Library Policies

Rules of Conduct Policy

Welcome to the Middletown Public Library. The Library is supported by the taxes of the people of Middletown who expect our Library to be clean, comfortable and safe places for selecting materials, reading, researching, studying, writing, and attending programs and meetings. To this end, the Library is responsible for establishing rules of conduct to protect the rights and safety of Library patrons, volunteers, and staff, and for preserving and protecting the Library’s materials, equipment, facilities, and grounds. In addition, the Library has a strong commitment to intellectual freedom and to freedom of access to information.

Enforcement of these rules will be conducted in a fair and reasonable manner. Library staff and/or Middletown Police Officers will intervene to stop prohibited activities and behaviors. Failure to comply with the Library’s established rules, regulations, and policies could result in removal from the premises and exclusion from the Library for a period of one day to one year, or in arrest or prosecution. Violations could also result in the restriction and/or termination of Library privileges, including the use of Library computers and other equipment.

Individual patrons may request an administrative review of an exclusion order that is for a period greater than seven days.

For the comfort and safety of patrons, volunteers, and staff, and the protection of Library property, the following actions are examples of conduct not allowed on Library property:

Engaging in any activity in violation of Federal, State, local or other applicable law, or Library policy.

Failing to comply with a reasonable staff request.

Carrying firearms and dangerous weapons of any type except by law enforcement officers.

Being under the influence of alcohol/illegal drugs, and selling, using, or possessing alcohol/illegal drugs.

Verbally or physically threatening or harassing other patrons, volunteers, or staff, including stalking, staring, lurking, offensive touching, and obscene acts such as sex acts and indecent exposure.

Soliciting or conducting surveys not authorized by the Library.

Stealing, damaging, altering, or inappropriate use of Library property in Library facilities or on Library grounds, including computer hardware and software, printers, copiers, phones, and other equipment.

Trespassing in nonpublic areas, being in the Library without permission of an authorized Library employee before or after Library operating hours, or camping on Library grounds.

Fighting or challenging to fight, running, pushing, shoving, or throwing things.

Creating disruptive noises such as loud talking, screaming, or banging on computer keyboards.

Gambling and group activities which are disruptive to the Library environment.

Using audible devices without headphones or with headphones set at a volume that disturbs others. Using cell phones, pagers, and other communication devices in a manner that disturbs others. Audible cell phone and pager ringers must be turned off.

Using restrooms for bathing or shampooing, doing laundry, or changing clothes.

Littering.

Smoking, chewing, and other tobacco use on Library property.

Entering or being in the Library barefoot, without a shirt, with offensive body odor or personal hygiene, or being otherwise attired so as to be disruptive to the Library environment.

Consuming food or beverages in public areas of the Library not authorized by the Library Director.

Leaving packages, backpacks, luggage, or any other personal items unattended. These unattended items are subject to immediate confiscation.

Using wheeled devices in Library property or on Library grounds including use of skateboards, roller-skates, motorized or non-motorized scooters, and shopping carts (except for motorized ADA assistive devices, wheelchairs, walkers, and strollers, bicycles).

Moving Library furniture from where it is placed by Library staff.

Lying down or sleeping in the restrooms, or on any floor, or couch, table or seat in the Library; having feet on furniture; or blocking aisles, exits or entrances.

Neglecting to provide proper supervision of children (See Middletown Public Library Policy- Unattended Child Policy).

Bringing pets or animals, other than service animals necessary for disabilities, into the Library, except as authorized by the Director.

Harassment Prevention Policy – Revised June 2012

It is our policy to maintain an environment free of intimidation, insult, and harassment based upon race, color, religion, sex, age, national origin, or disability.

No patron or employee shall engage in comments, jokes, or name calling that is vulgar, offensive, or profane, or that may insult someone’s religion, race, sex, color, disability, age or national origin.

No patron or employee, whether supervisory or non-supervisory, may sexually harass another employee. Sexual harassment includes, but is not limited to:

Touching or making improper or proposition advances;

Abusive, vulgar language of a sexual nature;

Suggestive jokes or comments about an employee’s body or wearing apparel; Display of sexually suggestive cartoons, pictures, or photographs.

Any such incident should be reported promptly to a supervisor, the director or board of trustees for investigation and resolution. In its efforts to prevent discrimination or harassment of any kind, the library will maintain an open-door policy. All complaints will be promptly and confidentially investigated. The complainant will be advised of the result of the investigation. Any employee, supervisory or non-supervisory, found to have engaged in harassment or discrimination toward another employee will be subject to discipline, up to and including termination of employment. Any patron found to engage in such conduct will be asked to leave and subject to criminal prosecution where appropriate.

