Library Use Guidelines

Please note: Masks are required to be worn over the nose and mouth at all times in the library, per the Board of Health. 

It is the mission of the Westborough Public Library to create a welcoming, inclusive environment for all members of our community who use our facilities and library services.  In order to ensure that our library is equitable and open to all, to protect the rights and safety of library patrons and staff, and to preserve and protect library materials, equipment, facilities, and grounds, it is important that library users be considerate of the rights of others and use the library in a safe and non-threatening manner.

For the comfort and safety of patrons and staff, and the protection of library property, the following actions are examples of conduct not allowed on library property. The following is not an all-inclusive list.

  • Carrying firearms and dangerous weapons of any type (except by law enforcement officers).
  • Smoking, vaping, or the use of tobacco or marijuana products*, being intoxicated or under the influence of illegal drugs, selling, using, or possessing illegal drugs; or selling alcohol, cigarettes, or marijuana.
  • Bringing animals (except service animals or animals used for library programs) into the library.
  • Playing audio equipment loud enough for others to hear it.
  • Leaving children 11 years or younger unattended in the library.
  • Blocking of public entrances or interfering with people entering or exiting the building.
  • Damaging or defacing library materials or property. Those who damage or deface library materials or property will be prosecuted (MGL Ch.266, Sec. 100).  Parents may be liable for damage done by a child under the age of eighteen (MGL Ch.231, Sec.85).
  • Abusing library computer equipment. The abuse of library computer equipment violates the law (MGL Ch. 226, Sec.100) and such actions will be prosecuted.  Abuse of equipment includes banging on the keyboard or other use of excessive force, misappropriation of hardware or software, and attempts to alter the software.
  • Creating a disturbance by making excessive noise, talking loudly, or engaging in other disruptive conduct. (MGL Ch. 272, Sec.41).
  • Eating in the computer area or the Westborough Center. Beverages in containers with lids are allowed throughout the library, except in the Westborough Center
  • Sitting on tables and heating units, placing feet on furniture, or lying on floors.
  • Entering the library without shoes or appropriate attire.
  • Misusing the restrooms (e.g. using them as a laundry or washing facility).
  • Skateboarding, rollerblading, or recreational scootering on library property. However, patrons may bring these items inside while they are using the library.
  • Sleeping in the library.
  • Soliciting or canvassing of any kind inside the building or outside on library grounds.
  • Smoking, vaping, or the use of tobacco or marijuana products in the library or on the library’s property.
  • Entering employee areas without permission.
  • Theft of library materials, use of false identification to obtain a library card, or use of another person’s library card without his/her permission (MGL Ch.266, 99a).
  • Threatening the safety or rights of another person including, but not limited to violent or disorderly behavior, threats of violence, abusive language, and possession of weapons. 
  • Harassing (sexually, verbally, physically), intimidating, or threatening other patrons, staff, or volunteers. This includes but is not limited to behavior such as stalking, unwelcome leering or staring, lurking with the intent to disrupt or intimidate, offensive touching, obscene acts, and indecent exposure. 
  • Interfering or attempting to interfere with another’s right to use the library or with the library staff’s ability to perform duties. This includes but is not limited to swearing, vulgar language, or gestures.
  • Hateful conduct, including but not limited to, posting flyers with symbols identified with a group or movement targeting persons because of their race, religion, ethnicity, gender or gender identity; positioning toys or materials into hate symbols or threatening acts; or leaving pamphlets that promote hate groups and hate speech within the environs of library property.
  • Distributing, in any manner, unauthorized private or non-library materials or documents.
  • Taking photographs, audio recordings, or videos of library users without their permission.

Patrons shall follow all Westborough Public Library policies and guidelines or abide by any reasonable request from staff to refrain from disorderly or disruptive behavior. Violations of policies or guidelines may result in removal from the facility and/or suspension of library privileges. Illegal activity shall result in expulsion from all library facilities, suspension of library privileges, and whereby federal, state or local laws apply, may result in arrest.

*Note: under Massachusetts General Law, you can’t consume marijuana of any kind in any public place. Violations can carry a civil penalty of up to $100.

