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Rotan Public Library

Library Policies

The following policies govern how we use our library.

Mission Statement

The Mission of the Rotan Public Library is to provide materials, services, and programs to help the community residents obtain information, which meets their personal, educational, professional, and recreational needs. Special emphasis is placed on providing current high-demand materials in a variety of formats for individuals of all ages, providing accurate, useful, and timely information for job-related and personal interest, and encouraging young children to develop an interest in reading and learning.

General Rules

No children under age 12 without adult supervision.

No children under the age of 16 left unattended on library premises at closing.

No animals other than service animals allowed in the library.

Safe Child Policy

Children 12 years of age or younger must be accompanied by a parent, legal guardian, or adult of at least 18 years of age who acknowledges responsibility for the child, during their stay in the library. These parents and/or adults are responsible for their children's behavior while in the building.

Registration Policy

Residents: Library cards are free of charge to individuals who reside in the City of Rotan and Fisher County. Children of the above, from birth through 18 years of age, with parental approval, may apply for a library card. The above individuals must present identification stating their local address, preferably a Texas driver's license.

Nonresidents: Persons who presently reside outside the city of Rotan and/or Fisher County, but reside in the state of Texas, may apply for a library card. Children of nonresidents, from birth through 18 years of age, may apply for a library card with parental permission.

Out of State Persons: At this time, persons residing outside of the state of Texas may not apply for a library card.

Checkout Procedures

Anyone whose behavior meets generally acceptable standards may use materials in this Library.

To check out materials, a library card is required. To obtain a library card, patron name, address, telephone number, driver's license number, identification showing a current address, and signature are required. Children's cards also necessitate the inclusion of the children's ages and parents' names. No physical card will be issued to patrons.

Three (3) items may be checked out at any one item, whether the items are books, magazines, DVDs, or other materials. Each patron, whether adult or child, may thus check out 3 items. Exceptions can be made at Librarian discretion.

Initial check-out period is 14 calendar days. Items may be renewed once for a further 14 days, upon request (either by telephone or in person). Renewal may be denied at Librarian discretion, especially for new or in-demand items.

Overdue fines accrue at the rate of 5 cents per item per day. "Day" refers only to days the Library is open. No fine accrues on days the Library is closed. A grace period may be extended in extraordinary circumstances, at Librarian discretion.

The maximum overdue fine charged is $2.00. If the item is lost, the patron must pay the replacement cost, plus a $5.00 processing fee.

The Librarian may attempt recovery of late items via phone call, provided email, or a card send by mail.

Grounds for revoking use privileges include: 1 or more books not returned; fines for overdue/damaged/lost items unpaid; and/or unacceptable behavior in the Library.

Use privileges will be restored when items are either returned or paid for, and behavior is seen to be acceptable.

Circulation of Materials Policy

Circulating materials for the Rotan Public Library shall be selected books, periodicals, sound recordings, videos in VHS format, and DVDs. The normal loan period is two weeks, although the loan period may be varied for materials in high demand. Limits may be set on the number of items borrowed for materials in high demand. The borrowing privileges of the Rotan Public Library shall be:

  1. The borrowing privileges of the library patrons in good standing are limited only by the restrictions upon the specific kinds of circulating materials.
  2. The borrowing privileges of delinquent patrons are suspended until any overdue materials have been returned and all overdue charges are paid.
  3. Patrons in good standing who are 18 years of age or older may borrow VHSs/DVDs/CDs.

Forbidden Activities

These include:

  • Smoking
  • Sleeping
  • Food and beverages (whether eating them or not)
  • Solicitation, for profit or charity
  • Selling or distributing items or leaflets. The librarian may allow bake sale type items in the bookstore area.
  • Possession of a firearm, illegal knife, or any weapon defined by Chapter 46 of the Texas Penal Code, except a peace officer engaged in the performance of his official duties
  • Willful damage to library property
  • Disorderly conduct as defined in Chapter 42 of the Texas Penal Code.
  • Unlawful behavior.

Those who disobey the Library's rules,or engage in the abovementioned Forbidden Activities, will first be warned. If the disobedience does not cease, those involved will be asked to leave. The police will be called for those who refuse to leave after being asked to do so, or when engaging in unlawful behavior. Repeated disobedience of library rules is grounds for denial of library privileges.

Internet Use Policy and Computer Etiquette

Please note: All library patrons must read Rotan Public Library's Internet Use Policy and Guidelines and read and sign the Internet Access Agreement for Adults and/or the Parental Consent Form/Internet Access Agreement for Minors. These forms are available upon request.

General Use:

  1. Users must have valid Library Card.
  2. Users must sign an Internet Access Agreement.
  3. Access to the Internet is available only on clearly marked workstations located within the library. Wi-Fi access is available on patron-provided devices, and is usable at patron discretion.
  4. Use of the Internet access workstations is available on a first come, first served basis. Those using the workstations may sign up for one half hour of use (30 minutes). If no one is waiting at the end of that time, the patron may continue his/her use until notification that another patron is waiting. Users are asked to begin logging off 15 minutes prior to closing of the library.
  5. Downloading of files may be done to external storage drives only, e.g., floppy drives, CD-RWs, USB flash drives, etc. The library is not responsible for damage to patrons' disks or computers, or for any loss of data, damage, or liability that may occur due to computer virus contracted from patron use of the Library's Internet services.
  6. Patrons may not load software of any kind onto Library-owned equipment.

