PLEASE NOTE THAT YOU MUST CHOOSE THE LIBRARY AND MEETING ROOM YOU ARE RESERVING FOR YOUR MEETING. JUST CLICK ON THE LIBRARY MEETING ROOM AFTER READING THE GUIDELINES BELOW.
Reserve a Room
Read the following guidelines and accept the terms in order to make a reservation for a meeting room. Meeting Room Policy | Effective January 20, 2015
General Guidelines About Meeting Room Use
The Hancock County Library System has established these policies under the laws of Mississippi which state that the library board “has the supervision, care and custody of all property of the library, including the buildings constructed, leased or set apart thereof.” (Mississippi Code, Section 39-3-19)
- The Hancock County Library System makes library meeting and conference rooms available to local non-profit groups and organizations when they are not being used by the library, the Library Foundation, or co-sponsoring groups of library events.
- Meeting rooms are intended to further the library's mission, including but not limited to: 1) facilitating the exchange of diverse information and ideas; 2) providing wholesome and entertaining educational activities for adults, teens and children; 3) bringing high-quality cultural programming to residents of the community.
- Library facilities are available on a non-discriminatory, equal access basis in compliance with state law. Use of library facilities and meeting rooms by any group or organization signifies acceptance of the terms of this policy and the guidelines for room use.
- Permission to use Hancock County Library System facilities will be denied for purposes that would interfere with the proper functioning of the library or disrupt the use of the library by others or violate state law.
- Permission to use the library's meeting rooms does not constitute library endorsement of any program presented or any viewpoints expressed. Advertisements or announcements implying such endorsement are not permitted.
- The library does not assume liability for injuries to individuals or damages to personal property which occur as a result of actions of the sponsors or participants in activities in meeting room.
- The library director is responsible for establishing and administering procedures to carry out this policy.
Specific Guidelines Applying To All Meetings
- All events held in meeting rooms must be open to the public.
- Persons who attend events in the library meeting rooms must adhere to all rules and regulations of the HCLS Rules of Conduct.
- Admission must not be charged and products must not be sold in a facility or meeting room except those which benefit the library and are sponsored by the Library Foundation.
- Information may be distributed and must be free of charge. No services or memberships may be advertised, solicited, or sold. However, groups or organizations which regularly charge membership dues are permitted to collect such dues at the library.
- During library-sponsored author events, it is permissible for the author or a local bookstore to sell copies of the author’s book or books.
- Smoking and the use of alcohol are not permitted in the meeting room or inside any part of the library building.
- Attendance must not exceed the posted capacity of the meeting room.
- Meeting rooms may not be used by profit-making ventures or by representatives of profit-making companies and/or organizations to advertise and sell services.
- Use of meeting rooms shall conform to all local, state and federal laws including the Americans with Disabilities Act.
- Children under the age of three who accompany an adult to a meeting must remain with the adult at all times.
Approval Of Room Use
- Library managers or their designees will approve use of the meeting rooms, based solely on the library's meeting room policy. Any application which is denied may be referred by the applicant to the library executive director, and, if necessary, it can be referred by the library executive director to the Board of Trustees for final decision.
- A schedule of library programs should be kept by the branch manager and checked before any particular program time is promised to any individual or group.
- Reservations are on a first-come, first-serve basis and may be made no more than six months in advance.
- Requests for use of a meeting room at a specific branch may be made in person, by telephone, or in writing. However, a completed and signed application must be on file in the library prior to the meeting.
- The library may block out times in advance when the meeting rooms are reserved for state library meetings, Library Foundation events, library co-sponsored events or government meetings. Library co-sponsored events are given priority in scheduling the meeting rooms.
- For a library event to be co-sponsored, the event must fit the goals of the library, be of significant benefit to the community in a cultural, educational or recreational manner and be approved at least a month in advance by both the programming committee and the library executive director. (Current examples of groups that are library co-sponsors include the Hancock Chamber of Commerce, Kreative Kids, Pearlington Impact, Camp Care and Tail-wagging Tutors.)
- The library reserves the right to re-schedule a meeting room reservation for a library co-sponsored event, but such events should not regularly disrupt other groups who have made a prior reservation for the meeting room.
- Regular weekly or monthly meeting space for groups or organizations cannot be provided due to the high demand from other groups and regularly scheduled library activities.
- A series of meetings of up to three dates may be scheduled with prior approval by branch manager.
- Scheduling will be limited when necessary to ensure equitable access to the facilities for the entire community.
- Person(s) listed on the application form will be held responsible for any expense the library incurs as a result of a group or individual's use of the meeting rooms.
- The Library System, its Board of Trustees and staff are not responsible for accidents, injuries or loss of property while the rooms are being used.
Signage And Publicity
- To establish the fact that the library is not sponsoring the event, all publicity which uses the name of the library must include the statements “Sponsored by (name of organization reserving the room)” and “No endorsement by the Hancock County Library System is implied”.
- A group or organization may not use the name and address of the library as the address of the group or organization.
- No individual or group may state or imply library approval without written approval from the library director or his/her appointed designee.
- Only groups that are preapproved by the library executive director can use the term “co-sponsored by the Library” in their publicity or programs for events.
Care And Use Of Facilities
- Permission to use the rooms includes ordinary use of the furniture and fixtures. Persons or groups must provide their own supplies.
- Equipment, supplies, or personal effects cannot be stored or left in library meeting rooms before or after use.
- Groups or organizations are responsible for the set-up and cleanup of the meeting room.
- Groups must leave rooms as they are found (i.e., restacking chairs, tables, cleaning counter top, arranging the space in the order in which it was found, etc.)
- Light refreshments may be served. Meal preparation is not allowed. Sink, counters, and tables must be left clean and in an orderly condition. All trash resulting from serving of refreshments must be removed from the premises by the organization.
- Groups or organizations are liable for all costs that would be incurred by the library to have the meeting room cleaned, or for damage to or theft of library property caused by persons attending the meeting.
- The library assumes no responsibility for any theft or damage to any property brought into the library meeting rooms
- If the group or organization using the room desires to use the ceiling-mounted data projector, screen and laptop accessible podium, it is advisable that they receive instructions on doing so at least 2-3 days prior to the event planned.
- Notice of cancellation should be made as soon as possible in advance of the meeting.
- Failure to notify of scheduled meeting cancellations for two meetings in any calendar year may result in the loss of meeting room privileges for a period of six months.
- The library reserves the right to deny further use of the meeting rooms to groups or organizations who do not comply with this policy.
To agree to abide by these guidelines, click here.