Policies

The Pickens County Library System adopted the current Policy Manual on August 21, 1997. A complete Policy Manual is located at the Reference Desk at each location. Several individual policies are important for everyone to know.

The mission of the Pickens County Library System is to provide all county residents with access to information through the development of appropriate collections and services. These collections and services must cover the informational, educational, cultural, and entertainment needs of county residents.

Policy Manual approved June 15, 2000.

The Pickens County Public Library develops, implements, and sponsors programs designed to meet the needs and interests of the community according to the following guidelines:

• All Library programs are open to the public.

• Selection of topics, courses, classes, events and their presenters will be made by the Library’s programming committee or its designees based on the interests and needs of Library users, the community and compatibility with the Library’s mission and goals.

• The Library will co-sponsor programs with other agencies, organizations, and businesses when they are compatible with the Library’s mission and goals. Co-sponsored programs must include either participation by Library staff to plan and develop program content, provide logistical support, or include information about Library collections relevant to the program. Co-sponsorship and collaboration decisions are made by the Library.

• The Library’s commitment of universal access to information and ideas includes materials and programming, and the Library does not knowingly discriminate through its selection of programs. Likewise, Library sponsorship of a program does not constitute an endorsement of the content of the program or the views expressed by participants, and program topics, speakers and resources.

• Library programs must be non-commercial. Presenters may be professionals or business people, but the information must be generic in nature. No solicitation for business will be permitted. Presenters may make business cards or literature available to attendees, but may not sell or take orders from attendees. There are 2 exceptions:
1. Because the Library wants to encourage reading, writing and an appreciation for culture, writers, performers, and artists may obtain Library approval to sell their own works at the Library following Library programs.
2. The Friends of the Library may sell items at the Library programs they sponsor

• Registration may be required for planning purposes or when space is limited.

• As needed an admission fee may be charged to cover program costs.

• Library programs will not duplicate programs offered within the community, unless they support the Library’s mission and strategic goals, there is sufficient local interest, and Library resources are available to support duplication.

Policy approved August 20, 2015.

Adult Residents of Pickens, Greenville, Anderson and Oconee Counties

Library cards may be obtained free of charge by any adult resident or business of Pickens, Greenville, Anderson and Oconee counties.  Having a library card enables patrons to access library material in the library and via the library’s website.   Some in-house library services, such as access to Internet, may require the patron to have their library card in hand.  Adult resident library cards are valid for two years.  Library cards may be renewed by visiting any Pickens County Library location with your library card, valid photo identification, and proof of current address.  To renew patrons must also pay any outstanding fines or fees in excess of $5.00.

Minor Residents of Pickens, Greenville, Anderson and Oconee Counties

Parents (or legal guardians) with library cards in good standing, may apply for a children’s library card.

Parents (or legal guardians) are responsible for the financial obligations associated with their children’s library card(s). Parents (or legal guardians) are responsible for the selection and use of materials checked out by and/or accessed with their children’s library card(s).  Children’s library cards expire when they become 18 years old.

Non-Resident Library Cards

Patrons living outside of Pickens, Greenville, Anderson or Oconee counties may apply for a Non-Resident Pickens County library card.  Non-residents must pay a $25.00 fee to obtain and/or renew their library cards.  Non-resident library cards expire annually.

Library staff may at their discretion use a valid photo identification in lieu of a library card.

Revised policy approved November 21, 2019

The Pickens County Library System will offer residents of any contiguous county borrowing privileges for all circulation materials, with the exception of downloadable items, at all its service points provided that residents of Pickens County are afforded the same borrowing privileges in all that county’s public library service points.  In providing this privilege, it is understood that these out of county residents will agree to abide by all borrowing rules of the Pickens County Library just as Pickens County residents would be required to abide by the rules of any contiguous county library offering them borrowing privileges.

