Madison County Library Meeting Rooms
The public meeting rooms (Jere Ayers room, study rooms, classroom, and/or other designated rooms) of the Madison County Library are designed to advance the ideas and purposes expressed in the library's mission statement and strategic plan. The facilities should serve as a public resource by providing access to library and other programs for educational, informational, cultural and civic functions of the community.
Equal Opportunity & Endorsement
- The library's meeting rooms are available on equal terms to all groups in the community, regardless of the beliefs or affiliations of the groups' members.
- All meetings held in public library facilities must be free of charge and open to the public, staff and the press.
- Activities taking place in the meeting rooms cannot be closed to any person on the basis of age, gender, race, religion, national origin, disabling condition or any other legally protected category.
- Use of the meeting rooms by outside agencies does not constitute an endorsement by the library, library staff or Board of Trustees of the viewpoints expressed by the participants in programs or meetings.
Reservations and Scheduling
- Reservations for use of a meeting room are made according to procedures established by the Madison County Library staff (see Meeting Room Guidelines and Procedures and Reservation/Agreement Form).
- Reservations must be made by an adult (18 years of age or older). Groups with participants younger than 18 years of age must have adult supervision. The adult who signs the reservation must arrive prior to the beginning of the event, must be present throughout the entire event, and must remain until the departure from the library campus of all under-age attendees.
- The signee/contact person for each group is responsible for ensuring that each member of his or her group is aware of and abides by all library regulations and policies.
- Meeting rooms are not available during library holidays.
- Meetings may be held in the Jere Ayers room before or after regularly scheduled library hours only when prior arrangement has been made and approval has been given by library staff for the hours requested. Procedures for borrowing keys for meeting rooms must be followed as outlined by the Branch Manager (see Meeting Room Guidelines and Procedures and Reservation/Agreement Form).
Meeting Room Fees & Food & Drink Service
- Refreshments may be served in the Jere Ayers room.
- All refreshments must remain in the meeting room.
- Madison County Library guidelines and procedures for room set up and cleaning will be provided at the time of reservation.
- Damage to library property will be the responsibility of the group using the room. The reservation signee will be charged with any resulting damage or cleaning fees. Damage to library property may also result in the applicant being denied further use of the facilities. These determinations will be made by the Branch Manager.
Priorities for Reservations
- Meetings and events sponsored by the library, which are allowed precedence over all outside groups or individuals.
- Events cosponsored by the library.
- Meetings of the agencies of local government which fund the library.
- All other reservations will be taken on a first come, first served basis.
- The library reserves the right to revise any schedule of meetings if necessary and to preempt established reservations upon reasonable notification of the group(s) involved.
- Meetings cannot disrupt the ability of the library to conduct its business in a normal or orderly manner because of noise, crowding, or other factors.
- Meeting rooms may not be used for private gatherings, parties, celebrations, or commercial gatherings.
- Events sponsored by the Library may include vending or fund-raising, others may not.
- Admission fees, solicitations of memberships, payment of dues, and registration of attendance are not permitted; no purchases may be required for attendance.
- Fees for participation in workshops, study groups, discussion series, conferences, and similar meetings may be collected only if it is to defray direct cost of the materials to be used in that program.
- Rulings of the county Fire Marshall (or other such authority) as to the capacity of people in the rooms and other matters of safety must be observed at all meetings.
- No group may use the library as its official address.
- Other than for library-sponsored events, the library will not accept reservations for a series of meetings which will designate the library as a regular meeting place for any organization. Up to three dates may be reserved at one time.
- The Library Board and staff do not assume any liability on or for groups or individuals attending a meeting in the library and assumes no responsibility or liability for private property brought into the building or onto the library campus.
- Future use of the meeting room may be restricted or denied by library staff for any violation of library policy.
Small Study Rooms & Computer Classroom
- The library's small study rooms and computer classroom are available during library open hours on a first come, first served basis.
- The small study rooms are available for a three-hour limited time only, which may be extended if no one else is waiting to use the room.
- Groups using the small study rooms are limited to eight people at one time.
- Any conversation or other noise in study rooms or the computer classroom must be quiet enough so other patrons are not disturbed.
- Small study rooms may not be used for sleeping or for storage of personal belongings.
- Reservations are required for use of the computer classroom (see Meeting Room Guidelines and Procedures and Reservation/Agreement Form).
- The ARLS Director reserves the right to review any and all requests for use of library meeting rooms and may reject any which he/she deems unsuitable or inappropriate.
- Issues regarding meeting room policy and/or the content of programs or events in the meeting rooms should be addressed in writing to the Branch Manager. A written response/decision from the Branch Manager can be expected within 10 days of receipt of a review request.
- An appeal of the Branch Manger's decision may be filed in writing with the Director of the Athens Regional Library System within 10 days after notice of a decision is given to the patron requesting review.
- The Madison County Library Board of Trustees will, during the next regularly scheduled quarterly Board meeting, hear the appeal. The Board's decision concerning the request will be the final decision.