Updated 12/21/22

The mission of the Orono Public Library brings people, ideas and knowledge together to inspire lifelong learning and strengthen community.

The policies of the Orono Public Library, adopted by the Orono Town Council and the Library Board of Trustees, are designed to provide an environment that will promote the accomplishment of this mission.


The Orono Public Library provides materials and resources for information, entertainment, intellectual development, and enrichment of the people of the community. The library endeavors to:

  1. Select, organize, and make available books, audio-visual materials and information in a wide variety of formats. 
  2. Provide guidance and assistance in the location, selection and use of library materials. 
  3. Inform, enrich, preserve, and promote community engagement, ranging from government issues to recreational activities. 
  4. Sponsor and implement programs designed to enhance the library experience, impart new knowledge and skills and engage in a variety of lifelong learning activities. 
  5. Secure information beyond its own resources when requested, using interlibrary loan and other resource sharing methods provided through the system and state. 
  6. Lend to other libraries upon request. 
  7. Develop and provide services to patrons with special needs. 
  8. Maintain a balance in its services to various age groups. 
  9. Improve early literacy and learning skills in order to prepare children ages 0-5 for school. 
  10. Provide access to technology, build technology-related skills and confidence, and make beneficial use of digital resources and services to meet patron needs. 
  11. Offer resources to improve the skills needed to find and apply for jobs and advance careers. 
  12. Cooperate with and enhance the educational experience, but not perform the functions of school or other institutional libraries. 
  13. Provide fun, engaging, and continuous reading opportunities throughout the summer in order to limit learning gaps for school-aged children. 
  14. Provide service during hours which enable use of the library by all members of the community. 
  15. Regularly review library services being offered. 
  16. Use media and other public relations tools to promote the full range of available library services. 
  17. Work with other governmental and community agencies to coordinate and enhance services.


The library proudly serves all residents of Orono. Positive identification and proof of an Orono address is required to obtain a free library card. Forms of acceptable ID include driver's license, Maine ID card, a piece of physical mail that has a canceled stamp, or an email with an attached legal contract listing a current address. Applications for children up through grade 6 must also list a parent or guardian's name. Students and staff of the Orono school system and nonresident employees of the town are eligible for a free card during the time that they are associated with the school or the town. Non-residents who are employed by an Orono business may obtain a library card for an annual fee of $10, other non-residents are welcome to obtain a library card for an annual fee of $30. The library also participates in the Maine Reciprocal Borrowing Program that allows anyone with a valid library card from a participating library to visit any of the other libraries and check out items in person.


Most of the library's physical collections circulate for three weeks. Items in the Maine Collection must be used inside the building. Most items may be renewed for up to two additional borrowing periods. If an item has been placed on hold by another patron, it may not be renewed. 

The library is a member of the Minerva shared library system that brings together nearly 70 libraries of all types from across the state. Items from other libraries can be requested by library staff or by individual card holders through the online catalog. The library participates in the statewide delivery service 5 days each week to assure timely access to materials. 

Lost or damaged items will be paid for by the patron at the library's current cost of replacement.


Library records are confidential. Maine Revised State Statutes, Title 4, section 121 states that, “A record maintained by any public library is confidential if the record contains: a) a library patron’s personally identifying information, including but not limited to the library patron’s name, address, phone number and email address; or b) information that identifies a library patron as having requested, obtained or used books or other materials in any medium at the library or provided by the library.”

The Orono Public Library strives to protect the privacy of library patrons. No confidential information on library patrons will be revealed to the authorities without presentation of a subpoena or search warrant.

When an individual signs up for a library card, information will not be shared with third parties, including name, address, telephone, and email address, except as required for circulation or library administration purposes.

Personal information on patrons will be discarded as soon as it is no longer needed. The Library keeps no permanent record of books or library materials that have been borrowed and returned. Patrons may opt in to borrowing history through the Minerva website. Information on Internet sites visited, electronic databases used, or searches performed by patrons is also not kept as a permanent record.