Middletown Public Library Internet Use Policy – Revised September 2019

INTRODUCTION

All holders of a valid Ocean State Libraries card in good standing have access to Middletown Public Library (MPL) public computers. Laptops can be borrowed for in library use by adult cardholders. Parental approval is required for loans to adult cardholders who are 13-17 years of age.

Out of state residents, students working on school assignments and Rhode Island residents who do not wish to register for an Ocean State Libraries card may be issued a guest pass. Minors are welcomed to use the MPL computers subject to parental approval. Priority of use for the computers in the children’s room, in order of first to last: (1) children (2) parents/care givers with young children present  (3) other adults. Adults and teens unaccompanied by children should use the available computers that are located in the adult area of the library.

The MPL offers free, high speed internet access in 3 hour sessions. Time can be extended subject to the availability of computers. Reservations can be made.

It is important to know that some websites may contain information that is not accurate. Trained, professional staff can assist with identifying websites that are not trustworthy.

The MPL benefits from funding for internet access from the Federal Communications Commission and so must comply with the Children’s Internet Protection Act (CIPA). CIPA was enacted by Congress in 2000. It imposes technology measures to block or filter access to websites that are harmful to minors. (https://www.fcc.gov/consumers/guides/childrens-internet-protection-act)

PRIVACY STATEMENT

It is important to log out of all websites and close all browsers before ending a computer session.

All information, including saved files and browsing history, is purged from MPL computers upon exiting the session.

The MPL’s public, high speed WIFI network is free, not password protected, and not secure. This means that information electronically sent or received may be intercepted by someone else.

ACCEPTABLE USE

The MPL’s computers are to be used appropriately and responsibly. Inappropriate use will result in a documented warning. A second occurrence will result in a suspension of one day. A third occurrence will result in a formal review and possible loss of privileges for thirty days. Headphones shall be used when visiting websites that project sound.

Examples of inappropriate use are, but not limited to:

Violating local, state or federal laws

Attempting to gain unauthorized access to computer systems or files

Tampering with computer hardware or software

Violating software license agreements and copyright laws

Violating another user’s privacy

Circulation Policy    Revised February 2020 

Middletown Public Library is a member of the statewide Cooperating Libraries Automated Network called Ocean State Libraries (OSL), which links over 50 public libraries in Rhode Island. Middletown Public Library FULL ACCESS cards may be used at other OSL libraries to borrow materials.

Items may only be checked out with a valid OSL card or a valid photo ID. Items can be held for up to 48 hours at the circulation desk for return pickup.

Obtaining a Library Card

ELIGIBILITY:

Any person who lives in or pays property taxes in Rhode Island is eligible to receive an Ocean State Libraries (OSL) card from the public library of their choice free of charge. One card is allowed per resident. Use of an Ocean State Libraries card is non-transferrable, i.e., can only be used by the person whose name appears on the card.

 To obtain a free library card: A RI resident must present a valid RI ID or license with his/her current address or a valid photo ID along with verification of address, such as a bill, car registration, check-book, or lease.

Library cards expire every three years. Proof of Rhode Island residency is required to renew. 

Acceptable ID for out of state residents who are currently attending school in RI would include a student ID, course schedule, or a tuition bill.

Children under 13 must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian with proof of residence.  The cardholder or parent/guardian of a juvenile cardholder is responsible for materials borrowed on his/her card.

Out of state residents can purchase a one year FULL ACCESS card for $125 or a one year LOCAL USE ONLY card for $10. A FULL ACCESS card may be used at other OSL libraries to borrow materials and to place reserves. A LOCAL USE ONLY card can only be used at the issuing library. It cannot be used to place reserves, to access eZone materials, or to borrow an iPad.

Middletown Public Library and/or OSL reserve the right to deny checkout privileges (including renewals and holds) to anyone owing fines of more than $5.00 at any OSL library, and/or has material checked out that is overdue by a week or more.

If a card is lost or stolen, notify the library immediately. A fee of $1.00 is charged to replace a lost card for patrons who present a valid photo ID.

You may apply online for a library card here.

