Collection Selection & Retention Policy

The Plainfield libraries are responsible for providing an open forum for the exchange and broadening of information, ideas, and viewpoints within the community. The libraries and staff will not censor or remove materials because of the political, moral, philosophical, or religious view they present or because of the conviction or backgrounds of their creators.  The Plainfield libraries will fully subscribe to the Intellectual Freedom Statements & Guidelines, American Library Associations Library Bill of Rights, The Freedom to View Statement and The Freedom to Read Statement.

Libraries must meet the needs of users in an age characterized by rapid expansion of available information, multidisciplinary thrusts to topics, and a continuing need to solve immediate problems in a technologically intense age. Increasing costs of library materials as well as space for storage and retrieval, coupled with the incorporation of new information formats requires librarians to rethink the need of ownership of all resources. Access to information is the key to the library of the future, but access is dependent on human and technical systems. the needs of local constituents will be the libraries' primary focus while recognizing the need for future collaboration, cooperation, and a view to the electronic access between both libraries and beyond. Volume count will become less important as meeting needs of everyone in the community becomes the norm.

1.  Materials are chosen on the basis of general excellence, anticipated interest or demand, the need to maintain a current well-balanced collection of currently useful resources, and knowledge of what is available in both Plainfield libraries when building the collections. Directors will not automatically purchase all titles by an author.  This will preclude duplicate purchases and lay a foundation for joint communication by the library directors when purchasing resources. It is the understanding that certain current frequently requested materials will require copies in each library.  This policy serves to encourage resource sharing and communication between directors in both libraries. Budgetary restrictions will be considered when evaluating additions to the collection.  The presence of an item in the libraries should not be considered an endorsement of the content by the library.

2.  The library does not attempt to develop a comprehensive research collection in any field other than local history.  The library does not have an environment for preservation of historic materials of value.  These materials have special preservation requirements.

3.  Library directors are responsible for the selection, review, and removal of books and other materials with the purpose of maintaining a viable, well-used collection within the confines of current library space.  Materials will be reviewed in total every three years.  Guidelines for removal will include Integrated Library System circulation information, duplicate copies in both Plainfield libraries, best use of physical space, electronic availability, age of materials condition, and the Public Library Core Collection development tools.  Textbooks are not purchased by the Plainfield libraries.  A statement will be provided every three years to the library board of trustees (BOT) that a careful weeding based on the above guidelines has been completed by the library directors.

4.  Resource sharing between the two libraries will be expected.  Decision to purchase will be based on patron requests, current subject interests, automated resources accessible online to patrons, and materials deemed to be appropriate for the Plainfield community by the library directors.  Patrons will be encouraged regularly to access electronic materials and online library resources, using the computers in their homes and at the libraries.  Library directors will be expected to establish areas that might be more heavily developed in one library rather than both libraries.  Interlibrary loans will be the first approach to obtain materials outside the Plainfield community profile.

5.  At the discretion of the library directors, based on this policy, gifted materials will be included in the collections or sold or discarded.  A gift does not establish a permanent space in the library if it does not fit the guidelines of the library collection development policy.  Memorial or honor gifts of library materials are encouraged, but the library directors will have selection and discretion on the appropriateness of the gifts.

6.  Anyone who takes an exception to the libraries' selection policies or the inclusion of a specific item in the library collection is encouraged to discuss the matter with the library directors.  If a satisfactory resolution is not achieved, the procedure contained in the reconsideration of materials policy should be followed.  The Plainfield library BOT will be the final deciding body.

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