Placement & Distribution of Political Materials
The Central Arkansas Library System is a limited public forum that is open to the public for specified purposes: reading, studying, and using library materials and meeting facilities. Since CALS is a limited public forum, it is under no obligation to accommodate the public beyond these specified duties. However, it is the intent of CALS to allow the placement of political materials in the library and the circulation of petitions on library property subject to the following guidelines.
Political Campaign Materials
- Political campaign materials are defined as flyers, brochures, palm cards, and like items. Space limitations do not permit placement of campaign signs or posters. Because the library is a place for quiet study, these materials may not be handed out to patrons in the buildings, and must be placed only on the public newspaper racks provided by the library. Persons wishing to place these materials in the library should notify the branch manager or that person's designee regarding the placement of materials.
- Political campaign materials may only be placed on the free newspaper stands* located on the premises of the library on a space available, first-come-first-served basis. Except for examples of official ballots, no political literature may be attached to any part of the building or its contents or placed in any materials owned by the library. The library may choose to attach library-related material to any of its buildings or contents or to place such items in materials subject to Arkansas Statute 13-2-705(3). Individuals may pass out political materials to persons provided that the activity takes place outside the library.
- Persons may not hand out political campaign materials, solicit votes, or proselytize to other persons in library buildings. The library may choose to distribute library-related materials to persons in the building subject to Arkansas Statute 13-2-705(3). Placement of any materials on automobiles is prohibited.
- Those libraries that serve as voting places must remove all political campaign material from the building on Election Day. Subject to Arkansas Statute 7-1-103(9), political signs, campaign literature, and workers must maintain a distance of 100 feet from the front door of any library that is serving as a voting place. All political materials should be removed after the appropriate Election Day, and one copy of each political item should be sent to the Butler Center at Main Library.
- Petitions are defined as documents that are being circulated with the object of placing an issue or candidate on the ballot. Petitioners must notify the branch manager or their designee of their intention to solicit signatures on library property. Because the library is a place for quiet study, petitioners may not solicit signatures in the buildings. Petitioners may not place any sign related to the petition on the grounds nor may they leave a petition unattended. Petitioners are expected to be respectful of library patrons and are not permitted to impede access to library buildings or parking.
* See also Board Policy #405 (Placement of Free Newspapers)