Collection Development Policy
This policy outlines the principles, practices, and processes employed by the Oregon City Public Library in the evaluation, development, and maintenance of the Library’s collections. The policy also outlines the process and criteria the Library and Library Board will utilize to evaluate and address any materials reconsideration requests.
- “Collection Development” is the ongoing process undertaken by staff to ensure that the library provides high-quality print and non-print materials and resources which meet the informational, cultural, and recreational needs of our community.
- “Weeding” refers to withdrawal of items from the collection that are worn, outdated, no longer in demand, or do not meet other current criteria for inclusion in the Library’s collection.
- “LINCC” stands for Libraries in Clackamas County, and refers to the 13 member libraries of the Library District of Clackamas County. LINCC libraries utilize a common catalog, share materials and resources, and work collaboratively to provide a consistent library user experience throughout Clackamas County.
- “Selectors” are designated library staff members who are for responsible for overall evaluation and management of specific portions of the Library’s collection.
SECTION 1: Minimum Conditions and Standards
The Library’s collection development activities and procedures shall adhere to the following requirements and standards.
State of Oregon Minimum Conditions for Public Libraries
Per Oregon Revised Statute (ORS) 357.405, the Oregon State Library Board has the authority to establish minimum conditions that public libraries in Oregon must meet. These minimum conditions are outlined in Oregon Administrative Rule (OAR) 543-010-0036.
Section 2(h) of this OAR requires that public libraries in the state of Oregon “have basic policies in place and accessible online for collection management, circulation, and patron confidentiality that incorporate relevant American Library Association (ALA) professional ethical codes, rules, and guidelines.” [emphasis added]
In order to meet the requirements prescribed in OAR, the Oregon City Public Library Collection Development policy fully incorporates relevant American Library Association (ALA) professional ethical codes, rules, and guidelines (see below).
American Library Association (ALA) Codes, Rules, and Guidelines
Per OAR 543-010-0036(2)(h), and based on guidance from the State Library of Oregon and the Oregon Library Association, the Oregon City Public Library Collection Development policy fully incorporates the following American Library Association (ALA) professional ethical codes, rules, and guidelines (see Appendices):
- ALA Freedom to Read Statement
- ALA Freedom to View Statement
- Library Bill of Rights
- ALA Code of Ethics
In addition, the American Library Association has published specific guidelines entitled Interpretations of the Library Bill of Rights, which address in more detail various aspects of collection development. The Oregon City Public Library Collection Development Policy fully incorporates the following Interpretations of the Library Bill of Rights:
- Access to Library Resources and Services for Minors
- Access to Library Resources and Services Regardless of Sex, Gender Identity, Gender Expression, or Sexual Orientation
- Challenged Resources
- Diverse Collections
- Evaluating Library Collections
In implementing this policy, the library may also consult and utilize additional ALA Policies and Interpretations of the Library Bill of Rights documents in collection development activities, as applicable. The additional policies and interpretations are not thereby incorporated into this policy but, instead, recognized as potentially useful guidance on how other entities view and interpret the policies. Consultation and utilization of these additional policies and interpretations is consistent with minimum condition requirements specified in OAR 543-010-0036(2)(h).
Oregon Library Association (OLA) Public Library Standards
The Public Library Division of the Oregon Library Association maintains and regularly updates Public Library Standards. While adherence to these standards is not required by ORS or OAR, The Oregon City Public Library recognizes it is in the best interests of our patrons to strive to meet any and all applicable OLA collection development standards to the highest degree practicable.
For purposes of this Collection Development Policy, the Library strives to meet each of the following standards (referred to as “attributes” in the standards document) in Section 3 (“Materials Standards”) of the OLA Public Library Standards (see Appendix L).
- The collection management plan includes policies and procedures for materials selection.
- The collection management plan includes policies and procedures for materials removal.
- The collection management plan includes policies and procedures for reconsideration of materials.
- The collection management plan includes policies and procedures for materials preservation.
- The collection management plan includes policies and procedures for donations of books and other materials.
- The collection management plan includes policies and procedures for special collections.
- The collection management plan is reviewed at least every three years.
SECTION 2: Policies and Procedures
Collection Development Authority
Ultimate responsibility for selection of library materials lies with the Library Director. Day-to-day collection development activities will be delegated to Librarians or other staff as assigned (consistent with position duties and employee experience/training).
General Collection Development Principles
- The library’s collection will include material on many subjects, incorporate various viewpoints, reflect a diversity of opinion and experience, and offer a wide selection of genres, themes, and items of general and special interest to the community.
- To develop and maintain a diverse collection, items that represent minority viewpoints, opinions and perspectives will be included in the Library’s collection.