The U.S. Patriot Act allows federal authorities to apply for warrants to seize records of all types, including those from libraries. Library officials are prohibited from disclosing to any person that such records have been requested. The federal law supersedes local library policy and Maine state law. Therefore, if a valid request is received from federal authorities, the Orono Public Library must comply.

In our networked, electronic environment, security cannot be guaranteed. Because even the most secure networks have been vulnerable to unauthorized access, library computer users must presume that the files they create and messages they send might be read by others. The Library strongly recommends that computer users familiarize themselves with issues of privacy and security and take measures to protect their information.


The Orono Public Library staff:

  • will provide information in the form of short answers to specific questions and guidance in locating material for patrons who appear in person, call on the telephone, or request information through email or written correspondence. 
  • will assist patrons in the use of the Library and teach basic research skills, when appropriate. 
  • will provide bibliographic verification of items both in the Library and not owned by the Library and will assist patrons in obtaining materials through interlibrary loan, when appropriate. 
  • may refer library users to other agencies and libraries in pursuit of needed information. 
  • may use not only the Library's resources in printed form, but consult appropriate digital resources, and other agencies in pursuit of information. 
  • will take reference questions in the order received. However, if a question cannot be answered quickly, librarians may ask to call a patron back. 
  • will answer questions to the best of their ability but are not expected to conduct in-depth research or lengthy one-on-one training.


A "program" is a planned interaction between the library staff or invited presenters and the program participants for the purpose of promoting early literacy, library materials, facilities, or services, as well as offering the community an informational, entertaining, or cultural experience.

Programming includes such activities as story times, book clubs, and summer library programs for children, activities for young adults and book or author discussion groups for adults.


A photocopy machine is available to patrons who wish to copy materials at the rate of $.10 per black and white page and $1.00 per color page. Copy machine users are advised that there are restrictions on copyrighted materials. Any violation of copyright is the responsibility of the copy machine user. The photocopier can also be used to FAX documents at $.50 per page as well as scan and email at no cost.

Audio visual equipment owned by the Library is used primarily for library programs. Meeting room users must arrange for use of any of this equipment ahead of the time of their meeting and have a capable operator. Any breakage is the responsibility of the person or organization using the equipment.


The Orono Public Library provides computer resources, including wireless internet access, to implement its goal of providing information to people of all ages in the community to further the pursuit of educational, personal and recreational interests. In keeping with principles found in the Library Bill of Rights, Access to Electronic Information Services and Networks, and the Freedom to Read Statement, the Orono Public Library provides equal access to all.

Patrons using library computers, laptops or computer resources must use them in a responsible manner, respecting the rights of others and taking care of the equipment. Computer users are liable for any damage done to the equipment or software.

Patrons use the library’s computer resources at their own risk. Loss of a patron’s time, work or property shall not be the responsibility of the library for any reason. The library staff does not provide in-depth support for computer users and may not have time to assist patrons in setting up email accounts, troubleshooting issues, or conducting extensive searches.


The Orono Public Library provides computer resources, including wireless access to the Internet. In keeping with principles found in the Library Bill of Rights, Access to Digital Resources and Services, and the Freedom to Read Statement, the Orono Public Library provides equal access to all.

Use of the Library’s computers requires a valid patron barcode from a Library Card, or current ID card. Access to computers will be denied to any library patron who has an invalid, expired or blocked card.

Patrons using library computers or computer resources must use them in a responsible manner, respecting the rights of others and taking care of the equipment. Computer users are liable for any damage done to the equipment or software.

Patrons use the library’s computer resources at their own risk. Loss of a patron’s time, work or property shall not be the responsibility of the library for any reason. The library staff does not provide in-depth support for computer users and may not have time to assist patrons in setting up email accounts or extensive searches.

Chromebooks are available to patrons on a first-come, first-served basis and can be used within the library or checked out for one week. Library staff are available for assistance in using the Chromebook. However, staff members are not expected to train patrons in the use of application programs.

