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Gifts and Donations

Article I: Introduction.

Donations that further the mission of the Cook Memorial Public Library District (“Library”) are encouraged and welcomed by the Library Board of Trustees (“Board”). Such donations are managed in accordance with 75 ILCS 16/30-75 and the Uniform Prudent Management of Institutional Funds Act, 760 ILCS 51/1, et al. The Library reserves the right to decline any donation that the Board, at its sole discretion, deems to be not in the best interests of the Library to accept.

Article II: Monetary Donations.

Section 1: Management of Funds.

All monetary donations shall be managed and invested by the Board pursuant to the standard of conduct set forth in 760 ILCS 51/3. Should the Board decide to delegate its management and investment functions, such delegation shall conform to the standards set forth in 760 ILCS 51/5.

Section 2: Restricted Donations.

The Library accepts monetary donations, bequests or memorials with conditions on their use provided that the specific use requested is consistent with the mission of the Library. Such money is usually deposited in the Trust Account for future expenditure by the Board. Such money will be deposited in the General Fund if the money is to be used for a previously budgeted item or to reimburse the Library for a purchase already made from the General Fund.

Section 3: Library Materials.

The Library accepts monetary donations for the purpose of purchasing Library materials consistent with the objectives of the Library collections. Money that is donated is deposited in the Trust Account for expenditure by the Library Director.

Section 4: Unrestricted Donations.

The Library accepts monetary donations without restrictions on their use. Such money is deposited in the General Fund for expenditures during the fiscal year or transferred to the Special Reserve Fund if unexpended.

Article III: Donations of Library Materials.

The Library accepts donated materials as storage space permits with the understanding that they may be disposed of in a manner most convenient to the Library if the materials are not added to the collection. Materials not accepted may be donated to other institutions, offered on an equal basis to the public through the Friends of the Library book sale, or discarded. The Library issues a receipt for donated materials but does not establish a monetary value for the donation. The decision to add an item to the collection rests with the Library Director or designee.

Article IV: Donations of Decorative or Display Objects.

Section 1: Criteria for Accepting Gifts.

The Library has stated responsibility for educating, enriching and inspiring. These responsibilities are reflected in Library services, collections, the design of the Library and the utilization of decorative and display objects within the Library. In keeping with these responsibilities, the Library will avoid the installation of permanent displays or artistic decorations, in favor of rotating displays and works of art that will serve to stimulate and renew interest. The following points must be considered by the Library before accepting a gift of this kind:

  1. Evaluation of the object itself will be based upon several considerations:
    1. Does it conform to the general design of the building?
    2. Will it fit comfortably into the space available?
    3. Does the object make optimum use of the space available?
    4. Is the object appropriate to Library objectives, or would it be better elsewhere?
    5. Will it cost more to accept the gift than it is worth to the District?
      1. Cost of insurance
      2. Cost of restoration
      3. Cost of display
      4. Cost of material and labor maintaining the gift
      5. Cost of disposing of it or storing it.
    6. Is it generally acceptable to the Board?
  2. No gift will be accepted by the Library unless it is freely given to the extent that the Library may:
    1. Dispose of the gift as it sees fit (selling it, discarding it or giving it away, etc.)
    2. Store the gift or move it to various locations.

Section 2: Procedure for Accepting Gifts.

Initial evaluation of the gift to determine its usefulness to the Library will be made by the Resources, Services and Long-Range Planning Committee of the Board. The Library’s gift policy will be explained and if both the Library and the donor wish to continue negotiations, authorities may be consulted to determine the merit of the gift.

The final determination of the acceptability of all such gifts lies with the Board. The Library will not place a monetary value on any gift, since it will not be recognized as expert by the Federal Government. Once a gift is accepted, a Gift Acknowledgment Letter will be sent on behalf of the Board to the Donor.

Article V: Sponsorship.

The Library welcomes sponsorship of programs from individuals and groups including but not limited to businesses and service organizations. Sponsors must be approved by the Board and the Library Director. Sponsorship is a type of restricted monetary donation as described in Article II, Section 2.

Section 1: Sponsorship Opportunities.

$ 500 Individual Programs

$1,500 Film Series

$1,500 Book Discussion Series

$1,500 Storytime Series

$5,000 Summer Reading Program

A statement of the sponsor’s name and a display of its logo, if applicable, will appear on the Library’s promotional materials for the sponsored program and a verbal announcement will be made at the beginning of the program.

Article VI: Naming Guidelines.

Section 1: Library Building.

At the discretion of the Board, the naming of a Library building may be considered in the event of an extraordinary contribution for a Library building project. The entity known as the Cook Memorial Public Library District shall not be subject to naming, but the building housing the Library may be so named. Such naming shall only be considered for an individual or family.