- Library materials shall not be excluded because of the political, social or religious views of the author or artist, or due to characteristics that make them part of a protected class under Federal or Oregon state law. (More information: http://www.oregon.gov/boli/CRD/pages/c_crprotoc.aspx).
- Any item considered for the collection shall be considered in terms of its own merit and considered as a whole, not by selected passages or portions.
- The library’s role is to provide materials which will allow individuals to freely examine issues and make their own decisions.
- The Oregon City Public Library does not endorse particular beliefs or views, nor does the selection of an item express or imply endorsement of the viewpoint of the author or content of the item.
- Some materials may be offensive to individuals or groups because of individual perceptions of profanity, human sexuality, social, economic, and political ideas, religious viewpoints, the background of the author, or the kind of information provided. However, these items may be meaningful and significant to other users.
- General criteria for selection of items include (no priority implied):
- Meets or anticipates the needs and interests of the community.
- Appears on bestseller lists or is highlighted by popular media.
- Popular appeal of an author or series.
- Encourages the enjoyment of reading.
- Artistic, literary, historic, and/or scientific merit.
- Contemporary significance.
- Supplements, expands on, or supports the existing collection, including collections at other LINCC libraries.
- Accuracy of content and competence of author.
- Clarity and accuracy of information.
- Availability, format, and durability.
- Budgetary and space considerations.
- Particular local significance, interest, or history.
- Materials of varying complexity which meet the needs of a wide range of ages, reading skills, and educational backgrounds.
- Reviews in professionally-recognized publications are a primary source for materials selection. Examples of such sources include (but are not limited to) Booklist, Library Journal, Publisher’s Weekly, School Library Journal, Video Librarian, and AllMusic. Other sources, including but not limited to recommended title lists, newspaper reviews, or expert recommendations may be used.
- Patrons may request the Library to consider purchase of any item for its collection, and their suggestions will be considered according to the Library's selection policy.
- The Library purchases self-published books very selectively. Self-published books will be subject to the same criteria as other materials, with additional emphasis on local interest or local media attention.
- The Library does not acquire material in very specialized areas, material of a highly technical nature, textbooks, or other curriculum-related material unless such materials also meet the needs of the general public.
- Spanish language materials are selected for the adult and teen collection, and Spanish and Russian language materials are selected for the children’s collection utilizing the same criteria outlined in this policy.
- While no other non-English language materials are currently added to the collection, materials in other languages may be considered for inclusion based on the changing needs and demographics of the Oregon City Public Library service area.
- Selectors consider prospective additions to the collection based on these selection criteria regardless of their personal taste. These standards apply equally to purchased and donated materials.
- The Library strives to maintain a generally equal ratio between materials borrowed from other LINCC libraries and materials lent to other LINCC libraries. Quantities of copies ordered of certain titles and budget allocations may be influenced by this consideration.
In order to keep the collection vital and useful, the library will regularly withdraw (“weed”) items from the collection that are worn, outdated, or no longer in demand. The Library maintains a weeding schedule and strives to examine each area of the collection for potential weeding on an annual basis.
The Library generally utilizes the weeding principles and methods outlined in “CREW: A Weeding Manual for Modern Libraries” produced by the Texas State Library and Archives Commission. In general, materials selected for potential weeding include:
- Unused or underused materials
- Materials in poor physical condition
- Materials with obsolete or outdated content
Withdrawn items in salable condition may be given to the Friends of the Library to be sold (by the Friends or third-party vendors selected by the Friends) for the benefit of the Library.
Withdrawn items which are not suitable for resale by the Friends may be:
- Given away to Library patrons on a non-preferential, first-come-first-served basis.
- Donated to government agencies or non-profit organizations which make books more readily available or advance literacy within the library service area or the County.
- Recycled or discarded.
The library is committed to preserving its collections through appropriate care. The library strives to maintain and preserve materials through proper storage and handling. Basic remedial treatment of damaged items may be undertaken, however, repair efforts will be limited to only those materials where repair efforts are likely to significantly extend the useful life of materials without requiring an excessive investment of human or financial resources.
In cases of rare or irreplaceable items, additional preservation measures may be taken (including consideration of transferring ownership of the item to another institution better able to provide necessary levels of care and maintenance). In addition, the library may employ alternative packaging for some materials (such as Library of Things items) which may reduce breakage and/or loss of individual parts of multi-component items.
Gifts and Donations
The Library may, at its sole discretion, accept donations of materials or donation of funds for the purchase of materials.
- Donations of materials to the Library must be arranged in advance with the Library staff member responsible for collection development in the appropriate area (Adults, Teens, Children’s).