Loan Periods

Material TypeLoan Period
Books, Audiobooks, CDs, Magazines3 weeks
Discount Passes - no holds/renewals1 week
DVD Series3 weeks
DVDs1 week
Express Collection - no holds/renewals1 week
DVD/BLU-RAY Browsing collection - no holds/renewals1 week
Fishing poles - no holds/renewals3 weeks
Tablets - no holds/renewals3 weeks
eZone Downloads1, 2, or 3 weeks
Freegal MusicKeep downloads
Hoopla Digital72 hours, 1 week or 3 weeks
Kanopy Streaming72 hours
RB Digital MagazinesKeep downloads

Loan Limits
Certain materials have limits on how many items can be borrowed at one time.

Material TypeNumber of Items
DVDs4
CDs and Audiobooks6
Discount Passes1 per venue
Tablets1
eZone Downloads8
Kanopy Streaming6 per month
Hoopla Digital6 per month
Freegal Music5 songs per week

Renewals

OSL libraries allow two renewals on most items. Renewals automatically occur when item loan limits allow, the item is not on hold for another cardholder, and the borrower’s card is not blocked by fines over $5.00, overdue or billed items. Material can also be renewed in person at the library, over the phone, or through the online catalog.

Fines and Fees

Fines are charged for overdue materials. Fees are charged for certain services, such as printing and making copies; replacement of lost items, and replacement of lost cards.

Non-perishable food is accepted as payment for fines assessed on Middletown owned materials only.

At the discretion of the owning library, fees may be assessed for damaged materials. Exact replacement copies of lost items may be accepted in lieu of payment for assessed charges at the discretion of the owning library.

Overdue Fines

Material TypePer DayMaximum
Print and CDs$.10$6
Express Collection$.25$6
DVDs$1$10
Discount Passes$5Replacement cost
Tablets$5Replacement cost

Other Charges

TypeCharge
Lost ItemsReplacement cost
Inter-library loan chargesDetermined by the owning library

Reserves (also known as holds) 

Cardholders may place up to 25 reserves on circulating items owned by Ocean State Libraries from a personal computer or at the libraries’ WEBPACs. This service is not available to LOCAL USE ONLY cardholders. All discount passes and some libraries’ audio visual materials are excluded.

Materials from universities and out of state libraries may be requested through the Reference Department. A small fee for postage may be charged.

Cardholders may choose to be notified either by email or with an automated phone call when their reserved item arrives. For instructions on setting up text message notification click here. Reserved material is held at the Circulation Desk for 7 days. A hold is cancelled and the item is placed back in circulation if not picked up within the reserved time.

Cardholders may reserve up to 6 eZone downloads. This service is not available to LOCAL USE ONLY cardholders. Reserved eZone downloads are held for 3 days.

Interlibrary Loan service is provided in accordance with the Library of Rhode Island Standards and Regulations.

Library materials are loaned to registered patrons in good standing who present a valid OSL card or a valid driver’s license.  

Circulating items which are not available in our collection may be borrowed through interlibrary loan from other libraries.  Reserves may be placed directly on our OPACS for items owned by other Rhode Island public libraries or patrons may place reserves from home via the Internet by accessing our homepage (middletownpubliclibraryri.org).

Patrons with FULL ACCESS library cards may place up to 25 reserves on circulating items owned by Ocean State Libraries from a personal computer or at the libraries’ WEBPACs. All special collection materials, discount passes, e-readers, and some libraries’ audio visual materials are excluded.

Reserves can be placed on our oversize collection, but they must be picked up and returned to the circulation desk because oversized material does not travel in the delivery bins.

Circulating items not owned by any Rhode Island public library may be borrowed from university or special libraries in Rhode Island, or from libraries located in other states at the discretion of the owning library. All Middletown library materials that are set as “holdable” are available for loan through interlibrary loan to non-Ocean Sate Libraries with the exception of the oversize collection.

LOCAL ACCESS ONLY cardholders are not allowed to place reserves.

If you need assistance locating library materials please visit the Reference Desk or call us at (401)846-1573.

MIDDLETOWN PUBLIC LIBRARY LONG RANGE PLAN

FY2021-FY2025, Approved by the Library Board of Trustees, August 18, 2020

Preplanning for this long range plan began in October 2019. A committee chair was appointed, a working committee was being assembled, and strategies for public input were designed. Just as the process was getting underway, we found that we had to close the library, practice social distancing and communicate electronically. It is not an understatement to say that this moment in time is an extraordinary time for public services. Just when you think you know what strong, responsive library service demands, an event like the coronavirus pandemic comes along and changes everything. Long standing processes that have come to define public libraries – in person reference service, loaning books/music cd’s/dvd’s, access to public computers/scanning/photocopying, children’s story times, programming, using a community meeting room – are now put on hold. Digital streaming has become front and center. Moreover, the understanding that an event like this may happen again within the time frame of this plan, necessitates the need to rethink and realign priorities. This document represents the thoughtful, ongoing work to determine the way forward for library services, so very important to the Middletown community.

