Mission Statement


Rockport Public Library is committed to providing the best possible free library service to all of the residents of the Town of Rockport. The library will identify and respond to the needs of our community of library users and seek to provide services that will meet these needs.

Library Cards

Loans and Renewals:

Books, magazines, audio- books, DVDs, and ukuleles circulate for a three-week period. Items may be renewed two times unless another borrower has requested the item.  You can request renewals in person or by telephone and get an immediate confirmation. If you request by email  to rpl@rockport.lib.me.us, we will reply to confirm the renewal or let you know that the item cannot be renewed. You can also renew your borrowed items online.

Borrowing Privileges


The Library is free to all for computer use, browsing, reference, and program attendance.  To borrow materials you must register for a library card.

Free cards are available to all Rockport residents and taxpayers, to all who work in Rockport, and to all children and students in Knox and Waldo Counties. Proper ID verifying residency is required.

Nonresident cards are available for a $20 annual fee for individuals, and $10 for short-term visitors. Proper identification required such as a valid driver's license, or photo ID and proof of mailing address.

You have one week to pick up items ordered through our interlibrary loan program. After one week the item will be sent back to the lending library. This is a state wide policy.

Patron Behavior Policy of the Rockport Public Library


Approved by the Library Committee 2/15/2022.

To ensure that all people who use and work at the Rockport Public Library can do so in a comfortable and safe environment, the Rockport Public Library reserves the right to determine what it considers to be disruptive or inappropriate behavior by the patrons in the Library.  In order to ensure that every patron has the opportunity to enjoy the benefits of the Library, patrons visiting or using the Library’s facilities or services must comply with the Rockport Public Library’s Patron Behavior in the Library Policy while on the Library’s premises. 

Dangerous, destructive, or illegal conduct, will not be tolerated:

Any patron engaging in disruptive, inappropriate, dangerous, destructive or illegal behaviors will be instructed to leave the Library immediately and may have his or her Library privileges suspended for a period of up to one (1) year depending on the severity of the violation.  In addition, law enforcement may be called and appropriate legal action may follow.

Engaging in any of the above behaviors may result in one or more of the following consequences, depending on the severity of the violation:

  • Initial warning.  
  • Library privileges suspended for one day.
  • Library privileges suspended for seven days.
  • Library privileges suspended for up to one year.
  • Depending on the severity, time may be determined at the discretion of the Library Director or Deputy Director.

Patrons who are suspended from the Library for a period exceeding one day may petition to have their suspension reviewed by the Director.

Please inform Library staff if you observe anyone behaving in a suspicious or inappropriate manner. Thank you.

We are a Fine Free Library


Adopted by the Library Committee at an open public meeting on 9/19/17.

As of October 1st 2017 the Rockport Public Library will no longer fine patrons for overdue materials.
This change in policy will:

  • Provide more friendly service
  • Facilitate the return of library materials by removing the fear of having to pay a fine
  • Encourage use of the library by those who might be worried about past fines
  • Streamline library procedures

Are you really doing away with overdue fines?
Yes, we just want people to borrow items from the library and then bring them back so others can use them.

How does this new policy work?
We will send notices regarding overdue items. If items become three weeks overdue, borrowing privileges will be suspended until the items are returned, or the replacement cost for the materials is paid.

Won’t you lose lots of money or materials if you don’t have overdue fines?
We believe materials will be returned more promptly when people aren’t worried about being fined. The amount of money generated by fines isn’t great and while its loss will be noted we feel the benefits outweigh the financial loss.

What happens if I don’t bring my books or other items back?
Your borrowing privileges will be suspended until the materials are returned. If an item becomes three weeks overdue, we will consider it lost and send you a bill for the replacement cost.

If I lose a book or other materials, how long do I have before I’m charged for it?
After an item is three weeks overdue, we consider it lost and will send you a bill.
What is the cost for lost materials?
It varies by item.  The library purchases materials for the benefit of the entire community.  If an item is lost, we will charge the cost to replace that particular item so it can be made available to others again.

What about old fines I still owe?
We are waiving all fines, even past ones.

What about old fees that I still owe?
Fees for lost books are still on your account. Please come in and talk to us – we can work it out.

Does your fine-free policy also include Interlibrary Loan items?
Yes, but keep in mind that interlibrary loaned materials are subject to the reminder schedule and billing procedures of the lending institution.

