201. Personnel

I. Introduction

 As this is not a contract, the Library Board reserves the right to amend or revoke any or all of these policies or benefits at any time at their sole discretion and without prior notice. In the case of any change, efforts will be made to notify employees as soon as possible.


Section 1.  Purpose

The purpose of this policy is to provide the basis for effective personnel management.  The Library’s ability to manage and provide public services efficiently and effectively is dependent on the performance of its employees.  As such, this policy guides the decisions and expectations of employees in order to achieve a good working environment where all are working together to provide the highest quality public services.


Section 2.  Administration

These policies cover all Library employees and volunteers, whether regular or temporary, full-time or part-time.  However, temporary and/or part-time employees may not be covered by all provisions.


Questions of interpretation should be addressed to the Library Director, who shall be responsible for final interpretation and application of these policies. The principles that underpin this policy will be used as a guide regarding issues not specifically addressed herein.


Upon appointment to a position, all employees of the Library shall be furnished a copy of this policy as part of orientation.  Each employee will be required to read this document, as well as the Staff Handbook, and sign a form that he/she has done so.


Section 3.  Equal Employment Opportunity

The Library provides equal opportunity to all employees and applicants for employment in accordance with applicable state and federal laws, directives, and regulations.


Discrimination on the basis of race, color, creed, religion, national origin, ancestry, gender, sexual orientation, veteran status (as per Minnesota Statute), pregnancy, disability, age, marital status, familial status, genetic information, status with regard to public assistance, or membership on a local human rights commission, or any other class protected by state or federal law is prohibited in all personnel policies, programs, and employment practices.


Failure of any Library employee to act in a manner consistent with this policy may result in disciplinary action, up to and including termination, against that employee.


Section 4.  Reasonable Accommodation

The Library is committed to the fair and equal employment of people with disabilities. Reasonable accommodation is the key to this non-discrimination policy. While many individuals with disabilities can work without accommodation, other qualified applicants and employees face barriers to employment without the accommodation process. It is the policy of the Library to reasonably accommodate qualified individuals with disabilities unless the accommodation would impose an undue hardship. In accordance with the Minnesota Human Rights Act and the Americans with Disabilities Act, accommodations will be provided to qualified individuals with disabilities when such accommodations are directly related to performing the essential functions of a job, competing for a job or to enjoy equal benefits and privileges of employment. This policy applies to all applicants, employees, and employees seeking promotional opportunities.


Reasonable accommodation requested by an employee for health conditions relating to pregnancy will be granted in accordance with Minnesota law (Section 181.9414), unless such accommodation would impose an undue hardship on the Library.  Reasonable accommodation for health conditions relating to pregnancy may include more frequent restroom breaks, limits to heavy lifting, seating, or temporary transfer of tasks.  The Library will engage in an interactive process with respect to an employee’s request for a reasonable accommodation.


A nursing mother will be provided reasonable, unpaid break time to express milk for her infant child in a private room/location that is in close proximity to her work area, shielded from view, free from intrusion, and includes access to an electrical outlet.  This policy will be administered in accordance with Minnesota law (Section 181.939).


Section 5.  Harassment

The Library is committed to providing a work environment free of harassment and discrimination. Such harassment is a violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Minnesota Human Rights Act.  Harassment may take many forms, including behaviors that are overt or very subtle. Harassment may occur between or among members of the same or opposite sex, employees and the public, co-workers, or subordinates and supervisors. Harassing behavior, whether of a sexual nature or not, has the effect of creating a hostile or offensive work environment and is prohibited behavior.  All employees are expected to treat each other and the general public with respect and to assist in fostering an environment that is free from unwanted harassment. Violations of this policy may result in discipline, including and up to termination. Each situation will be investigated on a case-by-case basis.


Sexual Harassment

Minnesota Statute § 363.01, subdivision 41states that sexual harassment includes unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, sexually motivated physical contact, or other verbal or physical conduct or communication of a sexual nature, when:

  • Submitting to the conduct is made either explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of an individual’s employment; or
  • Submitting to or rejecting the conduct is used as the basis for an employment decision affecting an individual’s employment; or
  • Such conduct has the purpose or result of unreasonably interfering with an individual’s work performance or creating an intimidating, hostile or offensive work environment.


Examples of inappropriate conduct include but are not limited to: unwanted physical contact; unwelcome sexual jokes or comments; sexually explicit posters or pinups; repeated and unwelcome requests for dates or sexual favors; and sexual gestures or any indication, expressed or implied, that job security or any other condition of employment depends on submission to or rejection of unwelcome sexual requests or behavior. In summary, sexual harassment is the unwanted, unwelcome and repeated action of an individual against another individual, using sexual overtones.


Employees who feel that they have been victims of any type of harassment or discrimination, or employees who are aware of such harassment or discrimination, should immediately report their concerns to one of the following individuals:

  1. Immediate Supervisor
  2. Library Director
  3. City Human Resources Manager


The Library will actively investigate any form of harassment or discrimination and appropriate actions will be taken.  All such complaints and records of resulting investigations shall be kept confidential, to the extent possible, while allowing the Library and City to meet their obligation to investigate such complaints.  As such, any employee involved in such an accusation, either as an alleged perpetrator or witness, is required to cooperate in the investigation.  A person reporting or witnessing a violation of this policy cannot be guaranteed anonymity. Any employee who makes a false complaint or provides false information during an investigation may be subject to disciplinary action, up to and including termination.


Further, the Library may discipline any individual who retaliates against any person who reports alleged violations of this or other Library policies. The Library may also discipline any individual who retaliates against any participant in an investigation, proceeding or hearing relating to the report of alleged violations. Retaliation includes, but is not limited to, any form of intimidation, reprisal, or harassment.


Section 6.  Workplace Safety

Minnesota Workers’ Compensation laws and the state and federal Occupational Safety and Health Acts require that all on-the-job injuries and illnesses (no matter how minor) be reported as soon as possible by the employee, or on behalf of the injured or ill employee, to his/her supervisor or the Director.  If a supervisor or Director is not available and the nature of injury or illness requires immediate treatment, the employee is to go to the nearest available medical facility for treatment and, as soon as possible, notify his/her supervisor or Director of the action taken. In the case of a serious emergency, 911 should be called.  If the injury is not of an emergency nature, but requires medical attention, the employee will report it to the supervisor or Director and make arrangements for a medical appointment.


Such reports are necessary to comply with state and federal laws and initiate insurance and workers’ compensation benefits procedures.  The employee’s immediate supervisor is required to complete a First Report of Injury and any other forms that may be necessary related to an injury or illness on the job and submit them to the Library Director or Office Manager within ten days after the event, or after the person becomes aware of the injury or illness.


Thus, each employee is responsible to perform his/her work in accordance with the health and safety guidelines, procedures and policies established by the Library Board, the Director and supervisors.  When an employee’s behavior violates these guidelines, procedures and policies by creating a potential health or safety issue for the employee or others, the supervisor or Director is authorized to send the employee home immediately on paid leave, depending on the severity of the unsafe environment and whether the employee has been spoken to about the situation before. Upon investigation, unsafe employee behavior resulting in leave authorized by a supervisor or Director will be documented as disciplinary action, may result in unpaid leave up to and including termination, and a record of such will be placed in the employee’s personnel file.


Finally, any reported injuries or illnesses sustained by visitors to any Library building require a verbal report to a supervisor, the Office Manager or Director.  Following the verbal report, an Incident Report form shall be filled out.  This form shall be filled out and submitted to the Director within 24 hours of the verbal report.


