Reciprocity of Lending and Borrowing Privileges at the MGPL


MGL, Ch. 78. Sec. 19B 1&6 requires public libraries to meet minimum standards of service in order to obtain annual certification and state aid grants. The Merriam-Gilbert Public Library (MGPL) extends full library privileges to all residents from certified communities.

Conversely, Mass. State Law (605 CMR 4.01) permits public libraries to deny borrowing privileges to residents from decertified communities. Accordingly, residents from decertified communities are not granted borrowing privileges, either directly from the MGPL’s collection or through patron-placed holds.

This policy is based on the understanding that true reciprocity is possible only where each community provides adequate funding needed to maintain minimum service levels at their library. If one community fails to adequately support its library, the reciprocal relationship is invalidated as one community assumes the service burden for another.

However, “in house” utilization of the collection, Internet usage, program attendance, and fax/copy services are permitted at the MGPL. Full library privileges are reestablished immediately following a community’s recertification from the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners.

Approved: 04/17/2008
Revised: 01/21/2016