Section 2: Endowment Funds.

Named Endowment Funds are intended for the continued support of the Library. The Board shall appropriate for the expenditure or accumulation of all Endowment Funds pursuant to the standard of conduct set forth in 760 ILCS 51/4.

These named Funds will be established in perpetuity with the income used for the annual operation of the Library. The principal remains intact. A named endowment may be requested by the donor or proposed by the Board with permission of the person or corporation to be named. The request shall be evaluated by the Board for approval. Fifty-one (51) percent of the minimum amount must be physically secured by the Library before the Library Director recommends the establishment of the named Endowment Fund. The remainder must be pledged and received within five (5) years. In the event that the flow of funds agreed upon does not reach the named amount within five years, the Library Director may recommend to the Board that the named Endowment Fund be dissolved and the funds be co-mingled with other Library gift monies. A minimum of $50,000 is required for Board consideration for a named endowment.

Section 3: Named Rooms and Special Use Areas.

Generally, only meeting rooms and designated special use areas shall be named for an individual, family, foundation or corporation. The naming of such a space generally requires a contribution of a percentage of the cost of the area in proportion of the total cost of the facility or the project for the facility but valuations may be assigned to naming rights possibilities on a case-by-case basis to aid with making decisions about granting naming rights. The proportion shall be determined by the Board who may take advice from such persons or other professionals as needed. Each case may take into account market comparisons for naming rights, for which professional advice may be sought. The Board shall be responsible for determining the manner in which the name is recognized (e.g., signage). The physical display of the naming rights may be decided or negotiated on a case-by-case basis. The Board may consider honorary naming rights for named rooms and special use areas to honor the service, commitment or other type of participation by an individual, civic or charitable group.

Section 4: Name Recognition.

Name recognition for a non-public room, or area inappropriate for naming, may be used to recognize a donor by a conspicuously displaced placard.

Name recognition may be the name of an individual, family, foundation or corporation making a contribution in proportion of the total cost of the facility. The proportional cost shall generally be less than a named or titled room and that amount shall be determined at the time of the project by the Board.

Section 5: Eligibility for Corporate Naming and Name Recognition.

Corporations that are compatible with the Library’s mission and reflect a positive influence on the Library may be eligible for naming or name recognition for all naming opportunities, except for the naming of the Library building. Such corporations must have a high ethical standard of business practice. Corporate logos will be excluded from signage and placards to avoid appearance of commercial influence.

Section 6: Duration of Name Recognition.

The duration of naming rights may be decided or negotiated on a case-by-case basis, but generally, donations under $10,000 carry naming rights or name recognition for 10 years. Donations from $10,000 to $100,000 carry naming rights or name recognition for 20 years. The duration of naming rights, including honorary naming rights, or name recognition for donations of $100,000 or more will be determined at the time of donation. The Library reserves the right, at its sole discretion, to terminate naming rights without refund of consideration, prior to the scheduled termination date, should it believe it is necessary to do so to avoid the Library being brought into disrepute.

Naming opportunities do not extend beyond the useful life of the spaces or facilities within which they are located. The naming or name recognition of a Library facility, room or special use area may also end under the following circumstances:

  1. A building, room, or special use area is drastically altered through construction or is to be demolished.
  2. A building, room, or special use area changes function to the extent that the purpose for the naming or name recognition is no longer relevant.
  3. If the individual or corporation is engaged in activities that are in conflict with the Library’s mission and values, or is involved in disreputable or criminal activities that would bring dishonor and embarrassment to the Library.

Naming rights may be renewed by mutual agreement between all of the parties.

Section 7: Naming Agreements.

All agreements for naming through philanthropic gifts shall be documented in a contract between the donor and the Board. Contracts shall detail the terms of the agreement in accordance with the terms of the naming policy and any conditions mutually agreed upon by the donor and the Board.

In the case of pledged donations or deferred gifts, the naming agreement may take effect with the first payment. In the case of failure of the donor to uphold the agreement, the Board may withdraw the naming commitment. The Board shall notify the donor regarding the consideration to withdraw the name and provide a reasonable time to correct the deficiency. In the event of removal of the naming, funds already collected shall not be returned to the donor.

The named party after whom a building or part of a building is named shall have no rights to the purpose to which that building or part of the building is applied unless provided for in a specific contract between the parties. The Library will not agree to any conditions in a contract that could unnecessarily limit progress towards the Library’s mission and plan or its statutory and legal obligations.

Section 8: Informed Consent and Transferability.

The Library will not grant any naming rights without the informed consent of the named party or the named party’s legal representative. Naming rights may only be transferred to any other named party by mutual agreement between all of the named parties and the Library.

