Section B1 - Main Functions and Services
Section B2 - Organizational Structure
Section B3 - Library Hours and Holidays
Section B4 - Library Card Registration
Section B5 - Library Services Availability
Section B6 - Confidentiality of Records
Section B7 - Loan Periods and Guidelines
Section B8 - Fees
Section B9 - Interlibrary Loan
Section B10 - Request to Add to Collection and Remove Materials in Collection
Section B11 - Computer and Internet Use
Section B12 - Electronic Devices Use
Section B13 - Wireless Internet Use
Section B14 - Copyright and Copyright Violation
Section B15 - Displays, Bulletin Boards
Section B16 - Meeting Room Use
Section B17 - Security, Emergency, and Safety Procedures
Section B18 - Unattended Children
Section B19 - Volunteers
Section B20 - Animals in the Library
Section B21 - Advertising, Signage and Electioneering
The policies contained in this document deal with the relationship between the Library and its patrons or the community at large.
SECTION B1 - MAIN FUNCTION AND SERVICES OF THE BULVERDE/SPRING BRANCH LIBRARY
Section B1.1: The Bulverde/Spring Branch Library serves the population of western Comal County as shown on the Library Metes and Bounds.
Section B1.2: Main functions of the Bulverde/Spring Branch Library are to:
● function as a source of support for the preschool, school age children and adults of the Bulverde/Spring Branch area and Comal County
● serve as a center for independent and assisted learning
● provide a safe environment for patrons of all ages to explore new materials in a non-
● provide exposure to a wide range of authors, both fiction and non-fiction
● provide materials in various formats to accommodate multiple learning styles and
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Bulverde/Spring Branch Library is governed by a five member Board of Trustees of the Bulverde Area Rural Library District which is elected by voters of the Bulverde/Spring Branch library district service area. The Board in turn hires a Library Director who oversees the operations of the library and its staff. The Director also is in charge of hiring staff members and overseeing the volunteer program(s).
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Section B3.1: Library hours are set by the Board. See Attachment B-7.
Section B3.2: The holidays observed by the library are set by the Board. See Attachment B-7.
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Section B4.1: All residents of Texas are eligible and encouraged to receive a Bulverde/Spring Branch Library borrower's card. Service shall not be denied or abridged because of religious, racial, physical, social, economic or political status. Borrowing privileges must be updated annually in order to maintain accurate records. There is no charge for a borrower's card. Customers can receive one replacement card at no charge. A fee charge for subsequent replacement of lost cards will be set by the Director. See Attachment B-8.
Section B4.2: To receive a Bulverde/Spring Branch Library borrower's card, an application form providing the following information must be completed:
▪ show some type of photo identification (a Texas Driver's License, Student ID, military
ID, or employer ID
▪ show verification of current address such as checkbook, voter's registration card, a
utility bill, or mail with a recent postmark
Section B4.3: Non-residents who own property and pay taxes in Texas may receive a card by showing proof of payment of taxes. There are restrictions. They may checkout books and have access to on-line resources but may not check out equipment, CDs, or DVDs.
Section B4.4: Non-residents living in Texas on a temporary basis may obtain a library card for a fee (see Attachment B-8). To receive a non-resident library card, an application form must be completed and the following information provided:
● A picture ID with current residential address and
● Rental receipt from an “in district” landlord OR
● A postmarked letter showing current residency
Section B4.5: Patrons under 18 years of age may receive a borrower's card. A parent or guardian must have his/her own borrowing card in good standing and give permission for the child to borrow materials. The parent or guardian accepts full responsibility for the minor and any damaged or lost materials and fees.
Section B4.6: Any patron who loses his/her library card or has it stolen must report this loss to the library immediately. The library will reissue the card and take steps to ensure that no false use is made of the missing card. Until a card is reported lost, the patron is responsible for its use.
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Section B5.1: Services of the Bulverde/Spring Branch Library are available to all Texas residents. (See Section B4.3.)
