Library Board, Governance, and Working with the Director

Essential Standards 

8. The Board and Director identify in writing what they want to accomplish in the next 3-5 years, and that plan is focused on meeting community needs. The Board and Director annually review their plan and progress made.

9. The Board adopts emergency response plans that ensure the safety of the public and staff as the primary priority.

You never know when disaster might strike. If a fire destroys part of the library, or a toxic spill happens in your community, what will you do? Check with the city or county to see if the disaster plan includes the library. Cooperating with local authorities is a good way to prevent duplication of efforts and ensure the library is included in a disaster response. The library may be able to offer services needed by the public while other agencies provide more immediate assistance. 

These resources will help you make a disaster plan for your library.

10. The Director or designee submits the Montana Public Library Annual Statistical Report to the Montana State Library. The Board and Director annually review public library statistics.

Libraries are required to file an annual statistical report. These reports can give the library a snapshot of its performance. It is particularly useful to do a trend analysis or compare the library to other libraries in Montana. Has the library's circulation gone up over the last few years? Is staff offering more programs than before? How does the library compare to libraries that are a similar size?

11. The Board adopts and regularly reviews policies that reflect the mission and goals of the library. The policies govern use of the library, its materials, and services. No single policy goes more than 4 years without review.

Policies set the direction for the library, as well as making sure that customers receive fair and equitable service. A well developed policy gives library staff some guidance on how to act when presented with a problem. Policies attempt to balance patron needs with library resources. Please contact MSL staff, other Montana public library staff, or search for library policies on the internet in order to see sample policies.

12. Library board and director review the most current Public Library Standards Road Map maintained by the Montana State Library.


Numbers refer to standards in the corresponding section of the Complete Library Standards document

Guide to Essential Public Library Standards