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Meeting Room Policies

Policy Approved: December 21, 2022

As a community service, Westlake Porter Public Library provides meeting rooms that may be used by community organizations. The library has multiple meeting rooms, a conference
room, and a technology lab that may be scheduled for educational, cultural, intellectual or civic activities. These rooms can accommodate individual speakers, panel groups, AV presentations, art and gardening projects, and board or committee meetings. These rooms are available during times when they are not in use for the library or library-sponsored programs and activities.

Individuals may not profit from, nor use the library’s facilities, meeting rooms, or tutoring rooms to run a business.

Meetings planned by a company or individual to promote, advertise, or lead to a sale of a product or service are not permitted.

The meeting rooms are available on a first-come, first served basis. Reservations must be made in writing, on the Meeting Room Application. The Application Form must be submitted for each set of specifically reserved dates.

Alcoholic beverages and smoking are NOT permitted in the Library.

All meetings shall be open to the general community. If there are any inquiries regarding your meeting the applicant's name and telephone number will be given as contact information.

The Library and its meeting rooms are wheelchair accessible.

Sponsorship

The use of a meeting room by a non-library group shall NOT be publicized in such a way as to imply Library sponsorship of the group’s activity unless the activity is truly and formally being co-sponsored by the Library.

The name, address or telephone number of the library may NOT be used as the contact address or headquarters of an organization. A contact name and telephone number must be given in any publicity for meetings or programs held at the library.

Supervision

An adult leader must be present at all times and responsible for the supervision of any group of minors (under the age of 18) using the meeting rooms.

Usage

The Library’s meeting rooms may be used by political groups for regular meetings of an organizational nature. They may be used for public forums, debates, and candidates’ nights but not for self-promotion of any one candidate. All sides must be offered the opportunity to participate and be represented.

Meeting rooms are NOT available for receptions or private parties.

The maximum number of times any one group may reserve the use of meeting rooms is 12 times per year. However, depending on room availability, time of day, and day of week, additional times may be assigned at the discretion of the Meeting Room and Events Supervisor. For high demand times, requests for additional dates beyond the initial 12 may be made 14 days in advance of the date desired.

Fees/Hours

Groups using library rooms may not charge fees. With the exception of Westlake Porter Public Library, Friends of Westlake Porter Public Library, and Westlake Porter Public Library
Foundation, no fundraising activities or solicitation may occur. Service clubs and organizations that collect de minimis amounts during their meetings may be permitted, subject to library approval in advance. Attendees cannot not be required to participate in these activities. A reasonable charge may be made to cover the cost of activity/craft materials, but is subject to library approval in advance.

The Library may choose to partner with organizations or businesses to provide fee-based services if they are deemed to be in the public interest and if they fit the mission of the library.

The Library will allow its meeting rooms to be used for classes provided by the Westlake City School District, the City of Westlake (Recreation Department or Community Services Department, for example), and accredited area colleges and universities, or other organizations of an educational nature which have entered into a partnership with Westlake Porter Public Library to provide classes which would benefit the public. Such groups sponsoring classes, which meet for several nights in a row or several weeks, will be assessed a fee to recuperate overhead costs.

The meeting rooms are available during regular library hours free of charge to qualifying groups. On Monday through Thursday only, groups whose meetings begin while the library is open may continue to meet a maximum of two hours beyond the library’s closing time, provided the time is scheduled and staffing is available. In such instances, all attendees at the meeting must vacate the building no later than 11:00 pm. Normally, the library’s doors are locked and the security system set promptly at 9:00 pm. Groups that have not registered and been approved in advance to remain after hours, must completely vacate the meeting rooms by 8:45 pm, so that the meeting room wing can be secured.

Important Notes
  • Failure to abide by these Meeting Room Policies is justification for denying the group further use of meeting rooms.
  • The Library is not liable for injuries to people, damage to their property, or loss of property belonging to individuals or groups using the meeting rooms.
  • All organizations must comply with fire and access codes that regulate the use of the Library. Maximum capacity regulations MUST be observed, adequate aisle space must be provided and doors MUST NOT be blocked.
  • The individual filing the Meeting Room Application must agree to assume full responsibility for any damages to the facility or equipment, which may occur as a result of the group’s use.
  • Please direct any further questions about Westlake Porter Public Library’s meeting rooms to the Group Services Department.

