.
A Sponsor shall have no reason to expect that it will receive special treatment other than as may be stated in the written agreement nor that it will be in a position to influence the policies or practices of the Library.
A Sponsor should also understand that sponsorship does not imply endorsement of its products or services by the Library.
Sponsorship should not create a conflict with the mission and objectives of the Library, nor with its broader policies and practices.
The Board reserves the right to terminate any existing sponsorships if conditions arise that conflict with this policy or if the sponsorship no longer supports the best interests or mission of the Library.
Sponsorships differ from collaborative partnerships which involve institutions, organizations, businesses or individuals, working together with the Library in an effort to accomplish a common goal with a shared sense of purpose and responsibility for the outcome. These partnerships do not involve the exchange of money. The Library routinely partners with others to deliver resources, programming, and services to the Lake Forest community.
Grant Defined. A grant is the transfer of money or property from a funding organization or individual to the Library. Typically, a grant award requires the performance of specific activities and follow-up reporting.
Acceptance of Grants. The Library will identify and apply for grant funds that further its mission and strategic plan. Any award of a grant shall be subject to the approval of the Board of Trustees, and the Library will use awards pursuant to the terms and conditions of the grant and comply with all reporting requirements. (Approved April 11, 2017.)
The Lake Forest Library shall be closed on the following official holidays: New Year's Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.
The Library is open on Presidents Day, Lake Forest Day, and Veterans Day. Eligible employees will receive a floating holiday for each of these days. (Approved April 14, 1992; revised May 14, 2002.)
The Library will close at 5:00 p.m. on Thanksgiving Eve, at 5:00 p.m. on July 3 if the 3rd falls on a weekday, and at 5:00 p.m. on December 31st. If the holiday falls on Sunday, the Library will observe the holiday on the following Monday. (Approved November 27, 1978; revised August 12, 1997; revised May 14, 2002.)
Homebound Service provides library services to individuals of any age who are unable to physically come to the library. "Homebound" is defined as being generally confined to one's residence either temporarily due to illness or accident, or permanently due to disability, age, or other mobility issues. Participants may reside in private homes or assisted care facilities.
Homebound services are provided at no additional cost to anyone with a valid Lake Forest Library card in good standing. Caregivers to a person requiring continuous care are also eligible for the service.
Materials will be delivered to and picked up from a participant’s residence on an agreed upon schedule. Participants will be charged with the replacement cost for materials that are lost or damaged while in their care.
Patrons who request Homebound Service may be asked to allow the Library to maintain a Reading History Log for the sole purpose of avoiding duplication of materials and circulation. The Reading History Log will only be used for internal purposes and will not be made public. The Reading History Log will be destroyed at the conclusion of the patron's participation in the service.
The Library representative may choose not to enter a home, leave a home immediately, and/or recommend suspension of Homebound Service if any of the following conditions exist:
- Pets are not confined (except for service animals trained to assist a disabled person).
- Any person in the home presents threatening, obscene, or abusive language, gestures, or images.
- Any person in the home harasses the library representative.
- Any person in the home is engaging in illegal activity.
- Any person in the home exhibits signs of illness that may endanger the health of the library representative.
- Any library material currently in the possession of the homebound patron appears to be willfully defaced, mutilated, or damaged while in the custody of the homebound person
- The conditions of the home and/or property are unsafe or unsanitary.
The Lake Forest Library has the right to terminate this service to any individual who does not meet the terms and requirement as defined above. (Approved January 12, 2021.)
The American Library Association 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, 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.
Adopted June 19, 1939. Amended October 14, 1944; June 18, 1948; February 2, 1961; June 27, 1967; and January 23, 1980; January 29, 2019. Inclusion of "age" reaffirmed January 23, 1996, by the ALA Council.
The Lake Forest Library is open Monday through Thursday from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., on Friday 9 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., and on Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. The library is also open from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday. These hours are subject to change at the discretion of the Board of Trustees. (Approved July 19, 1982; revised August 12, 1997; June 11, 2019)
Parents are responsible for the behavior of their children while they are in the Library. Children under the age of 7 must be attended by a parent or other responsible caregiver age 14 or older at all times while in the Library.
The Library Staff will attempt to contact parents of unsupervised children. If parents are unavailable, the Lake Forest Police Department will be contacted. (Approved April 12, 1994.)
