Library building



To provide free, open, and convenient access for all Keene residents to acquire information for growth in their personal knowledge; for life-long learning and enjoyment; for the fulfillment of informational needs, desires, and curiosities; and for enhancing quality of life in the community.


The Board of Trustees of the Keene Public Library has adopted the following policies which it intends to follow in governing the Keene Public Library. These policies may be amended at any duly-called meeting of the Board of Trustees, by majority vote of those Trustees present and voting.

  • 1.000 General Library Objectives


    To assemble, preserve and administer, in organized collections, books and related educational, historical and recreational materials in order to promote knowledge, enlightened citizenship and the enrichment of personal lives.


    To serve as the information center of the community.


    To provide the opportunity for continuous self-education of children, young people and adults.


    To identify with community needs, to provide programs of service to meet such needs, and to cooperate with other organizations, agencies, and institutions which can provide local programs or services.


    To cooperate with the school district libraries to strengthen community resources.


    To provide opportunity for a more advantageous use of leisure time through books, audiovisual materials, programs, and other art forms and formats.


    To inform the public of Library objectives and services, and encourage use and support of the Library by maintaining good public relations throughout the community.
  • 2.000 Use of the Library


    By borrowing materials from the Library, the borrower is deemed by the Library to have agreed to return the materials to the Library by the stated deadline and in the same condition as they were when borrowed.


    The Library will serve all residents of the City of Keene. Service will not be denied or abridged for reasons of religion, race, social, economic, political status, or age. On proper registration, all residents will be entitled to a Library card at no charge in their individual names, and use of this card shall be non-transferable. At the request of a parent or guardian, a child, at any age, may receive a Library card. A parent or guardian must sign for a child’s card until the child reaches the age of 18. Persons, including spouses and children, residing outside the city limits, but owning property in the City of Keene, shall be considered residents. Full-time employees of the City of Keene, full-time teachers in the Keene School System, students attending an educational institution in the City on a full-time basis and students, Library volunteers, and tutors in any Cheshire County literacy program shall be entitled individual Library cards at no charge. Institutions and organizations which own or rent facilities in the City are entitled to one Library card in the name of that institution or organization, providing such institution or organization takes responsibility for the use of the card. A specific procedure for issuing cards has been approved by the Board of Trustees and shall be followed by Library staff. It is the policy of the Library not to restrict the circulation of its materials to borrowers in any way. It is the responsibility of the parents to limit their children’s access to Library materials if they so choose.


    Individual Library cards are available to non-residents who pay a fee that is set by the Board of Trustees and approximates the cost per Keene resident for Library services as reflected in the City budget. Non-resident card fee will be reviewed on an annual basis. Non-resident institutions and organizations do not qualify to receive non-resident cards.


    The use of the Library and/or its services may be denied for good cause. Such causes include, but are not limited to, failure to return books or to pay penalties, destruction of Library property, disturbance of other patrons, or any other objectionable conduct on Library premises.


    Library patrons may be asked to leave the Library for exhibiting disruptive behavior. Disruptive behavior may include running, throwing, eating, loud or abusive talking, talking, fighting, vandalism, inappropriate public displays of affection, interfering with the reasonable activities of other patrons, or any other behavior deemed inappropriate by Library staff.


    Borrowers shall be charged a daily fee as set by the Board of Trustees, not including days when the Library is closed, for all overdue items subject to such a charge. Fines levied under this section shall not exceed the replacement cost for such items.


    Charges for non-returned Library materials will be computed by category by using current and documented price information, or, if that information is not available, at list price. The Replacement Fee Charges will be reviewed annually by the Library Finance Committee.


    The Library staff will promulgate policies for the recovery of overdue materials which shall have prior approval from the Board of Trustees.


    The Library hours shall be set from time to time by the Board of Trustees upon recommendation of the Library Director.


    The Board of Trustees shall approve the loan period for all Library materials.
  • 3.000 Services of the Library


    The Library will purchase or otherwise receive and lend to holders of Library cards, books, audiovisual materials, framed prints and other art objects, exhibits and other materials.