  1. Definitions


Regular employee: A person who has scheduled and assigned hours each week and is in a budgeted position.


Temporary employee:  A person who does not have regularly scheduled or assigned hours (such as a substitute) or one that is employed by the Library for a specific purpose (such as a grant or project) and for a specific length of time.


Full-time employee:  One who works between thirty and forty hours per week and receives additional benefit compensation beyond wage.


Part-time employee:  One who has scheduled and assigned hours totaling less than thirty hours a week.


Exempt:  For the Library, employees are classified as exempt or nonexempt, as set out by the Federal Labor Standards Act.  FLSA requires that employers must pay overtime to employees who work more than 40 hours in a given workweek, unless they meet certain exceptions.  These exceptions are many, but the Library employees who are exempt fall under the Administrative and Professional ones.


NonExempt: Employees  who are nonexempt from overtime as stated in FLSA receive pay of time + one half for any work over 40 hours.


Retirement: Employees are considered eligible for retirement and/or disability benefits in accordance with PERA or Social Security.


Years of service:  Employment as a full-time or part-time employee served on a continuous basis with any lapse of employment not greater than three months, which credit shall be determined as a ratio of total hours worked per year as compared to 2080 hours per year.  No more than 2080 hours worked per year will be considered towards employee’s years of service.  Years of service also include any years of service agreed to in an executed employment contract.  An employee begins earning years of service credit on the first day of work.  Some forms of leave will create a break in service.


Fiscal year: The period from January 1 to December 31.


Pay period:  A fourteen-day period beginning at 12:01AM on Monday through 12:00PM (midnight) on Sunday.  Employees are paid on the Friday following the close of the pay period.


Immediate Family:  Immediate family are defined as employee’s spouse, domestic partner or partner by cohabitation, children, mother, father, son-in-law, daughter-in-law, mother-in-law, father-in-law, step-parent, brother, sister, brother-in-law, sister-in-law, grandparents and grandchildren, uncle, aunt, niece, nephew, first cousin, foster parent, foster child, persons who are parents of the same child, and persons with whom the employee is in an intimate or close relationship.


  • Employment


Section 1.  Hiring

The Library Board hires and supervises the Director and gives responsibility of employment for all other positions to the Director.  Thus, the Director oversees the recruitment, hiring, supervising, and if necessary, termination of all staff.  This may be done in conjunction with other staff, such as supervisors, depending on the position.


All open positions will follow common best-practices when hiring (with the exception of some temporary positions):

  1. Posting and advertising the opening in a variety of places such as the Library’s website, local and regional media outlets and/or professional media outlets. On occasion, the Director may post the position internally only, giving current employees a chance to apply first.
  2. All open positions will remain open and advertised for a minimum of fourteen days, with length of time to be considered with the outlets used to post the position.
  3. No less than two people will be chosen to be interviewed for a given position. If initial recruitment postings do not garner an acceptable number of candidates, the position may remain open and a new recruitment strategy put in place.  Likewise, after interviewing candidates, if the pool does not garner what the position needs, the Director may choose to keep the position open and revise the recruitment strategy.
  4. Depending on the position, the Director may request that a Board member or outside person serve on a hiring committee.
  5. Due to their nature, temporary positions are not required to follow these same practices, although the Director is strongly encouraged to do so.


Section 2.  Candidate requirements


Application Documents

All applicants, whether a perspective hire or current employee, will fill out an application form for an open position.  Some positions may require additional documentation such as a resume, proof of a credential and/or written responses to pre-interview questions.


Pre-Hiring Tests and Checks

All positions shall require at least one reference listed by a candidate.  Full-time positions will require contacting at least two references.  Likewise, the Director or the Board may require an educational, criminal history,   and/or credit check, depending on the position.


Some positions, as part of the interview process, may require testing to demonstrate skill level, such as typing and computer knowledge or alpha and numeric filing skills.


Section 3.  Job descriptions and classifications

Every Library position shall have a job description.  These shall be periodically reviewed and updated as job requirements change.  Each position will also be reviewed by the Director and any other supervisor when a position is vacated.  The Office Manager shall keep the most current copy on file (both a physical and digital one).  A copy of one can be provided upon request.


If job duties, responsibilities and/or requirements change significantly following an update, the Library will follow the City’s classification system to have the position reviewed and potentially reclassified.  Resulting reclassification may also result in an appropriate wage adjustment.  This may take place regardless of whether the position is open or filled.


Section 4.  Probationary Period

All new or promoted employees (with the potential exception of grant-related temporary employees) will serve a probationary period for the first six months of employment.  The probationary period is intended to give new employees the opportunity to demonstrate their ability to achieve a satisfactory level of performance and to determine whether the new position meets their expectations.  Likewise, it allows the Library to monitor employees’ work to be sure they can do the required tasks at the established standards.  Either the employee or Library may end the employment relationship at will, at any time during or after the probationary period. Any significant absence will automatically extend the orientation period by the length of the absence. Employee performance will be formally evaluated at the completion of the probationary period.  Probationary periods may be extended at the discretion of the Director, in consultation with a supervisor, if performance does not meet required standards and the Director and supervisor are willing to provide additional time for improvement.


Section 5.  Performance Evaluation

Following the successful end of the probationary period, all staff shall be evaluated annually by their supervisor on or near their start date.  The Director shall create and make available the forms and procedures for this process.  All evaluations not conducted by the Director shall be shared with the Director prior to conducting the evaluation with the employee.  On request, employees may receive copies of any document that evaluates their performance and shall have the right to include a written response to the supervisor’s evaluation in their personnel file.


Section 6.  Compensation

An employee reaching 2,080 hours worked (equivalent of a 40-hour work week for one (1) year) will receive a step raise until all steps have been exhausted for that classification. The Library Board will determine whether a COLA or other pay increase for employees will be included in the annual budget request.


Under the Minnesota Wage Disclosure Protection law, employees have the right to tell any person the amount of his/her own wages without fear of retaliation or for asserting rights or remedies as laid out by the Statute.


Section 7.  Personnel Files

The Library keeps a personnel file for each employee, which is considered to be Library property generated for purposes of conducting business operations. It is the policy of the Library to permit access by all Library employees to their own personnel file maintained in the Director’s office. Access to these files and the information contained in them is generally limited to the employee, appropriate supervisory personnel, appropriate administrative personnel and third parties authorized in writing by the employee. Information related to education, employment and job performance will be maintained in these files. Confidential medical records and benefits information are maintained separately from an employee’s personnel file in the Office Manager’s files.


Library employees are permitted access to their personnel files during regular Library business hours. Employees are permitted to examine, take notes and make copies of any materials in their file but may not remove any documents. Employees wishing to examine their files must request this in writing and will be granted access to the file within 48 hours of the request.  The review shall take place in either the Office Manager’s or Director’s office.  An employee may request correction of any alleged misinformation contained in the file. If this request is denied, the employee will receive an explanation for the denial and will be permitted to place a concise statement of disagreement in the file.


Employees are encouraged to keep their personnel files up-to-date with all job-related information such as degrees obtained, seminars attended, certificates of completion and written letters of praise from staff or the public.  In addition, employees are required to update their personnel files with the Office Manager when they experience a change of name, address, phone, or emergency contact.


Section 8.  Termination



An employee who intends to resign shall provide written notice to his/her immediate supervisor.  The Library Director shall submit written notice of his/her resignation to the President of the Board.  Professional employees shall give at least a month’s (30 days) notice and all other employees shall give at least two weeks’ notice.