THE LIBRARY AND THE COMMUNITY: AN OVERVIEW
Middletown is a community of 15,282 residents, located on historic Aquidneck Island. It was incorporated in 1743, and possesses a rich cultural heritage, an outstanding quality of life, and access to pristine natural resources. The library is governed by a seven member volunteer Board of Trustees appointed for a three year term by the Middletown Town Council. It receives an annual operating budget from the Town of Middletown, annual Rhode Island Grant in Aid, as well as generous support from the Friends of the Middletown Public Library, local businesses, and the Rhode Island Foundation. There are fifteen employees, of which five work full time. As of July 1, 2020, there are 9,170 registered library card holders.

MIDDLETOWN PUBLIC LIBRARY – READING WITH YOU SINCE 1848
The library began as the Miantonoma Circulating Library in 1848. It consisted of a small collection of books that were kept in a locked bookcase at the Oliphant School. Borrowers paid $1.00 per share annually. At the same time, another group of residents formed the Middletown Free Library. In 1875, the two libraries combined and the collection was moved into a small building on the Chase Farm. In 1903, the family of Joseph Bailey donated funds to erect a library building in his memory at the corner of West Main Road and Oliphant Lane. The library was open on Tuesdays from 2pm-4pm. It was heated by a coal stove and there was no running water or electricity. A furnace was installed in 1948 and running water in 1955. In 1978, ownership of the library was transferred to the Town. In 1979, the library moved to 700 West Main Road into the former Navy Anchorage Day Care Center. It was expanded and renovated in 2005 funded in part by a Rhode Island Public Library Construction grant. Currently the building has outgrown its usefulness. In several areas, the slab floor is severely cracked presumably due to the weight of the book stacks. The mechanical systems are nearing the end of their life expectancy.

MISSION STATEMENT
The Middletown Public Library seeks to improve and enrich lives through information, education, and recreation. The library serves the community by providing:

  • clean and inviting surroundings
  • organized, up-to-date collections
  • access to state-of-the-art technology
  • friendly, professional service
  • trained staff who are committed to excellence

VISION STATEMENT
The library will maintain its status as an exemplary provider of services that encourage the free flow of ideas to inform, educate, enrich, and entertain its patrons.

Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, the library was open 7 days a week, a total of 61 hours, from September to May and 6 days per week during the summer. Services included free use of the meeting room by community groups and non-profits, free Wi-Fi, free scanning to email, free access to computers, free personal income tax preparation by trained preparers, art exhibits, low priced access to professional quality black ink and color printing, instructional workshops including 3D design and printing, programming for all ages groups, access to the Friends’ gently used book store and a community garden in the rear of the property.

Gov. Gina Raimondo declared a state of emergency on March 9, 2020. The library closed to the public on March 13, 2020. All library staff continued to report to work. They were able to address collection management projects, specifically a complete inventory of the collection, weeding, and mending. Staff also spent considerable time updating the library’s webpage, planning a revised virtual summer reading program, and installing a new online product, Beanstack, which was purchased in February with a Rhode Island Legislative Grant. Subsequently this product was made available to all Rhode Island libraries and so the grant funds will be used for another initiative.

In April, a literacy project was initiated to complement Gov. Raimondo’s Reading Challenge. We named it, “Middletown Reads – Family Book Giveaway”. It was supported by the Friends of Middletown Public Library and generous donors who made it possible for Middletown families to receive 2 free books for each child, age preschool to high school. In one month’s time, 99 families contacted the library and 394 books were distributed to 197 young readers. We continued the program through June until the library’s summer reading program was launched.

Also in April, the library initiated contactless curbside loans. This service became instantly popular and still continues. Contactless fee based printing also accessed by curbside pickup began in May.

In June, the library reopened to the public with restricted access when Reopening Rhode Island, Phase II was announced by Gov. Raimindo. In July, additional hours of restricted access were made available as the state entered Phase III.

More contactless public access is planned for September 2020 with the resumption of weekend service hours beginning October 1, 2020. The proposed schedule will be 7 days per week for a total of 54 service hours, dependent upon forthcoming directives from Gov. Raimondo.