- Any donated materials considered for acceptance will be subject to the same selection criteria as purchased items.
- The Library reserves the right to add to the collection only selected items from a donation.
- Acknowledgement of donated items or funds for memorial purposes may be available at the discretion of the Library Director.
- Donated material may subsequently be retained or disposed of without consulting the original donor unless otherwise agreed.
- Unless otherwise agreed with the donor, funds donated for the purchase of items may be used to purchase any items consistent with the Collection Development Policy.
- Under no circumstances will the Library accept a donation conditioned on the purchase of materials in violation of this policy.
- The library will not appraise gifts. Gift receipts in which the donor can indicate the number and type of items being donated are available upon request.
Materials not accepted for donation by the Library may be donated to the Friends of the Library at the Friends Bookstore at 814 7th Street, Oregon City OR 97045. The library does not accept donations on behalf of the Friends; please check with the Friends of the Library Bookstore for current donation procedures and needs.
The Library currently has a single designated special collection, our Heritage Collection (which includes print materials as well as microfilm/microfiche). The purpose of the Heritage Collection is to collect and make available materials which document and preserve the history, culture, and traditions of the peoples associated with Oregon City and Clackamas County.
While this collection development policy generally applies to the Heritage collection, criteria related to the historical nature and special purpose of the collection may be given greater weight when making selection and removal decisions.
Digital Collections and Online Resources
Items in the e-book and digital audiobook collections are generally selected for the entire LINCC cooperative by a committee of LINCC Library Services staff members. Collection development for this shared collection may follow different collection development guidelines. Patrons may submit purchase suggestions for these collections. Instructions to do so can be found at: https://help.overdrive.com/en-us/0860.html.
Databases or other materials accessed in electronic form may be selected on a LINCC-wide cooperative basis, or on an individual library-by-library basis. LINCC-wide resources are evaluated and selected cooperatively by designated LINCC-wide committees, made up of representatives from individual LINCC libraries.
Databases selected for local use by Oregon City patrons will be selected for usefulness and value of information or quality of content similar to other materials selected for the collection. Licensing terms, vendor requirements, and overall costs of electronic content differ greatly from print materials; these factors may impact collection development activities and decisions for digital materials to a greater degree than with print materials.
Per the OLA Standards for Public Libraries, both the collection and community feedback regarding the collection (including feedback by the Library Board) are regularly evaluated by selectors and the Library Director to ensure the collection is contemporary, dynamic, reflects the community’s needs, reflects the community’s interests, reflects the community’s standards, reflects the community’s diversity, and represents a wide variety of viewpoints.
As new non-print formats are developed, they will be given consideration for addition to the collection. The Library may weed or remove materials in obsolete formats.
Unless noted otherwise in the “Special Collections” section of this policy, all materials will be freely and easily accessible to the public. Users are free to select or reject for themselves or their own children any item in the collection. Children are not limited to use of the materials in the children’s or teen areas. Responsibility for a child’s selection or reading rests solely with their parent or guardian. The library will not limit access to materials based on content, and selection will not be inhibited by the possibility that children may inadvertently use such items.
In certain cases, physical access to high-cost items (such as video game cartridges or discs, or circulating laptop computers) may be staff mediated. Access procedures for these items will be developed to minimize barriers to patron access.
Selectors use their experience, judgment, and professional reviews to determine where materials will be located.
- Materials which primarily serve the needs of children from birth through 8th grade will be located in the Children’s Room.
- Materials which primarily serve the needs of teens from 9th through 12th grade will be located in the Teen area.
- Materials which primarily serve the needs of adults 18 and older will be located in the Adult area.
New materials (for all age groups and of all types) may be located in new materials sections/displays.
Selectors may purchase additional copies of new and popular items for the Lucky Day collection at their discretion. While designated as Lucky Day materials, these items will not be holdable, and will be available on a first-come, first-served basis. At least one holdable copy of any Lucky Day title will also be available in the general collection.
SECTION 3: Requests for Reconsideration
Residents of the Oregon City Public Library service area who express concerns about the presence of an item in the collection or in a certain area of the Library are given serious consideration. The following process will be followed to answer questions, address concerns, and evaluate formal requests for reconsideration of materials.
- Concerns relayed by a resident of the Oregon City Public Library service area will first be referred to the lead Librarian in charge of day-to-day selection for the appropriate collection. Residents of other library service areas (within or outside of Clackamas County) should contact their local library to discuss their concerns.
- The lead Librarian will attempt to make contact with the person submitting the question or concern, and will engage the person in a discussion about the item and how the item’s inclusion in the collection or placement within the library does or does not align with this policy.