Patrons are not allowed to use any of the library’s computers or computer resources for fraudulent, unlawful or malicious purposes, including but not limited to:

  • Sending, receiving, printing or displaying any text or graphics that are legally defined by State of Maine law as “obscene” or “child pornography.” (For more information see  17 M.R.S. § 2911(dissemination of obscene matter to minors) and 17-A M.R.S. § 281 et seq. 
  • Transmission of unlawful material. 
  • Unauthorized access, disclosure, use or dissemination of personal identification information. 
  • Attempting to violate computer system security or software license agreements. 
  • Initiating spam: any kind of unwanted, unsolicited digital communication sent out in bulk. 
  • Unauthorized entry into any computer. 
  • Knowingly transmitting viruses, worms, or any other malicious programs or codes. 
  • Harassment of an individual, business entity or group of individuals. 
  • Violation of copyright laws. 
  • Changing computer settings or access.

All wireless users must read and comply with the Terms of Use. Use of library computers and computer hardware or software, including the wireless network, constitutes acknowledgement that you have read and will comply with this policy. Failure to comply with this policy may result in loss of privileges of computer use, wireless service, other library services, and/or prosecution. 

Internet stations in the Children's Room are provided primarily for the use of children up through grade 12. Adults are welcome to request the use of computers in these areas when school is in session. When school is not in session, this equipment is reserved for children and adults attending to the care of those children only.


The purpose of the Orono Public Library materials collection is to provide resources to assist individuals in their pursuit of educational objectives, intellectual and emotional growth, the enjoyment of leisure time and practical solutions to daily problems.

The library keeps the collection vital and useful by retaining or replacing essential materials, and by removing, on a systematic and continuous basis, those works that are worn, outdated, of little historical significance, or no longer in demand.  Materials that are removed from the library collection may or may not be made available for public purchase at book sales.

The Orono Public Library endeavors to build a collection representing varying points of view.  The choice of library materials by users is an individual matter.  Responsibility for the reading materials of children and adolescents rests with their parents or legal guardians.  While a person may reject materials for themselves and for their children, they cannot exercise censorship to restrict access to the materials by others.  The library supports intellectual freedom and has adopted the following statements as policy: ALA Freedom to Read Statement, ALA Library Bill of Rights, and the “Freedom to View” statement of the American Film and Video Association.

Requests for reconsideration may be made only by registered patrons, with the OPL‘s Reconsideration Request form.


The  Orono Public Library is grateful for gifts, and its collection has been enriched by donations of materials as well as by contributions.  Through donors, the library has been able to acquire materials which could not have been purchased otherwise, at the same time, the library has limited space and reserves the privilege of deciding whether or not items donated should be added to the collection.


Although such gifts are often welcomed and valued, final decision on their acceptance rests with the Library Director. 

All gifts are accepted with the understanding that the library may at some point sell or dispose of them.  The Library cannot commit itself to perpetually housing a donation.


The Library provides services to cardholders and welcomes guests from other cities, states and countries to utilize in-house resources or information available over the Internet. People of all ages are encouraged to use the library’s facilities for reference browsing, reading, study, and attending cultural programs. Service will not be denied or abridged because of religious, racial, social, economic, or political status; mental, emotional, or physical condition; age; or sexual orientation. However, the use of the library may be denied for due cause. Such causes may be destruction of library property, disturbance of other patrons, or illegal or disruptive conduct on library premises. Failure to pay for lost or damaged materials may result in the restriction of borrowing privileges, but will not result in denial of the use of the library building or in-house services.


It is a patron's responsibility to maintain the standards of behavior outlined in the "Rules for Use of the Library" (printed below) in order to protect their individual rights and the rights and privileges of other patrons. If a patron creates a public nuisance, that patron may be restricted from the Library and from the use of the library facilities. Those who are unwilling to leave or do not leave within a reasonable amount of time, after being instructed to do so by the staff, will be referred to law enforcement officials.