The library’s collection is comprised of 76,854 books, periodicals, digital resources, and miscellaneous circulating equipment. Cardholders also have direct access to the 4.4 million items held in other Rhode Island public libraries through the library’s membership in the Ocean State Libraries network. On a month to month basis, the library is a consistent net lender to other libraries in the consortium. Staff mediated interlibrary loan service provides additional access to the holdings of over 40,000 libraries worldwide.

Annual Circulation Statistics

FY10 FY11 FY12 FY13 FY14 FY15 FY16 FY17 FY18* FY19* FY20*
128,438 137,034 145,438 145,303 141,667 129,869 122,814 122,633 113,293 118,985 101,010

 *library card holders use trends physical vs. digital

*FY18   *FY19   *FY20  
physical     113,293 physical  118,985 physical 101,010
electronic       18,192 electronic    20,869 electronic    26,136
streaming         7,043 streaming    10,856 streaming    13,723
grand total    138,528 grand total  150,710 grand total  140,869

Data from the following community surveys and forums is compiled in chronological order.

Fall 2019 Middletown, RI Community Livability Report
The National Community Survey (NCS), conducted by National Research Center, Inc. (NRC) in collaboration with the International City/County Management Association (ICMA)
Conclusions: At least 8 in 10 community members gave high marks to the overall quality of life in Middletown, the town and their neighborhoods as places to live, and Middletown as a place to raise children. Residents indicated that the facet of Safety was an important focus area for the Town to address in the coming two years. Respondents’ assessments of crime prevention were exceptional and higher than the national benchmark.
Survey participants highlighted the Economy as a priority for the Town in the next two years. Similar to other comparison communities, at least half of residents positively rated the overall economic health of Middletown, Middletown as a place to visit and work, and the overall quality of business and service establishments. However, evaluations of the cost of living, vibrancy of the downtown/commercial area, economic development and new development in Middletown were below average, with less than one-third of residents providing favorable ratings. Additionally, assessments of housing-related items were lower than the national benchmarks; less than 4 in 10 respondents gave high marks to the availability of affordable quality housing and the variety of housing options in Middletown.
Middletown residents also selected Education and Enrichment as a key focus area for the community. Community members’ ratings of public libraries and special events were positive and on par with national averages. Conversely, reviews of K-12 education, opportunities to attend cultural/arts/music activities, availability of affordable quality child care/preschool, adult educational opportunities and overall opportunities for education and enrichment were lower than reviews observed in comparison communities.

February 11, 2020 Citizen Input Survey – Middletown Strategic Plan 2021-2023 – two week online survey on the Middletown website

There were two hundred thirty three responses: 86.96% from Middletown residents; 13.04% from people who work or own a business in Middletown

Education and Enrichment including public & private schools, library services, preschool & child care programs, adult learning, art and music – rated third most important out of eight categories, with safety and natural environment placing first and second respectively. The remaining five categories in order of importance are economy, mobility, built environment, recreation & wellness, and community engagement.

Suggestions for Improvements for Built Environment: 1. Invest in green energy wherever possible, especially for public buildings like schools and the library.
2. Affordable housing where residents can walk to the store, library, post office, town hall.

Suggestions for Improvements for Recreation & Wellness: JFK should become a town athletic center to tie in with the fields on the other side of the library.
Suggestions for Improvements for Education & Enrichment: 1.Get the library their new building!
2. Add foreign language back to elementary schools. Expand the STEM programs. Offer public preschool for all. We are regulars at the library, and love it but wish the children’s section were bigger.
3. There is no bus to the library.
4. Enable artificial intelligence & machine learning curriculum for all levels of society in town. Perhaps at CCRI Newport, the public library and all schools. Use high speed internet to enable access to “super computer” power (i.e. GPU’s etc.) from home… almost like a utility.
5. The main façade of our high school needs a facelift. We need to replace our library: it’s an old eyesore that is, literally breaking down. A library is a direct reflection of a community’s commitment to its people, and ours sends a clear message: “Eh!” Consider a public/private development similar to that of Silver Springs, MD. That city features a beautiful library that’s integrated into a shopping and entertainment complex. It’s a win for everyone! (https://www.montgomerycountymd.gov/Library/branches/silverspring.html)
6. The library could use more funding for updated books and more public computers.
7. The public schools could be better with more professional leadership from the school board and school administration. — Also, the library does a great job, especially since its building is falling down!!! The town deserves a first-rate library building to go along with its first-rate library services.
8. Providing the library the sufficient funds in the budget is important in order to maintain the building is beneficial for all residents, seeing as the library provides both resources and information to the town.
9. There seems to be a lack of preschool age and younger facilities that are affordable and high quality. Middletown should also look to Portsmouth for improving public schools. The library also could use updating and expanding, particularly the Children’s area.

