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Meeting Room Policy and Procedures

As part of the Homewood Public Library's program of services, the Library provides meeting room facilities for individuals, organizations, and groups. In keeping with the American Library Association's LIBRARY BILL OF RIGHTS, Article VI, the meeting facilities are available to the public "on an equitable basis,regardless of the beliefs or affiliations of individuals or groups requesting their use."


A. FACILITIES


The Library has two kinds of meeting room facilities -- auditoriums, and conference rooms. There are two auditoriums on the main level. The larger auditorium has access to a kitchen facility with a refrigerator, stove with oven, microwave, ice maker, dishwasher and sink. It can be divided into smaller rooms. The smaller auditorium is round and has access to a kitchen facility with a refrigerator, stove with oven, microwave, dishwasher and sink. There is a small conference room on the Library level - suitable for 4-6 people seated around a round conference table. On the Lower Level there are five (5) conference rooms. On the lower level there are: one (1) large meeting room that has a serving counter; two (2) medium-sized meeting rooms - one has a serving counter and sink; two (2) small meeting rooms - suitable for 8-12 people seated around a rectangular conference table.

B. Facility Capacity

The capacity for each room has been established by the City of Homewood Fire Marshal. Fire code requires that no group exceed
the capacity specified for the particular room arrangement chosen by the group. (Check the Homewood website http://www.homewoodpubliclibrary.org for room capacity.)

C. Seating Styles


Auditoriums and meeting rooms will be set up auditorium style for all meetings. Any request for a set-up other than auditorium style must be made at the time the reservation is made or at least one week in advance. A special set-up can be done by library personnel only and will require payment of an additional fee of $10.00 for conference rooms and $25.00 for auditoriums.

II. RESERVATIONS

A. How are reservations for a room made?

Reservations for the use of a room must be made on the application form provided by the Library (the"Application"). Anyone who wishes to make a reservation must sign, or have signed within the past year, an agreement expressing intent to comply with all policies, rules, regulations, and conditions regarding responsible use of a meeting room (the "Use Agreement"). Reservations will be booked on a first-come,first-serve basis according to the date theLibrary receives the Application.

No reservation is final until:

1. Library receives a signed Application and Use Agreement. An Application and UseAgreement must be on file for each calendar year.
2. Library receives a deposit equal to the greater of: (a) 10 percent (10%) of the rental fee (the "Reservation Deposit") for the reserved room; or (b) $25. The balance of the room rental fee and any cleaning fee, special seating set-up fee, or Security Deposit must be paid on or before the scheduled event. The Library reserves the right to deny access to a reserved room if all fees are not paid by the required deadline.
3. Library approves the Application.


B. How far in advance may reservations be made?


Individuals, organizations or groups that wish to reserve a lower level Conference Room for a series of meetings over a period of time should fill out only one Application, and include a schedule of meeting dates, times, and other requested information. When reserving a room, be sure to include sufficient time before and after the meeting for set-up and clean up.


1. Meeting rooms may be reserved up to 12 months in advance for either an individual meeting or a series of meetings. To reserve a meeting for a series of meetings throughout the year, fees for the entire year must be paid in advance. The Library will annually invoice groups that meet regularly. When room fees are invoiced, payment is due by the 15th day of the month following the issuance of the invoice. If the invoice for room rental fees is not paid within sixty (60) days of issuance, all reservations will be canceled. Rescheduling will be based on availability of meeting
room space.
2. Auditoriums may be reserved up to twelve (12) months in advance for an individual meeting. Auditoriums may not be reserved for a series of meetings. (Only the Library Board, Director or Assistant Director has the authority to approve the use of the auditoriums for a series of meetings.)

C. Who can make reservations?

Reservations must be made by an individual at least twenty-one (21) years old.

D. WHEN CAN RESERVATIONS BE MADE?


1. Advance Reservation: All requests for use of any room must be made through the Library during the Library's hours of operation by calling the Meeting Room Coordinator at 332-6610 or by completing the online registration forms. If the Meeting Room Coordinator is not available, you may leave a message on the Meeting Room Coordinator’s answering machine.

2. Same Day Reservation: If a room is available, the Library will make a same dayreservation provided the group, organization or individual has a Use Agreement on file prior to completing an Application for the room. After 5:00 p.m. on weekdays and on weekends, the Supervisor On Department may authorize the use of a room. As with all other reservations, payment of the room rental fee must be made before the room will be opened.