  • Disorderly conduct is prohibited. 
  • Smoking is not allowed in any area of the Library, the Orono Village Green, or within 20 feet of either. 
  • Alcoholic beverages are not allowed in any area of the Library; intoxicated persons will be advised to leave the premises. 
  • Food and non-alcoholic beverages are permitted in the Community Room and the staff area of the library. 
  • Damaging or defacing Library property is not permitted. Violators will be prosecuted under Maine law. 
  • Bicycles must be left outside the Library. Skates, skateboards, and other athletic equipment may not be used inside Library buildings. 
  • Respect others' right to use and enjoy the Library. Harassment or intimidation by threatening or offensive language, or behavior will not be allowed. 
  • Shoes and shirts must be worn in the Library. 
  • Solicitation is not permitted on Library grounds or within Library buildings. 
  • Parents are responsible for the supervision and behavior of their children. 
  • Cell phones may be used outside the library and should be set to silent while inside the library facility.


The Orono Public Library encourages visits by young children and it is the desire of library staff to make these important visits both memorable and enjoyable for the child. Responsibility for children using the library rests at all times with the parent or caregiver. Parents must use their discretion in determining when their children are sufficiently mature and responsible to use the library and library resources unaccompanied by an adult. Parents and caregivers should keep in mind that our library is a public building. An unattended child is any young person who is using the public library unaccompanied by a responsible adult. A vulnerable or at-risk child is any unattended child whose safety or well-being may be endangered or who is unable to care for themselves. Because children develop and mature at different rates, there is no particular age at which all children are ready to cope with the variety of circumstances they may face alone in the library. Library staff will use their judgment and discretion in determining whether or not an unattended child is vulnerable or at-risk.

All children using the library must know how to reach a parent or a responsible adult in case of an emergency. Parents and caregivers are asked to be familiar with the library's hours of operation and not to leave children at the Library before opening or after closing. The Library may also be closed due to an unexpected emergency (storms, power outages, staff issues, etc.). Parents are asked to discuss arrangements and contingency plans for emergency pick-up with their children.

Library staff shall not remain alone after hours with a child who is left in the building. Under no circumstances is staff allowed to give a child a ride home. Staff will call the Orono Police Department to escort children who have been left in the building after closing.


Individuals of all ages are encouraged to use the library for homework, recreational reading, computer use, program attendance and as a gathering place. It is anticipated that the noise level in the building may rise after school and at other especially busy times. However, a child (whether with parents or not), a teenager or an adult who is being continually disruptive will be given a warning that the behavior must cease so that others may use the library or the person will be asked to leave the library. If, after a second warning, the individual continues to be disruptive, he/she will be asked to leave the library. If a child, who has been asked to leave, needs to contact a parent, they may do so and then wait with a staff person until the parent arrives.


The Orono Public Library strives to create an environment that is safe and comfortable for all. 

Smoking is not allowed in any area of the library facility.  Smoking is only allowed outdoors, at least 20 feet from the library facility and the Orono Village Green.   (as per Town of Orono Ordinances Sec. 28-95 and Sec 26-30). 

Recognizing that some people are sensitive to fragrances, staff and patrons are asked to minimize the use of scented products when visiting the library.


The library does not have a system of paging individuals for telephone calls. If possible, staff will assist callers by letting people using the library know that they have a call. However, we will not make an exhaustive search of the building or call individuals back.

The use of cell phones is limited to the lobby or outside areas to avoid the disruption caused by multiple cell phone conversations. Cell phones should be set to silent when in the library facility.


Solicitations or the collection of signatures on petitions are not allowed on library premises.