Suggested Improvements for Community Engagement: 1. Have a town day just directed towards community involvement, joining town committees – people are hesitant as they are not sure of what the commitment is or what is the function of the committee. Town should support the library for fund raising – Newport library has great fund raising events that bring in lots of dollars.
2. Public art and displays are a benefit to Towns. Rotating displays of various types and forms of art throughout Municipal facilities would be a fun, engaging endeavor. Paintings and sculpture at the library and Town Hall would be a good, easy start. Someplace like the trails along the valley park could have “art pads” (solid cement pad for artwork) installed for a rotating sculpture installation and would be a good incentive to get people out and about. There could be a quarterly rotation which could be promoted.
3. Beach gatherings, commemorative events, enhanced opportunities for lectures and classes at the library and schools and senior center. Wouldn’t it be great to have a neighborhood guild like South Kingston has – a dedicated building for fitness, art, maker space, wood shop, etc. Bringing so many people together and enhancing interaction, creativity, and community. We are commuting over there (yes, to the other side of the bay!) To participate now. Why can’t that kind of community resource exist in Middletown? Visit – you will be impressed!
4. Utilize the library more for community social for outreach. Utilize what we already have in place.

February 26, 2020 Middletown Planning Dept. Community Forum West Main/Coddington Development Center
Thirty three people attended but only a handful spoke. Some advocated for planned development and others recommended the land be used for affordable housing. No one said that the library should remain where it is.

Feb. 29, 2020 Middletown Strategic Planning Meeting, Facilitated by the Middletown Town Council with all Town Dept Heads in attendance.
It was determined that the Library can support the Middletown Schools with digital access to resources for language learners, self directed learning, and career development.

FY21-FY25 GOALS/SERVICE RESPONSES
1. Library collections in multiple formats are organized, accessible, and up to date.
2. All library personnel are fully prepared to provide in person and remote services.
3. The library building and grounds are capable of serving a 21st century community.
4. The library’s core is to engage, inspire, empower.
5. The library and Middletown schools are partners in students’ ongoing success.
6. The library will provide virtual and contactless services as necessitated by the COVID-19 pandemic.

FY21 Service Goals: submitted to Town Council January 2020
• Establish an environment that nurtures early literacy development, self-directed learning, life-long development, and community engagement
• Provide materials and resources for information, entertainment, intellectual development, and the enrichment of the Middletown community
• Employ trained staff who:
– select, organize, and make available books, audio-visual and digital materials
– provide guidance and professional reference assistance to patrons
– implement programs, exhibits, and displays that engage children and adults
– acquire information beyond the Library’s own resources

• Participate in resource sharing by lending materials to other libraries upon request
• Maintain service hours that best meet the needs of the community
• Provide access to public internet computers, printing, scanning, tablets, and Wi-Fi
• Provide opportunities for digital design and engineering through public 3D printing
• Provide access to meeting space during all the hours that the Library is open
• Host federal, state, regional and local events in the community room
• Host free personal income tax preparation facilitated annually by AARP
• Engage the Middletown Community by providing access to state of the art equipment, an extensive collection of newly published materials, and a full schedule of programs that inspire, educate and entertain

The library is currently in Phase III of its reopening plan which coincides with the guidelines released by the Rhode Island Dept. of Health and Gov. Gina Raimondo’s directives. Virtual services have risen to the top of the library’s service model as dictated by the COVID-19 pandemic. Every first year goal of this plan is being reviewed and revised as necessary. Public meetings, workshops, digital literacy training, and programming are all on hold. Social distancing and an abundance of caution for staff and patron safety changed all aspects of how library services have been traditionally delivered and will continue to define those services going forward for the better part of this plan’s duration. A plan to assess the building’s structural condition is currently on hold but will resume at the appropriate time.

Data from the following public surveys and community forums was used to develop this plan as noted in the User Needs Assessment section.