Greenville County – May 17, 2001
Oconee County – April 17, 2003
Anderson County – March 18, 2004

Revised policy approved January 19, 2017

The purpose of the Interlibrary Loan is to obtain materials not available in the Pickens County Library System upon the request of a Pickens County Library card holder.  Following is the Interlibrary Loan Policy of the Pickens County Library System:

  • There is a limit of 4 (four) requests per patron at one time.
  • Patrons are asked to understand that it may require 10 to 14 days for the processing and receipt of each request.
  • All materials on loan are subject to recall.  This usually applies to materials that are requested frequently throughout the network.
  • The loan period may vary due to the lending institution’s standards.
  • Patrons are responsible for the care of the items, for observing the length of the borrowing time, and for abiding by any restrictions imposed by the lending institution (some books are for in-library use only).
  • Materials borrowed from other sources cannot be renewed.
  • Borrowers will be billed for overdue charges, replacement cost of lost items, and any lending, shipping, or copyright fees as set by the lending institution.
  • Habitually returning the item(s) overdue or failure to follow requirements may result in the forfeiture of Interlibrary Loan privileges.

Revised April 16, 2015

The Pickens County Library System exists to provide library service in a safe, pleasant, and orderly environment to all members of the community regardless of age, sex, racial, or ethnic origin, religion, or economic status.  Library visitors and staff have the right to assume their time in the Library or on Library property will be free from harassment.

The following is considered unacceptable behavior on Library property:

  • Violent or unruly conduct of any kind, including horseplay, fighting, making obscene gestures or comments, shouting, speaking in a noisy or abusive manner, running, playing or any other behavior that is menacing or intimidating in nature.
  • Criminal acts including theft, abuse or mutilation of Library property.
  • Bringing animals, except service animals*, into the Library.
  • Smoking, or other tobacco use.  Vaping and the use of electronic cigarettes (e-cig or e-cigarette), personal vaporizers (PV), and electronic nicotine delivery systems (ENDS).
  • Use or possession of alcohol, drugs, or weapons.
  • Use of restrooms for activities other than their intended purpose.
  • Improper dress.  Shoes and shirts are required.
  • Soliciting or selling of any kind.
  • Distribution of leaflets or posting notices without approval.
  • Consumption of food or drink in non-designated areas, such as the historical room.
  • Violation of any local, state, or federal law.

Library visitors of any age with mental, physical, or emotional disabilities which may affect decision making skills or render supervision necessary must be accompanied by a parent, guardian or responsible caregiver at all times.

The Board of Trustees authorizes the library and staff to exercise or impose sanctions at their discretion when circumstances arise that are not addressed above.  Failure to comply with the Library Code of Conduct may result in exclusion from the Library and/or legal action.

 

*Service animal means any dog that is individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of an individual with a disability, including a physical, sensory, psychiatric, intellectual, or other mental disability.  Other species of animal, whether wild or domestic, trained or untrained, are not service animals for the purposes of this definition.  The crime deterrent effects of an animal’s presence and the provision of emotional support, well-being, comfort, or companionship do not constitute work or tasks for the purposes of this definition (Code of Federal Regulations, Title 28, Section 36.104).

Revised policy approved November 21, 2019

The Pickens County Library System provides access to the Internet in order to fulfill its mission to the citizens of Pickens County.  The Library Board of Trustees has established this policy to ensure responsible and appropriate use of the Internet within the Library System.

The Internet enables access to a wealth of valuable and reliable information.  However, it also provides access to information that may be inaccurate, controversial, illegal, offensive to viewers, or inappropriate for children.  Users must exercise judgment in evaluating the information retrieved from the Internet and assume personal responsibility for how the information is used.  The Library cannot be held responsible or liable for the content of any Internet site.  The Library affirms the responsibility of parents to determine the appropriateness of Internet resources for their children.  Parents are strongly encouraged to supervise their children’s Internet use, as Library staff cannot assume this responsibility.  Users must also assume personal responsibility for the use of the Library’s computer workstations.

Internet use will be managed in a manner consistent with the Pickens County Library System’s Code of Conduct, Internet Policy and Acceptable Use Agreement, filtering software, as well as local, state, and federal laws/regulations.

Users may not:

  • Bypass or disable the Library’s filtering software or instruct or demonstrate to another user how to bypass the Library’s web filtering software.
  • Damage or attempt to damage equipment, alter or attempt to alter software configurations.
  • Attempt to gain unauthorized access to the Library’s computer system.
  • Violate copyright laws and software licensing agreements.
  • Gamble; access, send or display within public view obscene or offensive images, messages or files (as defined by S.C. Code § 16-15-305).

