All Library Policies

Tobacco Policy

In accordance with the provisions of the Workplace Smoking Act of 1985 and M.R.S.A. 1541–1545 enacted by PL 1993, Chapter 342 and effective January 1, 1994, Scarborough Public Library prohibits smoking and the use of  smokeless tobacco products in the Library and anywhere on Library property.

There is no area of the Library or Library property designated as a tobacco use area.

This policy applies to all employees, library users, guests, and other visitors.

An employee who violates this policy may be subject to disciplinary action.


Adopted : 09/16/2010

Trustee Duties and Responsibilities


            The Scarborough Public Library was first organized in 1899, and for many years maintained a modest collection of books in a one-room building which was open for four hours only on Friday afternoons.  In contrast, the present Library, completed in 1990, serves a


            The Scarborough Public Library was first organized in 1899, and for many years maintained a modest collection of books in a one-room building which was open for four hours only on Friday afternoons.  In contrast, the present Library, completed in 1990, serves a rapidly growing community of approximately 20,000 inhabitants, with public access 55 hours weekly, circulating 199,580 items last year.  The collection contains 92,288 print, audio, and video materials, in physical and electronic formats.

            Scarborough's Library is part of a larger community network of informational services including both schools and town.  It is also part of a statewide system through the Maine Regional Library System and is connected nationally through computer networking and the Interlibrary Loan Service. The Library belongs to the Minerva consortium and has a shared borrowing agreement with the public libraries in Cape Elizabeth, South Portland, Westbrook, and Gorham.

            The whole spectrum of informational services is changing rapidly, and we are well aware of the necessity of keeping abreast of current technology.  The Scarborough Public Library has achieved an enviable reputation among small libraries for excellence and both staff and board intend to maintain that leadership position.

            While the Library is a private, non-profit, 501(c)(3), corporation with its own Board of Trustees, 92 percent of its operating budget is typically funded by the Town of Scarborough. In FY21 COVID’s impact reduced the Town’s support to 86%. The balance is provided internally through fines, fees, income from fundraising and investment income, and additional support for FY21 comes from federal COVID relief funds.  The total budget for 2020-2021 is $1,312,665. The Library participates in the Town's annual budget process in essentially the same manner as a Town department.

Board Structure

            The governing Board of the Scarborough Public Library consists of twelve members chosen from the community, a member of the Town Council appointed by the Council and a representative of the Friends of the Library, making a total of fourteen Trustees.  All Trustees will demonstrate a commitment to the Library as a vital resource to the community, and some may be selected for a particular expertise or background.

            The officers of the Corporation are a president, a vice-president, a secretary and a treasurer, and they form the nucleus of the Executive Committee.

            The Board of Trustees meets monthly throughout the year, although a summer break is usually taken if the business schedule permits.  The meetings are ordinarily held at the Library on the third Thursday of each month at 6:30 p.m. Virtual meetings are being held Thursday afternoons during the COVID-19 era.

            The President is authorized by the by-laws to appoint Board members and non-Board members to certain committees in order to provide technical assistance or breadth of community participation.  Committees may vary as to frequency of meeting.  Board members may also be asked to work with the Library Director as a Board advisor on particular policies or projects.

Duties and Responsibilities

           Trustees have an obligation to familiarize themselves with the by-laws of the Corporation, the annual operating budget and the ongoing business of the Library.  In addition, Trustees are expected to attend all meetings of the Board and to uphold their Trustee responsibilities, as well as to actively participate in committees as assigned.

            Any Trustee who misses three consecutive meetings and/or four meetings in any given year without reasonable cause may be removed by a two-thirds vote of the Board.

            Any Trustee finding it necessary to do so may resign by delivering a written notice of resignation to the Corporation at its principal office, or to the President or Secretary of the Board of Trustees.  The resignation shall be effective upon receipt unless the resignation states another date.

            Trustees have a variety of responsibilities individually and collectively, both as members of the community from which they are called, and as participants in a Management, Planning and Support process.


            Trustees will maintain careful oversight of the sources and use of funds.

