Meeting Room Policy
The Trustees of the Charlton Public Library (Library) welcome community use of the Library’s meeting rooms. The meeting rooms are primarily available to support Library programs and functions that further the mission and goals of the Library: to support an informed citizenry by serving their cultural, educational, and informational needs.
In accordance with the American Library Association’s Library Bill of Rights and its interpretation pertaining to meeting rooms, the Library does not limit use of the meeting room based on the subject matter or content of the meeting or on the beliefs or affiliations of the meeting's sponsors. The use of meeting rooms does not imply the Library’s endorsement of any ideas expressed in the meeting nor of the goals, objectives, or ideals of the person or organization using the Library. No advertisements or announcements implying such endorsement are permitted.
The Trustees/Director have the authority to deny the use of Library facilities to any individuals or groups that fail to comply with the intent and provisions of this policy.
Reservations will be granted in order of receipt of application and in accordance with the following priorities:
- Charlton Public Library programs and events
- Groups or organizations affiliated with Charlton Public Library
- Town of Charlton departments, boards, commissions, or elected bodies
- Neighborhood and community-based non-profit groups or organizations
- All other groups will be at the discretion of the Director or his/her designee
Group size may not exceed the following room capacities:
- Dexter Hall Auditorium - 180 occupants maximum
- Community Meeting Room - 50 occupants maximum
- Local History Room - 8 occupants maximum
- Study Rooms - 2 occupants maximum
Meeting/study rooms may not be used for:
- Private events such as birthday parties, bridal showers, graduation parties, etc.
- Meetings involving the sale, advertising, or promotion of products or services
- Programs sponsored by a for-profit business, regardless of purpose
- Fundraising purposes, except for those that benefit the Charlton Public Library
Reservations must be made online at charltonlibrary.org
- Children or young adult groups may use Dexter Hall and the Community Room provided at least one adult (age 18+) makes the reservation and is always present in the room. The Local History Room is not available for youth group use. Study Rooms are available for use by those ages 10 and older. The person making the reservation is responsible for the conduct of the group.
- The Library reserves the right to cancel a reservation granted to an outside group in order to use the room for Library purposes or due to unforeseen circumstances. Rooms will not be available when the Library is closed due to inclement weather or emergency situations.
- Scheduling conflicts will be resolved at the discretion of the Director.
- Reservations will be accepted no more than one year in advance.
- A/V equipment and/or the setup of tables and chairs must be noted in the online form.
- The Library respectfully requests cancellation be received within 48 hours of an event.
- No fee may be charged, no donations solicited, and no merchandise, food or beverages may be sold without prior permission from the Library Director or his/her designee.
- During regular Library operating hours, a representative from the group reserving the room must check in at the circulation desk or with a Library staff member when arriving and check out when leaving. A staff member will unlock the room for the group.
- When meetings are scheduled to begin outside of normal operating hours, participants must enter via the back, lower-level entrance and take the elevator to the appropriate floor. The front doors of the Library will remain locked. For security reasons, the custodian will lock the back, lower-level entrance 15 minutes after the scheduled start time of your event. Attendees who leave the building may not be able to get back in.
- Groups utilizing meeting rooms may arrange for photographers and news media during their event. Photography for such events must not cause disruption of normal Library operations. All persons attending a meeting in a meeting room shall comply with all requests by Library staff and, if applicable, the Charlton Police Department and Charlton Fire Department. Individuals who fail to comply will be required to leave the Library building and will be prohibited from using the meeting rooms in the future. Under no circumstances may use of the meeting rooms interfere with normal Library operations.
- It is the responsibility of the group to return the meeting room to the condition it was in prior to the meeting; failure to do so shall render the group liable to the Board of Trustees for the cost of repair and clean up and may result in forfeiture of future bookings. Any damage to Library property resulting from a meeting shall be the responsibility of the organization using the meeting room.
- The Library is not responsible for equipment, supplies, materials or other items owned by a group and used by them at the Library. No storage facilities are available.
- No posters, decorations or other items may be displayed on walls.
- Smoking is prohibited.
- Light refreshments are permitted provided the group cleans the area. No food is to be left on the premises.
- No open flame is permitted at any time.
- If alcohol is to be served, a one-day permit must be obtained from the Charlton Board of Selectmen. A general liability policy for $1,000,000/$3,000,000, including liquor liability in the amount of $1,000,000, must be obtained. The Town of Charlton must be named as an Additional Insured. Only TIPS-trained servers may serve alcohol and only vendors may bring alcohol into the building.
Adopted by the Board of Library Trustees, April 19, 2007
Amended by the Board of Library Trustees, February 12, 2008
Amended by the Board of Library Trustees, March 18, 2010
Amended by the Board of Library Trustees, July 15, 2010
Amended by the Board of Library Trustees, April 28, 2011
Amended by the Board of Library Trustees, November 17, 2011
Amended by the Board of Library Trustees, March 19, 2015
Amended by the Board of Library Trustees, October 20, 2016
Amended by the Board of Library Trustees, January 18, 2018
Amended by the Board of Library Trustees, August 15, 2019
Amended by the Board of Library Trustees, February 20, 2020
Amended by the Board of Library Trustees, April 21, 2022
Amended by the Board of Library Trustees, October 20, 2022