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Article I – Name

Section 1: NAME – The “Harrison Public Library” is the name of the organization, which provides library service within the Town/Village of Harrison. The Harrison Public Library was granted Absolute Charter Number 9576 on December 15, 1967 by the Regents, State Department of Education, State of New York.

Section 2: POWERS AND DUTIES – The Library possesses the power and authority and assumes the duty and responsibility provided under the Charter and the Laws of the State of New York.

Section 3: FACILITIES – The Library’s facilities consist of the Main Library, Bruce Avenue, and the Branch Library, Madison Street, Town of Harrison, State of New York.

Article II – Management

Section 1: TRUSTEES – The business and affairs of the Harrison Public Library shall be managed by a Board of Trustees consisting of nine members appointed by the Town Board of the Town/Village of Harrison with the advice of the Library Board. The Trustees shall be residents of the Town/Village of Harrison.

Section 2: TERM – The term of office of a library trustee shall be for five years and shall end on the 31st day of December of the fifth year following appointment. In the event of a vacancy in the office of trustee prior to the expiration of the term of the trustee the Town Board shall appoint a successor for the unexpired term of the trustee who vacated the office. Trustees appointed after the adoption of these by-laws shall not serve for more than three consecutive full terms of 5 years each.

Section 3: ABSENCES – Any trustee who shall fail to attend three consecutive regular meetings of the Board of Trustees and who shall fail to present an excuse therefore satisfactory to a majority of the Board, shall, upon resolution adopted by a majority of the Board be deemed to have resigned as trustee. The vacancy shall be filled as hereinabove provided.

Article III – Meetings

Section 1: REGULAR MEETINGS – Regular meetings of the Board shall be held each month, the date, place, and hour to be fixed by the Board at its annual meeting. Notice of Meetings shall be sent to each Trustee by the Secretary or the Director one week prior to each regular meeting.

Section 2: ANNUAL MEETING – The annual meeting of the Board for purpose of electing officers shall be the regular meeting of the Board held in March each year.

Section 3: SPECIAL MEETINGS – Special meetings of the Board may be called by the Secretary at the direction of the President, or at the request of at least three trustees, for the transaction of business stated in the call for the special meeting. Notice thereof shall be given to all members by telephone or in writing at least 24 hours prior to the time of the meeting.

Section 4: QUORUM – A quorum for the transaction of business at any meeting shall consist of five members of the Board present in person.

Section 5: ORDER OF BUSINESS – The order of business for regular meetings shall include, but not be limited to, the following items, which shall be covered in the sequence shown so far as circumstances will permit:

  1. Roll call of members
  2. Discussion with visitors, if any
  3. Disposition of minutes of previous meeting
  4. Director’s financial report
  5. Action on bills
  6. Report of the Director
  7. Committee reports
  8. Communications
  9. Unfinished business
  10. New business
  11. Announcements
  12. Adjournment

Section 6: DIRECTOR – The Director shall attend all meetings, may participate in the discussion and offer professional advice, but may not vote upon any question.

Section 7: CONDUCT OF MEETINGS – All meetings shall be conducted in accordance with Roberts Rules of Order, the Open Meetings Law and the Laws of the State of New York.

Section 8: MAJORITY VOTE – An affirmative vote of the majority of all members of the Board shall be necessary to approve any action of the Board.

Section 9: VOTE OF PRESIDENT – The President may vote upon and may move or second a proposal before the Board.

Article IV – Officers

Section 1: OFFICERS – The officers of the Board shall be a President, a Vice President, a Treasurer, and a Secretary elected at the annual meeting each year from among the members of the Board and they shall hold office until their successors shall have been elected and shall have accepted.

Section 2: PRESIDENT – The President shall preside at all meetings of the Board, appoint all committees, execute all documents authorized by the Board, authorize calls for any special meetings and generally perform all duties associated with the office of President. A trustee shall not serve as President for more than two consecutive years.

Section 3: VICE PRESIDENT – The Vice President shall preside at all meetings in the absence of the President, and in the event of the death, resignation or disability of the President or of a vacancy in that office, shall assume and perform the duties and functions of the President.

Section 4: TREASURER – The Treasurer shall keep the funds of the Library in a banking institution in the name of the Library and shall render at each stated meeting a report setting forth the receipts, disbursements and the balance of the funds so held. The Treasurer need not be a member of the Board.

Section 5: SECRETARY – The Secretary shall keep a record of the proceedings of the Board and shall give all notice of meetings and other notices required. However, the Secretary may delegate any or all of such duties to the Director of the Library.

Article V – Committees

Section 1: The President may appoint committees of one or more members each for such specific purposes as the business of the Board may require from time to time. The committee shall be considered to be discharged upon the completion of the purpose for which it was appointed and after its final report is made to the Board.

Section 2: The President may appoint Trustees whom the Director may consult specifically on matters affecting budgetary planning, building security, personnel and library legislation, policies and procedures, and programming. The President may also designate a Trustee to act as liaison officer with various town and county agencies concerned with Library matters.

Section 3: All committees shall make progress reports to the Board at each of its meetings.

Section 4: No committee will have other than advisory powers, unless, by suitable action of the Board, it is granted specific power to act.

Article VI – Library Director

Section 1: DIRECTOR – The Board, subject to the action of the Town Board as required by law, shall appoint as Director of the Library a person duly qualified to act as such. The tenure of the Director shall be subject to the pleasure of the Board in accordance with the Civil Service Law of the State of New York and any collective bargaining agreement specifically covering such position.

Section 2: DUTIES – The Director shall be the executive officer of the Board. The Director shall recommend to the Board the appointment and specify the duties of other employees and shall be responsible for the proper direction and supervision of the staff, for the care and maintenance of Library property, for an adequate and proper selection of books in keeping with the stated policy of the Board, for the efficiency of Library service to the public, and for its financial operation within the limits of the budgeted appropriation. The Director shall assist the Board in the formulation and submission of an annual budget and specific Library-related requirements in any collective bargaining negotiations affecting Library policy and personnel, and shall recommend the form and substance of agreement for action by the Board.

Section 3: PERSONNEL APPOINTMENTS – The Director shall have authority to appoint employees without prior approval of the Library Board provided such appointments are submitted for approval at the next regular meeting of the Board and provided such appointments are in accordance with the Civil Service Law of the State of New York and any collective bargaining agreement covering such appointments.

Section 4: REPORTS – The Director shall prepare and submit to the Board at each regular meeting a report of matters concerning the Library and of the activities of the Library during the prior months and shall submit an annual report of the activities and work of the Library for the calendar year.

Section 5: BUDGET – The Director shall prepare a proposed annual budget for the operation of the Library for consideration by the Library Board. Upon approval by the Library Board, a budget shall be submitted to the Town Board for inclusion in the Town budget.

Article VII – General

Section 1: PUBLICITY – Notice of the regular meetings of the Board shall be publicly announced at least 5 days prior thereto. Such notice shall be given to newspapers circulating in the area. Special meetings shall be publicly announced as soon as possible.

Article VIII – Amendments

These By-laws may be amended at any meeting of the Board at which a quorum is present by the affirmative vote of a majority of all members of the Board, provided that written notice of the proposed amendment or amendments shall have been mailed to the usual address of each member of the Board 10 days prior to the meeting at which such action is proposed.

Adopted: January 9, 1989

Amended: March 6, 1989; May 1, 1989; April 5, 2010; June 4, 2012.

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