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 Use 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 patrons in a manner that does not obstruct or interfere with the patrons' desire to use the Library facilities and grounds for quiet reading, research, and contemplation.
The Board of Library Trustees desires to adopt reasonable regulations:
- To accommodate the public’s desire to engage in Expressive Use outside City Libraries and on City Library grounds in a manner compatible with Library purposes;
- To protect Library patrons’ rights to access and use City Libraries and Library grounds for their intended purposes;
- 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;
- To maintain safe and convenient circulation for patrons with walkway access directly into City Libraries and Library grounds without obstruction or interference, and,
- To comply with the State and Federal Constitution and interpretive case law to allow for Expressive Use 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 Use at City Libraries:
- All persons desiring to use the Expressive Use Area shall report to the Library Services Director or designee prior to use.
- Expressive Use inside City Libraries is prohibited. All Expressive Use outside City Libraries, on Library grounds shall be limited to the designated Expressive Use Area shown in the attached Exhibits "A", “A2”, "B", "C" and "D".
- 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.
- 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.
- The benches, bike racks, public telephones and book drops located within the Library grounds are intended for Library patron use only. Access to the use of City Libraries and Library grounds by patrons shall not be obstructed in any manner.
- Loud talking, shouting, or yelling in a manner that is unreasonably disruptive to use of City Libraries and Library grounds by patrons and other person(s) is prohibited. Person(s) using the Expressive Use Area shall not approach patrons outside the designated area.
- Commercial activity is prohibited. No peddlers or vending of any merchandise or services is permitted.
Adopted November 16, 1999
Revised March 18, 2003
Revised August 17, 2004
Revised February 6, 2012
Amended and approved by the Board of Library Trustees on December 15, 2014
Amended and approved by the Board of Library Trustees on September 17, 2018
Amended and approved by the Board of Library Trustees on September 21, 2020
Amended and approved by the Board of Library Trustees on September 19, 2022
This Policy will be periodically reviewed by the Board of Library Trustees on the first to occur of (i) as circumstances may require or (ii) every two years from the date of adoption, last amendment, or last review. Adopted, last amended, or last reviewed on September 19, 2022.