Rev. 02/2020

Safe Child Policy
  • The Westborough Public Library provides current, high-demand, high-interest materials in a variety of formats for persons of all ages.  The Library encourages children of all ages to visit with their parents to take advantage of the resources available for them to meet their informational, recreational and educational needs.  The library has an obligation to provide for the general welfare of all persons using the library and also to prevent undue disruption of normal library activities.
  • It is the responsibility of parents to ensure the appropriate behavior of their children in the library, and library staff are not responsible for the supervision of children left unattended by their parents.  Disruptive children will be required to leave after receiving one warning. 
  • Children age 11 years or younger shall, at all times, be attended and adequately supervised by a responsible person, an adult or mature adolescent, and not library personnel. The supervising person should remain within view of the program during programming for children ages 5 and under, and in the library for programs for children ages 6-11.
  • Children age 12 years and older may use the library unattended, subject to library rules and regulations.
  • The Westborough Public Library assumes no responsibility for children of any age left unattended at the library.  Parents assume all liability for damage done by their children to the library facility, equipment and materials.


  • Unattended child during business hours: an unattended child found frightened or crying in the building should be reassured by the staff, and brought to the children’s librarian or person in charge.  Staff should try to identify and contact the parent or attending adult.
  • If the parent is in the building, staff should accompany the child through the library to seek the adult.  Upon locating the attending adult, staff should reunite the child with the adult and explain the library policy regarding unattended children.
  • If the child is alone in the library, with the child’s help, staff should obtain the parent’s name and phone number, and call the parent to inform him/her of the library’s policy and request the child be picked up.  If library staff cannot reach the parents within an hour, or if the parent does not respond within that same hour, the librarian shall call the police and ask that they assume responsibility for the child. 
  • If the library is forced to close (e.g., due to inclement weather or loss of power), unattended minors will be asked to call a parent or guardian to pick them up immediately.  The librarian in charge, along with another staff member, will stay until a parent or guardian retrieves the minor.
  • Unattended children after business hours: if a child is alone at the library at closing and appears to be vulnerable, library staff will attempt to call a parent.  If staff cannot reach a parent on the first attempt, the person in charge will call the police to assume responsibility for the child.  Two staff members will remain with the child inside the library entrance until a parent or police arrive.  Library policy will be explained and a copy of the written policy will be given to the parent.

Except in cases of immediate danger to the child, under no circumstances will library staff transport or take a child away from the library building.                                                                        

Use of the Children’s Department

In an effort to provide a safe and comfortable children’s area, the Children’s Department and the services provided are reserved for children, their supervising adults, and those who are utilizing the collection.  Adults not accompanied by a child, who are not utilizing the collection, will be asked to move to the Adult/Circulation or Reference Departments.

Adults not accompanied by a child may visit the Children’s Department to retrieve materials but may not remain in that area and must return to settle in the Adult areas of the library.

Adults unaccompanied by a child are not permitted to participate in children’s activities such as crafts, book talks, or any other program designated for children.

Use of Children’s Department Computers by Adults

Adults accompanied by children may access Children’s Department computers provided that no child is waiting, the adult is able to provide adequate supervision for his/her charge(s), and they follow the library’s Acceptable Use Policy for library computers.

Adults who are not accompanied by a child shall not use Children’s Department computers, with the exception of accessing the online library catalog to locate materials in the department. Adults doing otherwise shall be asked to leave the department and use computers in the Reference Department. Exceptions may be made to this policy with the approval of the Children’s Librarian or librarian-in-charge at the time.

 Rev. 12/2018

Meeting Room Use Policy

Please note: Masks are required to be worn over the nose and mouth at all times in the library, per the Board of Health. 

Meeting spaces at the Westborough Public Library are available to civic, cultural, charitable, and educational groups and organizations that have a substantial connection to the Westborough community and are engaged in activities consistent with the library’s mission. The meeting rooms are not available to businesses or to private organizations. 

The rooms are not to be used for social, partisan religious, partisan political purposes, or for the benefit of commercial enterprises or individual use; you may not solicit for a particular business or cause, or gather personal information from attendees.

