Board By Laws

Bylaws of the Newman Regional Library District

These rules are supplementary to the provisions of the statutes of the State of Illinois as they relate to the procedures of Boards of Library Trustees.

Regular Meetings.

The regular meeting of the Board of Library Trustees of the Newman Regional Library District shall be on the third Wednesday of each month. The meeting shall be at the library at 4:30 p.m. The meetings shall be open to the public and noticed in advance. At the beginning of each fiscal year, the board shall, by ordinance, specify regular meeting dates and times. The librarian shall then (1) provide for the local newspaper the schedule of regular meetings of the board for the ensuing fiscal year, and (2) post the schedule of meetings in the library. Both notices shall have the dates, times, and places of such meetings.

Special Meetings.

Special meetings shall be held at any time when called by the president or secretary or by any three trustees of the board, provided that notice with the agenda of the special meeting is given at least 48 hours in advance, except in the case of a bona fide emergency, to board members and to any news medium which has filed an annual request for notice under the Open Meetings Act; no business except that stated in the notice and agenda shall be transacted. Notice and agenda shall be posted 48 hours in advance on the front door of the library except in the case of a bona fide emergency.

Annual Report.

An annual report should include a summary of the year’s work with detailed account of the receipts and expenditures, a budget for the following year, and other information according to statute. This report will be available for viewing after the April meeting of the Board of Trustees. A copy of this report shall be forwarded to the Illinois State Library in accordance with the law. A copy should also be on file in the library.


A quorum at any meeting shall consist of four Board members.

Board of Library Trustees.

The Board of Library Trustees of the Newman Regional Library District is charged with the responsibility of the governance of the library. The Board will hire a skilled Librarian who will be responsible for the day-to-day operations of the library. The Board will meet at least every other month. These meetings will be open to the public, and noticed in advance.

Any Board member wishing to have an item placed on the agenda will call the Board President in sufficient time preceding the meeting to have the item placed. Any Board member who is unable to attend a meeting will call the library to indicate that he or she will be absent. Due to the fact that a quorum is required for each meeting, this phone call should be placed as far in advance as possible.

Board members are not to be compensated pursuant to statute, but will be reimbursed for necessary and related expenses as trustees. To be effective, Board members must attend most meetings, read materials presented for review, and attend an occasional Library System (or other library related) workshop, seminar, or meeting. The Librarian will make the dates of these workshops known to the Board in a timely manner. Board members using their own vehicle will be reimbursed at the rate allowed by the IRS for travel to and from any Library System (or other library related) workshop, seminar, or meeting. Board members are not exempt from late fees, fines, or other user fees.

Officers and Elections.

The officers of the Board shall be a president, a vice-president, a secretary, and a treasurer. Those officers shall be elected by a ballot vote for two year term at the regular meeting in the month of May. The president shall not serve more than two consecutive terms unless by unanimous board consent. In the event of a resignation from an office, an election to fill the unexpired term of that office will be conducted by a ballot vote at the next regular meeting.


The president shall preside at all board meetings, appoint all standing and special committees, serve as ex-officio member of all committees, and perform all other such duties as may be assigned by the board. The president shall be the only spokesperson for the Board of Library Trustees in all advisory or disciplinary action directed to the staff.

Vice President.

The vice-president, in the absence of the president, shall assume all duties of the president.


The secretary shall keep minutes of all board meetings, record attendance, record a roll call on all votes (except when a ballot vote is taken). The secretary shall perform all other such clerical duties as may be assigned by the board.


The treasurer is authorized by the Board to sign checks, shall serve on the finance committee, and shall draw up checks. The treasurer shall keep all financial records of the Board. The normal depository of all financial records shall be the library. The treasurer shall have charge of the library funds and incomes, sign all the checks on the authorization of the board, and report at each meeting the state of the funds. In the absence of the treasurer or when he or she is unable to serve, the president or vice-president may perform the duties of the treasurer. The treasurer shall be bonded in the amount to be approved by the board and according to statute requirement. The treasurer is authorized to pay salaries and insurance bills as they come due.

Standing and Special Committees.

The standing committees shall be appointed annually in the month of May and shall consist of three members including the Librarian. The standing committees at their first meeting shall elect a chairperson. Special committees may be appointed by the president to present reports or recommendations to the Board and shall serve until the completion of the work for which they were appointed. The standing committees shall be the finance committee, the personnel committee, the policy committee, and the building and grounds committee. The library shall be the depository of all committee reports.

Finance Committee.

The Finance Committee shall be comprised of two members of the Library Board of Library Trustees including the Treasurer and the Librarian. The Finance Committee’s responsibilities include, but are not limited to, drafting a preliminary Budget and Budget and Appropriations Ordinance for full board approval, drafting a Levy for full board approval, drafting a working budget for full board approval, monitoring library investments, and implementing the library’s investment policy.