Section B5.2: The use of the library or its services may be denied for due cause such as failure to return books or pay late fees, destruction of library property, disturbance of other properties or any other objectionable conduct on library premises. Failure to pay fees and return books may result in the loss of borrowing privileges. All fees must be cleared before a borrower's card can be renewed or replaced.
Section B5.3: Patrons will not be allowed access to library services if their fees exceeds an amount set by the Board, unless approved by library staff (see Attachment B-8).
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Section B6.1: The Bulverde/Spring Branch Library supports every patron’s right to have his or her library records remain confidential. These records include patron registration data, circulation records, overdue and reserve records, participation in library sponsored programs, records of library visits, use of internet including sites visited and any containing information linking specific patrons with specific materials or services used. The library will not provide patron information for commercial purposes.
The Bulverde/Spring Branch Library endorses the recommendations of the American Library Association's Policy on Confidentiality of Library Records (see Attachment B-9).
Section B6.2: Each patron has individual control over his or her borrower’s card and presentation of the card permits access to information about the borrower’s circulation record. When no longer needed for administrative purposes, records will be expunged.
Section B6.3: Personal records of patrons will not be disclosed unless:
The library receives an order from a court of competent jurisdiction, requesting the information because the merits of public disclosure clearly exceed the demands for individual privacy.
Patrons are advised that the library must comply with the provisions of the United States of America Patriot Act of October, 2001.
The information is at the request or consent of the individual who is the subject of the record or information.
The library needs to recover overdue, lost or stolen materials and to collect reparations. See Sections B7 and B8 below.
The information is needed for library administrative purposes. Patron records are available to library staff for use in conducting ordinary library business. Patron records may be shared with automation vendors in the normal course of database creation and management or to agencies using the information to collect outstanding fees.
Section B6.4: The BSBL will publish statistical reports regarding library registration and book circulation, but will not report any individual identification in the reports.
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SECTION B7 - LOAN PERIODS AND GUIDELINES
Section B7.1: Loan periods and restrictions on the number of items allowed per patron are posted in the library and on the library's website (http://bsblibrary.org/). The Director sets guidelines to allow equitable access to all patrons, encourage circulation and maximize the experience of each library user.
Section B7.2: All media must be returned with all cover art, booklets, inserts, and liner notes. All borrowed materials will be returned in the condition they were borrowed. Patrons will be assessed the full replacement cost for items not returned in their entirety. Patrons are responsible for all damaged and lost materials and a process fee set by the Director (see Attachment B-8) and will be assessed for all items declared damaged or lost.
Section B7.3: For a household with multiple cards, library services may be denied when the total of these cards exceeds the threshold set by the Director (see Attachment B-8).
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To offset labor costs and aid in replacing missing materials, the following policies will be observed:
Section B8.1: Overdue Materials Fees
Overdue material fees are set by Director (see Attachment B--8).
Section B8.2: Fees Notification
A first overdue notice will be given seven (7) days after the due date. A final overdue notice for the cost of the book plus accrued late fees and postage will be mailed 28 days after the due date. After 60 days the account will be sent to a collection agency if the fee exceeds the amount set by the Director.
Section B8.3: Failure to Pay
Failure to pay fees and /or return books after the final notice will result in the loss of borrowing privileges (see Section B7 above).
Section B8.4: Lost Items
All borrowed materials will be returned in the condition in which they were borrowed. A processing fee determined by the Director (see Attachment B-8) will be assessed for each damaged and/or lost item. If an item which has been lost and paid for is returned within 30 days of the time in which it was paid, a partial refund may be made less the late fees and processing charge.
Section B8.5: ILL Postage Fee
Patrons borrowing an Interlibrary Loan (ILL) item will be charged the cost of return postage.
Section B8.6: Faxing, Copying and Printing Fees
Fax transmission and reception charges as well as Oversea charges are set by the Director. Copy fees for black and white copies and prints, color copies and prints are set by the Director (see Attachment B-8). These are general guidelines. Exceptions may be made at the discretion of library staff.