Lake Forest Library is committed to maintaining an environment that:
- allows patrons to freely access Library information, resources, and events, and
- protects the privacy of its patrons and staff members and ensures their freedom from harassment, intimidation, and threats to their safety and well-being.
In order to provide appropriate safeguards against such behavior and enforce policies and procedures addressing that behavior when it occurs, the Library has adopted the following policy regarding the taking of photographs or recordings on Library property and during Library events at off-site venues.
Permission is not required for taking photographs or recordings in exterior and interior public areas of the Library for personal, noncommercial use if no tripods, lights, or other specialized equipment is used. If tripods, lights, or other specialized equipment is to be used, requests must be made at least 24 hours in advance. However, there may be Library locations where the taking of photographs or recordings is restricted or prohibited (i.e., restrooms, lactation rooms, childcare areas, areas reserved for staff, and areas displaying museum or archival materials). In addition, persons taking photographs and recordings shall not (i) compromise a patron or staff member’s right to privacy, (ii) harass, intimidate, or threaten a patron or staff member, or (iii) block Library aisles, walkways, stairwells, doors, or exits.
Commercial Photography and Recordings
The Library may permit use of its facilities for the taking of commercial photographs or recordings if the project does not interfere with the mission of the Library and is in accordance with the rest of this policy. The Library will charge a fee to offset costs incurred by the Library to provide access to the facility and prior permission must be sought at least one week in advance.
Photography and Recordings of Materials and Resources
The Library permits the taking of photographs and recordings of its publicly available collections. However, persons taking photographs or recordings are solely responsible for obtaining consent or other permission regarding copyrighted materials.
Library Photography and Recordings
The Library reserves the right to document its services and the public’s use of the Library building and grounds. The Library may take photographs and recordings of patrons using the Library or attending Library events to use in its publicity and communications materials. These photographs and recordings may be copied, displayed, televised, and published (including in the Library print and digital newsletters, website, and social media sites). Any individual that does not wish the Library to use a photograph or recording of them or their child should inform a Library staff member prior to or while such photographs or recordings are being taken.
Off-site Photography and Recordings of Library Events
Library staff will abide by any additional restrictions or policies of the hosting venue when photographing or recording off-site Library events.
Library Board Meetings
Pursuant to Section 120/2.05 of the Illinois Open Meetings Act (5 ILCS 120/1 et seq.), any person may record the proceedings of the Library Board and other meetings required by the Act to be open to the public. The recordings may be made by tape, film, or other means and shall not disrupt the meeting or create a safety hazard.
Persons involved in taking photographs or recordings are solely liable for any injuries to persons or property that result from their activities on Library property. They also have sole responsibility for obtaining all necessary releases and permissions required by law from persons who can be identified in any photograph or recording or for copyrighted materials. The Library undertakes no responsibility for obtaining these releases or permissions.
Information for the Public
The Library will have visible documentation throughout the building, on its website, and in its marketing and publicity materials stating that “Photographs and recordings may be taken of patrons and presenters using Lake Forest Library and during events. These photographs and recordings are for Library use only and may be published in print and digital materials. Please notify Library staff if you do not wish to be photographed or recorded.”
Library staff will alert patrons prior to photographing or recording them using the Library or attending an event and give them the opportunity to opt out. “We will be photographing or recording today’s event. Please notify a member of the Library staff if you do not want to be photographed or recorded.”
If a patron opts out, non-identifiable photographs and recordings that don’t include faces, voices, or other identifiable features may still be taken and published in print and digital materials.
Information for Library Staff
Photographs or recordings of Library staff engaged in normal work activities related to their job may be taken. Staff members may opt out of being photographed or recorded at any time. Non-identifiable photographs and recordings that don’t include faces, voices, or other identifiable features may still be taken and published in print and digital materials.
Members of the Media
Members of the media may photograph and record patrons and Library staff at events sponsored by the Library, following notification to a member of Library staff prior to the event.
Members of the media photographing or recording on Library premises have the sole responsibility for obtaining releases and permissions from persons who are photographed or recorded. Taking photographs or recordings of a minor requires the permission of the minor’s parent or guardian. The Library undertakes no responsibility for obtaining these releases.