Fall 2019 The National Community Survey (NCS)*, conducted by National Research Center, Inc. (NRC) in collaboration with the International City/County Management Association (ICMA).
Middletown, RI Community Livability Report.
*The NCS is a comprehensive, statistically valid survey solution for local governments eager to find out what their residents think about their communities. The results, based on resident perceptions, describe the areas where community members themselves believe things are going well and shed light on the areas that could benefit from improvement. Pg. 1 NCS

September 2019 Postal survey mailed to 1,700 random residents; 470 responded.
October/November 2019 Website survey through a link on the Town’s website: 223 surveys received

February 11, 2020 Citizen Input Survey – Middletown Strategic Plan 2021-2023 – a two week online survey on the Middletown website

February 26, 2020 Middletown Planning Dept. Community Forum, West Main/Coddington Development Center

Feb. 29, 2020 Middletown Strategic Planning Meeting – attended by the Town Council, Town Administrator, Town Solicitor, School Committee, School Superintendent, Town Department Heads, Library Director

FY2021 Annual Performance Plan, submitted to Middletown Town Council January 2020

              Outcomes               End Users            Strategic Goals                 Measures
1. Prepare and administer a zero based annual operating budget. ·  Residents

·  Library users

·  Library’s tax based operating budget meets RIGL 29-6-3. ·  Middletown receives Grant in Aid for library services.
2. Maintain a weekly schedule of 7 days, 61 hours. ·  Residents

·  Library users

·  The schedule is responsive to community needs and convenient for residents. ·  Annual statistics reflect sustained use.
3. Meet all RI Public Library Standards ·  Residents

·  Library users

·  Library operations comply with RI Public Library Standards. ·  Middletown receives Grant in Aid for library services; residents have reciprocal privileges at other libraries.
4. Provide resources in all formats to support life -long learning. ·  Residents

·  Library users

·  Library Mission: provide well-organized and up-to-date collections. ·  Annual statistics reflect sustained use; feedback is positive.
5. Provide age appropriate programs to nurture literacy, critical thinking, and technological skills. ·  Residents

·  Library users

·  Library Mission: enrich lives through information, education, and recreation. ·  Annual program attendance statistics reflect sustained use; feedback is positive.
6. Provide free access to computers, printers, Wi-Fi, copiers, scanners, tablets, 3D design, wireless printing, and streaming services. ·  Residents

·  Library users

·  Library Mission: Provide access to state-of-the-art technology. ·  Annual statistics reflect sustained use.

·  Public printing is self sustaining.

7. Maintain the Library’s web page as the primary point of access to information. ·  Residents

·  Library users

·  Web Page Policy: the website will organize and provide access to resources integral to the Library’s mission. ·  Web site statistics reflect sustained use.

·  Web site is up to date, engaging and informative.

8. Organize and provide access to Middletown documents, RI State information and historical documents. ·  Residents

·  Library Users

·  Collection Development Policy:  maintains collection of RI sources: General Laws, historical documents, and Middletown publications. ·  All information is catalogued and publicly accessible within 30 days of receipt.
9. Provide free public meeting space during all the hours that the library is open. ·  Middletown Boards/ Commissions

·  RI State/US Federal Agencies

·  Community groups

·  Non-profit organizations

·  Meeting Room Policy: provide access to community groups and non-profits. ·  Annual statistics reflect sustained use.
10. Identify and develop opportunities for community engagement. ·  Residents

·  Library Users

·  Friends of the Library

·  Middletown Vision Statement: a future committed to building valuable partnerships. ·  Community Garden activity, chess club, volunteerism, donations remain constant; free income tax preparation; digital literacy workshops; bookstore activity; increased collaborations with Middletown Historical Society.

Hood Family correspondence re: Middletown Reads – Family Book Giveaway

MIDDLETOWN PUBLIC LIBRARY TECHNOLOGY PLAN,

FY2020-FY2022

The Middletown Public Library (MPL) Library Board of Trustees and the library staff are committed to providing state of the art technology for library services. The purpose of this forward thinking technology plan is to build upon the MPL’s technological achievements.

12 Virtual Desktop units replaced with new desktops

Technical support provided in person, via email, and over the phone

Requests for individualized appointments for technical training are encouraged and accepted

4 circulating e-readers replaced with tablets that are loaded with the MPL’s permanent digital collection

Additional 3D printer purchased

Laptop loan program maintained for in house use

Kindle Fire tablet used for training repurposed to receive credit/debit card payments at the circulation desk

A minimum of 2 annual technology workshops scheduled for the public

Streaming service accounts established to provide online access to movies, e-books, e-audio books, and digital magazines

Subscription service account established to provide online access to educational, career and personal growth webinars

Children’s collection expanded with print books that contain a permanently attached audio reader

Fiber-optic installed to provide high speed broadband Internet connection, currently 1 gigabit