Article VII: Gifts of Real Property.

Section 1: Policy Statement.

This portion of the policy sets forth the procedures which the Library shall follow to accept title to gifts of real property, including unimproved and improved land. The policy is intended to safeguard the Library against accepting gifts of real property that are difficult to manage or are encumbered with defects that could put the Library at risk once the Library is in the chain of title. In addition, the Library must be sensitive to the long-term cost of owning the property, including the distribution of maintenance money. Gifts of real property may be outright gifts, bargain sales (i.e., part sale/part gift transactions) or part of a charitable life income plan (i.e., a gift held in trust with a life income to the donor). It is the general policy of the Library not to accept partial or fractional gifts in real property except for the situations where acceptance of such an interest would present an extraordinary benefit for the Library based on the recommendation of the Library Director and the approval of the Board. Other guidelines include:

  1. The Library shall not accept any real estate encumbered by a mortgage or other liens except when approved by the Board based on a recommendation by the Library Director.
  2. The Library may accept gifts with a retained life use but generally only if the life tenant agrees to pay for all ongoing carrying costs, including but not limited to real estate taxes, upkeep, insurance, maintenance and repairs to the property and utilities. The gift agreement for a retained life use shall contain the stipulation that if the life tenant defaults on the payment of these carrying costs, the retained life tenancy ceases.
  3. Where real property is being conveyed to the Library, every effort should be made to take the property free of any encumbrances such as possibilities of reverter to the donor’s heirs if the property is no longer used for Library purposes. Reverter or other restrictive use clauses could lead to the real property reverting to the heirs of the donor with no compensation to the Library. The Library attorney should be consulted about the best course of action if such clauses are to be included in the property deeds. If the Library decides to accept a gift of real property with a reverter clause, the Library may request that the prospective donor agree that the Library will be entitled to be reimbursed for any of the carrying costs of the real property, including but not limited to, property insurance, repairs and maintenance while the Library holds title to the property. If the donor declines to accept these terms, the Library must determine if it is in the best interests of the Library to accept the gift and agree to pay these carrying costs.

Section 2: Review Process.

As donations and gifts vary in their impact on the Library, the review process should be tailored according to the proposal’s complexity. The donor should meet with the Library Director at the earliest possible time to discuss the review process or the specific gift. The process of establishing the Library’s interest in accepting a gift of real estate shall begin with the initial gathering of the following basic information by the Library Director:

  1. The name, address, telephone number and e-mail address of the proposed donor. At the request of the donor, anonymity will be honored.
  2. A statement of the relationship of the donor to the Library, if any.
  3. A statement of the reasons for the donor’s desire to make the gift and the reasons for the Library to accept the gift, including a history of prior donations by the donor.
  4. A general description of the property including street address, any structures (above and below ground), past uses of the property, neighborhood characteristics, pictures, setting and zoning.
  5. A statement as to whether the contribution is of the donor’s complete or partial interest in the property. (Generally, the Library will not accept partial interests in real property.)
  6. A list of any personal property to be included with the gift.
  7. Copies of current real estate tax bills and special assessment bills.

Library staff will review land use requirements, legal requirements, potential public concern, maintenance issues and Library issues associated with the proposed gift. If it is determined that the Library could potentially benefit from this donation of real property, the following additional documents are to be provided by the donor at the donor’s expense, before the Library can make a final decision to accept title to the property. If the donor declines to provide at his/her cost the documents required to perform the necessary due diligence and to close on the property, and the Library Director determines that it is in the best interests of the Library to further advancement of the gift by paying these costs, the Library may agree to pay these costs.

  1. A recent legal description and survey of the property showing any easements and right-of-ways.
  2. If the parcel of land is improved with a building which is occupied, the name of the persons or business occupying space, together with copies of the leases relating to those occupancies.
  3. Proof of donor’s ownership of the property in form of a title policy or title report.
  4. A Phase I Environmental Assessment of the property in a form and content which would be satisfactory to the Library.
  5. Any other information needed to determine liability risks or unacceptable restrictions on use or disposition of the real property.

After the Library Director receives this information, he/she will evaluate the gift’s potential and make a recommendation to the Board. The Library may decline any gift or bequest for any reason.

Article VIII: Publicity.

The names of people making donations to the Library will not be released without their consent. The details of any such release will be approved by the donors. Library materials, equipment or display objects will be displayed in a way appropriate to their use by the public as determined by the Library.

Adopted: 12/21/76

Revised: 10/17/95

Reviewed: 2/17/98

Revised: 3/20/01

Revised: 12/16/03

Revised: 10/18/05

Revised: 08/21/07

Revised: 10/20/15

Revised: 10/16/18

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