Questions of interpretation will be referred to the Library Director. Final determination rests with the Board of Trustees. Permission to meet at the library does not in any way constitute or imply endorsement of the users’ policies, beliefs, or programs by the library staff or Board of Trustees.

Regulations for Use
  • The applicant is expected to adhere to the stated purpose of the meeting.
  • Meetings must be free and open to the public. Attendance is limited to no more than 40.
  • Patrons, groups, or organizations may have 2 bookings of meeting space per month and book up to 2 months in advance.
  • Failure to cancel a reservation (min. 24 hour notice) will result in suspension of meeting space reservation privileges.
  • Patrons must check in at the main floor Circulation Desk before using any reserved meeting space.
  • No admission fees can be charged. No collections or donations can be solicited. No items can be sold.
  • Meeting spaces may be booked for up to 4 hours maximum.
  • Coffee and light refreshments may be provided. No smoking or alcoholic beverages allowed.
  • The space must be left in a clean and orderly condition, as determined by library personnel. If it is not, a cleaning charge of $50 per hour will be billed to the applicant.
  • Each group is responsible for setting up the room. The library staff will assist if time and staffing allow. Wall hangings may not be removed or disturbed.
  • Library staff shall have the right to cancel, reschedule, or transfer meeting room locations or dates that conflict with library sponsored programs and/or special events. In such cases, the library will make its best effort to give advance notice.
  • Programs may not disrupt the use of the library by others. Persons attending the meeting are subject to all library rules and regulations.
  • Meeting times must be scheduled during normal library hours and end fifteen minutes before library closing. Special permission to meet beyond closing hours may be granted to town boards and committees by the Board of Trustees. However, all exits will be locked at normal closing times. All town Board and Committee meetings shall end by 10:00 pm.
  • Any handouts or distributed or exhibit materials are subject to inspection by the Library Director or Board of Trustees, and any press releases, advertisements, or announcements must be cleared with the Library Director (excluding official postings by Town Boards and Committees) prior to distribution or publication.  
  • Walk-in use of library space is arranged at Main Circulation or with the Reference Librarian; and is first-come, first-served. All participants must adhere to stated library policies.
Quiet Study Area Policy

The Westborough Public Library provides a Quiet Study Area on the third floor so that patrons may work individually or in groups of two without excessive distractions. Each side of the designated space shall have no more than two people at a given time. Cell phones shall be silenced, and those using the space shall use headphones for any audio from a computer or other device.

The Quiet Study Area is available on a walk-in basis only, first come, first served. The room is open during regular library hours but is closed for staff projects from 12PM-2PM each day.  The space closes fifteen minutes prior to closing.

Patrons wishing to use this area must check-in at the main floor Circulation Desk.

As the staff conduct work during the day, and there are meetings scheduled periodically, those using the Quiet Study Area must anticipate a certain level of noise and activity at any given time.  Those using the Quiet Study Area shall never ask a group or staff member to quiet their activity.

The library reserves the right to close the space or impose time limits, at the library staff’s sole and absolute discretion.

Tutoring Policy

Please note: Masks are required to be worn over the nose and mouth at all times in the library, per the Board of Health. 

The Westborough Public Library welcomes tutors and students. The library recognizes the benefit to the students and parents of the community of permitting tutoring within the library, however, the library must manage its limited space and resources in a way that best serves the needs of all users.

The Westborough Public Library does not sponsor, recommend, or assume liability or responsibility for the work and/or activities of tutors who use library space. All arrangements must be made between the tutor, student, and parents.

The following procedures are intended to provide a balance between the use of the library by tutors and their students, and the use of the library by other members of the community.

The Meeting Room (lower level/near Children’s Department) is available for multiple tutors and their students, Monday-Friday from 2:30-5:30 p.m. unless a library program requires use of the space. All meeting room policies are applicable.

ONLY if the meeting room is over capacity or otherwise occupied, are tutors permitted to use designated tutor tables in the Children’s Department (for tutoring students under 12) or on the main floor (for students over 12 years, including adults).

No tutoring is allowed in the Teen Zone or (front) Reading Room.

