Meeting Space Policy
1. The George Hail Free Library (hereinafter “the Library”) makes available meeting space to groups for civic, cultural, and educational purposes during the library’s normal hours of operation. Meeting space is not available for social gatherings, fundraising, or commercial purposes. “Group(s)” is defined as any association, organization, corporation, or gathering of individuals however denominated.
2. The Library subscribes to the tenets of the American Library Association’s Library Bill of Rights(opens in a new tab), Article VI, which states in part, “libraries which make 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". Since George Hail Free Library has no separate meeting rooms, no group with a specific religious or political agenda may use the library during regular operating hours.
3. Providing use of meeting space does not in any way constitute an endorsement of a group's statements, presentations, policies or beliefs by the Library. The Library shall not be identified or implied as a sponsor of the event or group.
4. All events held in the Library meeting space must be open to the public. “Event” is defined as any meeting, program, gathering, or performance.
5. All use of meeting space is approved by the library director or designee.
6. Failure to comply with the provisions of the Library’s meeting space policy will result in the suspension of future meeting space use.
7. Library-initiated programs have priority over all other uses of meeting space. In the event of a scheduling conflict, groups will be given timely notice and the Library will work with a group to reschedule the event subject to availability. If there is no availability, all fees will be refunded.
Meeting Space Reservations
1. A Meeting Space Request Form must be completed for all requests for the use of meeting rooms. Requests may be submitted up to 3 months in advance. Submitting a Request Form does not guarantee use of the meeting room or the date and time requested.
2. Fees may be charged for the use of the Library meeting space. All fees are due and payable one week in advance of the event. Checks should be made payable to: George Hail Free Library. Please refer to the Meeting Space Request Form for the fee schedule. If fees are not received one week in advance, the space reservation may be canceled.
3. Groups requesting the use of the meeting space will designate on the request form a contact person who shall be its formal representative while the space is being used. Inquiries concerning the meeting in question will be referred to the contact person.
4. The person requesting a meeting space must be at least 18 years of age.
5. The library director has sole discretion to determine the necessity of police presence. The group will cover any costs incurred by the use of police details.
6. Continued and repetitious use of the meeting space by a single group or organization may be limited if it interferes with other group requests.
7. Groups may not use the name, address, or telephone number of the Library as the official address or permanent meeting place of the organization.
8. Once a space is reserved, the group is not permitted to allow a third party to use the space in their place.
9. Meeting space use will be denied to anyone providing false, misleading, or incomplete information on a Meeting Space Request Form.
11. Extended and exclusive use of the Library's meeting space for cultural or educational purposes, such as a theater engagement or art exhibit, may be arranged under a separate agreement with the library director.
Use of Meeting Space
1. Use of meeting space is available during the Library’s normal hours of operation or after the close of the library with special permission. Groups are required to vacate meeting space fifteen minutes prior to library closing.
2. The Library assumes no liability for organizations or their meeting attendees using the Library facilities, or for theft or damage to vehicles or personal property while on the premises. The Library is not responsible for equipment, clothing, or other items left on its premises at the close of a meeting. The meeting organizer jointly and severally agrees to indemnify and hold harmless the Library, and its agents/employees and its Successors and assigns, from any claims, action, liability, loss, damage or suit, arising from the use of the Library facilities. In the event of any asserted claim, the Library shall provide the meeting organizer reasonably timely written notice of the same, and thereafter the event organizer shall at its own expense defend, protect, and hold harmless the Library against said claim or any loss or liability thereunder.
3. Meeting space may not be used in any way that interferes with the operation of the Library, or which threatens the safety of library staff and patrons. All attendees must adhere to all federal, state, local laws, regulations and library policies including the Library’s Code of Conduct.
4. Posted space capacity, as determined by the fire marshal, will be observed and enforced at all times.
5. Groups are responsible for and will be charged for any damage to library property, or any inordinate amount of cleaning resulting from the use of the meeting space. Groups are required to notify library staff immediately of any spills or damage to the space or library property.
6. Simple refreshments may be served with prior approval, provided groups use their own supplies and equipment and leave the area in a clean and orderly condition. Alcoholic beverages are prohibited.
7. Open flames and candles, smoking and vaping, and consumption of marijuana whether by smoking, vaping, or any other method, are prohibited in the Library.
8. The Library makes its meeting space available for use by other governmental agencies, or their contractors, when possible. Agencies holding meetings open only to their own staff may be approved subject to availability.
9. Library-related groups or support groups may be exempted from some of the regulations at the discretion of the library director.
10. The Library is unable to provide storage for any group. All items used for the meeting must be brought in during set up and be removed immediately following the meeting. A representative from the group must be present to accept delivery ahead of time for items needed by the group and take responsibility for its removal afterward.
11. The presenter, not the Library, is responsible for obtaining all rights and clearances regarding copying, performance, display, or distribution of materials for the event.
12. The Library makes its meeting space available for non-profit organizations with a valid 501c3 number for Board of Directors meetings, when possible. Non-Profit organizations holding Board meetings open only to their own board and staff may be approved subject to availability. Non-Profit organizations will be required to submit information confirming their 501c3 status to hold events under this provision.
1. All publicity shall clearly identify the name and contact information of the group sponsoring the program. The Library shall not be identified or implied as a sponsor. All publicity for the event must include the legible disclaimer “This event is not endorsed by or affiliated with the George Hail Free Library.”
Publicity includes but is not limited to all advertising, flyers, press releases, social media postings, newsletters, and any other method of promoting and marketing the event or meeting.
2. Only Library-initiated programs are placed on the Library’s website and social media.
1. The Library reserves the right to cancel any event due to inclement weather, building emergency, or other extenuating circumstances. The Library will do its best to reschedule the event on a mutually agreed upon date and if that is not possible, all fees will be refunded.
2. When the Library closes because of weather or building emergencies, every effort will be made to notify groups scheduled to use meeting space. During adverse weather conditions, group representatives should contact the library or go to the library’s Facebook page for information.
3. Groups are required to notify the Library of any cancellations to meeting space reservations at least 24 hours in advance. Failure to do so will result in loss of fees.
4. Failure to comply with the provisions of the Library’s meeting space policy shall result in the cancellation of any scheduled use of meeting space.