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Library Policies

Eastham Library Policies

Gift Acceptance Policy

Gift Acceptance Policy

The Eastham Public Library welcomes gifts of library materials, personal property or money that improve and enrich the library resources.

The Board of Trustees of the Eastham Public Library seeks to further encourage gifts appropriate to its mission and has adopted these guidelines.

Monetary Donations

All unrestricted monetary donations will be accepted and used at the discretion of the Board of Trustees in accordance with these guidelines and G.L. Chapter 44, Section 53A requiring Select Board approval for the expenditure of all monetary gifts. Monetary gifts given without restriction will be utilized to 1) purchase materials or equipment, 2) to support library programs or, 3) for other purposes that the Board of Trustees considers appropriate and for which the Board of Trustees is legally authorized to expend funds.

Monetary gifts over $100 with restriction, including endowment funds, will require Board of Trustees approval before the gifts are accepted. The Board of Trustees’ approval is subject to G.L. Chapter 44, Section 53A requiring Select Board approval for the expenditure of all monetary gifts. Restricted donations will be accepted on the condition that specific use requested is determined by the Board of Trustees to be consistent with the goals and objectives of the library.

All monetary gifts to the library over $100 will be deposited upon receipt. The Trustees will provide a report to the Select Board on no less than an annual basis on the amounts, sources, and any donor restrictions on the expenditure of such monetary gifts. Upon receipt of each report, the Select Board will approve the expenditure of these gifts as required by G.L. Chapter 44, Section 53A.

Books and Materials

Gifts of books, CDs, magazines, DVDs, etc., donated to the Library will be examined by Library staff to determine if they are appropriate for acceptance to be added to the collection. Materials will be accepted and withdrawn subject to the same criteria as purchased material. Factors relevant to the selection process with be cost of processing, availability of space and physical condition of the item (i.e. free of mold, stains, etc.)

Books and materials will be accepted with the understanding that the Library reserves the right to add them to its collection, donate them to the Friends of the Library, distribute them to other libraries, or discard them. Donated materials will not be returned to the donor. Proceeds from any books given to the Friends for their book sales are used to support Library programs and services.

Personal Property

Gifts of items for permanent display or preservation are not normally accepted. The Library may, however, accept some items on a temporary basis when all of the following criteria are met, as determined by the Library Trustees in consultation with the Library Director:

  • The item is specifically and clearly related to the Library or local history, or otherwise serves the Library’s strategic directions and/or mission.
  • There is adequate space to display and/or house the item.
  • The item can receive proper care and attention.

In those instances where a permanent gift of personal property, art objects, paintings, prints, maps, antiques and other collectibles, is accepted, this is done so only on condition that they may be kept, sold, given away, or discarded at the discretion of the Board and/or Library Director. After acceptance, all requests for the transfer of an item will be considered by the Board. An appropriate deed of gift or similar document transferring sole and exclusive ownership of an item(s) to the Library will be required for the transaction. All proceeds gained from the disposal of the gift may be used by the Library in a way consistent with the original donation.


Thank you letters are sent in response to donations and are prepared by the Director. However, donors may request a more specific written acknowledgment of any donation. (See Gift Acceptance Form)

A gift to the Library may be tax deductible, if and as provided by law. To remain in compliance with the current tax law, the US Internal Revenue Service prohibits libraries from being involved in the appraisal process. The responsibility for the estimation of value of gift donations lies with the donor. It is recommended the donor consult with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) or a tax expert for detailed information on appraisals and donated materials for acceptability as a charitable tax deduction. The Board of Library Trustees and the Library Director will not assess or suggest a value for non-monetary gifts for income tax or other purposes; any letter of acknowledgment will not contain a statement of value.

Gifts that do not further the mission of the Eastham Public Library, or which would result in the incurrence of excessive expense or administrative support, are subject to acceptance or refusal at the discretion of the Board as advised by the Library Director.

Gifts to Staff

Individual Library staff may not accept gifts, or any form of currency from patrons, vendors or others in connection with their work at the Library and must comply with GL c. 268A, the Conflict of Interest Law on acceptance of gifts. Patrons are encouraged to make contributions to the Library as a whole. This policy is to ensure compliance by the staff with state ethics laws and to ensure that staff will treat all members of the public equally and that no preferential treatment is shown or expected.

Approved by the Eastham Board of Library Trustees 5-0 on February 12, 2022.