Section B9.1: The purpose of Interlibrary Loan (ILL) is to expand the range and scope of materials available to patrons. Each item will be considered on a case-by-case basis, but the following policies will apply:
▪ Only patrons with valid Bulverde/Spring Branch Library card are eligible for ILL services.
▪ ILL will not be used for items already owned by the library , regardless of demand.
▪ Patrons may request new materials, including books, journals and magazine articles and
media items. There is no guarantee all requests will be filled.
Section B9.2: Purchase of materials and fulfillment of ILL requests are dependent on the availability of that item from other borrowing agencies. If library staff decide against purchasing the item, an Interlibrary Loan request may be filled.
Section B9.3: Library staff will contact the patron requesting the materials as soon as it arrives and is processed. Library patrons are fully responsible for all costs for overdue, damaged or lost items.
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Section B10.1: Library users may request books or other materials be added to the collection (see Attachment B-10 - Patron Request for Purchase).
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Section B11.1: Computers and the internet enable the Library to provide information beyond the confines of its own collection. Wireless internet access is available throughout the library building to eligible users who have the necessary devices and software, via an open, unsecured network. The Library is not responsible for damages to a patron's equipment as a result of patron's use of the Library computers or resources.
See Procedures for Computer and Internet Use (Attachment B-12). The Library reserves the right to terminate a patron's computer session if the patron is in violation of these procedures.
Section B11.2: The Library assumes no responsibility for any activities conducted by users of the Library's computers or by users of the Library's wireless network.
Section B11.3: The parent or legal guardian will determine a minor's access to the internet. Parents or guardians take responsibility for their child's internet use. Patrons under the age of 18 must have signed parental permission to use the unfiltered internet computers.
Section B11.4: All library records identifying the names of patrons with records of use of specific library materials and electronic resources are confidential in nature and will not be made available to any person or agency, including governmental authorities, except pursuant to authorized process, order or subpoena, according to law.
Section B11.5: Patrons may not modify or remove any Library equipment, or attempt maintenance on the Library equipment. Patrons must not attempt to circumvent Library computer session controls or security measures.
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Section B12.1: Patrons must have a library card for at least 30 days and be in good standing (no fines or lost materials) in order to check out laptops or e-readers or other electronic devices.
Section B12.2: Patrons must agree to and sign the Electronic Devices Registration Use Form (Attachment B-13) which includes the list of equipment in the case, the loan period, late fee, rates for damaged or lost equipment, collection and processing fee.
Section B12.3: Patrons are required to have a copy made of their driver's license or picture ID with address. The copy will be returned upon return of the equipment.
Section B12.4: The e-readers will be pre-loaded with books and patrons are not allowed to buy or add titles, materials, or applications for the e-reader.
Section B12.5: The loan period for the electronic equipment is two (2) weeks maximum with no renewals allowed as equipment must be serviced after each use. Another laptop or e-reader may be checked out, if available. There is a late fee per day set by the Director (see Attachment B-8).
Section B12.6: Upon return of the equipment, staff at the circulation desk will check over the equipment and review its condition before a patron's record is cleared.
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Section B13.1: Wireless internet access is provided free of charge by the Library for patrons who have the required hardware and software needed for this service. Use of this service is governed by the Library's Procedures for Computer and Internet Use (Attachment B-12). Use of the library's wireless service constitutes a patron's agreement with the terms and conditions of these procedures. The library reserves the right to terminate a patron's wireless internet session if the patron is in violation of these procedures.
Section B13.2: Wireless internet access is provided as a free public service on an "as is" basis with no guarantee of service . Users are responsible for setting up their equipment to access the library's wireless network. Library staff can provide general information or handouts to help patrons connect to the wireless network but will not provide technical assistance and will not assume any responsibility for personal hardware configurations, security, or changes to data file resulting from connections to the library's wireless internet network. It is recommended that users make a backup copy of any settings changed before configuring their equipment for use on the library's wireless network.
Section B13.3: All wireless internet users should have up-to-date antivirus software installed on their computers. As with most public wireless internet networks, the library's is not secure. Any information transmitted (including credit card numbers, passwords, and other sensitive information ) could potentially be intercepted by another computer user.