- If, after this initial discussion, the lead Librarian believes reconsideration is in order, the lead Librarian will implement such local cataloging/shelving changes necessary to ensure the item resides within the appropriate collection at the Library. The lead Librarian may also submit any bibliographic record update recommendations to the LINCC Library Services office (which is in charge of centralized cataloging and maintenance for the LINCC Cooperative), so LINCC cataloging librarians may consider changes to the bibliographic record.
- If, after this initial discussion, the lead Librarian does not believe a reconsideration is order, they will notify the patron and provide instructions on submitting a formal “Materials Reconsideration Request Form” (Appendix A).
- If the patron wishes to request formal reconsideration of an item, the patron shall completely fill out the “Materials Reconsideration Request Form” and submit it to the Library Director. A “Materials Reconsideration Request Form” must be filled out for each individual item for which reconsideration is being requested. If the reconsideration request is missing information, the Library Director will return it to the requestor for completion before any further action is taken. If a requestor submits a Materials Reconsideration Request Form without having undertaken the consultation outlined in Step 2, the Library Director may elect not to review the “Materials Reconsideration Request Form” until this consultation has taken place. If the Library Director makes such an election, the requestor will be notified in writing.
- The Library Director will examine the item in question and determine whether the item and/or its placement within the library aligns with this policy, and what changes (if any) will be made. The Library Director will communicate this determination in writing to the individual requesting reconsideration (requestor) within 10 calendar days of receipt of the reconsideration request.
- If the requestor is not satisfied with the Library Director’s decision, they may submit to the Library Director a written request to appeal the decision to the Library Board.
- If the Library Board has already considered an appeal for the same item within the past 36 months, the Library Director will inform the requestor of the Library Board’s previous determination. The Library Director will also inform the Library Board that a reconsideration request and subsequent appeal was received, but that since the item in question has already been the subject of a prior Library Board review, the appeal was not forwarded.
- Appeals eligible for Library Board review will be placed on the agenda of the next scheduled regular Library Board meeting that takes place at least 10 calendar days after receipt of the completed appeal. The requestor’s original reconsideration request as well as the Library Director’s written determination will be provided to the Library Board. During the designated portion of the meeting, the requestor may have up to 5 minutes to address the Library Board before the Library Board’s discussion/review. During the review, the Library Board may (but is not obligated to) ask questions of the Library Director, library staff, or requestor. Members of the public may provide verbal or written testimony related to the appeal in accordance with the guidelines for general public comments outlined on the Library Board meeting notice. The item subject to reconsideration will remain available in the library collection during this process.
- During the scheduled Library Board meeting, the Library Board will review and consider the reconsideration request and the Library Director’s decision. The Library Board may make a final recommendation at that meeting, or postpone a final recommendation pending further review.
- If a majority (more than 50%) of the Library Board does not recommend upholding the appeal, the requestor will be notified in writing of the Library Board’s denial. A summary of the reconsideration request, the Library Director’s determination, and the Library Board’s recommendation will be forwarded to the City Manager who may (at their discretion) communicate the Library Board’s appeal denial to the City Commission. No further action will be taken by the Library Board or Library Director with regards to the reconsideration request.
- If a majority (more than 50%) of the Library Board does recommend upholding the appeal, a staff report including the Library Board’s recommendation, the patron’s reconsideration request, and the Library Director’s original determination will be forwarded to the City Recorder for inclusion on the next available City Commission regular meeting agenda. As the Governing Body of the City, the City Commission has final authority to mandate a relocation or removal of an item from the Library’s collection. The item subject to reconsideration will remain available in the library collection during this process.
- If the City Commission approves the appeal, the item will be removed from the Oregon City Public Library’s collection, or relocated as per direction from the Commission. Any removal or relocation does not impact copies owned by and available from any other LINCC library. The Oregon City Public Library may offer the item to another LINCC library to add to their collection. If any Oregon City copies of the item are currently in use by a patron, the patron will be permitted to keep the item until its due date (including any renewals).
Approved by Oregon City Library Board: August 23, 2023
Approved by Anthony J. Konkol, III (City Manager): October 30, 2023
APPENDIX A: MATERIALS RECONSIDERATION REQUEST FORM
Item Title _________________________________________________
Item Author(s) _____________________________________________
Item Barcode ______________________________________________
Have you read, viewed, or listened to the entire work?
Have you met with one of our lead Librarians to discuss your questions or concerns about this item?
How does the inclusion of this item in the Library’s collection, or its location within the Library, not align with this Collection Development Policy? Please be as specific as possible.
What specific action(s) do you believe the Library should take regarding this item to be in alignment with this Collection Development policy?
Your name ______________________________________
Your address ____________________________________
Your phone number ______________________________
Your email address _______________________________