Collection Development Policy

To provide for an informed citizenry, Vail Public Library (Library) has a responsibility to include materials on all subjects of interest to its users, and include multiple sides of an issue.  Inclusion does not constitute endorsement on any particular viewpoint.  Any work will not be excluded from the Library’s collection because it represents a particular aspect of life, because of the frankness of expression, or because it is controversial.  Selection of materials is flexible and responsive to the changing needs and interests of the Library community.  The Library uses data, community feedback and its expertise to create the best collection of materials for the residents of the Library community.

The Library supports the individual’s’ right to access ideas and information representing all points of view. To this end, the Library welcomes and solicits patron suggestions, comments and ideas about the collection and its development.  The Library uses the American Library Association’s Library Bill of Rights, The Freedom to Read Statement and Freedom to View Statement.

Collection Development Objectives:

  • To provide materials that meet the community’s interests and needs in a timely manner.
  • To provide materials and programming to preschool and K – 12 children that encourage and promote continued learning and literacy.
  • To provide a broadly based and diverse collection that can support the roles of the Library in providing general information and current topics and titles.
  • To provide a balance of viewpoints on all titles and topics.
  • To purchase current materials proportionate to levels of demand and use.
  • To practice collection management using all data available for continuous collection management.
  • To keep abreast of technological changes which affect the development of the collection and addition of material to new formats.
  • To continue and expand resource sharing within the State of Colorado and promote availability of shared materials to Library users.
  • To maintain the presentation of the collection and the automated catalog.
  • To provide information electronically from a variety of reputable sources via the Library, including electronic subscription databases.

Authority for selection of materials is delegated by the Director of Library Services.

Patron use and circulation data are the most powerful influence on what the Library selects and retains. This data, combined with general collection criteria outlined below, guides selection and de-selection decisions.  The Library makes every effort in selection of materials to provide a balanced collection representing diverse viewpoints and interests.

Acquisitions are evaluated by the following criteria.  Items need not meet all of the criteria to be acceptable, nor will any single criterion be decisive.

  • Contemporary significance (positive review by staff/patrons or professional journals).
  • Popularity with patrons represented by requests, circulation statistics and/or observed use even if not enduring in value, interest or accuracy.
  • Publication date and currency
  • Appropriateness and effectiveness of the format (print/electronic/CD/DVD/download)for Library circulation
  • Within budget for materials
  • Insufficient materials available on the same subject
  • Literary and artistic merit
  • Local author, producer, illustrator or subject
  • Accuracy of content

The Library uses Standing Orders (SO) for select materials.  These are updated annually or every few years.  Materials included here are reference items, travel books, popular fiction authors, college guides, test review books and resume books.  Specialists for these areas review the SO list on a periodic basis.

New formats are considered for the collection when national and community trends, and evidence from local requests indicates a significant portion of the population has the necessary technology to make use of the format.

The Library encourages participation and remains open to suggestions for purchase.  The Library seeks to build a collection that accurately reflects the needs and interests of the community. The Library provides a venue for residents to suggest titles for purchase; all suggestions are reviewed using the criteria outlined above.

For items not purchased, patrons have the option to request them through the Library’s Interlibrary Loan service.

Excluded from the collection:

  • Scholarly and/or technical materials suitable for academic and specialty libraries.
  • Materials publicized exclusively through infomercials and personal websites.
  • Self-published materials that do not fit the Library’s collection or selection criteria.
  • Items promoted by the author that do not have a Marc record.

Collection Maintenance /Materials De-Selection

Systematic weeding of materials is required to keep the collection responsive to the patrons’ needs, to insure its vitality and usefulness to the community and to make room for newer material.  To determine retention or withdrawal, the Library uses the following criteria based on standard library weeding philosophy:

  • Circulation statistics
  • Current demand and frequency of use
  • Condition: worn, water-damaged, ripped, mildewed, defaced, etc.
  • Information: up to date, timely, accurate
  • Number of copies in the collection
  • Availability of item and/or information in other libraries or online

Withdrawn material in good condition may be put in the Book Nook and/or book sale, or offered to other libraries or non-profit agencies. Withdrawn material (including periodicals) will be removed from the collection according to an established retention schedule and recycled.

Material Donations and Memorials

Donations shall be added to the collection under the same selection criteria as purchased materials.  Donations are accepted subject to: 1) the Library retains unconditional ownership; and 2) the Library makes the final decision on acceptance, use or disposition.

Authors and publishers that contact the Library directly to promote their material for inclusion in the collection will be referred to the Director of Library Services.

When the Library receives a cash gift for the purchase of materials, whether as a Memorial or for any other purpose, the general nature of the subject area of the materials to be purchased will be based upon the wishes of the donor.  Selection of specific titles will be made by the staff in accordance with the needs and selection policy of the Library.

Local History and Rare Book Collection

The Library will preserve the institutional memory of the Library.  The Library’s local history includes print and digital access, rather than preservation.

Materials donated to and accepted by the Library must be acknowledged through a Donation form which will serve as their receipt. Those wishing to donate special, archival or historical material to the Library will be referred to the Director of Library Services.

The Library provides access to government documents for residents and community that contain information concerning upcoming projects such as highway construction, environmental impact studies, special community meetings, and those required by statute.  These types of materials will be held locally for the specified duration of the project and/or evaluation period.

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