Digital postage meter upgraded

Library website redesigned

Digital resources budget increased by 86%

Comprehensive equipment inventory maintained

Wireless people counter installed in the lobby

WIFI network and hardware upgraded

STAFF DEVELOPMENT

Online access to Universal Class training modules provided during work time

Both onsite and offsite training on Ocean State Libraries protocols scheduled

Cyber security training completed by all staff

Interior motion detector security system replaced

Four interior security cameras installed

Inventory

Servers: 2

Computers         staff use              public use           total      

Desktop               12                         23                          35

Laptop                   1                         11                          12

Tablets                    2                           9                          11

Total                     15                         43                          58

Public service equipment

3D printers: 2

Photocopiers capable of color printing and scanning: 2

Self check out stations: 3

3D bar code scanners:   8; additional 4 used by staff for cataloging new titles.

Wall mounted large screen television, HDMI enabled: 1

Apple TV: 1

Digital camera: 1

Vinyl cutter: 1

Heat press: 1

Services

Website provides 24/7 access to the collection and streaming services. It is 508 compliant.

WIFI is available throughout the library and in the parking lot.

Patrons can initiate the library card application process online.

Online event calendar provides real time access to scheduled events and meeting room use.

Wireless printing is available.

Patrons can submit interlibrary loan requests online.

Flash drives and headphones are available for purchase.

Speakers for computers and laptops are available.

Assistive listening device is available for use in the meeting room.

A stand alone screen magnifier and hand held magnifier are available for use in the library.

Library owned dvd’s and cd’s are cleaned and polished in house.

Trained staff is available to assist patrons and/or schedule one on one training sessions.

2020

 Customer Service Initiatives

Host a well attended visit for the Overdrive Digital Bookmobile on its nationwide stop in Middletown

Host a public screening for the premier broadcast of the RI PBS production, Our Town: Middletown

Launch RB Digital streaming service for e-audio books and expanded collection of digital magazines

Launch ipad loan program

Redesign the library’s website

Upgrade the online event calendar

Evaluate the library’s computer use policy and revise as necessary

 Library Operations

Implement schedule for self-directed staff training

Begin staged inventory of the library’s collection

Purchase 4 desktops to replace units that have a documented electrical issue

Purchase 2 additional desktops for backup and public use to complete the online Federal census

Research options to replace the self check desensitizing equipment

2021

Customer Service Initiatives

        Evaluate the streaming services program and revise as necessary

Investigate the feasibility of adding online chat to reference service and technical support

Purchase 1 desktop for public use in the children’s room

Research options for providing mobile hot spots

Library Operations

        Complete staged inventory of the library’s collection and evaluate results

Evaluate tablet and iPad loan program for efficiency and manageability

Replace the administration photocopier/scanner

2022

  Library Operations

Research RFID; project pricing

Develop staged implementation plan if practical

Develop supply budget in preparation for implementation

Expense 2020 2021 2022 Source
Ocean State Libraries annual fee    $22,892   $23,350    $23,817 RI  Grant in Aid
RI reserarch database access fee      $2,221      $2,265      $2,311 RI Grant in Aid
Overdrive license annual fee      $5,413      $5,521      $5,632 RI Grant in Aid
3 self-check licenses annual fee      $1,181       $1,205     $1,229 MPL operating budget
Envisionware license fee        $684          $698        $712 MPL operating budget
Wireless Printing License Annual Fee        $450         $450       $450 MPL operating budget
Online Survey Tool Annual Fee        $200       $200       $200 MPL operating budget
Website annual fees        $200       $200       $200 MPL operating budget
Event calendar  license  fee       $100        $100      $100 MPL operating budget
Streaming services access fees    $34,500    $35,190    $35,894 MPL operating budget
Digital postage meter lease        $380        $380        $380 MPL operating budget
Desktops, 6 in FY20; 1 in FY21     $4,800        $800 MPL operating budget
Digital books and audio books      $5,000     $5,000      $5,000 MPL operating budget
Phone Lines       $840       $840         $840 MPL operating budget
Admin/staff photocopier      $9,000 MPL operating budget
Online chat license fee         TBD         TBD MPL operating budget
RFID SUPPLIES         TBD MPL Construction Budget
RFID HARDWARE MPL Construction Budget
TOTAL $78,861 $85,199 $76,763

The MPL staff will evaluate all online systems and services.

The ongoing annual staff self evaluations will provide opportunities for staff to report on their technological competencies.

The Library’s webpage will be consistently monitored and updated.

Digital resources will be purchased according to the MPL’s collection development policy.

Training will be an ongoing goal.