Personnel Committee.

The Personnel Committee shall be comprised of three members of the Library Board of Library Trustees including the President. The Personnel Committee’s responsibilities include, but are not limited to, preparation of the annual review of the Librarian for discussion among the full board prior to the formal review, assisting the Librarian in the preparation of his or her annual statement of goals and objectives for the coming year, and assuming a leadership role in the resolution of any personnel conflict which cannot be resolved by the Librarian.

Policy Committee.

The Policy Committee shall be comprised of two members of the Library Board of Library Trustees and the Librarian. The primary responsibility of the Policy Committee is to develop the Library Policy. This policy shall include the division of responsibility between Board and staff, a Library Materials Selection Policy, and shall adhere to the “Library Bill of Rights” and the “Freedom to Read” statements of the American Library Association. The committee shall determine the library regulations governing the use of the Library and review sections of existing policy in a systematic fashion to insure that all policy is reviewed at an interval not to exceed three years. As a result of such policy reviews, the Policy Committee will make recommendations regarding additions or changes to existing policy as well as deleting policies which are no longer appropriate or of value. The entire library Policy must be approved by Board vote and made readily available to the public.

Building and Grounds Committee.

The Building and Grounds Committee shall be comprised of two members of the Library Board of Library Trustees and the Librarian. The Building and Grounds Committee’s responsibilities include, but are not limited to, conducting an annual inspection of the library’s physical facility to identify areas which are in need of repair, and making recommendations to the full board regarding any and all repairs which are deemed necessary either as a result of the annual inspection or throughout the year as the need arises.

Librarian Search Committee.

When the position of librarian falls vacant, the Board shall immediately select an acting librarian for the interim and establish a Librarian Search Committee, which shall consist of the President and two members elected from the Board. Applications for the position of librarian shall be filed at the library and available to all Board members. The Search Committee shall report the results of applications and interviews to the Board. Five votes shall be required for the Board to hire a Librarian, after which the Search Committee is dissolved.

Order of Business.

  • The following Order of Business shall be followed at regular meetings:

    • Call to order

  • Minutes of last meeting

    • Financial report

    • Librarian’s report

    • Unfinished business

    • New business

    • Adjournment

Parliamentary Procedure.

Robert’s Rules of Order, Revised shall govern the parliamentary procedure of the Board, unless otherwise specified in the Bylaws.

New Trustees.

The librarian shall meet with new trustees to examine the property and review services and shall present to new trustees a packet which includes the Library Policy and other procedural material, a list of trustees and committees, minutes and financial reports for the previous 12 months, and other pertinent information.

Duties of the Librarian.

Duties and responsibilities of the librarian are explained in the Librarian's job description. The librarian shall administer the policies adopted by this Board and recommend such policy and procedure that will promote the efficiency and service of the library.


Amendments to these Bylaws, the Library Policy, or any other policy or procedural document may be proposed at any regular meeting of the Board and will become effective if and as adopted by a majority of those members present providing they represent a quorum.

Copyright and Copying.

The Library may copy for its own collection material that has been lost or deteriorated only if such material is not available at a fair cost. It will post prominently all required notices regarding the copying of any materials in the library.

Administrative Records.

Administrative records of the library shall be kept in the library and shall be available to the general public upon request. These shall include the monthly and annual reports of the library, all financial reports, minutes of the public Board meetings, and actions and other such items as the Board or Librarian shall file there.

Staff personnel records are confidential and shall be kept in a secure place, and only the Library or any person authorized by the Librarian shall have access to these records.

Confidential records of the Board, such as personnel records concerning the Librarian, shall be kept in the library, and only members of the Board shall have access to these records.

Circulation Records.

Circulation records and other records identifying the names of library users with specific materials hereby are recognized as confidential in nature, and access thereto is hereby restricted to library staff and those members of the public with a legitimate interest therein, as hereafter provided for.

All library staff and employees are hereby advised that such records shall not be made available to casual members of the public, the press, or to any agency of State, Federal, or Local government, except pursuant to such process, order, or subpoena as may be authorized under the authority of and pursuant to Federal or State law relating to civil, criminal, or administrative discover procedures or legislative investigative power.

Library staff shall observe the following procedures: On receipt of any legal process, order, or subpoena, the library staff member in charge will immediately consult with the President of the Board and the Library Attorney to insure that (a) the document is in proper legal form, and (b) there has been a proper showing of good cause for its issuance in a court or administrative body of competent jurisdiction. Until the legality of such process, order, or subpoena has been affirmatively shown to the satisfaction of the Library Attorney, the Library will resist its issuance or enforcement until any such defects have been cured.

Revised: June 18, 2008