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Collection Development Policy


The collection development policy exists to guide the director and staff in the selection and deselection of materials, donations, and material challenges. As the community changes, the library will continue to reassess and adapt its collection to reflect new and changing interests and needs. The library is committed to provide a wide variety of print, electronic and audiovisual materials. The library director and its staff will strive to select materials of integrity, and excellence of quality. Materials will specifically be selected to reflect the needs and interests of the community with a priority to enrich the lives of those living in Patoka and Cass Townships.

Scope of Collection

To fulfill the community’s diverse needs, the library will purchase materials in the following formats:

  • Circulating print – hardcover, paperback, board books, VOX Books and magazines
  • Circulating Non-print – audio books, DVD and Blu-ray movie format, video games
  • Non-circulating print – reference, local history, genealogy books and newspapers, encyclopedia sets, and maps
  • Circulating electronic resources – eBooks, audio books, magazines

Criteria for Selection

The responsibility for material selection lies with the library staff and, ultimately, the library director. The director will operate within the framework of policies approved by the Library Board of Trustees. Selection of materials is an ongoing process and welcomes staff and patron input and suggestions; however, the library will not make assurances the requested material will be purchased.

All materials purchased, donated, or requested are considered under the following criteria:

  • Relevance to the interests and needs of the community
  • Positive reviews in professional journals and review sources
  • Popular demand
  • Access of material
  • Suitability of format or physical form for library use
  • Price and affordability
  • Representation of diverse points of view
  • Currency and accuracy of the information
  • Qualifications of the author, creator, or publisher of the work
  • Space availability
  • Consideration of vendor/publishing availability

Collection Maintenance

To ensure the library’s collection remains relevant and in good condition, the library staff and library director will regularly evaluate materials. The following are criteria for withdrawal from the collection:

  • Items are worn, stained or damaged beyond repair
  • Items are worn or out of date, contain inaccurate data or are not historically significant
  • New, current or more comprehensive resources are available
  • Format
  • Duplication
  • Low circulation
  • Availability of shelf space
  • Magazines will be maintained for 1 year
  • Newspapers will be maintained for 2 months
  • The Herald & Huntingburg Press will be maintained continually until the library receives a digitized format of previous year.

These items will be sparingly withdrawn from the collection due to their significance and rarity:

  • Materials donated to the genealogy collection
  • Regional materials including Indiana and Dubois County
  • Works by local authors and creators
  • Works believed to be worthy of preservation for historical purposes

All withdrawn items will be placed in the Book Fair, on the “Free” cart or with county recycling. All magazines and newspapers will be offered to patrons for free. Extremely soiled, moldy, or damaged items will be discarded with the weekly garbage removal.

Gifts and Donations

Gifts and donations are vital to the library and are greatly appreciated. To maintain a collection with quality and integrity, the director and staff will adhere to the following standards:

  • The library will accept these items: Books- Adult and youth, both fiction and non-fiction. DVD’s and Blu-ray discs – both fiction and current non-fiction. Audio Books in CD format.
  • Materials with the following conditions will not be accepted: Moldy/musty, with strong odor or water damaged. Dirty food stained, bug or rodent infested or feces. Marked by pens, pencils, crayons or highlighters. Extensive physical damage.
  • The library is unable to accept: Extensive magazine collections, VHS tapes, audio tapes and music CD’s. Textbooks/medical books, nonfiction titles with a copyright more than five years old. Individual magazines will be placed on the library free cart. Condensed books will be placed in the library Book fair.

Once materials are donated, they become the property of the Huntingburg Public Library. The library reserves the right to include the items in the collection, dispose of them or donate them to the Book fair or Free cart. Any gift considered for the inclusion of the library’s collection must meet the library’s selection criteria.

The library cannot appraise donated material in accordance with the Internal Revenue Service Code. The library will provide a receipt for the donation and the donor will be responsible for evaluating the donated materials.

The library will accept donations only during designated hours of operation. Patrons are asked not to drop off donations in the book drop box or at the library’s entries.

Challenged Materials

The Huntingburg Public Library believes in freedom of information for all, and the library staff and trustees recognize that a collection of diverse materials may offend some patrons, which could result in complaints or requests for reconsideration. The library will use these guiding principles regarding challenged materials:

  • The library considers the choice of reading and viewing materials as a purely individual choice. Patrons are free to reject library material they do not approve; however, patrons may not exercise censorship to restrict the freedom of others.
  • Responsibility for materials selected and read, heard, or viewed by children and adolescents’ rests with their parents or legal guardians.
  • Library selection decisions are not influenced by the possibility that materials may be accessible to minors.
  • No items are sequestered to control access.

These procedures will be applied in situations for challenged materials:

  1. Upon receiving a complaint regarding library material, the patron’s concern will be treated with respect.
  2. All complaints regarding library material will be referred to the library director.
  3. The library director will try to resolve the complaint informally. The library’s selection procedures will be explained as well as the value and rationale for the purchase of the challenged materials.
  4. If the patron is unsatisfied with the initial informal resolution, the patron will then be offered the opportunity to file a formal complaint.
  5. All patrons wishing to file a formal complaint must complete a Request for Reconsideration of Library Materials form. The completed form will be presented to the Library’s Board of Trustees within 60 days.
  6. The challenged material will remain a part of the library’s collection during the reconsideration process.
  7. The library director, along with the Board of Trustees, will review the patron’s complaint at a regularly scheduled meeting. All decisions made will be noted in meeting minutes. The patron will be notified of decisions made by the Board of Trustees in writing within 10 days of the meeting.

Request for Reconsideration of Library Materials

Please be advised the library will review this form within 60 days. This information will be discussed at a regular board meeting that is open to public. All actions conducted in the meeting will be recorded in the meeting minutes.

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