About Us

Mission/Long Range Plan

The mission of the Palm Harbor Library is to be the world’s best public library.

Vision Statement

Palm Harbor Library aspires to be the definitive educational and cultural destination for all members of the Palm Harbor community. It will offer a safe and secure environment, conducive to learning, life enrichment and creativity while providing easy accessibility to information.

It will also serve as a neutral venue where ideas may be freely exchanged, creating opportunities for anyone to discover how their lives may change for the better through such efforts as celebrating literacy and nurturing a love for reading

Palm Harbor Library will be an essential part of the community, serving as an anchor for learning and cultural development while continuously meeting the evolving needs of the residents it serves.

Long Range Plan

Circulation Policies

Type of Material Max # Loan Period (days) Renewals Available Late Fee Per Day
Adaptive Toys 3 28 2 $2.00
Book Club 2 28 2 $0.20
Book Clubs to Go 1 56 0 $2.00
Books & Kits 50 28 3 $0.20
CD Books 25 28 2 $0.20
CD Music 25 14 2 $0.20
CD Players 1 28 2 $2.00
CD-ROMs 2 28 2 $0.20
DVDs & Blu-Rays 25 7 1 $0.50
First Steps to Go 1 28 2 $2.00
Inter-Library Loans 5 28 0 $0.25
Kindle Readers 1 14 0 $5.00
Lending Library – Books 2 14 0 $0.20
Lending Library – DVDs 2 7 0 $0.50
LP Records 25 14 2 $0.20
LP Turntables 1 14 1 $2.00
Magazines 50 14 2 $0.20
Playaways 6 7 2 $0.20
New Books 4 14 2 $0.20
Puzzles 6 28 2 $0.20
Sunshine State Readers 4 14 2 $0.20
VCR & DVD Players 1 7 2 $2.00
Video Games 2 7 1 $1.00

Failure to return overdue library materials and failure to report and reimburse for lost, damaged, or destroyed library materials are violations of Pinellas County Ordinance 96-52 and may result in a misdemeanor punishable by a fine not to exceed $500.00 or imprisonment not to exceed 60 days.

Code of Conduct

Policy

This code of conduct is intended to encourage behavior, which supports the Library’s mission to provide the best possible resources in a warm, welcoming environment. Behavior becomes unacceptable when it interferes with this mission, impinges on the rights of others, causes damage to buildings or equipment or causes injury to oneself or others. Those willing to modify unacceptable behavior are always welcome to stay. However, those unable to comply will be asked to leave. If necessary, the authorities will be called.

Principles of Conduct

The Library serves various functions for library members, including that of a community information center, a place to study, and a place to find cultural and recreational materials and activities. All of these require traffic, movement, and discourse. In balancing these various roles and functions, a reasonable noise level is expected and generally believed to be acoustically unavoidable. When in Palm Harbor Library, library members must observe the following principles of conduct:

  • Speak in normal or quiet tones of voice
  • Respect others, including their rights and personal property
  • Respect Library property and staff
  • Maintain responsibility for the safety, well-being, and conduct of children in their charge
  • Refrain from actions that are disruptive to other library members
  • Place cell phones and pagers on vibrate feature; hold conversations in the foyer or outside of the building

Library Member Prohibited Activities

The following are examples of behaviors (but not limited to) that seriously interfere with the activities normally associated with the use of a public library and are prohibited in Palm Harbor Library:

  • Smoking
  • Sleeping
  • Eating, drinking, or displaying food in open containers
  • Disturbing or annoying anyone by loud/unreasonable noise or movement, including, but not limited to, using audible devices without headphones, or with headphones set at a volume that disturbs others
  • Use of abusive, threatening, harassing, or insulting language
  • Having body odor or personal hygiene that is offensive or that interferes with others’ use of the library
  • Animals (except trained assistance animals)
  • Improper acts which are subject to prosecution under criminal or civil codes of law
  • Vehicles and other objects which constitute potential safety hazards to patrons
  • Objects placed adjacent to any exit or entrance on the inside or outside of the facility which pose a safety hazard to persons entering or exiting the facility
  • Lack of shirt or footwear
  • Personally monopolizing library space, seating, tables, or equipment to the exclusion of other patrons or staff
  • Soliciting, selling, or begging
  • Unattended children under the age of 10
  • Bathing, shaving, washing clothes or other misuse of restrooms
  • Distribution or posting of printed materials not approved by PHL administration
  • Loitering, including refusal to leave at closing or emergency evacuation
  • Possessing, consuming or being under the influence of alcohol or illegal drugs
  • Unruly/offensive behavior such as viewing pornography

Violations of Library Member Principles of Conduct and Library Member Prohibited Activities

Maintenance of proper conduct in the Library is one of the responsibilities of Library staff. Staff has the authority to deal firmly but courteously with library members who are violating the Library Member Principles of Conduct and Library Member Prohibited Activities. Actions taken by staff may include making the library member aware that the behavior violates the principles of conduct or is a prohibited activity, warning the library member that he/she will have to leave if the behavior does not change, and telling the library member to leave the library. In some cases, the library member may be escorted from the building by staff or the police.

Anyone known to have violated the principles of conduct and prohibited activities of the Library may be excluded from the Library and its programs as a matter of administrative policy. If the behavior involves illegal activity, such as child molestation, indecent exposure, or destruction of Library property such as computer equipment, library staff has full authority to call the police. Based upon the severity of the situation, a suspension of library privileges may be applied without advance warning or prior suspension.

