Bylaws of the Board of Trustees


These Bylaws have been established to govern and help the activities of the Board and its officers. All matters of membership, election, duties. Powers etc., of the Board are governed by Illinois Compiled Statutes, The Illinois Public Library District Act.

The Board of Trustees of the Eisenhower Public Library District is responsible for providing library service to meet the needs of Norridge and Harwood Heights. To this end, the Board shall fulfill these objectives:

1. Determine Library Policies.
2. Employ a capable library director and provide for appropriate staff.
3. Secure adequate funds for library operation.
4. Approve expenditure of library funds.
5. Provide and maintain adequate facilities.
6. Ensure a representative selection of library materials.
7. Promote use of the Library within the community.
8. Perform other duties as outlined in Illinois Compiled Statutes.


Trustees serve without compensation but are reimbursed from District funds for their actual and necessary expenses incurred in the performance of their duties per the 31.0 Policy for Reimbursement of Travel, Meal, and Lodging Expenses – Public Sector adopted on December 15, 2016. In their position of public trust, no Trustee or employee of the Library shall engage in any business or transaction, have a financial or personal interest, whether directly or indirectly, that is incompatible with the proper discharge of his or her official duties in the public interest, or that may tend to impair his or her independence of judgment or action in the performance of such official duties. The library has adopted Ordinance 2008-4, “An Ordinance Regulating Political Activities and the Solicitation and Acceptance of Gifts by Officers and Employees of the Eisenhower Public Library District” in compliance with the requirements of Article 70 of the State Officials and Employees Ethics Act (5ILCS 430/70-5)

No Trustee may be related, by blood or marriage, to a member of the Library staff. If such a relationship exists or is contemplated, the Trustee must make prompt disclosure to the Board, which may, if it chooses, condone and allow such employment by means of a Board resolution approved at duly convened meeting.

All trustees must file a Statement of Economic Interest with the County Clerk, pursuant to the Illinois Governmental Ethics Act. Trustees must complete the Open Meetings Act electronic training once during their term of election or appointment no later than the 90th day after taking the oath of office.


The Board of Trustees shall consist of seven (7) members elected by the residents of the library district. The term of each member shall be for six years from the date of election. New trustees are sworn in at the first board meeting following their election.

If a vacancy occurs in the Board of Library trustees, the vacancy shall be filled by appointment by the remaining trustees until the next bi-annual library election, at which election a person shall be elected to fill the vacancy. This may be either a full or partial term of office. The Board of Library Trustees may declare a vacancy where any person serving as a trustee is no longer a resident of the library district or where any person who has been elected or appointed and qualified fails or neglects to serve as a Board member. Absence without cause from all regular Board meetings for a period of one year shall be a basis for declaring a vacancy.


The Board and the library director will conduct a formal orientation for all new Trustees within three months of the day they join the Board.


An important role of the Library Board is awareness of any legislation-national, state or local-that has library implications. The Board will not hesitate to take a position on such legislation and to make this position known to the appropriate legislators or governing bodies.


The officers of the Board of Trustees shall be a President, Vice-President, Treasurer and Secretary, each to be elected at the bi-annual meeting by a majority vote of the Trustees present. Each term of office shall be two years, or until a successor has been elected and qualified.

President: Shall preside at all meetings of the Board, appoint all standing committees and shall be an ex officio voting member of all committees.

Vice-President: Shall preside over meetings when the President is absent.

Treasurer: Shall maintain the financial records and file accurate reports at any time on the financial condition of the library. Shall sign all checks and/or vouchers from the operating funds with Board approval. Shall perform all duties of the President/Vice-President in their absence or inability to act in these capacities.

Secretary: Shall be responsible for keeping and maintaining the record and minutes of all Board meetings, writing letters at the request and direction of the Board, and act as the Library Election Official.

The Treasurer, President, Vice President, and Secretary are all covered under the Government Crime Policy and are designated to sign checks with Board approval. Only one Board signature is required on checks. The Government Crime Policy provides coverage for negligent or intentional acts by Library officials and employees that could result in the loss of Library funds. The Treasurer and Library Director are authorized to sign petty cash checks. The Library Director shall issue notices of all regular meetings and, on proper authorization, of all special meetings.


1. The regular meeting of the Board shall be held on the third Thursday of each month at 7:30 P.M. at the Library. This can change if statutory deadline requires it. The meeting dates will be voted on at the regular meeting in May. Notice will be posted in the library and on the Library website as prescribed by law. All meetings are open to the public.