Right Subject to Compliance with Policy
The Library reserves the right to ask any individual or group violating this policy to cease the taking of photographs or recordings. (Adopted by the Library Board of Trustees on August 14, 2021.)
Illinois Open Meetings Act Amendments, PA 94-28
In order to comply with the legal requirements of the Illinois Open Meetings Act Amendments, effective January 1, 2006, Lake Forest Library will post on its web site the agenda for any regular meetings of the Board of Trustees. The posted agenda will remain accessible on the web site until the regular meeting in question is concluded.
A notice of all meetings of the Board of Trustees will be posted on its web site until the meeting is concluded.
A notice of the annual schedule of regular meetings will be posted on the web site and remain until a new public notice of this schedule is approved.
Effective July 1, 2006, the Lake Forest Library will post on its web site the minutes of regular meetings of the Board of Trustees that are open to the public within seven days of the approval of the minutes by the Board of Trustees. The posted minutes will remain accessible on the web site for at least 60 days after posting. (Approved November 8, 2005.)
The Illinois Open Meetings Act provides in Section 2.06 that at meetings of public bodies, "any person shall be permitted an opportunity to address public officials under the rules established and recorded by the public body." 5 ILCS 120/2.06(g).
The Board of Trustees welcomes public participation. This policy provides the following rules and guidelines for public participation at its meetings.
Individuals attending board meetings must conduct themselves with respect and civility toward others. Abusive, profane, threatening, or harassing language and/or personal attacks will not be permitted. The Board President or presiding officer may prohibit further comment at the meeting by a speaker whose remarks violate this rule.
Public comments are permitted during the time designated on the Board of Trustees meeting agenda, unless otherwise directed by the Board President.
The Board President determines the order in which speakers will be recognized.
When recognized by the Board President, the speaker should begin by stating his or her name and address.
Public comments will ordinarily be limited to three (3) minutes per speaker. The Board President shall have discretion to modify this time limit, as well as to limit repetitive comments. Members of the public will not be allowed to speak a second time until all members of the public who wish to speak have been allowed to do so. The Board President will determine whether second public comments will be permitted, and if so, the appropriate amount of time for public discussion, and will end public comment at his/her discretion.
Board members are not obligated to respond to comments from the public. Issues requiring possible action by the board may be added to a future meeting agenda, and issues that can be addressed by library administration will be noted.
A copy of these guidelines will be placed next to the sign-in sheet made available to members of the public at the entrance to board meetings.
Petitions or written correspondence directed to the board shall be presented to the board by the Board President or secretary at the next regularly scheduled board meeting.
Minutes are a summary of the board’s discussion and actions. Speaker requests to append written statements or correspondence to the minutes are not favored. Generally, written materials presented to the board will be included in the library’s files rather than in the minutes. The Board President shall have the authority to determine procedural matters regarding public participation not otherwise defined in these guidelines.
The following example may be used:
Adopted by the Board of Trustees on February 13, 2018.
Lake Forest Library patron services covered under this Reference Policy include reference services, historical research, reader services, and interlibrary loan services.
Reference service and materials are available to all persons regardless of the race, sex, creed, color, national origin, citizenship status, marital status, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity/expression, physical appearance, physical or mental ability, socioeconomic level, education level, and any other legally protected characteristics of the patron. Adult and Youth staff are required to pursue continuing education opportunities which will enable them to better meet the reference needs of the Library's patrons.
Reference service and materials are available during all hours the Library is open and are provided in response to all forms of inquiry including but not limited to patrons in the Library, the telephone, email, and other digital platforms. Reference does not include editorial, typing, tutoring, or document translation services.
Staff will set reasonable limits on the amount of time and level of response given to patron requests for information in order to ensure equal and fair access to library services for all patrons. Patrons may not request to work exclusively with a particular staff member.
All requests are treated confidentially and courteously, and without regard to age, race, sex, social, or economic status of the patron. Names of patrons and the transactions which occur between patrons and the staff are confidential and not discussed outside a professional context.
In the instance of legal, medical, finance, investment, or tax reference questions, the staff may only guide the patron to the material available on the topic of interest. The staff may not evaluate or interpret the information provided nor may the staff define the meaning of terms, offer investment advice, select income tax forms, or serve as a surrogate for a professional in any of the fields listed above. If all materials within the Library are beyond the understanding of the patron, the patron will be advised to consult with their professional from the above listed fields for additional information or advice.
