Donation & Gift Policy

General Regulations

In general, the Dickinson Area Public Library welcomes gifts of money, books and other materials, equipment, works of art, documents, photographs, or property of any kind that promotes the mission of the Library.

The Library reserves the right to refuse any gift that the Library Board, in its sole discretion, deems to be not in the best interests of the Dickinson Area Public Library to accept.  If a gift is accepted by the Library, the gift shall be final; no restriction on the Library’s ownership, possession, use, or disposition of the gift shall be effective other than restrictions approved by the express vote of the Library Board.

The Library will provide a timely, written acknowledgement of the receipt of gifts to the donor and, if desired, to a recognized individual or organization. Income tax regulations leave the determination of the gift’s monetary value to the donor. Donors wishing to have an appraisal of their gifts for income tax purposes should have that done prior to donation.

Gifts of Materials

The Library gladly accepts donations of books and A/V materials, with the understanding that they are subject to the same criteria for inclusion in the collection as purchased materials.  The Dickinson Area Public Library reserves the right to accept or dispose of any gift through inclusion in our collections, transfer to another library, transfer to the Friends of the Library organization for inclusion in their sales or for charitable donations, or to discard them. 

Items that will not be accepted for donation include:  issues of periodicals, items that are moldy or foul-smelling, items that are visibly water damaged, and items in poor physical condition.

Monetary Gifts

The Library accepts monetary donations without conditions on their use or for projects previously approved by the Board.  Such money is deposited in the library account for future expenditure by the Board. 

Donations will also be accepted for the purpose of purchasing library materials consistent with the Library’s Selection Policy.  Such money is deposited in the library account for expenditure by the Collection Development Librarian.

Public acknowledgement of monetary gifts is at the discretion of the Library Board.


The Library actively encourages donations as memorials and as tributes to living individuals on special occasions.  Such acts provide the Library with an opportunity to add materials or equipment which it might not otherwise be able to afford.  These donations also provide individuals with a rich opportunity to honor loved ones with a lasting statement of admiration and respect. 

Memorials and tributes are accepted in the form of monetary donations to the Dickinson Public Library Foundation or the Friends of the Library organization.  These opportunities include, but are not limited to pavers in the Friends of the Library plaza or plaques in the library or the Friends of the Library bookstore.  Contact the library for more information regarding memorials given through the Library Foundation or the Friends of the Library. 

Memorials for the purchase of materials will be accepted directly by the Library.  The Library will make every effort to honor the donor’s wishes regarding the selection to be purchased.  However, the final decision rests with the Library in accordance with its needs and selection criteria.  Bookplates will be placed in items purchased with memorial and tribute gift funds.  Each bookplate will record the honoree.  The Library will send letters to notify all parties of the gift. 


In general, gifts of art objects shall be of local interest to the community, of a professional quality, well executed, and in good condition. As with all other gifts, art objects will be accepted only with the donor’s full agreement that the Library has the right to handle or dispose of the gift in the best interests of the institution.

Because of the Library’s limited display and storage areas and focus on its primary mission as a library and not a museum, potential donors of art and decorative objects are requested to discuss any possible gifts with the Director and the Library Board.   Gifts that require extensive, regular special care or conservation will not be accepted.

The following points will be considered by the Library before accepting a gift of this kind:

  • Will it fit comfortably into the space available?
  • Is the object appropriate to Library objectives or would it be better elsewhere?
  • Will it cost more to accept the gift than it is worth to the community?  Costs that must be weighed may include:  insurance, restoration, display, maintenance, storage, etc.
  • Is it generally acceptable to the Board?

No such gift will be accepted, unless it is freely given and with the agreement that the Library may dispose of the gift as it sees fit (including selling it, discarding it, or giving it away) and store the gift or move it to various locations. 

All gifts shall be acknowledged with a personal note from the Director to the donor.

Miscellaneous Gifts

The decision as to the acceptance of furnishings, appliances, equipment or other miscellaneous items shall be made by the Library Board on the advice of the Director.  Criteria influencing the decision include need, space, impact on staff, and expense and frequency of maintenance.

 The decision as to the acceptance of all other gifts not previously addressed in this policy shall be made by the Library Board on the advice of the Director. 

Approved by the Library Board  March 13, 2018