    The Library may require that the use of any of its books, audiovisual, paintings and other art objects, exhibits and other materials, be limited to use on the premises of the Library at such times and subject to such conditions as the Library may from time to time determine.


    The Library may borrow from and lend to other libraries books and other materials.


    The Library will endeavor to maintain a balance in its services to adults, young people and children.


    The Library shall maintain such other services as the Board of Trustees shall from time to time determine. These services may include, but are not limited to, copying machines, computers, an auditorium for group assemblies, microform viewing facilities and the like. The use of any of these items shall be subject to such conditions as the Library may from time to time impose.
  • 4.000 General Policies Governing Use of Premises


    No alcoholic beverages are to be consumed on Library premises except by prior approval of City Council.


    With the exceptions of the staff rooms and approved spaces no food or beverages are to be consumed on Library premises except by permission of the Library Director or by specific vote of the Board of Trustees designating the time and location.


    No smoking is permitted on Library premises.


    Any person or group of persons failing to comply with regulations governing the use of the Library premises may be disallowed further use of the same.


    No organization or individual shall be permitted to solicit donations in the Library.


    Political information may be distributed only in the Library’s lobby area. Political discussions and meetings are limited to the Library’s approved spaces.


    Except for seeing eye/helper dogs, no animals or other pets shall be allowed in any part of the Library, unless the animals are part of a scheduled presentation.
  • 5.000 Use of the Youth Department

                5.001  The Keene Public Library offers the following guidelines to ensure a welcoming and comfortable environment for children, their parents and guardians, and other adults doing research with children's literature.

                (a)  The materials, services, and equipment in KPL's Youth Department are intended for the use of young people under the age of 18 or who have not yet completed high school, their parents and caregivers, and others needing children's materials and services for some specific purpose.

                 (b)  Internet use in the Youth Department is limited to young people under the age of 18 or who have not yet completed high school, adults taking care of children, or adults visiting the Youth Department with a caregiver. See: 15.000, Internet Access Policy.

                 (c)  Gaming equipment in the Youth Department is limited to participation and use by youth under the age of 18 or who have not yet completed high school and their families.

                  (d)  Adults not using the Youth Department materials or services are asked to use other areas of the Library. Adults who are not using youth materials may be asked by staff to relocate.

  • 6.000 Use of Auditorium and Meeting Rooms and Kitchen


    It is the intent of the Board of Trustees that Library-related programs shall receive priority scheduling for use of the auditorium or meeting rooms. However, the Library will make these facilities available for non-profit, civic, cultural, charitable, and social organizations in Keene, as well as individuals who are legally filed political candidates, subject to the following conditions and procedures:


    There will be no charge for use of the auditorium, meeting room or 
    kitchen facility during Library hours, Monday through Friday, 
    holidays excepted, from 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.


    Groups of minors may use these facilities if the meeting is booked 
    and attended by an adult supervisor.


    All scheduling must be done at least one week before the event.


    After 6:00 p.m. Monday through Friday, or on weekends, a fee which 
    shall be determined by the Board of Trustees shall be assessed for 
    groups using the lower level facilities. All activities in the Second 
    Floor meeting rooms must be completed and the rooms closed by 8:45 p.m. All activities in the Lower Floor rooms (Kay Fox Meeting Room and Ruth Huntress Auditorium) must be completed and the facilities closed by 10:00 p.m.

    6.001A   Use of Library Meeting Rooms Form | Assumption of Responsibility Form

  • 7.000 Fine Art Exhibit Policy

    7.001 The Keene Public Library invites artists to exhibit their works in approved spaces. An artist who wishes to make use of these spaces must agree to these provisions:

    (a) The artist will assume total responsibility for the mounting of the exhibit and must conform to any constraints placed upon the exhibit space by the Library.

    (b) The artist will assume full responsibility for the works exhibited. Neither the Keene Public Library nor the City of Keene shall assume any responsibility or obligation for any loss or damage to any item or items so displayed. The displayed items are not and will not be covered under any insurance policy owned by the City of Keene. A certificate proving adequate insurance is held by the exhibitor to cover the value of the exhibited works and must be presented to the Library Director and the Library Fine Art Display Release Form signed before the exhibit is mounted.