Library staff will not engage in conversation or debate of a personal nature, including, but not limited to, religion, political position, or personal lives.
When offering help with technology, staff will offer basic help on devices and software applications but are not responsible for any changes made to the devices.
Historical Research Services
The Lake Forest Library provides local historical research services, including provision of copies from Community Cornerstone database and other Lake Forest historical resources. The fee schedule (updated annually) and other information on hourly research fees, postage or delivery costs, and copying costs will be provided at the time of the request. Fees are collected in advance of the service.
The Lake Forest Library provides advisory services on reading and viewing materials. The Library's Readers Advisory Service promotes recreational enjoyment of books and authors of all genres and formats by providing patrons with personalized consultation, suggestions, and assistance in locating and choosing materials. Each patron's reading tastes will be taken seriously and without judgment. The Library's Viewer Advisory Service assists patrons in locating and choosing movies, documentaries, and films to fit their interests and needs. These services are also provided as part of the Library's Homebound Service.
This policy covers interlibrary loan activity outside of the agreements and policies established by the Lake Forest Library's membership in the CCS (Cooperative Computer Service) consortium. Interlibrary loan is the process by which a library requests material from, or supplies materials to, another library. Through interlibrary loan, patrons may request materials from other libraries in Illinois and from other libraries that participate in OCLC (Online Computer Library Center). The Library facilitates and manages these requests.
Lending libraries determine the cost of lost or damaged items, and these costs are paid by the patron. Additional fees charged by lending libraries for microform borrowing, photocopying, and/or other fees are passed along to the Lake Forest Library patrons, with their prior approval.
Libraries may refuse to borrow items that are rare or valuable, and whose replacement value would exceed a reasonable amount. Loan periods are determined by the lending library. Interlibrary Loan service is not intended to supply textbooks or materials required for coursework or other long term exclusive use.
The requested materials are sent to the Lake Forest Library, where the patron may check the items out (or use them in the Library, if so stipulated by the owning library).
Interlibrary loan is a service reserved for Lake Forest Library cardholders in good standing. The Lake Forest Library affirms that interlibrary loan is an adjunct to, not a substitute for, the Library's collection. The Library exhausts local resources first, including its own collection, the CCS consortium collection, and those of libraries in the Reaching Across Illinois Library System (RAILS), before requesting items from libraries out of the system.
The Library endorses the Illinet Interlibrary Loan Code and the American Library Association Interlibrary Loan Code for the United States. The Library complies with Copyright Law (17 U.S.C.) and its accompanying guidelines.
Standards for Illinois Public Libraries
Adult and Youth services staff are required to pursue continuing education opportunities which will enable them to better meet the reference and advisory services needs of the Library's patrons. Adult and Youth Reference and Advisory Services are evaluated annually. (Approved by the Library Board on January 12, 2021, incorporating "Fee Schedule for Non-Resident Requests for Reference & Historic Materials.")
Patrons failing to return Room Use materials will be subject to fines set by the Administrative Librarian, subject to approval of the Board. (Approved September 15, 1980.)
Shoes and shirt are required.
Please be considerate in your use of cell phones.
Children under seven years of age must be accompanied and supervised by a responsible person age 14 or older.
There shall be no eating in the public areas of the library. Covered non-alcoholic drinks and bottled water are permitted in public areas without computers. Alcohol is prohibited by City Ordinance No. 2010-04 Sec. 4-4 City Code.
Firearms are prohibited in the library, 430 Illinois Compiled Statues 66/65.
Pets are not allowed in the library. Animals assisting disabled patrons are allowed.
Quiet conversation only is permitted. Excessive noise which causes a disruption of others will lead to a request to leave the building.
Library restrooms are gender neutral. One person at a time will be permitted the use of a rest room, unless the assistance of another person is required.
There shall be no smoking in the library or within 25 feet of the entrance. Sec. 19-66 City Code. The use of chewing tobacco, e-cigarettes and any vapor product, and cannabis or any cannabis-infused product is prohibited in the library and on the library grounds.
There shall be no solicitation of any kind within Lake Forest Library. (Revised May 1995.)