Tutors and students must be conscious of and not be disruptive to other library patrons.

Parents must adhere to the Library’s Safe Child Policy (by remaining in the library building during tutor sessions for children 12 and under).

The library reserves the right to restrict or ban tutoring at any time without prior notice if space resources are monopolized or if such activities interfere with the use of the library by others.

Revised 02/2019

Item Loan Guidelines

Adult & Children’s DVDs, CDs, and Magazines
2 Week Loan
2 Renewals

Adult, Teen & Children’s Special Collections
2 Week Loan
No Renewals

Special Collections Include: ● Breakout Books ● Board Games & Puzzles ● VOX Books ● Playaway Launchpads ● Teen Summer Reading ● Library of Things Items ○ Including Hotspots Adult, Teen & Children’

Books (Print & Audio)
4 Week Loan 2 Renewals

General Collection

General Collection pertains to all items not mentioned in the Special Collections above.   

For the quickest circulation experience, please bring your C/W MARS library card with you.  Library material may alternatively be checked out with a valid ID and/or confirmation of multiple account details, but we encourage you to bring your card. 

Hold items may be picked up by any member of a household with a valid library account (unless otherwise noted on patron account).   

The fee for a library card replacement is $1.00 or one non-perishable food item to be donated to a local charity.   

BORROWING LIMITS   There will be no limit on the format of items checked out aside from the 50 item limit imposed by the CWMARS network with the few exceptions being listed below.  

Item Limit Exceptions:  

● Breakout Books 1 per card ● Library of Things Items 1 per card ○ Hotspots 1 per household ● Other ○ The Library reserves the right to add a limit to a special collection or format as needed.  Items with a special limit will be clearly marked. 

– Revised 01/15/19  

Equipment Loan Policy


The Westborough Public Library has equipment available for loan to patrons. Anyone checking out equipment shall only use their own personal library card. Under no circumstances may equipment be checked out using another person’s card.

  • Laptops and Chromebooks are available for patron use inside the library.  Laptops are equipped with Microsoft Office and wi-fi capability. Chromebooks run on the Google Chrome operating system, and have wi-fi capability.
  • Mobile wi-fi hotspots may be checked out, so that users can connect devices (laptops, tablets, etc.) to the internet.
  • Telescopes may be checked out and used offsite.
  • Geocaching kits may be checked out and used offsite.


Laptops: The borrower must present a Westborough Public Library card in good standing (fines no greater than $10.00) and a driver’s license or valid photo ID. The library card and identification piece or license will be held at the Circulation Desk until the laptop is returned. The borrower must be 18 or older.

Chromebooks: Teens (grade 6 and higher) may check out a Chromebook with a Westborough Public Library card.

Hotspots: Borrowers must be Westborough residents 18 or older with a Westborough Public Library card in good standing.

Telescopes: Borrowers must be Westborough residents 18 or older with a Westborough Public Library card in good standing.

Geocaching kits: Borrowers must be Westborough residents 18 or older with a Westborough Public Library card in good standing.

Loan Period/Availability

Laptops and Chromebooks may be checked out for 2 hours, and must not be removed from the building. No renewals.
Laptop and Chromebook lending will end one hour before the Library closes. The devices must be returned 30 minutes before closing.
Laptops and Chromebooks are available on a first-come, first-served basis for one session per day. Borrowers may only check out one device per day.

The telescope and geocaching kit may be checked out for 2 weeks and are available on a first-come, first-served basis. No renewals.

Hotspots may be reserved in advance on the library website, and may be checked out for 2 weeks. There are no renewals, and patrons must wait 48 hours before checking out another hotspot, in order to give others an opportunity to use one.


No additional software may be downloaded or installed on laptops or Chromebooks, and software already installed must not be duplicated or removed. Users wishing to save files they have created must back them up to USB drives or personal internet based accounts. All created files will be wiped clean after a session ends by software that is in use on the device, and will not be able to be recovered.

Equipment loaned by the library may not be used to engage in illegal activities or to disturb others. Borrowers who wish to view videos or listen to audio must supply and use their own headphones.

Only one piece of equipment (hotspot, telescope, geocaching kit) may be checked out per cardholder at any time.