2. Special meetings may be held any time at the call of the President or any two members of the Board provided that notice and the purpose of the meeting be given at least 48 hours in advance.

3. A quorum at any meeting shall consist of four Trustees. A minimum majority of a quorum of a Public Body under Open Meetings Requirements is three Trustees.

4. Committees may include:

A. Finances
B. Library Services and Policies
C. Building and Grounds
D. Community Relations
E. Personnel
F. Policy
G. Library Director Search

5. Each committee shall be comprised of a chairperson and at least one additional Board member. The President shall serve as an ex-officio voting member on all committees. Special committees for the study and investigation of special problems may be appointed by the President, and such committees shall serve until the completion of said work. The Library Director may serve as a resource person on all committees.

6. The Library Director shall see that notices of Board meetings are delivered to each Board member. Such notices should also include minutes of previous meetings, financial reports, and the agenda to be considered at the proposed meeting.

7. The order of Business at all regular meetings of the Board shall be as follows: (By agreement of the Board, the order of business can be changed if deemed necessary)


8. Robert’s Rules of Order shall govern in the parliamentary procedure of the Board, except as may be specified herein.

9. The Board shall follow the Open Meetings Act. At each regular and special open meeting, the members of the public and Library employees may comment on or ask questions of the Board, subject to reasonable constraints.

The individuals appearing before the Board are expected to follow these guidelines:

A. Address the Board only at the appropriate times as indicated on the agenda and when recognized by the Board President.

B. Identify oneself by full name and address, and be brief. Ordinarily, such comments shall be limited to 5 minutes. In unusual circumstances, and when the person has given advance notice of the need to speak for a longer period of time, such person may be allowed to speak for more than 5 minutes.

C. The Board President may shorten or lengthen a person’s opportunity to speak. The President may also deny the opportunity to speak to a person who has previously addressed the Board on the same subject within the past 2 months.

D. No more than 20 minutes shall be allowed to each subject under discussion, except with unanimous consent of the Board.

E. The Board President shall have the authority to determine procedural matters regarding public participation not otherwise defined in Board policy.

F. Petitions or written correspondence to the Board shall be presented to the Board at the next regularly scheduled Board meeting.

10. Pursuant to Public Act 93-0523, the Library adopts the following policy concerning verbatim records of closed meeting:

A. A verbatim record of all closed meetings shall be kept in the form of an audio recording. The Library shall provide the recording device and only one recording device will be allowed.

B. The Vice President, or designee if he is unavailable, will be responsible for operating the recording device in all closed meetings of the Board.

C. The Library shall maintain the recordings in a safe and secure location. Access to non-released recordings shall be limited to the Board, Director, and Business Manager unless otherwise directed in writing by the Board. Individuals allowed access shall sign a log indicating date and time they listened to a particular recording only under supervision of a Board member. No copies of any non-released recordings shall be made.

D. The verbatim record of a closed meeting may be destroyed eighteen (18) months after the completion of the meeting if the Board approves the destruction of a particular recording and if it approves written minutes for the particular closed meeting as required by Section 2.06 of the Open Meetings Act (5ILCS 120).

E. The Board, on a periodic basis, but not less frequently than every six months, will review the recordings to determine if they continue to require confidentiality.

F. Unless the Board has determined that recording no longer requires confidential treatment, or otherwise consents to disclosure, the verbatim recordings of closed meetings made pursuant to Paragraph 1 above shall not be either open for public inspection or subject to discovery in an administrative proceeding other than one brought to enforce the provisions of the Open Meetings Act. In civil action brought to enforce the provisions of the Open Meetings Act, a recording will be made available to the court for in camera examination for the purpose of determining whether a violation of the Open Meetings Act exists. In the case of a criminal proceeding, a recording will be made available to the court for in camera examination for the purpose of determining what portion, if any must be made available to the parties for the use as evidence in the prosecution.


The fullest participation and attendance in all board meetings should be achieved whenever possible; and the use of electronic conferencing for meeting attendance and voting, at least in some governmental meetings, is permissible so long as the conduct of the meeting is in accordance with the Open Meetings Act. The Board in all of its regular and special meetings and committee meetings complies and intends to comply with the provisions of the Open Meetings Act. Electronic participation cannot be used to establish a quorum. A quorum must be physically present. When needed, the capabilities of electronic conferencing for its meetings, as more specifically set out in this policy, will enhance and further the public’s business as conducted by the Board of Library Trustees as follows:

1. All pertinent provisions of the Open Meetings Act must be complied with, including specifically the proper notice of any regular or special meeting, the proper record-keeping or minutes of each meeting, the appropriate agenda preparation for each meeting which, in addition, shall be posted along with the notice of the meeting; and any use of closed sessions shall be in compliance with the provisions of the Act.