In support of its mission to provide services for residents, the Library permits tutoring on the premises in accordance with this policy. The intention is not for the Library to be used as a classroom or place of business for tutors to work from, but as a safe and quiet workspace for students to receive instruction. The Library does not sponsor, recommend, or assume liability or responsibility for the work and/or activities of tutors who use Library space.
Tutors, students, and parents are expected to observe the following guidelines:
- All arrangements must be made between the tutor, student, and parents. Library staff will not deliver messages or help find a tutor.
- Tutors are encouraged to use the Reference Annex and the Media Lab Study areas on the main level.
- The Children's Library is intended for the use of children ages birth through 8th grade and their parents or caregivers. If the student falls into that age range, it would be appropriate to use one of the study tables in the Children's Library. Tables can neither be reserved, nor can the expectation be made that others will be asked to move to accommodate a tutoring session.
- The main lobby areas (Rotunda and Foyer), Reading Room, Fine Arts Room, Business Room and Reference Room should not be used for tutoring sessions.
- Tutors are permitted to use the Library during any of its hours of operation. Failure to leave promptly at closing time may result in restriction or loss of library privileges. Tutors and students must bring their own supplies.
- Tutors may not publish or distribute advertisements or letters indicating the Library as their place of doing business or otherwise imply Library sponsorship of their activities. Tutors may not advertise their business in the Library.
- Library staff is happy to assist tutors and their students as they would any patron; however, Library staff must be available to all people who come into the Library for help.
- Tutors are responsible for the behavior of their student during the session. It is preferred that the caregiver of children under 9 years old remain in the Library while their child is being tutored.
- Tutors and students must follow the Library Rules, including ensuring that conversations and instruction are not loud enough to distract other library users, and exercise consideration in the use of cell phones. Additionally, tutor and student belongings and use of space should not interfere with easy access through the Library or other Library users. Students and tutors must be in possession of their belongings at all times.
(Approved January 12, 2016.)
Where no specific Library policy, administrative directive, procedure, or practice is in effect, those policies, administrative directives, procedures, and practices of the City of Lake Forest which are from time to time specifically designated by the Board as applicable to the Library shall be in effect. (Revised August 1997.)
Display and exhibit facilities are to be used to further the program of the Library.
A bulletin board is available for announcements of music and drama events, civic programs and similar items of cultural or educational interest.
Two glass-enclosed display cases are available for the display of materials of community interest related to the Library's collections or objectives. Through these exhibits, the Library makes the public more aware of its resources and facilities and widens its sphere of influence and service.
In order to guarantee equal opportunity for all members of the community, no individual or organization may use the exhibit cases more than once per calendar year. Art exhibits which include saleable items are permissible, providing no price tag is affixed to any work.
The use, by individuals or organizations, of the Library's facilities for displays and/or exhibits, other than those which pertain to the Library, is not a right but a privilege which is subject to review by the Board of Trustees.
The Administrative Librarian may grant the privilege of placing exhibits and displays in the Library, subject to the following conditions:
- No poster, display, exhibit, pamphlet, brochure, leaflet, or booklet shall be exhibited, displayed, or placed in the Library for distribution without the permission of the Administrative Librarian.
- No outside organization or individual shall be permitted to display or exhibit any materials, leaflets, or posters which advocate the election or defeat of a candidate for public office, or which advocate an affirmative or negative vote for or against any proposition, whether political or otherwise.
- No organization or individual shall be permitted to place in the Library any box, receptacle, or canister which solicits donations, nor shall any poster or display be permitted which advocates or solicits consideration of any product or item sold by any commercial or charitable enterprise; however, posters announcing bazaars or programs may be displayed provided there is room for such displays and they are of reasonable size. Such displays shall be on a "first-come, first-served" basis.
- While the Library will exercise due caution in the use or handling of display material, it cannot be responsible for loss or damage to such material beyond insurance coverage held on the display cases.
Any individual or individuals found vandalizing library property in any manner will have their family privileges suspended indefinitely. The reinstatement of these privileges will be at the discretion of the Library Board and the Administrative Librarian. (Approved October 10, 1977.)
Volunteer employees and Friends of Lake Forest Library who contribute their services to the Library shall be permitted to undertake those jobs that are in their areas of interest and for which they are qualified.