The Orono Public Library has a meeting room with seating for 35 in an auditorium style arrangement.  The primary purpose of this meeting room is support for library functions, meetings, and programs.  The meeting room may also be made available for use to members of the public.  Organizations not affiliated with the Orono Public Library may use the meeting room only when all of the following conditions are met:

  1. The organization conducting the meeting is not doing so for the immediate or ultimate gain of a for-profit business or agency. 
  2. The meeting will not disrupt the ability of the library to conduct its business in a normal and orderly manner. 
  3. In the case that the meeting is held after library hours, one member of the organization will be responsible for the timely pick-up and delivery of the room key. 
  4. The organization assumes all responsibility for setting up the room and cleaning up the room as well as putting tables and chairs away. 
  5. No admission fee, registration fee, nor donations may be sought from meeting attendees. 
  6. No charge will be made by the library for the use of the meeting room. 
  7. The users abide by all regulations of the library relating to the use of facilities and accept responsibility for all damages caused to the building and/or equipment beyond normal wear.

The Library does not restrict the use of the meeting room on the basis of the views of groups sponsoring meetings or individual participants, in accordance with American Library Association standards. The Library does not endorse the views of groups or individual participants who use the meeting room. A group that has received permission to use the meeting room may publicize the location of its meeting but must state the sponsoring organization in all announcements.

Failure to adhere to the above rules will constitute cause for future refusal of permission for use of the meeting room.


Use of the Orono Village Green is primarily for library or Town use and is coordinated by library staff.  Private events are allowed but not reservable.  Use of the space is governed by the Town of Orono and ordinances related to Public Parks/Areas and Open Spaces (Chapter 26 - Article II).


The Library's Gallery, located in the Devoe Community Room, the display case located near the main circulation area and other exhibit areas are part of the Library's collection space.  The Library selects and exhibits artwork and other materials that are consistent with its mission.  As with the Library’s materials collections, the Library seeks to make available materials that represent a variety of media and techniques, that are of artistic or literary value, that match the interests of our patrons, fit attractively in the available space, have some relationship to Orono or surrounding areas, or to Maine, and that represent a variety of viewpoints.

The Orono Public Library does not discriminate based on doctrinal point of view expressed by an exhibit and hereby endorses the American Library Association Library Bill of Rights and the ALA interpretation of the Library Bill of Rights as related to library exhibit spaces and bulletin boards. 

As with any other part of the collection, the library welcomes requests and suggestions from patrons and others for materials to be displayed.  The library does not, however, guarantee that any particular request will be granted and reserves the right, in its discretion, to reject any exhibition.  Objections to the materials displayed, where a patron asks that the materials be removed or limited in some manner, are treated in the same manner as challenges to books and other materials.

The Library assumes no responsibility for the preservation or protection of, and no liability for possible damage or theft of, any item displayed or exhibited. All items placed in the Library are there at the owner's risk.


Bulletin board materials may be submitted for posting by nonprofit organizations for civic, educational, or cultural purposes or for educational services such as tutoring and music lessons.  Brochures and free magazines of public interest will be made available for a limited time. Examples of items that will not be accepted are: commercial advertising, personal ads and real estate sales or rental ads. The Director must approve all postings and shall not accept those that do not meet library policy. Library staff will place and remove postings according to their advertised dates. Items will remain on display for no longer than one month. Bulletin boards in the library entry way are reserved for Library or Town events only.



At the first indication of smoke or flame, staff will investigate the situation to determine whether there is a problem in the building. The Library is protected by smoke alarms, which notify the Fire Department automatically, while a loud alarm sounds throughout the building. If a problem that does not set off an alarm is identified, staff will call 911 immediately. Staff will evacuate the building in a calm and orderly manner. Library personnel will meet outside by the Senior Center parking lot to ensure that all have exited and report to the senior person on duty, who will act as the liaison with Fire and Police departments. The goal of the staff will be to turn the problem over to fire safety officials as efficiently and safely as possible.


Staff members should exercise caution when dealing with health emergencies of even a minor nature to ensure the safety of the injured individual and avoid potential liability of the staff member. Without specialized training it is not advisable for staff to undertake more than keeping the sick or injured patron comfortable and protected from needless disturbance until medical help can be obtained. 