E. Who makes the facility assignment?


The Library reserves the right to make schedule or room assignments. In general, the Library allows groups to reserve its rooms on a first-come, first-served basis.

III. ELIGIBILITY FOR USE OF FACILITIES


A. Is there an age restriction for use of the meeting room facilities? Groups or individuals under the age of twenty-one (21) must have an adult sponsor in attendance at their meetings at all times.
B. Who is eligible to use the facilities? Any individual, organization, or group, whether governmental, commercial, or noncommercial, may use the Library's auditoriums and meeting rooms, subject to this policy. The Library reserves the right to refuse a reservation to any group, organization or individual who has failed to comply with the rules and regulations for use of meeting room space established by the Homewood Public Library Board of Trustees. Granting permission to use Library facilities does not constitute endorsement by the Library of the group or its beliefs.

IV. PURPOSES FOR WHICH MEETINGS MAY BE HELD


Auditoriums and meeting rooms may be used for the following purposes: (I) commercial meetings; (II) noncommercial meetings; Or (III) parties, receptions and ceremonies ("Social Events"), whether or not held in connection with commercial enterprises.
• A meeting is considered to have a commercial purpose if: (i) any charges or fees are required in order to attend the meeting; (ii) goods or services are sold at or offered for sale at the meeting; or (iii) the meeting promotes a commercial enterprise.

• A meeting that is neither a commercial meeting nor a Social Event will be considered a noncommercial meeting.

Only the Library Board, Director or Assistant Director has the authority to approve the use of the Library facility for Social Events. Requests for such use will be considered upon the Library's receipt of a writtenApplication.

V. MEETING HOURS

Commercial and noncommercial meetings may be held in the Library’s meeting room facilities between the following hours on days the Library is open.
Monday, Tuesday, Thursday / 9:00 a.m. - 9:00 p.m.
Wednesday, Friday / 9:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m.
Saturday / 9:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m.
Sunday / 2:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m.
If approved, Social Events will be permitted in the following facilities only at the following times:
Auditoriums...........................Only after Library hours
Meeting Rooms......................Only after 5:00 p.m. on weekdays and any time on weekends
The meeting room facilities may be used after Library hours for any purpose, but only with permission from Library Administration. An increased fee is charged for after hours events to cover the cost of using the Library beyond normal budgeted hours. A security guard or a member of the library staff must be on duty forall after hours meetings.

VI. FEE SCHEDULE

The following are exempt from auditorium and meeting room rental fees:

  • A. Library-sponsored meetings or programs
  • B. Friends of the Library meetings or programs
  • C. City Department meetings or programs
  • D. Municipal meetings and functions
  • E. Homewood Board of Education meetings or programs
  • F. Employees and trustees of the Homewood Library:
    Employees and trustees may use the Conference Rooms and/or Auditoriums twice  (2) per calendar year at no charge. Standard meeting room fees will apply to any meetings scheduled after the two (2) free meetings.

A fee is charged to cover the costs of utilities, building maintenance, general wear and tear, and, when applicable, the cost of keeping the Library open beyond normally budgeted hours.

Special Set Up Fees

Auditorium and conference rooms are set up auditorium (theater) style. Groups requesting a set-up other than auditorium will be charged a setup fee,

Special Setup Fee .............................................................................Conference Room ($10.00), Auditorium ($25.00)

A. Fees for Use During Operating Hours

1. During business hours:
a. Social Events are NOT allowed in Auditoriums. Social Events are allowed in lower level conference rooms only after 5:00 p.m. on weekdays and any time on weekends.
b. Alcohol may NOT be served at any meeting.
2. For Non-Commercial Meetings the following fees apply:
a. Conference Rooms - Room rental fee .........................................$15.00 (per 4hrs, or part thereof)
b. Auditoriums - Room rental fee .........................................$35.00 (per 4hrs, or part thereof)
3. For all Commercial Meetings the following fees apply:
a. Conference Rooms - Room rental fee .........................................$20.00 (per 4hrs, or part thereof)
b. Auditoriums - Room rental fee ........................................$100.00 (per 4hrs, or part thereof)
4. For all Social Events the following fees apply:
(Social Events are allowed in lower level conference rooms only after 5:00 p.m. on weekdays and any time on weekends.)
-Room Rental Fee ....................................... $100.00

B. Fees for Use Before /  After Operating Hours

Before the Library Opens: A $25.00 fee will be charged for any meeting that requires a staff memeber to provide access to the Library before it is scheduled to be open.  