The suspension shall remain in effect pending periodic administrative review. The library administrator’s decision shall be final.

Florida Statute 257.261

  Library registration and circulation records.—

(1) All registration and circulation records of every public library, except statistical reports of registration and circulation, are confidential and exempt from the provisions of s. 119.07(1) and from s. 24(a) of Art. I of the State Constitution.

(2) As used in this section, the term “registration records” includes any information that a library requires a patron to provide in order to become eligible to borrow books and other materials, and the term “circulation records” includes all information that identifies the patrons who borrow particular books and other materials.

(3)(a) Except in accordance with a proper judicial order, a person may not make known in any manner any information contained in records made confidential and exempt by this section, except as otherwise provided in this section.

(b) A library or any business operating jointly with the library may, only for the purpose of collecting fines or recovering overdue books, documents, films, or other items or materials owned or otherwise belonging to the library, disclose information made confidential and exempt by this section to the following:

1. The library patron named in the records;

2. In the case of a library patron less than 16 years of age, the parent or guardian of that patron named in the records;

3. Any entity that collects fines on behalf of a library, unless the patron is less than 16 years of age, in which case only information identifying the patron’s parent or guardian may be released;

4. Municipal or county law enforcement officials, unless the patron is 16 years of age, in which case only information identifying the patron’s parent or guardian may be released; or

5. Judicial officials.

(4) Any person who violates this section commits a misdemeanor of the second degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083.

History.—s. 1, ch. 78-81; s. 1, ch. 89-18; s. 1, ch. 96-220; s. 112, ch. 96-406; s. 1, ch. 2003-13; s. 6, ch. 2003-126.

Unattended Child

 Palm Harbor Library welcomes the use of its services and facilities by children. Staff members are committed to the well-being and safety of children. However, library facilities are not designed or licensed to provide basic childcare needs or emergency care if the child becomes upset or ill.

Any public place may be dangerous for a child who is left unattended. Arrangements should be made ahead of time for children to be picked up after programs.

The Library reminds parents to consider the safety and well-being of their children and the needs of other library users of all ages. Children should be supervised at all times and reminded that the materials in the library are to be respected and treated with care.

Policy Statement

Children under the age of 10 may not be left unattended in the library and must be directly supervised by a responsible adult or caregiver 16 years or older, with no exceptions. This does not apply to children in library-sponsored programs.

Children age 10 and over may use the library unattended provided that their behavior is not disruptive. Parents are responsible for the actions of their children in the library whether or not the parent is present. Parents will also be responsible for any disturbance or damage done to the library by their child. Disruptive children, older than nine years of age may be asked to leave the library after one warning. In such instances, parents will be contacted or, if the parent is unavailable, police custody will be utilized.

The library must not be used as a childcare service.  Any child unaccompanied by a responsible adult or a caregiver for an extended period of time may be approached for information concerning his/her parent’s availability.  The parents will be notified of library policy.  If the situation continues, proper authorities will be notified.

If a minor under the age of 18 is left unattended at the time of closing and attempts to reach the parents have failed, the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office will be called to take responsibility for the child.

Internet Use

 The Palm Harbor Library offers Internet resources equally to all users.  The Internet enables the library to provide resources not available within the confines of its own collection.  However, the Internet is an unregulated medium.  It offers access to a wealth of material that is personally, professionally, and culturally enriching to individuals of all ages, but it also enables access to some materials that may be offensive and/or illegal.  Individual users must accept responsibility for determining the suitability of content for themselves and their children.

In addition, users must respect the legal protections to data and software provided by copyright and licensing laws.  Users may not represent themselves as another person nor use Internet access to transmit obscene, threatening, or harassing materials.  Although library staff and volunteers are able to offer some searching suggestions and answer some questions, they cannot provide in-depth training on the Internet or computer use.

Computer Use

Library computers are provided to members for the purpose of accessing information and reference resources. In order to make these resources available to as many members as possible and to make sure that the equipment is used in a manner consistent with the Library Code of Conduct, the following rules apply:

  • In order to allow all members an opportunity to use the equipment, members are asked to comply with sign-in and time limitations. Computer users are allowed one 120 minute session and one 60 minute session every day and must be logged off for 15 minutes between sessions. No other extensions will be granted.
  • Computer users may only use their personal library card or guest pass assigned to them. Use of multiple library cards for the purpose of extending computer time is strictly forbidden and may result in the loss of library privileges.
  • Guest passes will be issued to persons visiting from outside Pinellas County. Visitors must have a valid form of photo identification. Visitors are entitled to the same computer privileges as library members and must comply with all library policies and regulations.

Because computers are located in public area, what you view is not private. Please be considerate of other library users and refrain from displaying materials that they might reasonably consider objectionable. In accordance with Florida Statutes, Chapters 847.011(1)a and 847.0133(1), displaying obscene materials to minors or printing such materials may be a violation of the law and could result in penalties up to and including imprisonment.

Misuse of library computers will result in the loss of computer privileges, potential loss of library privileges and possible prosecution. Such misuse includes, but is not limited to: damaging or altering computer equipment or software; downloading or installing any program on the hard drive of any computer; sending, displaying, or printing obscene material; impersonating other library members for additional time.