Expressive Use Areas

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Expressive Use Area locations:

Central Library (Lower Level & Upper Level) | Mariners | Balboa | Corona del Mar

The City of Newport Beach Libraries have been designed and are operated for the purpose of meeting the educational, cultural and literary needs of Newport Beach residents. The library has received requests from the public to engage in Expressive Activity such as soliciting signatures for ballot initiatives, distributing leaflets or flyers, or providing information, on matters of community interest. The Board of Library Trustees recognizes the public’s interest in communicating with library customers in a manner that does not obstruct or interfere with the customers' desire to use the library facilities and grounds for quiet reading, research, and contemplation.

The Board of Library Trustees desires to adopt reasonable regulations:

  1. To accommodate the public’s desire to engage in Expressive Activity outside City Libraries and on City Library grounds in a manner compatible with Library purposes;
  2. To protect Library customers’ rights to access and use City Libraries and library grounds for their intended purposes;
  3. To maintain City Libraries and library grounds in a manner that is without visual clutter, which may detract from or  be incompatible with the design of the Library, and use of library grounds;
  4. To maintain safe and convenient circulation for customers with walkway access directly into City Libraries and Library grounds without obstruction or interference, and
  5. To comply with the State and Federal Constitution and interpretive case law so as to allow for Expressive Activity in a manner which is compatible with the intended purpose of City Libraries without suppressing speech on the basis of content.

THEREFORE, the Board of Library Trustees adopts the following rules and regulations for Expressive Activity at City Libraries:

  1. All persons desiring to use the Expressive Activity Area shall report to the Library Services Director or designee prior to use.
  2. Expressive Activity inside City Libraries is prohibited. All Expressive Activity outside City Libraries, on library grounds shall be limited to the designated Expressive Activity Area shown in the attached Exhibits "A", “A2”, "B", "C" and "D".
  3. Only one (1) chair and one (1) small table, not to exceed three feet by three feet (3’ by 3’), are permitted. No other tables, chairs, umbrellas, or other furniture are permitted.
  4. Posters not to exceed six square feet in size are permitted so long as posters are held by a person or placed on, leaned against or hung from the permitted table.
  5. The benches, bike racks, public telephones and book drops located within the library grounds are intended for library customer use only. Access to the use of City Libraries and library grounds by customers shall not be obstructed in any manner.
  6. Loud talking, shouting, or yelling in a manner that is unreasonably disruptive to use of City Libraries and Library grounds by customers and other person(s) is prohibited. Person(s) using the Expressive Activity Area shall not approach customers outside the designated area.
  7. Commercial activity is prohibited. No peddlers or vending of any merchandise or services is permitted.
  8. Banners may be hung on the Library façade to publicize Library and Library affiliated group events only. They must be hung by City personnel, cannot exceed eleven feet ten inches by four feet (11’ 10” by 4’) with nine (9) grommet holes in the top.  Banners can be hung no more than five (5) days before the event and must be removed the day after the event.  All banner designs must be submitted to the Library Services Director for approval at least six (6) weeks prior to the event.

Final Approval by the Board of Library Trustees on December 15, 2014

Adopted November 16, 1999

Revised 3-18-03

Revised 8-17-04

Revised 2-06-12