The termination date shall be the employee’s last day in attendance at work, except in cases of medical disability. Resignations must be accepted by the Library to be effective for benefit payment purposes. Generally, employees will be required to be at work on their last day and extended vacation or personal time will not be approved prior to separation from service.



Any employee absent from work without proper notification and authorization for three consecutive scheduled shifts shall be considered to have voluntarily resigned the position.



There is no mandatory retirement age from the Library.  Employees eligible for the Public Employee Retirement Fund (PERA) or other pension plans shall contact the pension system or City benefits officer for information on contributions and retirement qualifications.


Disciplinary Action

Following the process of progressive disciplinary action (refer to the Staff Handbook for details of this process), the outcome may result in the termination of an employee if his/her behavior is not modified as requested throughout the process.  There are, however, some incidents and behaviors that may cause immediate dismissal.  These include, but are not limited to:

  • Physical or verbal abuse and/or sexual harassment of a library customer or employee;
  • Theft of or deliberate damage to library property or the property of a library customer or employee;
  • Gross insubordination or misconduct, which may include off-premise conduct which is illegal;
  • Possession, distribution, sale, transfer, or use of alcohol or illegal drugs in the workplace, while on duty, or while operating Library-owned vehicles or equipment;
  • Falsification of library records
  • Possession of explosives or weapons in library facilities or vehicles.


Reduction of Funds or Services

Should there be a reduction in funds received for Library operations or the discontinuance of a service, it may become necessary to terminate the service of staff members. Notice shall be given as far in advance as possible to those employees affected by such action.


Section 9.  Employment of Relatives

As the Library maintains a small staff, the policy shall be that no members of the immediate family of a current employee shall be hired, unless that person is an outstanding candidate for the position and no other applicant could fulfill the position as successfully.  If an immediate family member is hired, it cannot be in a position where one family member supervises the other.  Any position that is to be filled by the immediate family member of a current employee must be approved by the Board first.  Staff who are employed by the Library prior to August 1, 2016 shall be exempt from this policy.  Should a staff member who is an immediate family member of another staff member apply for another position or promotion, the Director will make every attempt to change supervisory assignments so one does not oversee the work of the other.


  1. A Benefits for Full-Time Staff


The following benefits are only awarded to those who are employed by the Library full-time.


Section 1.  Health Insurance

Eligible employees participate in the City’s Health, Vision and Dental plans, following their requirements, documentation and timelines.  Questions regarding this benefit should be directed to the City’s benefits officer.


Section 2.  Public Employees Retirement Fund

Eligible employees participate in the Public Employees Retirement Fund (PERA) to receive pension benefits.  The Library and the employee contribute to PERA each pay period as determined by state law.  All eligible employees are under the provisions of the PERA and when applicable, the provisions of the federal Social Security Act.  For information about PERA eligibility and contribution requirements contact the City’s benefits officer.



Failure to promptly report work related injuries may result in disciplinary action up to and including termination of employment. Additionally, failure to promptly report an illness or injury that is related to work may result in the loss of Workers’ Compensation benefits.


The Library has the right to obtain a second medical opinion to determine the validity of an employee’s workers’ compensation claim, or to obtain information related to restrictions or an employee’s ability to work. The Library will arrange and pay for an appropriate medical evaluation when it is required by the Library.


Section 3.  Disability Insurance
Long-term disability insurance is provided to eligible employees on the first of the month following 30-days of employment.  For additional information, contact the City’s benefits officer.


Section 4.  Life Insurance

Through the City’s plan, the Library offers life insurance to eligible employees.  For details regarding the options, contact the City’s benefits officer.


Section 5. COBRA

The federal Consolidation Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (COBRA) gives employees and their qualified beneficiaries the opportunity to continue health, dental, and life insurance coverage under the Library’s plans when a “qualifying event” would normally result in the loss of eligibility. Some common qualifying events are resignation, termination of employment, or death of an employee; a reduction in an employee’s hours or a leave of absence; an employee’s divorce or legal separation; and a dependent child no longer meeting eligibility requirements.


Section 6.  Leave Accruals

Eligible Library employees earn vacation, sick, personal and paid holiday leaves.  Please see Part VI for details regarding all accruals and other types of leaves.



  1. B Benefits for all Library Employees


The following benefits are available for all library employees and volunteers (with the exception of Section 6 which is only for employees:


Section 1.  Workers Compensation Insurance

If an employee suffers from an illness or injury that is related to work, the employee may be eligible for workers’ compensation benefits. Workers’ compensation will pay for medical care and lost wages resulting from job-related illnesses or injuries.  If an employee becomes injured or ill through work, the employee is required to inform the supervisor immediately regardless of how minor the injury or illness might be. The supervisor will file the report with the Director, or Office Manager is the Director is unavailable, within ten calendar days; unless in cases of serious injury or death, notification must be received within 24 hours of the event.


Employees entitled to the benefits of the Workers’ Compensation Act, because of injury or illness resulting from employment by the Library, will be paid workers’ compensation insurance benefits and supplemented by the Library with the employee’s accrued leave balances to equal the employee’s normal rate of compensation.  The employee will be charged with any accrued leave for that portion paid by the Library only.  Employees are required to exhaust all sick, vacation, floating holidays, compensatory time, and personal leave accruals prior to the approval of unpaid leave.


Section 2.  Overdue Fines and Lost or Damaged Materials

Overdue due fines are waived for employees and volunteers.  If an item is lost or damaged, the employee or volunteer only pays the cost, not the additional processing fees.



Section 3.  Purchase New Materials

Employees and volunteers may purchase new materials through the Library’s vendors in order to get the library discount.


Section 4.  A Marshall-Lyon County Library Card

For those employees or volunteers who live outside Lyon County (or live in Minneota or Tracy), they are eligible to get a Marshall-Lyon County Library card, at no cost to the employee, which gives them access to those resources and services that are available only to Lyon County residents.


Section 5.  Access to Library Equipment

Employees and volunteers may have limited use of Library equipment and/or technology for personal use, such as copiers, printers and devices, without cost.  For details and limits, please refer to the Staff or Volunteer Handbooks.


Section 6.  Service Awards Programs

The Library participates at the invitation of the City and follows the Rules and Guidelines as set forth in the City Personnel Policy for this program.


The purpose of this program is to recognize and reward the services of employees at milestones in their careers through a uniform and consistent recognition program. The service recognition award acknowledges the length of service, in five year increments, beginning with the 5th year of service for each employee.


The City invites library employees to participate in the Annual City Employee Recognition event at a formal diner and service award presentation.



  1. Payroll and Working Conditions


Section 1.  Schedules and Hours of Work

The Director and supervisors are responsible for setting the schedules of all employees.  Full-time employees generally work an 8-hour day; part-time employees generally work shifts of 3 to 4 hours and stay within the scheduled amount of weekly hours.  There are exceptions to these norms and exceptions must be approved by the Director and/or supervisor.


If a non-exempt employee works longer than an 8-hour day, the Director must approve the shift of the schedule prior to the event and the hours must stay within 40 hours for the week.  Overtime and compensatory time are rare occurrences and may only happen with the explicit approval of the Director.


If full-time exempt, non-managerial employees work longer than a 40-hour week, they must shift hours in the two-week time period so no more than 80 hours are worked.  If more than 80 hours will be worked, the employee must have the explicit permission from the Director to do so.