Section B13.4: Printing access is not available via the wireless network. If the user desires to print, the file can be saved to a flash/thumb drive or emailed and printed from a public computer in the library for a nominal fee per page (see Attachment B-8).
Section B13.5: Any attempt to circumvent library procedures or any unauthorized attempt to access or manipulate library equipment will result in permanent disconnection from the library's wireless network.
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Section B14.1: The Library recognizes the rights of the holders of copyright for materials and will not knowingly allow violation of the law either by staff or by the public. The Library uses as guidelines the Copyright Law of the United States of America and related laws contained in Title 17 of the U.S. Code (see http://www.copyright.gov/title17/92chapl.html).
Section B14.2: The Library recognizes the rights of patrons to use materials for personal use only unless public performance and /or broadcast rights have been obtained. These rights for Library materials are indicated in the catalog record.
Section B14.3: Under Copyright Law, illegal duplication or sharing of copyrighted materials is prohibited. Copyrighted materials may include, but are not limited to, all printed matter, audio recordings, video recordings, computer software, databases, and digital files that are owned or licensed by the Library, obtained through interlibrary loan, or downloaded from the internet. Warnings will be posted on or near all public equipment capable of reproducing or distributing materials including audio and video recorders, photocopiers, printers and computers. All materials produced by staff on behalf of patrons will carry a warning notice.
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Section B15.1: The Library provides space for library-sponsored or co-sponsored programs, displays, and activities of an informational, educational, cultural or civic nature. Religious, profit-making, politically partisan or merely social meetings do not fall within this co-sponsored category.
Section B15.2: All items to be placed on library bulletin boards or given as handouts must first be given to library staff, and will be posted if they fall within the above-mentioned guidelines. Items placed on the bulletin board will be dated and will be displayed no longer than two (2) weeks. Items place on bulletin boards without prior approval will be removed and discarded.
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Section B16.1: The Library's meeting rooms were designed to be used for the Library's own programs, and first priority will be given to Library sponsored programs. When a meeting room is not needed for library activities, it may be available for use by Texas-based nonprofit community entities and Comal County commercial entities. A nonprofit entity is a nonprofit corporation or nonprofit association. A commercial entity is organized solely for one or more of the purposes specified in Texas Business Organizations Code Chapter 2.002 (see Attachment B-14).
Section B16.2: The rooms may not be used by organizations for commercial purposes or which furthers anyone's individual goal or personal gain. The rooms are designed for activities such as club meetings, staff training, lectures, storytelling or other community events. Private social events for individuals are not permitted. Individual use of the meeting room for purposes of study or tutoring is not permitted. The Library does not discriminate in making its premises available on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, sexual preference, political affiliation, age, or physical limitation. The meeting rooms may be reserved by anyone over the age of 18, who holds a valid Bulverde/Spring Branch Library card in good standing. (See Attachment B-15 Meeting Room Policy and Attachment B-16 After Hours Meeting Room Policy.)
Section B16.3: An organization may reserve the meeting rooms for no more than two days per month. Space for a series of recurring monthly meetings, or other periodic meetings, should be requested as far in advance as possible and all meetings should be requested at the same time. Rooms can be reserved for recurring use for a maximum period of the current calendar year. Reservations for the next calendar year cannot be made prior to October 1 of the previous year.
Section B16.4: An application for use of the meeting rooms must be completed five (5) days in advance of the meeting date. The rooms will be assigned in the order in which requests are received. Meetings may not extend after closing time without special permission from the Library Director. (See BSBL website for Meeting Room Request Forms and Attachment B-17 and B-18.)
Section B16.5: The Library must be notified at least 48 hours in advance whenever a scheduled meeting is cancelled. If an organization does not use its reservation and does not cancel it properly on more than two occasions in a calendar year, they lose the privilege to reserve meeting rooms for a period of 12 months and the organization will lose its deposit. The cancellation notice does not apply if the cancellation is due to severe weather conditions or emergency library closure.