    (c) No prices may be posted on the art works, or admission charged. A price list may be discreetly placed in the exhibit. However, no sales may be made on the premises.

    (d) The selection of the artistic content of the exhibit will be governed by the same principles of intellectual freedom which underlie the Keene Public Library’s materials selection policy. See Policy 10.000 et seq., below.

    7.001A Fine Art Display Release Form

  • 8.000 Policies Governing Displays in the Library

    8.001 The contents of any displays of public information in the Library shall be governed by the same principles of intellectual freedom which underlie the Keene Public Library’s material selection policy. See Policy 10.000 et seq., below.

    8.002 Displays which contain works of art will also be governed by Policy 6.000 and the displaying organization will be required to sign the Fine Art Display Release Form. (See Policy 7.001A)

    8.003 Local non-profit organizations may publicize their activities on the Library premises, with prior approval from the Library Director.

  • 9.000 Finances



    At an appropriate time each year, the Board of Trustees will review the City budget proposed by the Board’s Finance Committee working with the Library Director and will submit an approved budget to the City Manager. It will be the responsibility of the Board of Trustees to accept, by vote, the final City appropriation voted by the full City Council. The Board of Trustees, working with the Library Director and the Finance Committee, will be responsible for keeping expenses within the appropriated figure.



    The Board of Trustees will review budgets and expenditures for all funds held by the Board of Trustees of the Keene Public Library. The annual budget will be submitted by the Finance Committee for approval by the Board of Trustees. An annual audit will be conducted by the City or other appropriate person appointed by the President of the Board of Trustees, and all filings to the appropriate state agencies shall be made on a timely basis.



    The Board of Trustees shall be responsible for the proper expenditure of funds held by the City of Keene in the name of the Library. The Board of Trustees may delegate this responsibility for expenditures by proper vote.



    Gifts of money and real or personal property including securities will be accepted by the Board of Trustees. The Board of Trustees reserves the right to make whatever disposition of such property as it deems advisable. Approval may be based upon, including but not limited to, 1) local interest, 2) local subject, 3) historical significance, 4) ease of display 5) care and storage, and 6) appropriateness to the Library’s general Library objectives. No estimated evaluation of any gift will be made.


    The Board of Trustees shall make the decision as to the acceptance and location of gifts of landscaping items. The major criterion on which the decision shall be based is the appropriateness of the offered gift to the existing landscaping, cost of maintenance and consideration of any future building expansion, renovation or similar circumstance.


    Landscaping Gift Proposal Form


    Any organization which proposes to raise money on behalf of the Keene Public Library must obtain prior permission from the Board of Trustees.



    The Treasurer of the Board of Trustees of the Keene Public Library may be bonded for an amount which the Board of Trustees considers appropriate.



    If the Board of Trustees choose to use a safe deposit box, the President and the Treasurer of the Board of Trustees of the Keene Public Library will have access to such safe deposit box.



    The President and Treasurer will have the authority to sign checks and other financial documents on behalf of the Board of Trustees. Other Trustees may be given authority to sign upon special vote of the Board of Trustees.



    For special trips for the Library Staff to conventions and seminars, the Board of Trustees may vote special funds for financial assistance in specific cases. With this exception, the Library intends to follow the then-existing City of Keene travel guidelines for authorized business travel, including automobile mileage rates.

  • 10.000 Materials Selection Policy


    The Library will adhere to the tenets set forth in the American Library Association’s  Freedom to Read Statement and the Library Bill of Rights.

    Responsibility for the selection of Library materials and for the development of the collection is delegated by the Board of Trustees to the Library Director.

    Materials no longer useful are to be withdrawn systematically from the collection, according to accepted professional practices. Such material may be given to the Friends of the Keene Public Library for its annual book sale or disposed of at the discretion of the Director and/or the Board of Trustees.