Library Code of Ethics


The Rockport Public Library follows the mandate of American Library Association's Code of Ethics, which states the following:

The principles of this Code are expressed in broad statements to guide ethical decision making. These statements provide a framework; they cannot and do not dictate conduct to cover particular situations.

  1. We provide the highest level of service to all library users through appropriate and usefully organized resources; equitable service policies; equitable access; and accurate, unbiased, and courteous responses to all requests.
  2. We uphold the principles of intellectual freedom and resist all efforts to censor library resources.
  3. We protect each library user's right to privacy and confidentiality with respect to information sought or received and resources consulted, borrowed, acquired or transmitted.
  4. We respect intellectual property rights and advocate balance between the interests of information users and rights holders.
  5. We treat co-workers and other colleagues with respect, fairness, and good faith, and advocate conditions of employment that safeguard the rights and welfare of all employees of our institutions.
  6. We do not advance private interests at the expense of library users, colleagues, or our employing institutions.
  7. We distinguish between our personal convictions and professional duties and do not allow our personal beliefs to interfere with fair representation of the aims of our institutions or the provision of access to their information resources.
  8. We strive for excellence in the profession by maintaining and enhancing our own knowledge and skills, by encouraging the professional development of co-workers, and by fostering the aspirations of potential members of the profession.

Adopted at the 1939 Midwinter Meeting by the ALA Council; amended June 30, 1981; June 28, 1995; and January 22, 2008.

Computer Use Policy of the Rockport Public Library


Adopted by the Library Committee at an open public meeting on 2/15/2022.

The Rockport Public Library does not monitor and has no control over the information available through the internet, and specifically disclaims any warranty as to the accuracy, authoritativeness, timeliness, usefulness or fitness of the information for a particular purpose.

Further, the Library assumes no responsibility for and shall have no liability for any direct, indirect, or consequential damages arising from the use of its electronic resources, or connections to other internet resources. 
The Rockport Public Library provides public access to the Internet via terminals that are located throughout the building. The Library reserves the right to limit the use of these public access workstations. The Library’s electronic resources may be used only for purposes that are legal and consistent with the Library’s mission. Library users may not use public library Internet stations for unlawful purposes or to view illegal content.

Illegal activities or activities that interfere with or disrupt the network, users, services or equipment are prohibited. The library does not routinely monitor public computers, but reserves the right to do so when a violation of this policy or illegal activity is suspected. Staff is authorized to take immediate action to protect the security of computers and the network and to enforce the following rules. This includes confiscating any removable media, requiring a user to leave a computer or the premises, and contacting law enforcement authorities.

You are responsible for complying with copyright law, licensing agreements and the policies of individual websites that you view.

To make internet access available equitably and to ensure that its use is in accord with all applicable laws, the Library has established the following policies and procedures:

 1.  The Library reserves the right to limit the use of this electronic resource by the public.  Such limitations may include, but are not limited to:

  • restricting time on computers and limiting applications or functions used on the computers;
  • charging a nominal fee for the use of certain consumable supplies such as printing and portable devices

 2.     The Library’s electronic resources may be used only for purposes that are legal and in accord with the proper operation of the library.  Unacceptable uses (some of which may be illegal) include, but are not limited to:

  • Intentional exposure of other individuals to material or graphic images that they (or their parents or guardians) may find personally unsuitable.
  • Harassment of other library users or staff.
  • Unauthorized access to files, data, or passwords of others.
  • Unauthorized copying or downloading of copyright-protected materials.
  • Violations or attempts to violate computer system security.
  • Damaging or attempting to alter computer equipment.
  • Hacking or other unlawful activities.
  • Unauthorized disclosure, use, and dissemination of personal identification information regarding minors.
  • Use of a workstation for any illegal or criminal purpose, including viewing content such as child pornography or obscenity.

3.    Children’s Internet Protection Act (CIPA) Compliance statement. To be compliant with CIPA the Rockport Public takes the following steps:

  • To the extent practical, technology protection measures (or “internet filters”) shall be used to block or filter internet, or other forms of electronic communications, access to inappropriate information.
  • Specifically, as required by the CIPA, blocking shall be applied to visual depictions of material deemed obscene and/or child pornography, or to any material deemed harmful to minors.
  • Subject to staff supervision, technology protection measures may be disabled for adults or, in the case of minors, minimized only for bona fide research or other lawful purposes.