Section B16.6: With the exception of library sponsored programs or fundraising events to benefit the Library, groups using the meeting rooms are not permitted to charge registration fees or to require the purchase of an item as a condition of attending a meeting. Membership dues and voluntary incidental donations, such as coffee money, may be collected, but collection of these fees shall not be a requirement for attendance at any meeting held at the Library.
Section B16.7: Publications directly related to program events may be sold at such events if events are sponsored or co-sponsored by the Library or the Friends of the Library.
Section B16.8: Use of a meeting room does not imply endorsement, support or co-sponsorship by the Bulverde/Spring Branch Library of the activities that take place in the meeting room or of the beliefs of the group using the room.
Section B16.9: Neither the name nor address of the Library may be used as the official address or headquarters of an organization. In publicity materials, the Library cannot be listed as the sponsoring organization, but only as the "location site." All publicity about the program must state that the meeting is not sponsored by the Library.
Section B16.10: The room must be vacated at the agreed upon time. All food, beverages and equipment must be removed from the facility immediately following the event. Library staff is not available to assist with meetings, set up for meetings, clean up after meetings, or repair, operate or trouble shoot equipment, or rearrange furniture including tables or chairs. Library equipment will be furnished by the Library when available, however, organizations are welcome to use their own.
Section B16.11: The Library reserves the rights to limit or prohibit uses which represent a threat to the health or safety of library users, or the orderly use of the library. The Library has the option of canceling or rescheduling an organization's meeting date should the meeting room(s) be needed for a library sponsored program or event.
Section B16.12: Permission to use the Library meeting rooms will be denied to any organization and/or meeting whose purpose is illegal, whose conduct would interfere with the proper functioning of the Library, and/or whose activity does not have adult sponsorship.
Section B16.13: Security deposits are required from all organizations (except FOL) due at the time of reservation. Deposit fee per group is set by the Director and is more if the reservation includes kitchen use. (See Attachment B-19 Fee Schedule for Meeting Rooms.)
Section B16.14: Kitchen facilities are available but supplies are not provided. Non-alcoholic beverages and meals are allowed in the meeting rooms, if prior approval is obtained. Each organization is required to clean the kitchen and leave the room in order after use. Responsible parties will be billed for extra cleaning required as a result of food or beverages in the room. For major events (e.g. caterers, oven use) an additional charge will apply. (See Attachment B-20 Checkout Form for Meeting Rooms.)
Section B16.15: For and in consideration of the use of the meeting rooms and Library facilities, any person or group using the room agrees to indemnify and hold harmless the Bulverde/Spring Branch Library from any and all actions, suits, relating to its use of such rooms, equipment and facilities. Further, such person or group agrees to reimburse the Library for any and all costs for repair of any and all damage as may be caused directly or indirectly to the room and/or facilities by such use thereof. If any organization refuses to pay for the damage, the matter will be referred to the Library's attorney for legal action.
Section B16.16: If an organization is denied the use of a meeting room by the Library Director, the organization may appeal to the Library Board of Trustees at the next regularly scheduled monthly meeting. The Library Board shall issue a decision in writing to the complaining person or representative within ten (10) business days. The Library Board's decision shall be final.
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Section B17.1: Emergency Procedures
Procedures for fire, police, medical emergencies and inclement weather or natural disaster will be in place. Staff will be trained in implementing the procedures (see Attachment B-21 - Emergency Procedures).
Section B17.2: Inspection
The Bulverde/Spring Branch Library shall conduct annual and periodic inspections of its building, grounds, and equipment to ensure safety and security. Such inspections shall be the province of the Library Director and the entire library staff. These inspections should include the plans for emergencies in conjunction with the Texas Safety Culture Act (39-71-1501 through 39-71-1508 MCA).
Section B17.3: Safety Plan
The developed Safety Plan should include posted detailed evacuation plan and signs indicating shut-off locations for gas, electricity and water.