    In the event that a patron objects to a specific item in the collection, the patron will be asked to complete a written complaint form. See Appendix for a copy of the Request for Reconsideration Form. This form will be reviewed by the Board of Trustees at its next regularly-scheduled meeting. The patron filing the complaint will receive a written reply within ten days.


    Disposition of Historical Materials.

    Primary source materials of local historical significance will be donated to the Historical Society of Cheshire County so that they may be properly handled and preserved. Because these are archival materials, if the Historical Society of Cheshire County does not accept them, they will be offered to institutions which can provide appropriate care.

    Materials of state or regional historical significance will be donated to appropriate agencies, such as the New Hampshire Historical Society. A comprehensive list of such agencies will be compiled and the agencies contacted in a priority order. If these agencies decline acceptance of these materials, they will be handled in accordance with the Material Selection Policy (See Policy 10.001).


  • 11.000 Friends of the Keene Public Library


    The Board of Trustees endorses the Friends of the Keene Public Library. A member of the Board of Trustees may be a liaison on the Board of the Friends of the Keene Public Library. The Trustees concur with the policy of a friends organization set forth in New Hampshire Library Trustees Handbook which states: “Friends of the library working in cooperation with the trustees and librarian provide valuable support and assistance in the local Library Program. Friends are volunteers who form a non-profit organization to bring about public awareness of the Library, its resources, service to the community, and needs. They advocate and support programs to improve and expand good library service in the community.”

  • 12.000 Membership in Organizations


    Memberships in Library Organizations:

    All Trustees are encouraged to become members of: New Hampshire Library Trustees Association (NHLTA), Association of New Hampshire Library Friends (ANHLF), and the New Hampshire Library Association (NHLA)


    Membership in Civic, Service and Business Organizations.

    The Library as an organization will not be a member of the Chamber of Commerce or other civic organizations. Members of the Library Staff may belong to such organizations as individuals and participate in their programs.

  • 13.000 Confidentiality of Library Records


    The Trustees recognize that the Library’s circulation records and other records identifying the names of Library users with specific materials are confidential. The Librarian and staff shall not make these records available to any agency of state, federal or local government except pursuant to such process, order or subpoena as may be authorized under the written authority for and pursuant to federal, state, and local law relating to civil, criminal, or administrative discovery procedures or legislative investigatory power. See also NH RSA 201-D:11.


    This confidentiality policy shall not apply to any borrowers who have overdue books. See Policy 2.001 regarding the borrower’s obligation to return books by the stated deadline and in the same condition as the books were borrowed.
  • 14.000 Personnel


    Unless voted to the contrary by the Board of Trustees, the Library will follow the City of Keene’s Employment Handbook.


    The Board of Trustees may establish such rules and regulations for the government and management of the Library as they may deem advisable.


    The Library Director shall be the executive head of the Library and shall be responsible to the Board of Trustees. The Library Director shall have charge of the administration of the Library, subject to the control of the Board of Trustees, and shall be responsible for the efficiency of the Library service to the public, shall have charge of the employment and direction of the staff and shall be in charge of the operation of the Library, all subject to the supervision and approval of the Board of Trustees.


    Salary scales and classification shall be made, at the discretion of the Board of Trustees, in accordance with the established Salary Plan for the City of Keene, and these shall be developed in cooperation with the City Manager, or designated representative. Any change in amounts, range designations, or positions may be made by an amending ordinance.


    No member of a Trustee’s family may be employed by the Library.


    Whenever it becomes necessary to reduce the staff of the Keene Public Library the following criteria, in the order of priority hereinafter stated, shall govern such reduction in staff:

    (a) the need of the Library for particular skills and experience. 
    (b) the education, training and experience of the staff members.
    (c) the seniority of the staff member.

  • 15.000 Internet Access Policy


    As part of the Keene Public Library’s commitment to meet the cultural, informational and educational needs of the community and in response to the advances in technology in this Information Age, the Library is pleased to offer public access to the Internet.