Fines and Liability

The library’s Policy for Public Access to Computers and Internet applies to laptop and Chromebook use. Users must read and agree to the policy before internet access is allowed.
Devices must not be left unattended or be taken to library restrooms. The borrower is responsible for all costs (*see fines/fees listed below) associated with damage or loss or theft of equipment and any peripherals during the period it is checked out. The library does not accept replacement hardware, software, equipment or peripherals in lieu of payment.

Device borrowing privileges shall be suspended if the patron fails to return any device by the time it is due. For the first offense, device borrowing privileges shall be suspended for six months; for the second offense, device borrowing privileges shall be suspended for one year, and for the third offense, device borrowing privileges shall be suspended permanently.
Laptop/Chromebook returns: The borrower must return the device, mouse, and cord to the Circulation Desk at the end of the checkout period. Laptops or Chromebooks removed from the library or not returned by library closing time will be considered stolen, and the Westborough Police Department will be notified immediately.

Hotspots may not be returned in the book drop; they MUST be returned at the main floor Circulation Desk. Any hotspot that is not returned on its due date will be deactivated and will no longer work.

Telescopes must be returned to the main floor Circulation Desk. They may not be stored outdoors while on loan, and must be used in a clean, dry, dust-free place safe from rapid temperature changes and humidity. Dust caps must be placed on the front of the telescope and on the focuser when not in use.

Geocaching kits must be returned to the main floor Circulation Desk.

Patrons must not loan equipment to others.


The library is not responsible for damage to any removable drive (i.e. flash drive), or lost or corrupted files, for any reason.

The library is not responsible for any computer viruses that may be transferred to user storage devices. Tampering with library equipment or attempting to access or modify the operating system or any other software or programming, including bypassing security functions, is prohibited.

The library cannot guarantee that hotspots will work in every location. The devices run from cellular signals, which may be weak or intermittent in some locations.

The library is not responsible for accidents or injuries caused by use of equipment borrowed by patrons. (Do not ever look at the sun through the telescope, permanent eye damage may result. Be aware of your surroundings at all times when using Geocaching Kits.)

Fines or fees will be charged for damage or replacement.


Each hour/fraction thereof that laptop is overdue (no grace period or maximum fine)$10.00
Lost or damaged power cordReplacement Cost + $25.00 Processing Fee
Damaged laptopRepair Cost (Up to Total Replacement Cost) + $25.00 Processing Fee
Lost or stolen laptop (if stolen, borrower must submit a copy of the police report to the library)Replacement Cost + $25.00 Processing Fee
Battery missing or damagedReplacement Cost
Each day/fraction thereof that hotspot or telescope is overdue$10.00
Lost, damaged, or stolen hotspotReplacement Cost + $25.00 Processing Fee
Lost, damaged, or stolen telescopeReplacement Cost of $350 + $25.00 Processing Fee
Lost, damaged, or stolen geocaching kit (excluding book)Replacement Cost + $25.00 Processing Fee
Lost or Damaged Materials Fees

The Westborough Public Library does not accept replacement items from patrons when an item is lost or damaged.

Fees are as follows:

ItemReplacement Fee
Book – LostReplacement cost (list price for book) + $5.00 processing fee
Book – DamagedReplacement cost + $5.00 processing fee
Book – Missing parts (CDs, DVDs, CD-ROMs)Replacement cost of book and non-print material + $5.00 processing fee
Book – Damaged parts (CDs, DVDs, CD-ROMs)Replacement cost of book and non-print material + $5.00 processing fee
Book on CD – LostReplacement cost + $5.00 processing fee
Book on CD – Missing CD$12.00 for missing disc if it can be replaced, otherwise full cost of the item. Additional $5.00 processing fee in either case.
Book on CD – Damaged CD$12.00 for damaged disc if it can be replaced, otherwise full cost of the item. Additional $5.00 processing fee in either case.
Book on CD – Packaging damaged or missing$20.00 + $5.00 processing fee
DVD – DamagedDVD replacement cost + $5.00 processing fee
DVD – LostDVD replacement cost + $5.00 processing fee
DVD – Missing packagingDVD replacement cost + $5.00 processing fee
DVD – Damaged packagingDVD replacement cost + $5.00 processing fee
Music CD – MissingReplacement cost + $5.00 processing
Music CD – DamagedReplacement cost + $5.00 processing
Music CD – Packaging damaged or missingReplacement cost + $5.00 processing
Reproduction Policy for Historical Materials

Library users may make copies of, or request the Westborough Public Library (the “Library”) to reproduce, historical images and/or material under the following policy.