911 should be called immediately in the event of any serious problem. 

No medication, including aspirin, should ever be dispensed to the public. However, first aid kits and band-aids may be provided to anyone who requests one.


If a bomb threat is received by telephone, staff will listen carefully and question the caller for as much information as possible. If another staff member can be alerted, he or she will call 911 to report it. Immediately after the caller hangs up, staff will call police and clear the building. Staff will follow any instructions given by police or fire personnel. Police or fire will handle the actual bomb search.


Library staff is expected to report to work as scheduled. If weather conditions make this impossible or dangerous, the individual is expected to report as close to their scheduled time as is reasonably safe. Arrangements to make up time lost must be made with the Director.  Employees may choose to use accrued time for regularly scheduled hours off. On rare occasions of extremely adverse weather conditions, if the Library cannot be made accessible, it will be closed. The Library will close when the Town Offices close or when travel is deemed dangerous by the Town Manager in consultation with the Public Works Director and the Chief of Police. Information about library closings will be posted on the library website and/or Facebook page as well as local television stations.



Individuals and groups are encouraged to volunteer their time and efforts in the service of the Orono Public Library. Volunteers are welcome in a number of capacities. Many wish to fulfill community service requirements for their school, or religious organization. Court ordered community service workers must apply to the Director and are placed according to the Director's discretion.

 All volunteers must fill out an application form and be interviewed. The needs of the library and the needs and skills of the applicant are reviewed in order to make a good match. A successful volunteer experience results in benefits for both the individual and the organization. 

In recognition of their efforts and for statistical purposes, volunteers are asked to document their hours at the library. Letters of recommendation will be written by the volunteer's supervisor upon request. The Library plans an annual recognition event to thank volunteers for their many efforts..


Friends of the Orono Public Library is a group of residents of Orono and surrounding communities who help the Orono Public Library carry out its community mission by providing financial and other kinds of support. They believe a town's library is a valuable community resource. By offering ongoing and special programs for all age levels and many interests, the Library functions as more than a warehouse for books; it serves as a vital center for the intellectual and cultural life of our town. The Friends are proud to help it carry out that role.

In the past Friends activities have included:

  • Annual Book sale
  • Ongoing Book sale
  • Program sponsorship
  • Annual meeting with speaker
  • Sale of book bags, cell phone wallets and raffle tickets
  • Refreshments and hands-on help for many programs
  • Fund raising
  • Newsletter


The Orono Public Library Foundation was established in 2002 to build a free-standing public library for the town of Orono and to provide for the library's ongoing support. The Foundation supports the Orono Public Library's mission: to serve as a community resource and to support the educational, cultural and informational needs of the people of Orono. The Foundation is committed to strengthening the Orono community and enhancing the quality of life for all Orono's citizens.


The Board of Trustees is made up of Orono residents appointed by the Town Council. The six regular members of the board are appointed for three-year terms and the youth member is appointed for one year. Two associate members are appointed for two-year terms and the youth associate is appointed for one year. Apply here to be a member of the Orono Public Library Board of Trustees.

Board members work with the Library Director and staff on issues relevant to the Library, reflect the views of the community on those issues, manage donations given to the Library, and provide advice on the Library's operation, budget, and policies.

Meetings usually take place once a month (except for summer months) and are open to all Orono residents. Meeting dates are posted to the Library website calendar or can be obtained from the library staff (207-866-5060).

The Trustees will:

  • Aid the librarians in promoting the efficiency of the library in its service to the community.
  • Maintain a permanent record of all memorial gifts to the library.
  • Manage the Endowment Fund, except where otherwise stipulated by a donor, so that interest from the Endowment Fund is used to support current programs, and maintain the Endowment Fund.
  • Support the professionalism of the library operations and staff by seeking to maintain the State Minimum Standards for Public Library Service in Maine as adopted by the Maine Library Association and upholding the Library Bill of Rights.

For current board and committee members, visit this page.