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Rules Governing the Use of the Library

The Olean Public Library is to be used for library purposes only. Any behavior that interferes with such use or that is not consistent with such use is not permitted. Any person not abiding by these rules and regulations of the library may be required to leave the library building and grounds and may forfeit their library privileges. Library employees will contact the Olean Police, if necessary, to ensure the safety of library patrons and staff. A patron whose privileges have been denied may have the decision reviewed by the Board of Trustees.

  • Patron identification, such as name, address and phone number may be requested.
  • Large bags, backpacks, suitcases or other containers are not permitted in the library unless the patron voluntarily agrees that these items may be searched.
  • Each patron is responsible for any fines, fees or other charges due in accordance with the library’s standard schedules. Failure to pay these fines may result in the suspension of library privileges.
  • The library telephone is to be used for library business only. Phone calls that are deemed to be an emergency will be made by staff.
  • Polite cell phone use is allowed in the library. Turn phones to “silent” mode and speak in a manner that will not disturb others.
  • Food and beverages are allowed on a limited basis. Please refer to the Library’s Food and Drink Policy. Patrons are responsible for cleaning up after themselves.

The following behavior is not permitted because it interferes with the use of the library by others, is a health hazard, or is not consistent with the mission of the library. A patron engaging in any of the following behaviors may be prohibited from Library grounds:

  • Patrons cannot be under the influence of alcohol or drugs in the library building or on library grounds.
  • No blocking entrances, exits or library aisles so that access to library materials and services is prevented.
  • No entering employee workspaces or office areas without authorization.
  • No loitering in the library building or on library grounds. For the purposes of this policy, loitering is defined as lingering in the library or on library grounds without any obvious purpose and where the behavior is disruptive and/or inappropriate to the purpose of the library and its use by others.
  • No soliciting of any kind in the library building or on library grounds.
  • No weapons of any kind are permitted in the library.
  • No displaying print or non-print materials of an offensive nature to others.
  • No singing, talking loudly or playing audio equipment so that others can hear it or behaving in a manner that can reasonably be expected to disturb others.
  • No presenting offensive and/or pervasive odors which are disturbing to others.
  • Smoking, vaping, or use of electronic cigarettes is not allowed in the library building or on library grounds.
  • No pets or animals other than service animals are allowed in the library.
  • No entering the building without a shirt and shoes.
  • No using rollerblades, roller-skates, skateboards or other sports equipment in the library building or on library grounds.

The following behavior is not allowed and will result in criminal charges, and the patron may be prohibited from Library grounds:

  • Engaging in any illegal activity while in the library building.
  • Loud, abusive, aggressive, threatening, violent or obscene language and/or behavior (Disorderly Conduct- NYS Penal Law Section 240.20).
  • Destroying or damaging library books, library materials, furniture or other property (Criminal Mischief- NYS Penal Law Section 145.00)
  • Using or distributing drugs (Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance- NYS Penal Law 220.03, 220.06)
  • Theft of library materials or circumventing or attempting to circumvent the library security system (Petit Larceny- NYS Penal Law Section 155.25)
  • Tampering with, altering, editing or damaging computer hardware and/or software (Computer Tampering- NYS Penal Law Section 156.20)


–Adopted May 20, 2009; amended September 21, 2016 & January 16, 2019