4.     Parents concerned about their children’s use of the electronic resources are ultimately responsible for setting standards and establishing guidelines for their children. The Library does not have the right to act in loco parentis. The following are recommended guidelines for parents and guardians to ensure their children have positive online experiences:

  • Use the Internet as a family. Join your children in Internet exploration.
  • Inform your children about the appropriate use of electronic mail, chat rooms, and other forms of direct electronic communication.
  • Instruct children NEVER to give out personal information online.

Unattended Children Policy of the Rockport Public Library


Approved by the Rockport Public Library Committee 2/15/2022.

One of Rockport Public Library's primary goals is to encourage library use by children and to instill a love of books, reading and learning. We want to believe that our library is safe for everyone; however, the library is a public space and library staff cannot assume the role of parents, caregivers or guardians by supervising children.

For the protection of children, and in the interest of all library patrons, we adopt the following policies:

Children under the age of eight should be accompanied by a parent, guardian or caregiver while in the library. Children may be in the children's room without a parent of caregiver provided that the children can behave appropriately while unsupervised, but children should not be left unattended in the children's room for extended periods of time, including when parents or caregivers use the library's computers.

If a child is left unattended in the library, and a parent or caregiver cannot arrive by the time the library closes, staff will contact the Rockport Police Department to escort the child home or oversee the child until a parent or guardian can be reached.

Rockport Public Library: Policy Regarding Service Animals


Adopted by the Library Committee at an open public meeting on 4/19/2022.
It is the Policy of Rockport Public Library that access be provided to service animals and such persons using service animals to comply with the requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act, as amended, and the Department of Justice’s implementing regulation Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended and all other applicable state and federal laws.
This Policy shall apply to all visitors, patrons, vendors and employees of the Library using a service animal and promotes access to library resources for individuals with disabilities.

Disability An “individual with a disability” means a person who has a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities including, but not limited to, walking, talking, seeing, breathing or hearing.
Service Animal Any guide dog, signal dog, or other animal individually trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of an individual with a disability.
Direct Threat A significant risk to the health or safety of others that cannot be eliminated or mitigated by a modification of policies, practices, or procedures, or by the provision of auxiliary aids or services.  In determining whether a service animal poses a direct threat to the health or safety of others, the Library shall make an individualized assessment, based on reasonable judgment that relies on current medical knowledge or on the best available objective evidence, to ascertain:  the nature, duration, and severity of the risk; the probability that the potential injury will actually occur; and whether reasonable modifications of policies, practices, or procedures will mitigate the risk.

A. Service Handler Responsibilities.
1.  The Library may ask an individual with a disability to remove a service animal from the premises if:
(i) The animal is out of control and the animal's handler does not take effective action to control it; or
(ii) The animal is not housebroken.
If the Library excludes the service animal pursuant to the above rules, the Library shall give the individual with a disability the opportunity to obtain goods, services, and accommodations without having the service animal on the premises.
2.  The Library is not responsible for the care or supervision of a service animal.
B.  Staff Responsibilities.  If a staff member is not certain that an animal is a service animal, the staff member may only ask the service animal handler(s) if the animal is used because of a disability and ask what specific task the animal has been trained to perform.  Staff members shall not require an individual to provide documentation.  If the animal is not a service animal, it will not be permitted in any area of the Library.
C. Access to Facilities.  A service animal shall be permitted in any area of the Library that is accessible to its handler provided that the service animal does not pose a direct threat and that the presence of the service animal would not require a fundamental alteration in the Library’s policies, practices, or procedures.  Any decision to exclude a service animal from a particular area of the Library shall be made by the most senior Library staff person currently onsite based on an individualized assessment as set forth in Definition (Direct Threat).