The Pickens County Library System upholds user’s rights to privacy and confidentiality in the use of library resources including the Internet.  However, the nature of electronic resources makes it impossible to guarantee these rights.  The Library staff will assist Internet users in a manner consistent with other Library services; availability of staff and needs of other Library users will necessarily affect the extent of assistance.

Violations of this policy may result in the loss of Internet access and/or other Library privileges.  Violations of local, state, and federal laws/regulation are subject to prosecution by the appropriate authorities.

Revised policy approved November 16, 2017

The Pickens County Library System welcomes children of all ages. The library is a public building and Library staff cannot assume the responsibility of a child’s care when they use the Library.  The behavior and welfare of children in the library is the responsibility of their parents, legal guardians or responsible caregivers.

The Library asks parents, guardians and responsible caregivers to observe these rules to keep their children safe:

  • Children under the age of 10 must be continually accompanied by a parent, guardian or responsible caregiver.
  • Children 10 and over may use the library unattended for any length of time as long as their conduct is acceptable in a library setting and code of conduct rules are observed.
  • If any unattended child calls attention to him/herself, Library staff will attempt to locate the parent, guardian or caregiver and inform him/her of the situation and the policy.
  • If a parent, guardian or caregiver cannot be located, the appropriate authorities will be asked to intervene.
  • Children of any age with mental, physical, or emotional disabilities which may affect decision making skills or render  supervision necessary must be accompanied by a parent, guardian or responsible caregiver at all times.
  • Adults other than parents, guardians or caregivers must not loiter in the Children’s area.
  • Taking pictures in the Children’s area or of children anywhere in the library is prohibited unless authorized by a manager.

Children must know how to reach a parent, legal guardian or responsible caregiver in case of an emergency.  Children and their parents, legal guardians or responsible caregivers need to be aware of library hours.

The Library has established procedures for closing the Library.  If it is apparent to a library staff member that a child (16 and under) is unattended thirty (30) minutes prior to closing, the following will be observed:

  • The child (16 and under) will be asked to call a parent or otherwise confirm that he or she has a ride or will be picked up no later than closing.
  • If a child has been left unattended at the library at closing time, or during an emergency closing, every effort will be made to contact the parents, legal guardians or responsible caregiver.
  • If a parent, guardian or responsible caregiver cannot be reached and has not arrived 15 minutes after closing, the child will be treated as an abandoned child and the police will be contacted.  The Librarian in Charge and one other staff member will stay with the unattended child/children until the police arrive.  This is compensated time for the two staff members.
  • Under no circumstances will library staff take a child out of the building and transport him or her to another location, or remain in the building alone with an unattended child.
  • If the police have been called, staff members will leave a note on the Library door stating, “Unattended child is in the custody of the ________City Police”, with a contact number.  Names will NOT be stated on the sign.
  • Parents or guardians of unattended children will be contacted by the Library Director or Assistant Library Director and given a copy of the Safe Child Policy.  Any additional incidents will be reported to the appropriate authorities.

The Board of Trustees authorizes the Library and staff to exercise or impose restrictions at their discretion when circumstances arise that are not addressed above.  Failure to comply with the Child Safety Policy may result in exclusion from the Library and/or legal action.

Amended policy approved March 19, 2015

The Pickens County Library System (“library”) offers non-profiting use of its meeting spaces to groups and individuals (“applicant”) for law-abiding purposes as outlined below. Meeting spaces include meeting rooms, conference rooms, and applicable study rooms at all library locations.

Applicants must be at least 18 years of age, have a valid library card in good standing (i.e., cannot owe more than $5 in fines or fees to the library), and submit a completed Meeting/Conference Room Application in order to reserve a meeting space in advance.

Granting permission to use library meeting spaces or facilities does not constitute an endorsement of the applicant or the applicant’s viewpoints by the Pickens County Library System, its Board of Trustees, or Pickens County Officials.