Section B17.4: Cooperation with Fire Department
With a floor plan and details of the safety inspection, the library will work with the Bulverde Fire Department on:
1. fire inspections
2. training in the use of fire extinguishers
3. drafting evacuation plans
4. evacuation and other fire drills
5. salvage and property recovery
Section B17.5: Cooperation with Law Enforcement Agencies
The library staff will work with Law Enforcement agencies in the area on personal safety and protection of property. If required, library staff will ask their help for:
1. dealing with problem patrons
2. opening and closing procedures
3. review of safety plan
4. theft of library materials
Section B17.6: Prohibition of Smoking
The Library is a smoke-free environment. Smoking in or on Library property is prohibited. This includes e-cigarettes, vaporizers and other nicotine delivery systems.
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Section B18.1: The care and behavior of minors visiting the library is the sole responsibility of the parent/guardian, and the library staff will not act in the place of parents. Parents and child-care providers assume full responsibility for the behavior of all children they bring to the library.
Section B18.2: Children up to age 9 may not be left unattended at any time. If a child is left unattended in the library near closing time, staff will first attempt to contact the parents or care-providers. If they cannot be contacted, staff will call the Library Director and Comal County Sheriff's Office and/or Bulverde Police Office.
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Section B19.1: Volunteers
Volunteers serve at the library without financial or benefited compensation. Volunteers represent the library to the public and therefore are subject to the same standards of behavior, conduct and dress as the employed staff. Volunteer handling and procedures are outlined in the Library’s Volunteer Guidelines. Volunteers can receive community service hours with their schools or other programs for the time they spend helping at the library. They are scheduled for certain days and times. (See Attachment B - 22-Volunteer Opportunities.)
Section B19.2: Friends of the Library
The Library collaborates with volunteer groups including the Friends of the Library. The purposes of the Friends of the Library, a non-profit, non-partisan corporation are to promote public use of the Bulverde/Spring Branch Library; to develop appreciation of its value as a cultural and educational asset to the community; to supplement library services and materials beyond the library’s normal operating budget, and to encourage the extension and improvement of its services. The corporation supplements the library’s mission to provide an environment that inspires a life-long love of learning with programs and activities that make available educational and cultural opportunities not normally accessible to members of the community.
Section B19.3: Appreciation of Volunteers
The Library values and appreciates the efforts of volunteers and will make efforts through the year to highlight or otherwise acknowledge volunteer contributions.
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Animals are not allowed in the library except for animals that are for library programs and service animals. Service animals are allowed in the library with a patron. A service animal is defined as an animal that has been individually trained to do work or perform tasks for an individual with a disability. The task(s) performed by the animal must be directly related to the person's disability. This does not include animals that provide comfort just by being with a person. If a service animal is out of control and the handler does not take effective action to control it, staff shall request that the animal be removed from the premises.
Section B21.1: The library may enact reasonable regulations concerning the time, place, and manner of advertising and signage. In order to preserve the landscape, wildflowers, and irrigation system of the Library, to ensure the public right-of-way, and to decrease traffic hazards--advertising and signage related to events and programs at the library are allowed but limited. Signs may be posted on library grounds outside the fence but not on utility poles, signs, retainer walls, or trees. See City of Bulverde policy at http://bulverdetx.gov/180/Signage.
The signage must be within two-feet (24 inches) of the curb or sidewalk so as not to trample wildflowers or seeds. Signs are limited to a maximum of two (2) per group/individual. Size of signs should not exceed 6 square feet, and must be made of lightweight material, be easily removable, and be removed within 24 hours after the event.
Political and legislative advertising (including magnet signs on the side of vehicles) are not allowed within 100 feet of the Library in which a polling place is situated during early voting and election times. [See Texas Government Code § 305.027(e)].
Section B21.2: The library may enact reasonable regulations concerning the time, place, and manner of electioneering. No electioneering is allowed within 100 feet of an outside door through which a voter may enter the library. See Texas Election Code Title 6, Chapter 61.003 and Chapter 85.036.
Outside the 100 feet boundary electioneering is not allowed on driveways or drive-throughs of the library to ensure public safety and is limited on the grassy areas and hillsides to within two (2) feet of curb or sidewalk in order to preserve grass, wildflowers, and seeds.