Collection Development Policy of the Rockport Public Library


Approved by the Library Committee 2/15/2021.
The purpose of the Rockport 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 is responsible to its potential constituency to announce this purpose statement, to evaluate and alter it as the community changes and to increase the opportunity for all potential users of its resources to achieve their purposes through the library.
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 Rockport Pubic 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 himself or herself and for his or her children, he or she 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, and shall be made in writing and given to the library director for a written response.  Appeals are directed to the Library Committee for the final decision.
The Purpose Statement assumes specific definitions for the term "Resources" and for the four categories of activity to which these resources are directed.  The term "Resource" includes:
1. Print and non-print materials available within the Rockport Public Library.
2. Electronic database sources
3. Resources in other libraries or locations to which the library may achieve access through interlibrary loan or a similar resource sharing process.
These resources respond to four categories of activity:
1. Resources for Education
A. Materials that supplement the formal curriculum of primary, secondary and post-secondary schools.
B. Materials that support self-education pursued apart from a structured or formal program.
2. Resources for Emotional and Intellectual Growth
Materials that satisfy a personal need and relate to self-directed attempts at personal understanding and personal growth. The acquisition of these materials represents a commitment to the improvement of the quality of life of the individual.
3. Resources that Enhance the Enjoyment of Leisure Time
Materials purchased as a source of pleasure and fun for the user. These materials are not purchased as goal-oriented items, and therefore acquisitions decisions may rest more heavily upon the potential pleasure to be derived by the user than the critical appraisal of the materials.
4. Resources that assist in the Practical Solution of Daily Problems
A. Materials that empower the individual to live more independently.
B. Materials generally directed at the solution of short-term problems.
C. Materials that help individuals save money, improve health, save time, etc.
The library acknowledges that each person has information needs that are important to that individual.  It also recognizes that it has limited financial resources to respond to these needs.  The library has a responsibility to use public funds in ways that are advantageous to the largest number of its constituents.  While the library's materials collection will not deny any need consistent with its mission, the library will nevertheless develop its collections with the recognition that it has the ability to meet certain needs more effectively and efficiently than other needs.  It is cognizant of the availability of complementary information-giving institutions in the region and has examined the collections of other public and academic libraries in the area.
The responsibility for book selection rests with the library, operating within the framework of the policies enunciated herein, and adhering to generally accepted professional practices. 
Copyright Restrictions
The copyright laws of the United States (Title 17, United States Code) govern the reproduction, distribution, adaptation, public performance, and public display of protected material.
Under certain conditions, public libraries are authorized to lend, lease, or rent copies of computer programs and videotapes to patrons for nonprofit purposes.  Any person who makes an unauthorized copy or adaptation of a computer program or videotape or redistributes the loaned copy or publicly performs or displays the computer program or videotape, except as permitted by Title 17 of the United States Code, may be liable for copyright infringement.
This institution reserves the right to refuse to fulfill a loan request if, in its judgment, fulfillment of the request would likely lead to violation of the copyright law.
Selection is the decision to add, retain or delete material as part of the library's resource collection.  All materials, whether purchased by the library or donated to it, are evaluated in accordance with these guidelines.  Each item is evaluated on its significance as an entire work rather than upon the merit of individual parts.  Selection decisions may be made upon one or a combination of guidelines as applicable to the item in question.  Guidelines used by the Rockport Public Library to evaluate materials to be selected for its collection include:

  1. The needs of the community.
  2. The overall balance of the collection.
  3. The spirit of service and the philosophy of the library.
  4. The availability of material from other sources.
  5. Budgetary limitations.
  6. Suitability of the format of the item for library use.
  7. Relation to existing collection and other material on the subject.
  8. Reputation or significance of the author.
  9. Reviews in professional literature or patron request.
  10. Accuracy of the item.
  11. Appearance in standard bibliographies and indexes
  12. In-print availability.
  13. Literary merit.
  14. Locally produced or authored material.
  15. Price.
  16. Suitability of reading level, interest level and treatment of subject to the age of the intended audience.
  17. Use of the material locally as assigned reading, viewing or listening.