After Opperating Hours: The following fees will be charged any time a room will be used after the Library has closed. These fees will apply even if the meeting begins during the Library's operating hours. No meeting may last past 11:00 p.m., at which time all parking lot lights are turned off. Everyone, including caterers, musicians and guests, must be out of the building by 11:00 p.m.

1. For Non-Commercial meetings the following fees apply:
a. Conference Rooms - Room rental fee .........................................$25.00 (per 4hrs, or part thereof)
b. Auditoriums - Room rental fee ........................................$100.00 (per 4hrs, or part thereof)
c. Any event serving alcohol will require:
i. Payment of a $200 cash or money order deposit (the "Security Deposit") at time of reservation, which deposit will be refunded if the meeting
room facility is found to be in satisfactory condition following the event. If the facility is found to be in unsatisfactory condition, the deposit will be forfeited. Unsatisfactory conditions include but are not limited to: stains, gum and/or burns on carpets, damaged walls or ceiling tiles, broken furniture and/or appliances, etc.
AND
ii. The services of two off-duty uniformed Homewood police officer(s). The Library will arrange for a police officer (s) with the renter paying the police officer (s) directly.
2. For Commercial Meetings the following fees apply:
a. Meeting Rooms - Room rental fee ........................................$100.00 (per day, or part thereof)

b. Auditoriums
-Room rental fee ........................................$350.00 (per day, or part thereof)
-Security Deposit ....................................... $200.00
( Cash or Money Order deposit will be refunded if the meeting room facility is found to be in satisfactory condition following the event. If the facility is found to be in unsatisfactory condition, the deposit will be forfeited. Unsatisfactory conditions include but are not limited to: stains, gum and/or burns on carpets, damaged walls or ceiling tiles, broken furniture and/or appliances, etc.)
AND
-Any event serving alcohol will require: The service of two (2) off-duty uniformed Homewood police officers. The Library will arrange for a police officers with the renter paying the police officers directly.
3. For Social Events (which must be approved by the Director/Asst. Director), the following fees apply:
a. Conference Rooms
-Room rental fee ........................................ $350.00 (per day, or part thereof)
-Security Deposit ....................................... $500.00
( Cash or Money Order deposit will be refunded if the meeting room facility is found to be in satisfactory condition following the event. If the facility is found to be in unsatisfactory condition, the deposit will be forfeited. Unsatisfactory conditions include but are not limited to: stains, gum and/or burns on carpets, damaged walls, doors, or ceiling tiles, broken furniture and/or appliances, etc.)
b. Auditoriums
-Room rental fee ...................................... $ 1,000.00 (per day, or part thereof)
-Security Deposit .......................................$1,000.00
(Cash or Cashier Check deposit will be refunded if the meeting room facility is found to be in satisfactory condition following the event. If the
facility is found to be in unsatisfactory condition, the deposit will be forfeited. Unsatisfactory conditions include but are not limited to: stains, gum and/or burns on carpets, damaged walls, doors, or ceiling tiles, broken furniture and/or appliances, etc.)
AND
-Any event serving alcohol will require: The service of two (2) off-duty uniformed Homewood police officers. The Library will arrange for police officers with the renter paying the police officer directly.

VII. CANCELLATIONS

The Library should be notified immediately if any reserved room will not be used as scheduled. Notice of cancellation must be provided to the Building Supervisor, personally, either in writing or by telephone.

Room rental fees and Reservation Deposits will be refunded or credited as follows:
• Reservation Deposit will be refunded if cancellation notice is provided to the Library at least one week before the scheduled event. Any room rental fees paid in advance will be refunded if cancellation notice is provided to the Library at least 1 week before the scheduled meeting. Otherwise, all reservation deposits and room rental fees will be forfeited.
• For meeting rooms reserved and paid for in advance, if the group will no longer meet at the Library, a refund of unused room rental fees will be issued as soon as the library receives written notification of the cancellation.
• If one time events in the auditoriums or meeting rooms are canceled due to inclement weather, events will be rescheduled for another date or a full refund will be provided.
• If any regularly scheduled meeting is canceled due to inclement weather, the group will be given an opportunity to reschedule its meeting or a credit will be applied to its next year’s fees.