2. The location of the meeting included on the notice shall be equipped with a suitable electronic conferencing system in order that the public audience, the trustees in attendance and any staff or guests will be able to hear any input, vote or discussion of the electronic conference and that any other location where the board conducts regular business shall have similar electronic conferencing capabilities for use by board members, staff or public audience to attend at that location, if requested at least 24 hours in advance of the meeting.

3. That sufficient security and identification procedures be employed, whether at the outset of any meeting or at any time during the meeting as appropriate, to ensure that any and all trustees attending or voting purposes are in fact authorized trustees with the right to speak and vote.

4. As soon as it becomes apparent to the board that a meeting will require electronic conference, all subsequent notices of the meeting shall indicate that one or more trustees will or may be attending by electronic connection and the location or locations where electronic conferencing be available shall be noted thereon. In the event that the notice of the meeting has already been disseminated and posted, a follow-up notice indicating the above shall be placed as soon as possible. In the event any news media have filed the annual request for notice of meetings, they shall receive an updated notice in the same manner as given to all members of the Board.

5. All trustees attending meetings by electronic conference are entitled to vote as if they were personally and physically present at the meeting site so long as the electronic connection exists. All votes shall be taken by roll call to ensure that non-physically present members are casting their own votes if they cannot be seen.

6. This policy shall not be construed to mean that electronic conferencing shall be regularly used or used at every meeting of the Board but shall be used only as necessary to allow the participation of Board members who are unable to attend in person due to circumstances beyond their control. Acceptable circumstances include, but are not limited to, personal illness, disability, business purposes or the business of the public body, or family or other emergency.

7. Electronic conferencing shall not be provided for members of the public to use in order to attend or participate in a meeting.

8. Only two trustees may participate by electronic attendance at a meeting. The presiding office shall be present at the meeting. In the event that the President is not physically resent at the meeting, the Vice-President shall preside.

9. The Board of Library Trustees may conduct a closed meeting, pursuant to one of the exceptions to the Open Meetings Act, by way of an electronic conference, provided that there is compliance with other requirements of the Act.

10. The meeting minutes shall indicate those trustees who attend by electronic connection, and in the event the entire meeting is not so attended, shall indicate those portions of the meeting which were attended by electronic conference.


The Board shall hire a qualified Library Director and establish the compensation of a Library Director, who will be responsible for the administration of the Library. The Board shall evaluate the Director’s performance at least annually. The Library Director shall report directly to the Board and shall be authorized to hire staff, develop library programs, establish the organizational structure, purchase materials, and undertake such other activities as may be necessary for the library’s operation, subject to the policies established by the Board. The Director shall serve as an advisor to the Board and shall implement all policies adopted by the Board. The director shall attend all meetings of the Board, and submit to the Board monthly and annual reports. The Director shall make recommendations for the policies and operation of the Library.


“Library trustee do their work collectively on the library board. Though the Board has broad powers-it is answerable only to the governing body that has oversight over the library or, if elected, to the voters-those powers are exercised collectively. No individual trustee can speak or act for the Board or for the library, unless specifically empowered to do so by board action or adopted bylaws.” From Trustee Facts File, third edition, Illinois Library Association, 2004. Board powers and duties are set forth in the Illinois Public Library District Act.


If any claim or action is instituted against a Trustee of the Eisenhower Public Library District arising out of an act or omission by a Trustee acting in good faith for a purpose considered to be in the best interest of the Library; or if any claim or action not covered by insurance or ordinance is instituted against an officer or employee of the Library allegedly arising out of an act or omission occurring within the scope of his/her duties as such an officer or employee; the Eisenhower Public Library District shall, at the request of the Trustee, Officer or Employee:

A. Appear and defend against the claim or action; and

B. Pay or indemnify the Trustee for a judgment and court costs, based on such claim or action; and

C. Pay or indemnify the Trustee for a compromise or settlement of such claim or action, providing the settlement is approved by the Board of Trustees.


These bylaws can be amended at any regular meeting of the Board by a two-thirds vote, provided that the amendment has been submitted in writing at the previous regular meeting.


On December 19, 2013 the Board adopted Resolution 2013-6 “Resolution Establishing Rules Regarding Unofficial Recording of Public Library Board Meetings by Tape, Film or Other Means”.