            Trustees have the responsibility for safeguarding the physical plant, equipment, collections and investments having a replacement value of approximately $2.7 million.  The Trustees must also hire a librarian and authorize the hiring of other staff and determine salary and benefit levels and rules of personnel practice.

             It is the responsibility of all Board members to be aware of current trends in libraries and the changing needs of our patrons.


            Trustees must be active and thoughtful participants in both short- and long-term planning to assure the continuing strength of the Library.  Members of the Board must have their fingers on the pulse of the community in order to aid in the planning process.  The Board holds an annual retreat where the long-term goals are discussed in depth.  All trustees must share in the annual planning process involving such areas as personnel expenses, capital expenditures and preparation of the annual budget.


            Trustees are expected to provide their financial support to the Library’s annual appeal and other fund-raising initiatives.

            The good health of the Library and its ability to serve Scarborough depends heavily on the good will of the citizens.  Trustees should be willing to promote the Library whenever there is an opportunity to do so.

            Since the largest percentage of the Library’s operating budget is provided by the Town of Scarborough, an awareness of the political realities inherent in the Library’s dependence is essential.  Trustees are expected to be supportive of the Library’s fiscal requirements in budget hearings or other deliberations of the Town.

            Trustees are encouraged to attend programs and activities sponsored by the Library and the Friends of the Library.


October 2020

Use of Cell Phones Policy

The Scarborough Public Library provides an environment conducive to study and welcoming to all users. Therefore, the use of cell phones and similar wireless communication devices is not permitted within the Scarborough Public Library by the public or staff, except in designated areas:

  1. Lobby area near public telephone;
  2. Staff break area;
  3. Meeting Room (groups using the meeting room may set their own guidelines): and,
  4. Any area outside the building.

Inappropriate use of such devices is considered disruptive behavior. This policy will be enforced under the Library’s Rules Related to Library Behavior Guidelines

Adopted: June 17, 2004

Rules Related to Library Behavior revised: June 17, 2004; Amended 2/19/2009
Policy Statement Regarding Appropriate Library Behavior 10/1990

Wireless Network Policy

The Library provides a wireless network to allow public access to the Internet before, during, and after library business hours. It is a separate network from the Library wired network and by its nature, like all public hotspots, is less secure.

A login and password are required so that we may manage the number of users on the network at one time.

Devices Covered

This policy covers all wireless data communication devices.

Content Filtering

Content filtering is a requirement of our Internet service provider Maine School and Library Network (MSLN)

Responsibility of Library Staff

The Library is not responsible for any loss of data caused by use of the library wireless network. Library staff will strive to inform wireless users of security and privacy policies and procedures related to the use of wireless communications in common areas.

The Library makes available printed directions for configuring a device on the Library wireless network. The Library staff will not configure a user’s computer.

Staff Access Points and Cards

Employees of the library may not provide personal off - the - shelf base stations and access points for themselves. Abuse Interference or disruption of other authorized communications or unauthorized interception of another's wireless traffic is a violation of this policy.


Any employee found to have violated this policy may be subject to disciplinary action, up to and including termination of employment. Any public user in violation of this policy will be denied further access to the wireless network.


Wireless access points operate over a shared bandwidth. As the number of users increase, the available bandwidth per user diminishes dramatically. For that reason, we use methods to limit the number of concurrent users on our wireless network. Users needing higher bandwidth should use a wired library public access computer. As per our agreement with our Internet provider (MSLN), users cannot directly send and receive mail to and from mail servers located outside the MSLN network using the POP mail protocol. Users on the library wireless network must have configured their mail program to use the IMAP protocol in order to access their email directly from a server.*

Wireless networks inherently have greater risks than wired networks because wireless transmissions occur on unlicensed radio frequencies. Consequently, it is difficult to know who or what devices may be connected and listening. Users use the wireless network at their own risk. Users of the library wireless network should consider all unencrypted communications over the network as insecure and available and all content as clear text.

* POP was designed for, and works best in, the situation where you use only a single desktop computer. Normally, messages are downloaded to your desktop computer and then deleted from the mail server.


Adopted: June 17, 2004
Revised: March 21, 2013; April 18, 2013