Section 2.  Breaks

Each employee is allowed a paid 15-minute break during each consecutive four-hour shift worked, if working conditions allow.  Break periods may not be used to reduce the workday, unless approved by the supervisor or Director prior to the beginning of the shift. Employees must notify others working in the department of their break time. Employees leaving Library property must notify other staff members that they are leaving the property while on break.


Employees who work more than a six-hour shift are entitled to an unpaid work break of 30 minutes.  Employees who work an eight-hour shift may take an hour (unpaid) for lunch.  As with other breaks, meal breaks may not be used to shorten the workday or take longer than the specified time without explicit approval from the supervisor or Director prior to beginning the shift.


Section 3.  Timesheets

Accurately recording time worked is the responsibility of every employee.  [Time worked is all the time actually spent on the job performing assigned duties.]  Federal and state laws require the Library to keep an accurate record of time worked in order to calculate employee pay and benefits, as well as apply various insurance liabilities.  As such, timesheets are a legal document and should be treated that way.  Thus, employees’ signatures on their timesheets certify the accuracy of all time recorded.  Altering, falsifying, tampering with time records, or recording time on another employee’s time record may result in disciplinary action, up to and including termination of employment.


Employees should accurately record the time they begin and end their work, as well as the beginning and ending of each meal period.  They should also record the beginning and ending time of any split shift or departure from work for personal reasons.


If corrections or modifications are made to a timesheet after it has been submitted to payroll, the employee, supervisor and/or the Director must verify the accuracy of the changes by initialing the changes on the timesheet.


Section 4.  Holidays

In addition to those observances already acknowledged by the Library Board (see Part VI, Section 1), every reasonable effort will be made to accommodate employee requests for release from work to participate in additional bona fide religious holidays or services. Once approved, personal leave, vacation time, compensatory time, or, in the absence of any of these, unpaid leave may be used to cover such absences.


Section 5.  Emergency Closures

From time to time, emergencies may occur that result in the Library being closed for part or all of a workday.  The Director, or the designee in an absence, has the sole responsibility to decide when such a closure is necessary.  Please see the Library’s Inclement Weather and Emergency Closure Policy and the Staff Handbook for more details.


  1. Leave Policies


Section 1.  Holidays

The Library observes and closes for the following holidays:

  • New Year’s Day
  • Martin Luther King Day
  • Memorial Day
  • Independence Day
  • Labor Day
  • Veteran’s Day
  • Thanksgiving
  • Christmas Eve
  • Christmas

The Library is also closed on the Saturday prior to Memorial and Labor Days.  With the exception of Christmas Eve, if a specified holiday falls on a Sunday, the following Monday shall be observed as the holiday. When a specified holiday falls on a Saturday, the preceding Friday shall be observed as the holiday. For Christmas Eve, the holiday benefit only occurs when it falls on a day the library is open and does not shift to Friday or Monday. For purposes of calculating legal holidays and floating holidays, for Full-time employees each holiday is calculated in terms of eight working hours for a total of 72 hours of legal holidays and 16 hours of floating holidays.


In addition to the above-specified holidays an eligible employee shall be granted two floating paid holidays. One shall be for the Friday following Thanksgiving, since the Library is open that day.  Full-time staff shall work with their supervisor to take the Thanksgiving floating holiday during the time period in which the holiday falls.  The Director must approve using the Thanksgiving floating holiday any other time and it shall be taken before the end of the year.  The second floating holiday is for the employee’s birthday, but it may be taken any time during the year, with prior approval from his/her supervisor.  Neither floating holiday may be carried over to a new calendar year.


Section 2.  Vacation

Vacation time off with pay is earned by fulltime employees, with accrual occurring each pay period.  Annually, employees earn the following amount for years of service:

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A fulltime employee begins accruing vacation immediately, but employees in their initial six-month probationary period are not allowed to take vacation time until after successful completion of the probationary period.


All vacations must be arranged with the employee’s supervisor, with reasonable advance notice, and requests will be approved depending on staffing levels.  During certain periods, it may not be possible for more than one or two employees to take vacations simultaneously.  Employees are required to exhaust their vacation leave balance prior to approval of an unpaid leave of absence.


No more than one year’s accrual of vacation will be allowed to be carried for more than two months without the approval of the Director.  Supervisors will keep track of vacation accruals and will speak with those employees who are over their allotted accrual.  If vacation time is not scheduled, the employee may lose the hours above the allowed amount.


When a recognized holiday falls on a working day during an employee’s vacation, the day of the holiday will not be counted as a day of vacation.


An employee who terminates employment or is let go within the probationary period will not receive vacation pay upon termination.  An employee who terminates employment after successful completion of the probationary period will receive the accumulated vacation pay.



Section 3.  Personal Leave

Personal leave is time granted to employees to conduct personal business.  Eligible employees are provided twelve hours of personal leave each calendar year, with no carry over to the next calendar year.  The supervisor may authorize time off with pay for an employee to conduct personal business provided the employee requests the leave with reasonable advance notice.


Section 4.  Sick Leave

Sick leave is an authorized absence from work with pay, granted to fulltime employees. Sick leave is a privilege, not a right.  Employees are to use this paid leave only when they are unable to work for medical reasons and/or under the conditions explained below.  Employees are required to exhaust their sick leave balance prior to approval of an unpaid medical leave of absence except in the case of a long-term disability claim. Sick leave does not accrue during an unpaid leave of absence.


Full-time employees will earn sick leave at the rate of one day or 8 hours for each month of service and can accumulate up to 120 days or 960 hours at this rate.  Beyond 120 days or 960 hours, sick leave will continue to accumulate at a rate of 1/2 day or 4 hours for each month of service up to 1200 hours.


If at any time the accumulation drops below 120 days or 960 hours the employee will then accumulate one day or 8 hours for each month of service up to 120 days or 960 hours and then continue accumulating 1/2 day or 4 hours for each month of service up to 1200 hours.


When an employee reaches 120 days or 960 hours or more of accumulated sick leave and the employee utilizes sick leave time, it shall first be withdrawn from the 960-hour portion and not from total accumulated sick leave.


When an employee finds it necessary to be absent from work for any reason, the employee must report the absence to the appropriate supervisor prior to the start of his/her shift, unless there is a compelling reason that the employee is unable to do so.  In that case, the employee shall notify the supervisor within one hour of the beginning of the shift.  More details about the procedures for calling in sick are found in the Staff Handbook.


Employees may use accrued sick leave benefits for an absence due to illness or injury.  Sick leave may be granted when the employee is unable to perform work duties due to illness, injury, or disability, the necessity for medical, dental, chiropractic, or psychological care, for child birth or pregnancy disability, maternity or paternity leave, or exposure to contagious disease where such exposure may endanger the health of others.


Accrued sick leave benefits may also be used for absences due to an illness or injury to the employee’s child, adult child, sibling, spouse, parent, mother-in-law, father-in-law, stepparent, grandchild, and grandparent in accordance with Minnesota law (Section 181.9413).    For the purposes of this policy (7.1 Sick Leave) means a stepchild, biological, adopted, or foster child, either under 18 years of age, or under 20 and still attending secondary school.  Furthermore, upon the approval of the Director, sick leave use may be granted to attend to others not on this list.


An employee may utilize accrued sick leave for “safety leave” for reasonable absences for themselves or such relatives, as well.  Safety leave is leave for the purpose of providing or receiving assistance because of sexual assault, domestic abuse, or stalking.  Safety leave will be granted in accordance with MN law.