Applications for meeting space reservations are evaluated to ensure the proposed use and activities are in compliance with all library policies. All reservation requests are pending until the applicant receives confirmation from library staff.  The library reserves the right to cancel or amend any reservation.

Meeting space reservations are assigned on a first-come, first-served basis.  The Library will resolve reservation issues using the following priorities:

  1. Pickens County Library System and affiliated groups, such as the Friends of the Library
  2. Government departments or agencies within Pickens County
  3. Community organizations formed for educational, cultural, and civic purposes
  4. Other

Library use of meeting spaces takes precedence over all other use and is not subject to this policy.

Study rooms are available for non-reserved, walk-in use on a first-come, first-served basis, and a library card is not required for such use. Study rooms may be used on a walk-in basis for up to two (2) hours. When no one else is waiting, the user may continue to use a study room beyond two hours, but must vacate the study room at the direction of library staff if another user wishes to use the room.

All activity in library meeting spaces is subject to the library’s Code of Conduct. Violations of it or any other library policy may result in the denial of meeting space use and/or the assessment of fees.

An applicant may appeal the denial of meeting space use in writing to the Library Director within ten (10) days of notification of the denial. The Library Director’s decision may be appealed to the Library Board of Trustees in writing and will be considered at the next regularly scheduled Board meeting. The decision of the Board is final.

 

The use of meeting spaces is subject to the following guidelines and regulations:

  1. Because the library is a public facility, any meetings, programs, or exhibits hosted in a library meeting space must be open to the public. The library reserves the right to monitor any meeting.
  2. Meeting spaces may not be used for any kind of solicitation or selling, including the direct or indirect promotion of a business or solicitation of clients. Prohibited activities include, but are not limited to, collecting contact information from attendees or distributing promotional materials in order to solicit business in the future, delivering a presentation about products or services that would be available in the future at a cost to attendees, or promoting or endorsing participation in multi-level marketing and sales. You may charge fees or tuition only with prior approval by the Library Director.
  3. Private events, i.e. birthday parties, family reunions, etc. are prohibited.
  4. Applicants may not conduct fund-raising activities or events except those sponsored by the library or the Friends of the Library.
  5. Meeting / Conference Room Applications may be submitted up to 6 months in advance and no later than 2 business days prior to the reservation start time.
  6. A meeting space at the same library location may be reserved by the same applicant or on behalf of the same group no more than 4 times in the same calendar month.
  7. Library equipment used in meeting spaces must be requested on the Meeting/Conference Room Application to ensure its availability.
  8. Meeting spaces are only available for use during the library’s operating hours, and all meeting spaces must be vacated at least 30 minutes prior to the location’s closing time.
  9. Cancellations should be made at least 48 hours in advance. When arriving late for a meeting space reservation, an applicant should notify the library prior to the scheduled start time. The library will cancel a reservation when an applicant or the applicant’s designee is not present within 15 minutes after the reservation start time.
  10. Any publicity must state that the meeting is not a library-sponsored event. The library’s contact information is not to be listed on publicity materials without prior approval.
  11. Meeting room set-up and storage are not provided. The applicant is responsible for setting up and taking down any tables and/or chairs. All furniture must be returned to its original location leaving the room(s) clean and in order. Items left in any meeting space or associated facilities (e.g., an adjoining kitchen) may be disposed of by the library. The library reserves the right to assess a clean-up fee if a meeting space is not properly cleaned after being used.
  12. All activities must be confined to the reserved meeting space. This includes, but is not limited to, the display of signage and the distribution of literature or other materials.
  13. Due to fire regulations, meeting space capacity must not be exceeded. No open flames are allowed.
  14. The applicant is liable for any damage or loss of library property resulting from the applicant’s use of the meeting space, and the library reserves the right to charge the applicant for such damages or loss. The applicant’s responsibility for the meeting space is only terminated after notifying a library staff member that the room has been vacated.
  15. The library accepts no responsibility for the personal safety of any person, either inside or outside a library building. The library is not responsible for damage, loss or theft of personal property.
  16. The library is unable to provide security, but may require the applicant to provide security.

Revised policy approved November 21, 2019

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