Anyone who copies or reproduces materials from the Library collection should be aware of Title 17 and especially the provisions of Section 108 of the U.S. Code (Copyright Law) and takes full responsibility for complying with it. A librarian can help point users to resources that can aid in determining a work’s copyright status. The responsibility for identifying and satisfying any claimants of copyright must be assumed by those wishing to reproduce the images or materials for publication in any form.

Library users may bring their own scanners or photographic equipment (including phone cameras) into the Westborough Room to make copies of images or materials. In some cases, materials may already be available in digital form through the Library website or digital repository, and a librarian can help users determine if they are.

Library users may photocopy materials from the Westborough Room, but must ask the permission of a librarian to remove any item from the Room in order to do so.

All requests for the Westborough Public Library to reproduce historical images and/or materials must be made by filling out the Reproduction Request Form for Historical Materials.  Forms are available from the Westborough Room of the Library or can be printed out online. Reproduction may take up to two weeks to complete after the form is received.

Library staff will scan the best quality image when making reproductions, but the final product is dependent upon the condition of the original. The Library staff does not edit or touch up images. 

The Library reserves the right to prohibit the photocopying or reproduction of historical images or materials if doing so will harm the original in any way.

The Library may refuse a request to reproduce images or materials, or may prohibit the copying of materials by library users, if doing so puts an undue burden on library staff or other library users in any way. 

The Library requests that a credit line that reads, “Courtesy of the Westborough Public Library, Westborough, Massachusetts” accompany images used in any publication, exhibition, or other public display, along with a link to the home page of the Westborough Public Library in the case of electronic publications.

The person requesting the reproduction agrees to hold the Westborough Public Library harmless from any and all claims and expenses arising from the use of the reproduction or copy.

Local History and Genealogy Collection Development Policy

About the Collection

The Westborough Public Library collects, organizes, preserves, and provides access to sources that document the history of Westborough and its inhabitants, government, environment, businesses, institutions, and organizations. The aim of this collection is to provide resources for town residents and researchers to explore the personal, historical, and cultural heritage of Westborough and its environs in meaningful and creative ways.

Collection Topics

The emphasis of the Local History and Genealogy Collection is on documenting Westborough’s government, settlement, industry, commerce, education, recreation, and historically significant individuals, as well as the history of its civic, religious, cultural, and social organizations. The collection supports activities related to historical and genealogical research, exhibits, community outreach, organizational events, and publications, among others. Genealogical materials help researchers trace their family backgrounds and/or aid in researching the history of individual town residents are also collected.

Primary Areas of Collecting

Primary areas of collecting include, but are not necessarily limited to, the following:

  • Materials that record the history, development, and the current state of affairs of the Town of Westborough. Images of Westborough sites and individual residents are an important part of this collection.
  • Personal manuscripts and other materials that record the history, experiences, and ancestry of Westborough individuals and families.
  • Records that chronicle the history of Westborough organizations and institutions.
  • Materials that record the social and cultural heritage of past and present ethnic, immigrant, and religious groups in the community.
  • Materials that contribute to a better understanding of the area’s geography, demographics, and architecture.
  • Materials that record and provide context for understanding the lives of historically significant figures associated with the Town of Westborough.
  • Materials that provide instruction in the practice of genealogy, local history, preservation, oral history, and similar topics.

Acquisitions from any time period and in any language may be considered. The geographic scope of the collection focuses specifically on Westborough and its environs.

Current strengths of the collection include the history of settlement and early families of Westborough, historical photographs, genealogies of multi-generational Westborough families, maps of Westborough and surrounding areas, historical Westborough newspapers, records that document the military service of Westborough residents, the history of select churches, and information about historically significant Westborough residents, including the Rev. Ebenezer Parkman and Eli Whitney.

