The Iowa Library Trustee’s Handbook was published in 2003 and updated throughout in 2009. The new 2014 version reflects legislation passed in 2011 that required the former State Library of Iowa and the Iowa Library Service Areas to merge into one organization, resulting in Iowa Library Services. Library Development staff (comprised of the District Consultants and Learning Resource Technicians, and the Des Moines Consultants) work to make library service in Iowa the best it can be by offering services and programs for Iowa libraries.
Virginia Young, in The Library Trustee(1), states, “Trusteeship by definition is the agency of a person (or persons) designated to act as governor or protector over property belonging to another. Since a public library belongs to its entire community, library boards have been created by law to act as citizen control or governing body of the library. Library trustees accordingly are public officials and servants of the public, and the powers delegated to library boards are a public trust.”
Please note that the handbook was prepared as an educational resource and should not be used as a substitute for legal advice.
The purpose of the Iowa Library Trustee’s Handbook is to give trustees a basic understanding of their responsibilities and power. It contains useful, practical information about developing policy, the board/director relationship, funding, intellectual freedom, library laws and many other topics.
Library trustees are now and will continue to be confronted by both daunting problems and exciting possibilities. How trustees respond will determine the future of library services to the people of Iowa.
(1) Young, Virginia, The Library Trustee: A Practical Guide, American Library Association, Chicago, 1995: 10