Display Policy

This Policy is adopted to further implement the mission of the Manatee County Public Library System, which aims to provide responsive, innovative, proactive programs capable of improving the educational, cultural, and recreational quality of life in the community by featuring high-interest materials in a variety of formats; providing timely, accurate, and useful information; and encouraging children to develop an interest in reading and learning.

Manatee County owns and operates certain facilities as libraries.  Within such facilities, the Manatee County Public Library System may make use of certain suitable areas and fixtures to display various items to library visitors.  While the Library System may make use of these areas with County-owned materials, it is also authorized to request that materials owned by some other person or entity be loaned to the Library System.  Pursuant to Board of County Commissioners Resolution 05-30, materials requested by the Library System to be loaned to it to be displayed must be owned or have been produced by a Manatee County resident or entity, or be deemed by the County to be relevant in some way to the history, industry, culture or geography of Manatee County.  Display areas shall not be used for commercial purposes.

Prior to any non-County-owned materials being placed in a library facility, the County and the person or entity agreeing to loan the materials must execute an approved Library Loan Agreement.  Delivery, installation and removal of loaned materials shall be the sole responsibility of the person or entity loaning the materials, and shall be under the supervision of County staff.  Loaned materials must be delivered, installed and removed on the dates and times set forth in the Library Loan Agreement.

The Library System may limit or prohibit the use of display areas, shorten displays of loaned materials, and re-deploy materials as the County deems necessary to meet library needs.  Materials which arrive at a library facility in a state of disrepair, emitting a foul odor, lacking proper installation hardware, or which would otherwise pose a possible threat to the health, safety or welfare of library visitors, may not be accepted for placement by library staff.

Where library staff deem relevant to educate library visitors about library displays, the library staff may post factual information concerning loaned materials such as the age of an item, or its history, origin or significance to Manatee County.  Library staff may also work with the person or entity loaning the materials should that person or entity desire to greet library visitors at certain times during the loan period and provide live information to visitors who may be interested, such as a professor explaining an environmental display to school classes.  Since loaned items are displayed as part of the library’s operations, any such presentations shall be approved by library management first.  If the person or entity loaning the materials so desires, information may be placed on or near the items displayed stating how the person or entity may be contacted for more information about the loaned materials.  However, no offer of sale of the materials may be made on library grounds, orally or in writing, and no sale price may be displayed on any such materials while on loan to the Library System.  The Library may use images of loaned materials when publicizing library programs or activities.

Loaned materials which, after reasonable attempts are made to have the owner remove them, are deemed abandoned by the library staff, may be discarded.  Manatee County shall not be responsible for any loss, theft, or other damage which may occur with respect to the loaned materials, and owners shall be responsible to insure any materials loaned.

Display Procedure

The Manatee County Public Library System may solicit on its own and may consider entering Library Loan Agreements for materials offered by others at any time.  However, so that library staff may plan its programming and facilities uses in an orderly manner, the Library System may conduct open solicitation to the community for persons or entities interested in loaning materials.  This open solicitation may be accomplished by the use of signage at all library facilities, notices on government television and the library’s website, press releases, social media, and other similar means.

Persons or entities responding to the open solicitation will submit a Loan Agreement form to the library staff.  The offer shall state the name of the person or entity willing to loan materials and whether that person is a Manatee County resident, group or business.  The offer shall also describe the materials, and state whether the materials were produced by a Manatee County resident or entity, and how the materials may be relevant in some way to the history, industry, culture or geography of Manatee County.  Photos, measurements and inspections of the materials may be requested by library staff.

All offers will be evaluated by appropriate staff including the Library Services Manager, site supervisors, topical specialists and other relevant professional and managerial staff.  Where the staff concludes that offered materials will fit within desired library programming for the period of time being planned, it will contact the person or entity making the offer with information concerning the date range the Library System would like the materials loaned, the branch and location where the materials are to be displayed, and enclose a Library Loan Agreement, with all such information completed by library staff but unsigned, for the person or entity to execute and return.  Once library staff has received the completed and signed agreement, and it is deemed complete, library administration or site supervisors may execute it, returning a copy to the person or entity making the loan. Offers not accepted shall be acknowledged with a letter of thanks by the library staff.

Display Forms

Be sure to read the complete Manatee County Public Library Display Areas Policy before requesting a Loan Agreement Form.

Please call the location you are interested in displaying items at, in order to coordinate with library staff. All displays must be approved by library managers. Library locations

You may also email us at [email protected] to request a form.