The collection is currently weak in documenting the history, culture, and lives of Westborough’s immigrant and ethnic groups, the development of commerce and agriculture in town, and the activities of town organizations and institutions. Donations to the collection that focus on these subject areas are especially welcome.

Preferred Formats

Formats collected include, but are not necessarily limited to, the following:

  • Atlases
  • Audio recordings
  • Biographical dictionaries
  • Books
  • Broadsides
  • Brochures
  • Census records
  • City & county histories
  • Digital files
  • Ephemera
  • Government documents
  • Institutional or organizational records
  • Manuscripts
  • Maps
  • Newspapers
  • Organizational directories
  • Pamphlets
  • Periodicals & journals
  • Personal letters, memoirs, diaries, account books, & financial records
  • Photographs
  • Scrapbooks
  • Serials
  • Town directories
  • Video recordings

Three dimensional artifacts will not be added to the collection unless, in rare instances, they are deemed appropriate to the collection and can be properly housed and displayed. In most cases, the Westborough Historical Society or the Westborough Historical Commission will be a more appropriate destination for such items.

Selection Criteria

  • Relevance to the local history
  • Available space to house the materials
  • Non-duplication of material within the collection
  • Authenticity & completeness of record
  • Quality of the physical form of material
  • Ease of use for patrons
  • Available space to house the materials
  • Ability to store, display, or otherwise care for the item properly
  • Cost to preserve, store, and process
  • Security requirements to store and/or display
  • Lack of restrictions by donor

Donations / Deed of Gift

The Library welcomes donations to its Local History and Genealogy Collection. Each donation to the collection will be recorded in a donor file that will contain a copy of the Deed of Gift and all correspondence and memoranda relating to the transaction.

All donors must complete a Deed of Gift Form in order to establish the transfer of ownership of donated materials (and copyright, if appropriate) to the Library. The transfer to the Library of the copyright owned by donors in individual items makes it easier for the Library and its users to use the items in unique and creative ways. Once the Deed of Gift is signed by the donor, the donated material becomes the unrestricted property of the Library.

The Library reserves the right to refuse an offered donation. The Library will not accept material that shows damage from mold, mildew, water, insects, smoke, or dirt, as such material can harm other items in the collection. The Library may also refuse a donation based on the Selection Criteria.

The Library reserves the right to decide how the donated material will be displayed or stored, how the material may be used by the public, and how long the material will be retained.

Donated materials may be scanned and placed on the Internet for viewing or otherwise reformatted. They may also be moved from the Local History and Genealogy Collection to other sections of the library, sold, transferred to another library, or discarded.

The Library will not, and cannot, conduct any monetary appraisals for donors nor give tax advice. If donors plan to take a tax deduction for their donations, they should consult a tax accountant or attorney. Any monetary appraisals are the responsibility of the donor and should be conducted before transferring materials to the Library.


The Local History and Genealogy Collection is mainly housed in the Westborough Room, which is open for public use during normal Library hours. Every effort is made to make the collection as accessible to the public as possible, but due to the nature of this collection, materials are non-circulating and must be used inside the Westborough Room. Users of the collection must consult with a librarian before removing items from the Westborough Room for any reason.  Irreplaceable, fragile, or valuable materials may be locked away in order to ensure their long-term future use, but these materials can easily be accessed in some cases online or through the help of a librarian.

Policies regarding photocopying and the reproduction of items are spelled out in the Reproduction Policy for Historical Materials. Anyone who copies or reproduces materials from the collection should be aware of Title 17 and especially the provisions of Section 108 of the U.S. Code (Copyright Law) and takes full responsibility for complying with it. A librarian can help point users to resources that can aid in determining a work’s copyright status. Library staff may refuse to allow the photocopying or reproduction of fragile material.

Reappraisal & Deaccession

From time to time, the Local History and Genealogy Collection will be reappraised, and the deaccession of some materials may take place. The Library will offer the deaccessioned materials to other institutions if appropriate, sell the items, or discard them.