The Director may limit the use of sick and/or safety leave when it becomes excessive or the Library’s ability to function efficiently is compromised, unless the employee is on leave under FMLA.


After an absence of more than three consecutive days, a physician’s statement may be required on the employee’s first day back to work, indicating the nature of the illness or medical condition and attesting to the employee’s ability to return to work and safely perform the essential functions of the job with or without reasonable accommodation.  Any work restrictions must be stated clearly on a return-to-work form. Employees who have been asked to provide such a statement may not be allowed to return to work until they comply with this provision. Sick leave may be denied for any employee required to provide a doctor’s statement until such a statement is provided.


All employees, regardless of whether they accrue sick leave, are required to report their absence due to illness as laid out here and in the Staff Handbook.


For fulltime employees who began working for the Library prior to August 1, 2016, upon the death, retirement, resignation or disablement to the extent an employee can no longer work for the Library, the employee or his/her estate shall be compensated for unused accumulated sick leave in accordance with the following schedule:

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For those who begin work on August 1, 2016 or after, the above payout for sick leave stands except for resignation.  The Library will not pay out any sick leave if an employee resigns from a position if hired after this date.  Likewise, employees that are terminated from the Library due to disciplinary actions will not be compensated for any unused accumulated sick leave, regardless of hire date.


Section 5.  Bereavement

Employees who wish to take time off due to a death should notify their supervisor and the Director immediately. For family members, up to five days of paid bereavement leave may be provided. Employees requiring more time off may use sick leave, vacation or personal time, or unpaid leave. Family members include an employee’s spouse, domestic partner, parent or guardian, child or sibling; the employee’s spouse’s or domestic partner’s parent(s) and other in-law relationships, child or sibling; grandparents or grandchildren; step-parents and other step relationships; aunt, uncle, niece, nephew or cousin.  Moreover, the Director may give special consideration for paid leave in the event of the death of a person who had a close relationship with the employee.


In the event that an employee is required to act in an official capacity at the funeral of someone outside his/her immediate family, he/she shall be granted time off with pay to do so.


Section 6.  Pregnancy/Parenting Leave

Employees who work twenty hours or more per week and have been employed at least twelve months preceding the request are entitled to take an unpaid leave of absence under the Pregnancy and Parenting Leave Act of Minnesota.  Eligible employees for this leave are female employees for pre-natal care, or incapacity due to pregnancy, childbirth, or related health conditions, or a biological or adoptive parent in conjunction with/after the birth or adoption of a child.  The leave may not exceed 12 weeks, and must begin within 12 months of the birth or adoption of the child; except when a newborn remains in the hospital longer than the mother, the leave must begin within 12 months after the child leaves the hospital.


Employees must provide verbal or written notice to the supervisor of the date the leave is to commence and the estimated duration of the leave at least thirty days prior to the date on which leave is to begin, or if 30 days’ notice cannot be given, as much notice as practical.  Employees will be required to exhaust all other accrued leave balances, as applicable, prior to the approval of unpaid leave.


The employee is entitled to return to work in the same position and at the same rate of pay the employee was receiving prior to commencement of the leave. If eligible, group insurance coverage will remain available while the employee is on unpaid leave; however, the employee will be responsible for the entire premium unless otherwise provided in Library policies (i.e., where leave is also FMLA qualifying).  An employee granted an unpaid leave under this policy must make arrangements for the payment of the employee and employer’s contributions towards health insurance benefits with the City’s benefits officer.


If the employee has any FMLA eligibility remaining at the time this leave commences, this leave will also count as FMLA leave. The two leaves will run concurrently until eligibility for either leave expires.  This leave will be administered in accordance with the Minnesota Pregnancy and Parenting Leave Act.


Section 7. Bone Marrow and Kidney Donation Leave 

The Library will provide a maximum of forth (40) hours of paid leave to an employee who seeks to undergo a medical procedure to donate bone marrow or kidney. The leave requires approval by the Director. Employees requesting leave for bone marrow or kidney donation surgery are required to provide the Library with a physician’s verification for the purpose and length of the leave requested. FMLA leave will run concurrently with the leave for eligibility employees if the beneficiary of the donation bone marrow or kidney is the employee’s spouse or child as defined by the Family and Medical Leave Act.



Section 8.  Jury duty, court appearances, victim or witness leave

Fulltime employees will be granted paid leaves of absence for required jury duty. Such employees will be required to turn over any compensation they receive for jury duty, minus mileage reimbursement, to the Library in order to receive their regular wages for the period.  Employees taking vacation time, compensatory time, or floating holidays while on jury duty will not be required to turn over compensation received for jury duty.  Time spent on jury duty will not be counted as time worked in computing overtime.


Employees excused or released from jury duty during their regular working hours will report to their regular work duties as soon as reasonably possible or will take accrued vacation, personal leave, floating holidays, or compensatory time to make up the difference.  Requested paid leave time must be submitted in advance, in writing, to the appropriate supervisor.


If an employee must testify in court on Library-related business, the employee will be paid the regular rate of pay. Schedules shall be changed to accommodate the appearance, when possible.  If overtime hours are likely to occur, the Director must be notified prior to the event and give verbal or written consent.  Any compensation received for court appearances (e.g., subpoena fees) arising out of or in connection with Library employment, minus mileage reimbursement, must be turned over to the Library.


If an employee is subpoenaed or requested by a prosecutor to attend court for the purpose of giving non-Library-related testimony, he/she is entitled to reasonable time off from work to attend criminal proceedings related to the victim’s case. Employees with accruals may use vacation, personal time, floating holidays or compensatory time for requested time off.


Section 9.  Military Leave

State and federal laws provide protections and benefits to employees who are called to military service, whether in the reserves or on active duty. Such employees are entitled to a leave of absence without loss of pay, seniority status, efficiency rating, or benefits for the time the employee is engaged in training or active service not exceeding a total of 15 days in any calendar year.


The leave of absence is only in the event the employee returns to employment with the Library as required upon being relieved from service, or is prevented from returning by physical or mental disability or other cause not the fault of the employee, or is required by the proper authority to continue in military or naval service beyond the 15-day paid leave of absence. Employees on extended unpaid military leave will receive 15 days paid leave of absence in each calendar year, not to exceed five years.


Where possible, notice is to be provided to the Library at least 10 working days in advance of the requested leave. If an employee has not yet used his/her 15 days of paid leave when called to active duty, any unused paid time will be allowed for the active duty time, prior to the unpaid leave of absence.


Employees returning from military service will be reemployed in the job that they would have attained had they not been absent for military service and with the same seniority, status and pay, as well as other rights and benefits determined by seniority. Unpaid (i.e., not paid by the Library) military leave will be considered hours worked for the purpose of vacation leave and sick leave accruals.


Eligibility for continuation of insurance coverage for employees on military leave beyond 15 days will follow the same procedures as for any employee on an unpaid leave of absence.


This policy will be administered in accordance with the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act (USERRA).



Section 10.  Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA)

In accordance with the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) unpaid leave for certain family and medical reasons will be granted to all eligible employees for up to twelve weeks per twelve-month period with job protection and no loss of accumulated service provided the employee returns to work at the end of the leave.


