Collection Development Policy

Harmony Public Library

Collection Development Policy

Mission Statement: The Harmony Public Library will provide access to various types of materials as well as programs and services that meet the educational and recreational needs of the community.


The purpose of the Collection Development Policy is to guide library staff in the basic principles upon which decisions are made in selecting materials for the collection. This policy should not replace the judgment of library staff, but will assist them in maintaining a balanced and well-used collection.

The ultimate responsibility for development of the Library collection rests with the Library Board of Trustees. TheLibrary Director is responsible for seeing that the collection development policy is followed. Selection will be based on the Library’s Mission statement and the materials available, using standard selection aids, such as Booklist, Library Journal, etc.

Promotion of reading as adults and to children is an urgent and important responsibility within the Library program, and selection of materials to fulfill this need should be considered, even when they may be of an ephemeral nature.


  • The Library will provide materials in any format, including electronic, which help to fulfill its mission.
  • The Library subscribes to The Freedom to Read statement and The Library Bill of Rights of the American Library Association. Copies of those documents follow this policy.
  • Materials acquired will meet high standards of quality in content, expression and format. The Library does not feel an obligation to purchase every book which appears on the best seller lists, but does recognize the diverse interests of its patrons and will endeavor to satisfy them within budget limitations. Representative titles by serious fiction writers may be purchased, even if the subject and language of their novels may be offensive to some readers.
  • Children’s books are selected to provide pleasurable reading for reading’s sake and as much as possible to provide information in fields of interest to children. Balance will be sought regarding material for different age groups and reading levels, and emphasis is put on books which stimulate the imagination, invite mental growth, and develop a taste for good literature.
  • The Library will not attempt to purchase materials needed for formal courses of study for any education institution, although foreign language self-study courses, self-help materials on many subjects, and supplementary materials for many subjects are available. When specific titles are requested by individuals engaged in formal study, staff will attempt to locate and borrow the information through interlibrary loan, or will direct the patron to an institution where it may be found.
  • The Library staff will cooperate with the school and area public libraries to stay informed about materials which might be shared to avoid duplication of limited-interest or expensive materials.
  • Materials which are no longer useful in light of the Library’s mission will be weeded from the collection according to accepted professional practices. Damaged materials will be repaired or replaced if the demand for and quality of the material is judged to warrant such treatment.


Gifts and Memorials

Books and other materials will be accepted on the condition that the Library staff has the authority to determine which items will be added to the collection or otherwise used for library programs, and to dispose of the remainder, either by sharing them with another library, selling them and using the proceeds to buy other needed materials, or recycling them if another use cannot be found.

Gifts of books and books purchased with monetary gifts will be identified with special bookplates indicating the name of the donor, unless the donor wishes to remain anonymous. Separate shelving cannot be provided.

Gifts of money, real property, and/or stocks or bonds will be accepted if conditions attached thereto are acceptable to the Library Board and the Harmony City Council. Personal property, art objects, portraits, antiques, and other museum objects will not be accepted unless specifically related to the Library’s mission. If the donor wishes, the Library staff may aid in finding a suitable depository for the items.

The Library will not accept for deposit materials which are not outright gifts.