Public Access to Computers and Internet

The Westborough Public Library in its role as a community information resource provides public access to the Internet. The library does not control and does not monitor any information accessed through the internet for either accuracy or content. The individual user is the ultimate judge of the value of accessed information. In the case of minors, responsibility rests with their parents or legal guardians.

Acceptable Use

Access to and use of the library’s computers and internet connections is a privilege and should be treated as such by all users of the system. The Westborough Public Library’s electronic information resources are to be used in a responsible manner consistent with the educational and informational purposes for which they are provided. The following purposeful, illegal and/or criminal activities constitute unacceptable use:

  • Attempting to gain unauthorized access to the resources of the library’s computers
  • Disrupting the intended use of library computers
  • Wasting resources (staff time, equipment capacity, supplies) through such actions
  • Destroying the integrity of information on library computers
  • Compromising the privacy of users
  • Deliberately displaying obscene images (a violation of Massachusetts General Law)
  • Engaging in communications which are libelous or slanderous
  • Committing fraud
  • Violating copyright law or software licenses
  • Developing or using computer programs which infiltrate, or attempt to infiltrate, a computer or computer system, and/or damage or alter the software components, of a local or remote computer or computer system


All public computers are available for 2-hour sessions with unlimited logins as long as no one is waiting.  *due to COVID-19 computer use time is limited. Please adhere to time limit set by computer session*

Wireless Access

Wi-fi access is available to the public at the Westborough Public Library. We provide open, unsecured access to anyone with a wireless-enabled device. The library makes no guarantees as to the compatibility of the user’s equipment with our network. The library is not responsible for any personal information that is compromised, or for any damage caused to a user’s hardware or software due to security issues or consequences caused by viruses or hacking. Users should not transmit personal information, including but not limited to, banking information, over any unsecured network. Use of the Westborough Public Library’s wireless internet access is governed by the library’s Acceptable Use Internet Policy.

Filtering or Blocking Software

The Westborough Public Library subscribes to the position adopted by the American Library Association that the use of filtering software on library internet workstations blocks constitutionally-protected speech and is inconsistent with the United States Constitution and federal law.


Anyone discovered attempting to damage the library’s equipment or software, attempting to change files or reset configurations, or otherwise violating this policy will immediately lose the right to use those resources. Illegal acts involving library computing resources may also be subject to prosecution by local, state or federal authorities. Users are responsible for any damage to hardware, software or furniture.


Printing is available from public workstations and patrons’ wireless devices. Printing fees are posted at the printer.


While walk-ins are welcomed on both short-term and long-term Internet workstations, patrons may reserve up to one hour of computer time on the long-term Internet computer only, either in person or by phone. These reservations may be made for same day use only. Users arriving more that five minutes late for their reserved time may forfeit their reservation.

Shut Down

To facilitate closing procedures, software will shut down workstations fifteen minutes before the library closes.

User Limits

Users may be accompanied by only one other person at the workstation.


Internet users are cautioned to examine carefully the validity and accuracy of any information obtained over the Internet as well as the validity of its source.

Access by Minors

Parents or guardians must assume responsibility for deciding which library resources are appropriate for their own children. Parents/guardians must provide guidance to their own children for the safe usage of email, social media, and other forms of direct electronic communication. It is the responsibility of the parent/guardian to ensure that their child does not access sites that may be inappropriate or potentially harmful to the child.

The following safety guidelines will be posted at computers in the Children’s Room:

  • Never give out information about yourself, such as home address, school name, or telephone number, to anyone without permission from your parents or guardians
  • Never arrange a face-to-face meeting with someone via the computer without your parents’ or guardians’ approval
  • Never respond to messages that are suggestive, obscene, threatening, or make you uncomfortable. Show any messages like this to a parent, guardian, teacher or other adult
  • Never post messages or send emails that are suggestive, obscene, threatening, or would make someone else uncomfortable
  • Remember that people online may not be who they say they are
  • Never open attachments or click links in emails from people you don’t know. They could lead to inappropriate websites or contain viruses
  • Remember that everything you read online may not be true.
Library Long Range Plan
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