VIII. GENERAL GUIDELINES


1. City Ordinance prohibits smoking in any public facility within the City limits of Homewood.
2. Alcoholic beverages may NOT be served during Library hours. Only wines, champagnes and beers containing no more than 14% alcohol may be served at events held after the Library has closed.
3. Kitchen facilities include: microwave, refrigerator, oven, coffee pot, dishwasher, and ice maker.  They are available for meetings booked in the Auditoriums. Some Meeting Rooms include microwaves and coffee pots.
4. The Library does not provide users with coffee, condiments, paper cups/plates, napkins etc.
5. No food preparation, other than warming in microwave or oven, shall be allowed in the auditoriums and meeting rooms. However, covered dishes and catered meals shall be allowed.
6. No food or beverages may be served in the lobby or corridors outside conference rooms or auditoriums.
7. Seating may NOT exceed room capacity. Additional furniture items to be brought in must be approved by the Library Director before they are set up in any room.
8. Advance notice is required for the use of Library audio visual equipment. A separate list of equipment is attached.
9. The Library does not provide porter services for groups meeting in the facility nor storage space for their property. The Library does not accept responsibility for materials that are lost or damaged.
10. Library staff will not accept calls or relay messages to people attending meetings except in emergencies. A pay phones is available in the Library Cafe.
11. Groups may not use the Library as their mailing address nor may they state or imply that the Library sponsors or endorses their meeting.
12. The Library will give the name and phone number of the person and group making the reservation to anyone inquiring about the meeting.
13. Admission charges and sales are permitted. However, any meeting generating revenue must be held in an Auditorium at the fee charged for commercial (for profit) meetings. Generating revenues includes proceeds from sales, admission or attendance charges or fees, or tuition. Also included are meetings where a sales presentation is made, regardless of whether goods or services are sold at the meeting. Groups must obtain a sales tax license and comply with all applicable City and State laws.
14. Children must be supervised at all times. The Library is not responsible for children left unattended in the Library while their parent or guardian is in a meeting at the Library.
15. Excessive noise or disruptions to the functions of the Library are not permitted. Music and noise must be kept to a reasonable level, and in accordance with the City's noise ordinance.
16. No pets are allowed in the Library except those used by physically impaired persons.
17. When a tornado warning is issued, the Library will follow evacuation procedures outlined in its emergency procedures manual.
18. Permission to use the facility may be withheld from anyone who fails to comply with this Meeting Room Policy.
19. The Homewood Public Library Board reserves the right to alter this policy without prior notice.

IX. CARE AND USE OF THE FACILITY

1. Individuals, organizations and groups using the Library are responsible for leaving the facility in good order with doors locked, lights turned out and windows shut. Abuse of Library property will result in charges for the repair or replacement of damaged property and/or the loss of permission to use the meeting rooms.
2. All small appliances (i.e., coffee pot) and equipment used should be turned off/unplugged.
3. Dishes should be cleaned and put away. If you leave before the dishwasher is completed, it is acceptable to leave the dishes; however, they must be clean.
4. All trash, including trash resulting from the serving of refreshments, must be placed in the receptacles provided.
5. By order of the City of Homewood Fire Marshal, attendance at meetings is limited to the capacity of the room. Seating and/or supplementary furniture is not allowed in corridors outside rooms.
6. Furniture and/or equipment from the main area of the Library or lobby may not be brought into the Auditorium.
7. Nothing may be attached to the painted walls, furniture, doors or the ceiling tiles. Fire code prohibits any open flames, including such things as incense or candles.
8. The use of pens, paints, crayons, dyes, markers, or other materials will be permitted; however, the individual signing the Application will be charged for the cost of repairing any damage to Library furnishings caused by these materials.
9. Do not use confetti for decorations in any meeting room facility.
10. DO NOT use any sort of tack, nails or screws ANYPLACE in any meeting room facility.
11. Use of any appliance, equipment or extension cord not provided by the Library is prohibited unless approved in advance.