    Information and resources on the Internet can enhance the material available at the Library and often go beyond what is locally available. The Library, however, does not monitor the Internet or control over the information accessed through the Internet. Not all sites on the global Internet provide accurate, complete or current information and access points often change rapidly and unpredictably. Some sites may carry information that a user finds controversial or inappropriate. Library users access the Internet at their own discretion. As with other Library materials, restriction of a child’s access to the Internet is the responsibility of the parent/legal guardian. Parents are encouraged to come in with their children and supervise Internet sessions at the Library.


    Reference staff will continue to use the Internet as a reference tool and will retrieve information for users. Also, the Library’s home page will offer specific starting points for searching the Internet, along with recommended sites for adults and children. Staff will also try to assist users with their Internet use and, as time permits, guide them to sites, but cannot offer personal instruction. Formal instruction will be offered by the Library at designated times. Current books and videos about the Internet are available in the Library’s collection.


    While the staff at the Keene Public Library will not monitor an individual's computer use, there are times when viewing otherwise legal materials may be inappropriate or when the behavior of those using the Internet may not be appropriate. The Library staff reserves the right to address such use of the Internet or behavior by requiring a patron to terminate his or her session. If any particular patron disregards the Library's Internet Use Policy, and is repeatedly required to terminate his or her session(s), that patron's right to use of the Internet may be revoked.


    Internet use in the Youth Department is limited to young people under the age of 18 years, adults taking care of children, or adults visiting the Library with a care-giver.


    Before going to Internet sites, users must read the policy and guidelines. Furthermore, it is understood that in signing up to use the service, the user has agreed to follow the policy and guidelines.




    Users 18 years of age or older must provide a Library card or current ID and sign in at the Reference Desk. Users under 18 years of age must have a Library card on file that has been approved by a parent or guardian.


    Users must agree to obey all applicable federal, state and local laws including, but not limited to, copyright, licensing and content restrictions. The Library reserves the right to terminate the User's Internet privileges for abuse of these conditions or for unauthorized use of the Library's Internet connection.


    Users may not use Library equipment to access illegal materials including those that are obscene or harmful to minors, or for any illegal or fraudulent actions.


    Users may not in any way engage in any activity which is libelous or slanderous. Nor shall any patron use any Internet resources to offend, harass, intimidate or threaten any third party.


    Users may not download or save any files onto the computer's hard drive.


    Users may bring in removable storage devices and copy materials onto them. Printing is available for a charge.


    E-mail access is only available through the World Wide Web.


    Patrons will be personally responsible for any materials ordered via the Internet. They will need to pay for these items with a credit card. The Library will not be responsible for these costs.


    Any damage to the computer or its peripheral devices is the responsibility of the user. Abuse of the equipment or the service will result in the user being denied further access.


    Internet users are required to follow the same rules of conduct as others in the Library, and not engage in disruptive behavior.


    There will be no more than two people at a computer station.


    Users are asked to restart the computer when they have finished their session and to inform the staff member at the desk that the computer is available for the next person.


    Violations of any of the guidelines may result in loss of Internet privileges.


    Procedures for scheduling the use of the Internet are set by staff.


  • 16.000 3D Printer Use Policy


    3D printers are being used for educational, workshop, and programming purposes to make three-dimensional objects in plastic using a design that is uploaded from a digital computer file.


    The Library's 3D printers may be used only for lawful purposes. Users will not be permitted to use the Library's 3D printers to create material that is:


    Prohibited by local, state or federal law.

    (b) Unsafe, harmful, dangerous, poses an immediate threat to the well-being of others, or is otherwise inappropriate for the Library environment. (Such use may also violate the terms of use of the manufacturer.)
    (c) In violation of another's intellectual property rights. For example, the printers will not be used to reproduce material that is subject to copyright, patent or trademark protection.


    The Library reserves the right to refuse any 3D print request.


    Supervision of the use of the 3D printer by Library staff does not constitute knowledge, or acknowledgement, of any unapparent final use of the 3D product, and the Library specifically disclaims any knowledge thereof.

  • Social Software Policy

    Blogs, Wikis, and Other Social Networking Web Tools  
    Effective Date  June 16, 2009:

    The Keene Public Library provides blogs, wikis, and other social software to advance our mission: of providing free, open, and convenient access for all Keene residents to acquire information for growth in their personal knowledge; for their life-long learning and enjoyment; for the fulfillment of their informational needs, desires, and curiosities, and for enhancing the quality of life in their community. 