Selection Tools
Because it is impossible for librarians to examine all items being considered for purchase, they depend on reliable selection aids.  The librarians regularly depend on the reviews found in standard sources.  Other selection aids, such as “Notable Book” lists chosen by the American Library Association, National Book Awards lists, Pulitzer Prize lists, and published lists of bestsellers may also be used as required.
Non-Book Materials
The criteria for and the methods of selection of non-book materials are the same as for books.
The acquisition of a variety of non-book materials is under constant evaluation and is subject to change.  Cost of items, budget, use, and availability of new items are the determining factors in selection.
Collection Maintenance
Duplicate Copies
The number of copies purchased varies with the expected use of any item. As extensive use for individual titles is demonstrated, duplication to meet the demand is implemented.
In order to maintain the best possible collection of materials, a continual weeding process takes place. Items are discarded if they are outdated, if they no longer circulate, if there are more duplicate copies than needed, or if they are in poor physical condition.
Items discarded are plainly marked and may be donated to the Friends of the Library for sale.
Library property (i. e. print and non-print materials, equipment, supplies and or any personal property) which in the judgment of the Library Director is no longer necessary or useful for library purposes, may be disposed of in the following manner:
1. Books and non-print materials from the library's collection or gift materials may be discarded, sold, or be given to local philanthropic, educational, cultural, government or other not-for-profit organizations.
Revision of Selection Policy
Because the needs of the community change, this materials selection policy is revised as needed and/or is reviewed at least every five years.
Patron Requests
The library welcomes patron interest in the collection and will seriously consider all requests that specific materials be acquired.  The library is under no obligation to fill any particular request if not deemed suitable to the collection.  Patron requests will be reviewed using the materials selection criteria listed in this document.
Donations, Gifts and Memorials
The Rockport 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.  The library staff can supply, upon request, a list of needed materials for consideration by the donor.
Donation of Books and Audio Visual Materials
In accepting a gift of materials, the library reserves the privilege of deciding whether items donated should be added to the collection.  Out of the many books and other materials which citizens so generously give, a considerable proportion can be used.  Some materials cannot be used because any library material, though of value in itself, may be: (1) a duplicate of an item of which the library already has a sufficient number; (2) outdated--interesting but not of sufficient present reference or circulating value to the library; and/or (3) in poor condition--which would not justify the expense of processing it, i.e. cataloging and preparing it for circulation.  The material will be judged by the same standards of selection as those applied to the purchase of new materials.  The Rockport Public Library accepts gift books with the understanding that books which are useful to the library collection will be retained and other books disposed of in whatever manner the librarian deems best.  The Library necessarily reserves the right to interfile gifts with other collections on the same subject, so that all collections are organized and classified according to library standards for the best public service.
Gift Book Program
 The Library welcomes monetary contributions specifically for book purchases in memorial to or in honor of named individuals.
Donation of Art Objects and Other Types of Materials
Although such gifts are usually welcomed and valued, final decision on their acceptance rests with the Library Director.
Donations—Others, e.g. Monetary
The Library welcomes cash contributions, gifts of real property, stocks, and bonds.  It is our custom to expend cash gifts on materials, equipment, or a project which is acceptable to the donor.  Although it is unlikely, there may be an occasion in which the restrictions set by the donor make it impossible for the library to accept the contribution.  All donations are subject to the approval of the Library Director. Any funds given to the library will be spent in a time frame that works best for the Library unless a date for spending the funds is stipulated at the time of the donation.
Recognition of Gifts
For memorial books to the library, the library may place within the book the name of the donor, if desired. Any funds given to the Library for memorial books will be spent in accordance with the Library’s materials selection guidelines as outlined. Donors may help set parameters such as genres, age of target audience, and type of material. However, the Library will have final say on the items purchased. We will work with the donor to aim our selections at books the donor would like.  
Use of Gifts
All gifts are accepted with the understanding that it may someday be necessary that they be sold or disposed of in the best interest of the library.  The Library cannot commit itself to perpetually housing a donation.
Income Tax Statements
The library cannot appraise the value of a donation of materials or art.  It will, however, issue the donor a letter acknowledging the donation.  It is the donor's decision whether he or she will determine the value of the donation or utilize an independent appraiser.  While the gifts to the Library as a governmental unit qualify as tax deductible, the donor will have to consider the particular circumstances of his or her situation for the specific effect.  
No donation can be accepted unless it is given to the library without restrictions.  All gifts may be used, sold, or disposed of in the best interest of the library.  All donations are accepted only if, in the opinion of the Library Director, they are in the best interests of the library.
Request for Reconsideration of Materials
Strong objection to any library materials must be made in writing.
The Rockport Public Library subscribes to the provisions of the Library Bill of Rights and the Freedom to Read Statement as adopted by the American Library Association.  These documents are considered a part of this policy.  All individuals have the right to choose which library materials they will use.  However, no one has the right to restrict the freedom of others to read whatever they wish.  No book or other material in question is automatically removed from the collection because of an objection to it.