Attendance Cards

Groups should check in at the Reception Desk to confirm arrival and ensure rooms are unlocked. An attendance card will be available to all groups in the meeting rooms. At the conclusion of each meeting, please fill in the attendance number and turn it in at the Reception Desk.

Cancellations

Groups should notify the library as far in advance as possible, but at least 24 hours in advance, of cancellations.

Failure to cancel sooner than 24 hours before the scheduled meeting may result in future applications being denied.

While every effort is made to honor all reservations, the library retains the right to cancel scheduled organizational meetings if the need should arise. In such an unusual case, as much notice as possible will be given.

Equipment & Setups

Groups are responsible for transporting, setting up and operating their own equipment. A cart can be provided upon request for bringing such equipment into the building. Groups may NOT store or leave their equipment at the library overnight.

The large meeting room and the medium-sized meeting room contain standard folding tables and stacking chairs that may be used by groups. Groups may choose a configuration from the Meeting Facilities List of Standard Room Set-ups and should register their request at least one week in advance of the meeting. Groups preferring a room configuration that is different from the options provided are responsible for setting the room up themselves and for returning it to normal immediately afterward.

Special needs of handicapped persons should be brought to the attention of the Events Facilitator at least 48 hours in advance of a scheduled meeting so that, if possible, the request can be filled.

Library audiovisual equipment is available for use during the meetings held at the Library. Groups are responsible for operating any equipment furnished and are liable for any damage to it. Groups that view videos must secure all necessary performance licenses and indemnify the library for any failure to do so. Reservations for available audiovisual equipment must be made with the Group Services Department at least 48 hours in advance of the meeting date.

Food & Beverages

Light refreshments may be served. A coffee maker is available in each meeting room for coffee or hot water. The kitchenette and staging room are available for any group to use, so long as they are cleaned afterward. The staging area may be used for deliveries of prepared food or box lunches, etc. A refrigerator and microwave are also available in this area. Groups must bring their own supplies, coffee, cups, and any other materials they will need. 

The meeting rooms, restrooms, and kitchenette must be left in neat and clean order. Organizations will be responsible for and billed for any equipment or property loss or damage as well as for any cleaning required.

Piano Use Policy

Westlake Porter Public Library has two pianos, which may be used by music teachers and organizations for scheduled public performances and one practice session per performance, in conjunction with the use of the meeting room. The use of the pianos is at the discretion of the library. The grand piano will not be moved out of the Porter Room.

Procedure

Pianos are tuned regularly but not necessarily before each performance. Any teacher or group wanting the piano(s) tuned prior to their scheduled performance can opt to pay for the tuning in full, in advance in lieu of the normal fee. The tuning will be arranged through the library with its tuner.

The library will allow piano recitals to be held at the library under the following conditions:

  • The meeting room will be booked following all general meeting room policies including that the recital is open to the public at no cost, and may not conflict with library sponsored use of the room.
  • No more than two (2) bookings per calendar year by any teacher or organization.
  • Any additional equipment, other than the pianos, will be provided by the teacher or organization.

Individuals wishing to use the piano for practice should schedule a time in advance to guarantee availability. Drop-in requests for piano use may be accommodated if the room with the piano(s) is available.

Technology Training Lab Policies

Westlake Porter Public Library has one computer training lab that may be scheduled for groups to provide training or needing computer resources as part of their meeting. This room is only available during times when it is not in use for library or library-sponsored computer training and activities. At the discretion of the Library, staff may be present to monitor the room or equipment during any session. All general meeting room reservation policies apply to this room.

Individuals or businesses may not profit from, nor use the library’s facilities, meeting rooms, or study rooms to run a business.

The library will not install an individual’s or a group’s personal software on library computers.

Procedure

Because this room has specialized equipment in it, there are additional guidelines that apply to the usage of this room:

  • No food or beverages are allowed in the Technology Training Lab.
  • The latest scheduled ending time for the computer training room is 15 minutes before the library closes.
  • Training and orientation to the equipment in the Technology Training Lab are available prior to a scheduled meeting upon request.