MAINTENANCE OF PUBLIC ORDER POLICY
The Half Hollow Hills Community Library (“Library”) is charted by the Education Department of the State of New York to, among other things, meet the educational, cultural and recreational needs of the community. In order to best meet those needs, the following rules, regulations, and procedures are enacted by the Board of Trustees for the purpose of maintaining public order in and upon Library grounds by all library patrons, visitors, and employees, as well as other licensees and invitees.
Conditional Permission for Use of Library Facilities
As a condition for the use of Library premises, all those who enter in and upon Library grounds agree that they shall be subject to these rules and regulations. Failure to comply with the same shall constitute grounds for the immediate ejection and revocation of Library privileges.
Purpose of Use of Library Facilities
While in or upon Library grounds, patrons use shall be limited to those traditionally associated with a public library. Those include, but are not limited to, reading, studying, selecting, returning and borrowing Library materials, use of public-appropriate Library equipment, and attendance of educational, cultural and entertainment conferences, meetings, programs and concerts, authorized or conducted by the Board of Trustees or other Library personnel. Any use by a patron not consistent with that of a public library is prohibited, and may result in the revocation of Library privileges.
Public Behavior Rules and Regulations
- Consistent with the prohibitions contained in the NYS Constitution, no commercial, for-profit, business or solicitation may be conducted on Library ground.
- No partisan political campaign events on Library property.
- Patrons whose behavior interferes with the right of the public to enjoy the Library facilities will be required to leave Library grounds.
- No violence or loud/threatening/obscene behavior.
- No loitering on Library grounds.
- Smoking is prohibited on Library grounds.
- Possession of illegal drugs, alcohol, fireworks, firearms or weapons are prohibited.
- Outside food deliveries (e.g., Uber Eats, DoorDash, Postmates, etc.) (see, “Outside Food Delivery Prohibition Policy”).
- No rearranging of Library furniture or equipment without prior permission of staff.
- No defacing, damaging, or destroying Library premises, materials, equipment or property.
- Patrons are responsible for cleaning up after eating on Library property.
- Appropriate attire, including footwear, and upper/lower body covering required.
- No entrance into unauthorized staff areas.
- No pets.
- No recreational skateboarding, rollerblading or bicycling on Library grounds.
- Identification must be displayed upon request.
- No cameras/recording devices for commercial purposes or in a manner that disturbs other Library patrons, without prior administration approval.
- No cameras/recording device in the children’s area of the Library, or in or into restricted non-public areas.
- Patrons must abide by the instructions/directives of staff/administration.
- Any other actions, not delineated herein, that, within the discretion of Library administration, jeopardize the health, safety, or public order, of the Library.
- Personal property must not be unattended for extended periods of time.
Procedures for Reporting Violations
- While the Library facilities are open, the Library Director, or his/her designees, in the first instance, shall be responsible for the enforcement of these rules and regulations. Any violation thereof shall be immediately reported to the Library Director or his/her designee who shall thereupon immediately make inquiry of the facts and circumstances surrounding the complaint, and who may thereupon either direct that the offending conduct be ceased and desisted, or the violator vacate Library grounds. Upon the refusal of such person to obey the directive of the Library Director or his/her designee, such Library Director or designee is authorized and directed to make a complaint to the Suffolk County Police Department and to sign any information as necessary charging said trespasser with the appropriate violation of the Penal Law. The Library Director shall forthwith make a report to the Board of Trustees.
- When the Library is closed, or when the Library Director or his/her designees are not present and cannot be reached, any Library employee is authorized and directed, upon observing and being informed of any violation of these rules and regulations, to make inquiry of the facts and circumstances surrounding the violation and any such employee may either direct that the offending conduct be ceased and desisted, or the violator vacate Library grounds. Upon the refusal of such person to obey the directive of the employee, such employee is authorized and directed to make a complaint to the Suffolk County Police Department and sign any information as necessary charging said violator with the appropriate violation of the Penal Law. Subsequently, such Library employee, at the first opportunity, shall make a written report of the facts and circumstances surrounding the enforcement of these rules and regulations to the Library Director.