Family and Medical Leave Act (“FMLA Leave”) provides for job-protected leave for the following reasons:


  1. Birth or placement of a son or daughter with the employee for adoption or foster care;
  2. To care for a spouse, son, daughter, or parent who has a serious health condition;
  3. The employee’s own serious health condition that makes the employee unable to perform the essential functions of the position;
  4. A qualifying exigency arising of the fact that the employee’s spouse, son, daughter, or parent is on active duty or call to active duty status in support of a contingency operation as a member of the National Guard or Reserves; or
  5. As a spouse, son, daughter, parent, or next of kin to care for a covered servicemember with a serious injury or illness.


In accordance with the law, the following definitions apply:


“Caring” for someone includes psychological as well as physical care. It also includes acquiring care and sharing care duties.


An eligible “son or daughter” is defined as a biological, adopted, foster, or step child, a legal ward, or a child of a person standing in loco parentis, who is under 18 years of age or is 18 years of age or older and incapable of self-care because of a mental or physical disability.


An eligible “parent” means a biological parent of an employee or an individual who stood in loco parentis to an employee when the employee was a son or daughter.


“Serious health condition” is defined in Federal law, but generally means an illness, injury, impairment, or physical or mental condition that involves inpatient care in a hospital, hospice, or residential medical care facility; or continuing treatment by a health care provider.


“Twelve-month period” is a twelve month period measured forward from the date the employee’s first FMLA leave begins.


Eligibility under FMLA

An eligible employee is one who has worked for the City for a cumulative period of twelve months and at least 1,250 hours during the twelve-month period prior to requesting the leave.


Length of Leaves of Absence under FMLA

The length of FMLA leave is not to exceed twelve weeks in any twelve-month period; except for a covered service member with a serious injury or illness, where an employer must grant an eligible employee who is a spouse, son, daughter, parent, or next of kin up to a total of 26 workweeks of unpaid leave during a single 12-month period to care for the service member.  FMLA leave will be taken simultaneously with all paid leaves provided by Minnesota state statutes or Library policy. The entitlement to FMLA leave for the birth or placement of a son or daughter expires twelve months after the birth or placement of that son or daughter.


Return to Work Under FMLA

The Library may require a medical certificate attesting to the employee’s fitness for duty at least one week prior to the return to work date. The fitness for duty report must be based on the particular health condition(s) for which the leave was approved and must address whether the employee can perform the essential functions of his/her regular job.


Job Protection under FMLA

Employees returning from FMLA leave will be reinstated in their former position or a position equivalent in pay, benefits and other terms and conditions of employment.


An employee’s reinstatement rights are the same as they would have been had the employee not been on leave. Thus, if an employee’s position would have been eliminated or an employee would have been terminated but for the leave, the employee would not have the right to be reinstated upon return from leave.


Special Provisions for Highly Paid Employees

Salaried employees who are among the highest paid 10% of the employees of the Library may be denied restoration to employment following FMLA leave if such denial is necessary to prevent substantial economic injury to the Library’s operations.


If the Library determines that such injury to the Library’s operations would occur, the Library will notify the employee is its intent to deny restoration.  An employee who is notified that this provision (i.e., denial of restoration to employment) will be applied to him/her may retain employment by not taking leave; or if already on leave, returning from the leave.


Effect on Benefits under FMLA

An employee granted paid or unpaid leave under this policy will continue to be covered under the City’s group health and dental insurance plans, the life insurance plan, and the AD&D insurance plan under the same conditions and at the same level of Library contribution as would have been provided had they been continuously employed during the leave period. If there are changes in the Library’s contribution levels while the employee is on leave, those changes will take place as if the employee were still on the job.


If the employee fails to return from unpaid FMLA leave for reasons other than the continuation of a serious health condition of the employee or a covered family member, (a re-certification is required within thirty days of failure to return to work), the Library may seek reimbursement from the employee for the portion of the premiums paid by the Library on behalf of that employee (i.e., employer contribution) during the period of leave.


An employee on an unpaid leave will not accrue vacation, sick, floating holiday, or personal time leaves.


Use of Accrued Paid Leave or Compensatory Time during FMLA Leave

Employees will be required to utilize paid leave balances to include personal leave, floating holidays, vacation, sick leave, and compensatory time concurrent with the FMLA leave.


Vacation and sick leave benefits will continue to accrue while on paid FMLA leave.  Only paid FMLA leave counts as continued service for purposes of PERA.


Records Retention under FMLA

Records on FMLA leave will generally be kept with normal payroll records or maintained separately as a confidential medical record in accordance with the law.


Failure to Return from FMLA Leave

Employees who cannot return from an approved FMLA leave at the end of the approved leave period may request an extension up to the maximum of the twelve weeks allowed under FMLA. If the twelve FMLA weeks have been exhausted, the employee can request to go on a leave of absence. If approved, before unpaid leave begins the employee must use all accrued sick leave, compensatory time, floating holidays, and vacation leave that remains in accordance with usual requirements for the use of such paid leave. If the leave is approved and unpaid, the employee will be required to pay the full cost of all group insurance premiums (i.e., life, health and dental) as provided under COBRA, in order to continue coverage.


Where FMLA is exhausted and a leave of absence is not approved or the employee fails to request additional leave, and the employee does not return to work, the employee will be considered to have voluntarily resigned. If circumstances beyond the employee’s control prevented the employee from requesting additional leave, a retroactive leave request may be allowed, subject to the Director’s approval.


The family and medical leave policy will be administered in accordance with the Family and Medical Leave Act with the aid of the City’s Human Resources Department.


Section 11.  Leave of absence

A period of leave time requested by any employee exceeding 15 workdays must be accompanied by a written leave of absence request. Upon request of an employee, a leave of absence with/without pay may be granted by the Director, only when it is in the best interest of the Library to do so.  All leave balances, except sick time, must be exhausted prior to approval of an unpaid, non-medical, leave of absence.  All leave balances must be exhausted prior to approval of an unpaid medical leave of absence and shall require a doctor’s certification as to the issue and limitations doing the required portion of the employee’s job.


Leaves of absence without pay should not exceed thirty days; and in no case, will leave without pay exceed 6 months.  No vacation, sick leave benefits, or length of service will accrue during an employee’s period of leave of absence without pay.  During an unpaid leave, the employee may continue insurance benefits with all expenses being covered by the employee.


All employees on approved leave of absence will be required to contact their supervisor two weeks prior to the agreed upon return to work date.  A return to work earlier than the scheduled termination of leave date may be arranged by the supervisor and the employee, with the approval of the Director.  An extension of the leave of absence may be considered if conditions change and warrant such a request.  The employee will notify his/her supervisor and the Director immediately if this occurs.  While on leave, any employee who does not comply with the terms of the approved leave of absence or does not provide timely and/or appropriate documentation will be considered to have voluntarily resigned.  Further, if, on the date following the expiration of the leave of absence, an extension is not requested and granted and the employee has not returned to his/her position, the employee shall be considered to have voluntarily resigned.


Section 12.  Professional Leave

The Library Board recognizes the importance of a well-trained and informed staff.  As such, the Director may grant paid time to employees to attend classes, training, conferences and other meetings that keep the staff up-to-date on technology and library practices.  Each request will be considered on an individual basis, based upon possible benefit to the Library, ability to reschedule said working hours to the Library’s convenience and a demonstrated ability of employees to effectively carry out the responsibilities of their positions.  The Director will approve all such requests.



VII. Employee Conduct and Standards


Section 1.  Employee conduct and work rules

The work of every employee is important. On-the-job performance has an effect on the employee’s success with the Library, as well as having an effect on the quality of service to the citizens of Marshall and Lyon County. Employees have a right to expect fair treatment and fair compensation from the Library. In return, employees are expected to work diligently toward providing high levels of public service.