Use by Minors:

  1. The library must have on file a Parental Consent Form/Internet Access Agreement for Minors for any patron under age 18. This form is available on request.
  2. Parents of minor children must assume responsibility for their children's use of the Internet. The Library does not have the right or responsibility to act in place of a parent.
  3. Children under the age of 12 may not use Internet-capable Library computers without supervision of their accompanying adult. The Library is not responsible for children's online behavior or browser history.

User Responsibilities and Internet Etiquette:

  1. Legal usage: Computers may not be used for any illegal purposes. Examples of illegal use include, but are not limited to, the following:
    1. Attempting to alter or damage computer equipment, software configurations, or files belonging to the City of Rotan, Rotan Public Library, other users, or external networks
    2. Attempting unauthorized entry to the City of Rotan computer network or external networks
    3. Engaging in activity which is deliberately and maliciously offensive, libelous, slanderous, or harassing to others
    4. Transmission of child pornography or other obscene material
    5. Intentional propagation of computer viruses
    6. Violation of copyright or communication laws. U.S. copyright law (title 17 U.S. Code) prohibits the unauthorized reproduction or distribution of copyrighted materials, except as permitted by the principles of "fair use." Any responsibility for any consequences of copyright infringements lies with the user. The Library expressly disclaims any liability or responsibility for such use.
  2. Computer etiquette: Computing resources must be used in accordance with the rules of the Rotan Public Library. Examples of unacceptable use include, but are not limited to, the following:
    1. Hacking (breaking into or out of any system) and violation of computer systems security
    2. Use of computer communications facilities that interfere with, or impede, computer use by others
    3. Intentional violation of another patron's privacy
    4. Obtrusively displaying information with the intent of being disruptive of or offensive to others.
  3. Sanctions:
    1. Violations of the rules described above will result in the user having Library computer privileges suspended for ninety (90) calendar days. A second occurrence will result in loss of computing privileges for one calendar year.
    2. Illegal acts involving Library computing resources, in addition to the sanctions mentioned above, may also be subject to prosecution by local, state, or federal authorities.
    3. Users are financially liable for any damage caused either directly or indirectly to any Rotan Public Library equipment or software.
    4. The Library reserves the right to terminate a patron's Internet/computer session at any time the library staff deems the use to be in conflict with the Library Internet Use Policies. The Library may also terminate computer sessions at closing.

Patron Responsibilities

It is a patron's responsibility to maintain necessary and proper standards of behavior in order to protect his/her individual rights and the rights and privileges of other patrons. If a patron creates a public nuisance, that patron may be restricted from the Library and from the use of Library facilities. Those who are unwilling to leave or do not leave within a reasonable amount of time, after being instructed to do so by the staff, will be subject to the law.

Young Children: The Rotan Public Library encourages visits by young children, and it is our desire to make this important visit both memorable and enjoyable for the child. Library staff is not expected to assume responsibility for the care of unsupervised children in the Library.

Therefore, it is library policy that all children under age 12 must be accompanied by a parent or designated responsible person while in the Library. Also, if the young child is attending a library program, we require the parent/responsible person to remain in the Library throughout the program.

Disruptive Children: Children of all ages are encouraged to use the library for homework, recreational reading, and program attendance. The Library staff realizes that the Library will be noisier at busy times and that children by nature can cause more commotion. However, children (whether with parents or not) who are being continually disruptive will be given a warning that s/he must settle down or s/he will be asked to leave the Library. If after a second warning the child continues to be disruptive, s/he will be asked to leave the Library. If the child needs to contact a parent, they may do so, and then wait with a staff person until the parent arrives.

Copy/Print Policy

Under the 1976 Copyright Act, Libraries may provide limited copying services for their patrons. The following guidelines must be followed for the Library to comply:

  1. The copied material must display the following information: "NOTICE": This material may be protected by copyright law. (Title 17 U. S. Code)
  2. The material must become the property of the patron, and the Library must have no notice that the material will be used for anything but "private study, scholarship, or research."
  3. Materials may not be copied in large quantities nor should it substitute for subscription to or purchase of materials.

Patrons logged in to Library computers may print materials at their discretion and responsibility. Each page printed will be charged a 25-cent fee, to cover Library costs.

Donated Materials Policy

"Materials" shall mean books, magazines, pamphlets, records, cassettes, slides, films, filmstrips, videocassettes, DVDs, CDs, newspapers, maps, and letters of educational, historical, cultural, or recreational value.

The Librarian and his/her representative reserve the right to make disposition of all such material received. The staff will use the best professional judgment, taking into consideration the same standards which apply to purchased materials.

If donated material is added to the Library collection, the Librarian and his/her representative reserve the right to classify and arrange the materials in whatever fashion is most in keeping with the Library's needs. The donor may not restrict access to, nor use of, donated materials. These materials, once added to the collection, will be subject to the regular retention policy.

The Library does not provide an appraisal service, suggest value, recommend professional appraisers, nor provide lists of donated materials.

Donation receipts are available upon request.

Complete Policy Manual