    Social software sites address goal number two of the Keene Public Library’s long-range plan: promote and market library services to the community.

    Acceptable Use
    Social Software is defined as any web application, site or account created and maintained by the Keene Public Library which facilitates an environment for Library staff and Library users to share opinions and information about Library related subjects and issues. 
    Users of other the Keene Public Library social software are strongly encouraged to check facts, cite sources, present balanced views, acknowledge and correct errors, and check spelling and grammar before making a post.

    Each social software site developed by the Library will have a manager who will be responsible for maintaining the site.  Managers will also develop and post a set of guidelines for each Library social software.  These managers must be employed by the Keene Public Library.  Although the manager periodically will monitor and maintain the tool, the Keene Public Library is not responsible for individual comments posted on the blog. 

    The Keene Public Library recognizes and respects differences in opinion. Comments, posts and messages are welcome and will be reviewed before publishing.

    The Keene Public Library is not responsible for individual comments posted on the blog.  The comments posted do not necessarily reflect the policy of the Library. Nor does the Library necessarily support the opinion of the poster. By posting content, the user agrees to indemnify  the Keene Public Library and its officers and employees from and against all liabilities, judgments, damages, and costs (including attorney's fees) incurred by any of them which arise out of or are related to the posted content. Forums and messaging may not be used for commercial purposes or for organized political activity.

    The Keene Public Library reserves the right to monitor content before it is posted on all their social software web sites and accounts, and to modify or remove any messages or postings that it deems, in its sole discretion, to be abusive, defamatory, in violation of the copyright, trademark right, or other intellectual property right of any third party, or otherwise inappropriate for the service. The Keene Public Library also reserves the right to edit or modify any submissions in response to requests for feedback or other commentary. Notwithstanding the foregoing, the Keene Public Library is not obligated to take any such actions, and will not be responsible or liable for content posted by any subscriber in any forum, message board, or other area within the service.
    Suggested Guidelines that might be developed for a YA Book Review Blog.  Guidelines for each tool will be posted on the tool.

    1. Keene Teen Reads is an online forum for Keene Public Library customers and staff members to discuss pre-publication books read and reviewed as part of the YA Galley Project.

    2. To participate in the discussion, leave a comment at the end of a "post" or blog entry. Most posts are books reviews. Other posts could include information about Library programs. In a comment, you respond to a review by 
    •    sharing your thoughts about a book, 
    •    offering points for discussion, 
    •    providing links to other resources, or 
    •    Suggesting similar titles or authors.

    3. The manager will review all comments prior to publication. Inappropriate comments will be deleted.

    4. In order to protect your privacy and safety, please refrain from including such personally identifiable information as telephone numbers, addresses, e-mail addresses, or photographs in your comments.

    5. Limit your comments to text only. You should not submit any text, artwork, or photographs that may be under copyright. Include a source for quotations (author and/or title).

    6. You may not use profane, obscene, or otherwise offensive language.

    7. Please be respectful of other contributors. We will not tolerate the posting of deliberately hostile or insulting messages ("flaming").

    8. The purpose of this blog is to discuss books and library programs, therefore, please do not promote any product or service or any non-Library event (examples include self-published and commercial books; poetry readings and other public programs; and editing, tutoring and other professional services).

    9. All comments must conform to the Keene Public Library Internet Use Policy

    10. If you fail to follow these guidelines, the blog manager will block all your comments.

    11. Although the blog manager periodically will monitor and maintain the blog, the Keene Public Library is not responsible for individual comments posted on the blog.  The comments posted do not necessarily reflect the policy of the Library. Nor does the Library necessarily support the opinion of the poster.

    12. The Keene Public Library strongly encourages parents or legal guardians to discuss Internet safety with their children and to monitor and supervise their online activity. All patrons are encouraged to report abuse or inappropriate solicitations to the website's administration, local law enforcement, and organizations such      as or

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