It is not possible to list all the forms of behavior that are considered unacceptable in the workplace.  The following are examples of infractions of rules of conduct that may result in disciplinary action, up to and including termination of employment:

  • Theft or inappropriate removal or possession of property
  • Falsification of timekeeping records
  • Working under the influence of alcohol or illegal drugs
  • Possession, distribution, sale, transfer, or use of alcohol or illegal drugs in the workplace, while on duty, or while operating employer-owned vehicles or equipment
  • Fighting or threatening violence in the workplace
  • Boisterous or disruptive activity in the workplace
  • Negligence or improper conduct leading to damage of Library-owned or customer-owned property
  • Insubordination or other disrespectful conduct
  • Violation of safety or health rules
  • Smoking in prohibited areas
  • Sexual or other unlawful or unwelcome harassment
  • Possession of dangerous or unauthorized materials, such as explosives or firearms, in the workplace
  • Excessive absenteeism or tardiness or any absence without notice
  • Unauthorized absence from work station during the workday
  • Unauthorized use of telephones, mail system, or other Library-owned equipment or supplies
  • Unauthorized disclosure of confidential information related to business or customers
  • Manipulation of statistical data or records in the Integrated Library System (ILS)
  • Violation of personnel policies
  • Unsatisfactory performance or conduct


Section 2.  Progressive Discipline

The responsibility of the Library to maintain efficient operations may occasionally require taking disciplinary action against employees. The objective of progressive disciplinary action is to correct inappropriate behavior and produce efficient Library operations. However, failure of the employee, after multiple notices and chances to improve work and modify behavior, may result in suspension and/or termination of employment.


Library supervisors will work with all staff, employing coaching and counseling methods, to help an employee become more efficient and error-free in his/her tasks.  However, when this does not produce a noticeable improvement, or when employees break a work rule (such as those listed above), the supervisor, working with the Director and the City’s Human Resources office when needed, will launch progressive disciplinary action in order to see workplace improvement.  See the Staff Handbook for details on this process.


Section 3.  Attendance and punctuality

To maintain a safe and productive work environment, the Library expects employees to be reliable and to be punctual in reporting for scheduled work.  Absenteeism and tardiness place a burden on other employees and on the efficient functioning of the Library.  In the rare instances when employees cannot avoid being late to work or are unable to work as scheduled, they should notify their supervisor or the Director as soon as possible in advance of the anticipated tardiness or absence.  As poor attendance and excessive tardiness are disruptive, either may lead to disciplinary action, up to and including termination of employment.  See the Staff Handbook for more details on calling in.


Section 4.  Personal appearance

Employees are expected to maintain a level of personal appearance and grooming that is considerate of other employees and projects an image that inspires the confidence of citizens and others with whom the employee must associate in the course of work.  Thus, employees should dress appropriately when working with the public to convey a positive and professional image of both oneself and of the library, while remaining approachable to Library customers.


General rules related to appearance and grooming can be found in the Staff Handbook.  The Library Director will make the final decision if there is a dispute over what constitutes appropriate personal appearance.  If the Director determines that an employee’s attire is inappropriate, he/she will be required to go home to change clothes.  Employees will not be compensated for this time.


Employees are required to adhere to health, safety, and sanitation standards while at work.  Likewise, employees are required to wear a name tag identifying them as a member of the staff.  All staff will have a name tag furnished by the Library.  Para-professional, professionals and administrators will use their first and last name; clerical staff may opt to only use their first names.  Page staff and volunteers will use shared lanyards that identify them as working for the Library.


Section 5.  Personal use of Library equipment, materials, supplies and technology

No Library employee shall request, use or permit the use of any publicly-owned property, vehicle, equipment, labor, service or supplies (new, surplus, scrap or obsolete) for the personal convenience or advantage of the employee or any other person, except for that use which is generally available to the public or is incidental to appropriate staff development. No Library-owned property may be removed from the Library except for the purpose of conducting Library business.  No Library employee shall remove Library materials without proper checkout, change the standard loan period, remove materials not yet processed for circulation or waive replacement or damage fines for library materials circulated for personal use except as allowed to the general public.


Employees may use Library equipment such as the copier, fax and printers and related supplies for occasional and incidental use.  Should an employee use the computers, equipment or supplies regularly or excessively for personal use without prior approval of the Director, disciplinary action up to and including termination may occur.


Lengthy and/or frequent personal telephone calls and text messaging are not allowed while working. Employees’ voice mailboxes may be monitored.  No personal long-distance calls shall be made on Library phones.  Any charges that are found to be the responsibility of an employee shall be reimbursed.  The Director will decide if further action, such as disciplinary action, should be taken.


Computer terminals and workstations are provided to staff to further the services of the Library. During work hours, use of any Library computers or software, including electronic mail and access to the Internet, is limited to business and work-related use only. Personal use of computer hardware, software, networks, email, and the Internet is permitted only on breaks, lunch hours, and non-work time as long as such use does not interfere with other employees conducting Library business. However, staff should be aware that personal use of computers may not be as private as it seems.  Employee use of email and Internet may be monitored; email and Internet activity are considered Library property and can be considered part of the public record.  If the following banned activities are found to have taken place, disciplinary action, up to and including termination, may occur:

  • engaging in illegal, fraudulent, or malevolent conduct;
  • transmitting or storing material that is threatening, obscene, sexually explicit or disparaging of others based on race, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, age, disability, religious or political beliefs;
  • obtaining unauthorized access to any computer or data system;
  • using another individual’s account or identity without explicit authorization;
  • distributing or storing chain letters, solicitations (except for Library -, County- or City-sanctioned activities), offers to buy or sell goods, or other non-business material of a trivial or frivolous nature;
  • activity used for outside employment or other direct financial profit;
  • conducting political campaigns or other activity;
  • gambling for money or other stakes and/or playing games;
  • intentionally intercepting, eavesdropping, recording, altering, reading or receiving other employees’ e-mail without proper authorization;
  • spending significant amounts of time on social networking sites and/or playing games.


Section 6.  Personal use of personal equipment and devices while on duty

Employees may bring personal devices, such as a laptop, cell phone or tablet, to work.  As it is the responsibility of the Library to provide the appropriate devices and technology to staff, personal devices should not be used regularly to conduct Library business and no records, documents, or data, confidential or otherwise, shall be stored on a personal device.   Cell phones may be kept on a staff person, but should be silenced when on the public floor or desk.


Section 7.  Use of Library buildings and vehicles

Afterhours or weekend use of closed Library buildings by employees is not allowed without prior approval of the Director.   Employees are also not permitted to give their keys to others to use, regardless of whether the person is an employee or not.  No one who is not on the staff of the Library should be in any Library building without accompanying an employee when the Library is closed.


Any vehicle owned and operated by the Library may only be used for official library business and not personal benefit. Official business includes purchasing library materials and supplies, the transport of library property between library facilities and program locations, and the transport of library personnel (employees, board members, etc.) to conferences, workshops, and seminars.

An employee may be authorized to take a vehicle home providing it is more efficient and cost effective to the library for the employee to take the vehicle home at the end of the day than it would be to return the vehicle to the library for storage.  Staff who operate any Library vehicles must maintain a valid Minnesota driver’s license.  Please see the Staff Handbook for procedures and rules for operating the vehicle.


Section 8.  Smoking

All Library buildings, vehicles and property shall be designated as tobacco-free; meaning that the use of any and all tobacco products on Library property, facility or vehicle is prohibited.  This includes any vehicle owned, leased, rented, or maintained by the Library.