- The Library shall indemnify and hold harmless the Director, his/her designee, or any Library personnel, from any action, claim or proceeding instituted against such person arising out of the enforcement of these rules and regulations by such Library personnel.
- In addition to all of the foregoing summary remedies against the trespasser and/or person in violation of law and these rules and regulations, the Library Director may thereafter, in his/her sole discretion, take the following action:
- Library patrons: Revocation and suspension of Library privileges, and for a period not to exceed four (4) years.
- Library personnel: Subject to any applicable collective bargaining agreement and/or Civil Service law, discipline, up to and including termination.
- Visitors, licensees and invitees: Suspension and revocation of their licenses to enter upon Library property for a period not to exceed four (4) years.
Violations of “Public Behavior Rules and Regulations” by Unaccompanied Minors (under 18) / Students
- Upon the first violation of these Public Behavior Rules and Regulations, or other Library Policy, the patron will be asked to leave.
- To the extent Library administration determines it necessary, if an incident occurs, a representative for the library will ask the offending patron for their name and parent contact information.
- To the extent possible, a library representative will make an effort to contact the parent to come pick up the patron.
- If the patron refuses to provide their name and parental contact, and / or refuses to wait for their parent to pick them up, a representative for the library will review existing video footage, interview other witnesses and contact a school administrator to help identify the student.
Individuals whose Library privileges were suspended/revoked may appeal that suspension/revocation to the Library Board of Trustees. Individuals requesting an appeal must do in writing within thirty (30) days of suspension, indicating their desire for an appeal, and the basis therefor. If the next Board meeting is more than 15 days from receipt of the appeal request, such hearing will be held at the next regular meeting of the Board of Trustees. If less than 15 days, the hearing will be held at the following regular meeting of the Board of Trustees. The Board shall render a written decision within fourteen (14) days of the hearing.
Adopted as attachment to MAINTENANCE OF PUBLIC ORDER LIBRARY FACILITIES POLICY
HALF HOLLOW HILLS COMMUNITY LIBRARY MAINTENANCE OF PUBLIC ORDER AT LIBRARY FACILITIES – AMENDMENT 1
PATRON CODE OF CONDUCT – COVID 19
The following rules and procedures are enacted as a supplement to the Library’s existing “Maintenance of Public Order at Library Facilities” Policy, which also governs the conduct of patrons in the Library, pursuant to Education Law § 262. The purpose of this Policy is to set forth the Library’s current rules and procedures concerning COVID-19. This Policy is designed to increase the level of safety, hygiene and security for the entire Library community.
To the extent that the rules and procedures set forth herein are inconsistent with a governmental order to which the Library is subject, the governmental order shall supersede.
II. Use of Masks/Face Coverings
The CDC recommends that, in areas of “High Community Transmission,” “everyone should wear a mask in public indoor settings.” As of the effective date of this Policy (below), and until such time as it is further amended, the following Library rules are in effect:
1) Masks are mandatory for all individuals, over the age of two, while attending an indoor Library program/event;
2) While not attending a Library program/event, masks are mandatory for unvaccinated patrons present in the Library, and optional for “fully vaccinated” patrons, as defined by the CDC. Nonetheless, masks are recommended at all times; and
3) Patrons who refuse to wear a mask or cloth face-covering in conformity with this Policy will be asked to leave the indoor Library premises. Patrons who do not have a mask or cloth face-covering will be offered one.
III. Social Distancing
The CDC recommends individuals who are not members of the same household to practice adequate social distancing. The CDC recommends at least six feet (about 2 arms’ length) from other people. The Library recommends the same.
As with our staff, the Library expects that patrons will not enter the Library if they are sick or if they are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms, or if they have tested positive for COVID-19 and have not yet received a follow-up negative COVID-19 test.
Hand sanitizer will be placed throughout the Library. Please use this often.
V. Unattended Children
Until further notice, the Unattended Children’s Policy will be temporarily amended such that all children under the ages of 11, will be required to be accompanied by a responsible adult in order to use the Library.
Approved by the Board of Trustees
June 15, 2020
November 22, 2021
December 20, 2021