The use of tobacco products by employees during paid time is prohibited.  Employees who engage in the use of tobacco products may do so during unpaid time only (i.e. unpaid lunch break or outside of work).


Section 9.  Drug and alcohol use

It is the Library’s desire to provide a drug-free, healthful, and safe workplace.  To promote this goal, employees are required to report to work in appropriate mental and physical condition to perform their jobs in a satisfactory manner.  While on the Library’s premises and while conducting business-related activities off the Library’s premises, no employee may use, possess, distribute, sell or be under the influence of alcohol or illegal drugs.  The legal use of prescribed drugs is permitted on the job only if it does not impair an employee’s ability to perform the essential functions of the job effectively and in a safe manner that does not endanger other individuals in the workplace.  Violations of this policy may lead to disciplinary action, up to and including immediate termination of employment, and/or required participation in a substance abuse rehabilitation or treatment program.  Such violations may also have legal consequences.


Employees with drug or alcohol problems that have not resulted in, and are not the immediate subject of, disciplinary action may request approval to take unpaid time off to participate in a rehabilitation or treatment program. Leave may be granted if the employee agrees to abstain from use of the problem substance; abides by all Library policies, rules and prohibitions relating to conduct in the workplace; and if granting the leave will not cause the Library any undue hardship.


Section 10.  Workplace violence / Possession of weapons

Providing a safe work environment is essential to the Library. Acts or threats of violence against any Library employee will not be tolerated whether among employees or between one or more employees and the public. Any Library employee initiating a violent act against another Library employee or a member of the public will be subject to disciplinary action, up to and including termination.


Workplace violence includes any act of physical, verbal, written, or electronic aggression and/or intimidation within the work setting, as well as destruction or abuse of property.   All reports of violence shall be made to the employee’s supervisor or the Director; employees may make a report to the City’s Human Resources Manager as well.


No employee of the Library shall carry a weapon while on duty. Employees’ weapons are not allowed on Library property nor in an employee’s vehicle when parked on Library property or when conducting Library business. Issuance of a weapons permit does not exempt an employee from these provisions.  Any employee in violation of this policy will be subject to disciplinary action, up to and including termination.


Section 11.  Falsification and/or tampering with Library records

No employee shall falsify, change or tamper with Library data or records for the purpose of creating an advantage or disadvantage in a situation or for a person.  This includes a customer’s record in the ILS (including his/her own), statistic sheets and data collected or gathered.


Thus, Library staff will maintain a personal library card for checking out materials for personal use and be subject to all requirements and limitations of all other Library users (except for those items listed as an employee benefit).  Any exceptions to the Library’s circulation and other public policies must be approved by an employee’s supervisor or the Director.


For the use of materials related to conducting Library business (services, programs, etc.), employees may request a staff card.  The Director shall approve all staff cards prior to issuance.  See the Staff Handbook for rules pertaining to a staff card.


Section 12.  Conflicts of interest

No Library employee shall use his/her position for personal financial gain or the financial gain of family or friends.  No employee shall engage in his own business activity, accept private employment or render services for private interests when such employment, business activity or service is incompatible with the proper discharge of his/her official duties or would impair his/her independence or judgment or action in the performance of his/her official duties.  No employee shall use or disclose privileged or confidential information gained in the course of his/her position or activities.


Employees may engage in political activity provided that such activity does not interfere with normal work performance and is not conducted during normal working hours and does not involve the use of Library equipment or property.  Employees are specifically prohibited from directly or indirectly coercing any person to hold or contribute monetary or other types of assistance to any political candidate, party or purpose.


Finally, no employee shall solicit or accept for himself/herself or another person any gift, campaign contribution, gratuity, favor, services, promise of future employment, entertainment, loan or any other thing of monetary value from a person who has or is seeking contractual or other business activities from the Library.  This does not include acceptance of loans from banks or other financial institutions on customary terms of finance for personal use, such as home mortgage loans, the acceptance of unsolicited advertising or promotional materials, such as pens and calendars, and acceptance of an award for meritorious public or personal contributions or achievements.


VIII.    Continuing Education, Conferences and Travel


Section 1.  Continuing education and training

The Library encourages all employees to improve their job-related skills and abilities through various credit and non-credit training, education courses and workshops. Within the limits of the budget, the Library will contribute (although not always fully) to the expenses of employees attending training workshops or classes which have a significant relationship to their job responsibilities. Employees may be required to attend specified training, including in-service days and staff meetings where training is taking place.


The Library Director must approve any educational effort prior to the event if the Library is contributing financially to the effort and/or it takes place during normal working hours.  Consideration of the request will be based upon the direct benefit to the library, meeting needs identified in the strategic plan and through needs assessments with employees.


Section 2.  Professional conference and meeting attendance

Staff members are encouraged to become members of civic, educational and professional organizations. Whenever possible, employees will be authorized to attend meetings, conferences and conventions of professional library or library-related organizations on Library time. Within the limitations of the budget, the Library will contribute toward the expenses of its officially designated representatives at library-related meetings.


Section 3.  Business travel

The Library will reimburse employees for reasonable business travel expenses incurred while on assignments away from the normal work location. All business travel must be approved in advance by the Director, unless mileage is incurred as part of an employee’s regular duties.   [These type of mileage reimbursements shall be submitted regularly to the Office Manager and reimbursed at the IRS’ standard mileage rate for business.]


All travel requests must be made in writing to the Director and include the amount requested for reimbursement if the travel is approved.  Each request will be considered on a case-by-case basis, taking into account current budget allocations, what the travel is for, how many staff have requested similar travel and the impact on the Library both in terms of scheduling and what advantages there are to the Library attending a meeting or conference.


Each travel request that is approved will include what will be reimbursed for that particular request.  In general, the Library will pay for the employee’s time to travel and attend the meeting or conference (up to an 8-hour day for each day traveling or in attendance), the registration costs (if applicable) and the expenses occurred in traveling to and from the location (i.e., mileage, airline or train fares, etc.).   Other expenses incurred may be reimbursed, but will be dependent on a number of factors, such as the number of employees attending, what other meetings, conferences and educational opportunities are also to occur during the year and who will benefit the most by attending.  Other expenses that may be reimbursed include, but are not limited to:

  • Lodging
  • Public transportation and/or taxis in the host location
  • Access to business services such as wifi, fax, telephone calls, printers
  • Baggage fees
  • Car rental and/or shuttle, car or bus service

The Library shall not reimburse for any food or entertainment expenses.  Employees whose travel plans have been approved are responsible for making their own travel arrangements.   Employees are expected to limit expenses to reasonable amounts.


With prior approval, employees on business travel may be accompanied by a family member or friend, when the presence of a companion will not interfere with successful completion of

business objectives. Generally, employees are also permitted to combine personal travel with business travel, as long as time away from work is approved.  Additional expenses arising from such non-business travel are the responsibility of the employee.


When travel is completed, employees shall submit completed travel expense and attendance reports within thirty days. Expense reports must be accompanied by receipts for all individual expenses where practical and possible. Employees should contact the Office Manager for guidance and assistance on procedures related to travel arrangements, expense reports, reimbursement for specific expenses or any other business travel issues.


Abuse of this business travel expenses policy, including falsifying expense reports to reflect costs not incurred by the employee, can be grounds for disciplinary action, up to and including termination of employment.

Originally adopted 2001/2002. Current version adopted July 2016. Next review, July 2019.