Library description
Collection development objectives
Collection maintenance objectives
Periodic review and update
Selection responsibility and criteria
Collection levels - Scope of collections
Definition of selection levels
Subject fields collected
Other types of materials
Reference collection
Archival and special collections
Excluded materials

Collection Development Policy: Libraries are keepers of and gateways to knowledge. Within that framework, collection development and management of materials by professional staff includes: selection of materials and electronic resources, both current and retrospective, as well as the organization, storage, maintenance, preservation and replacement of the collection; and the deselection of obsolete, dated, worn and superseded materials. The role of library staff is to assist and instruct the public in the retrieval of print, microform, and electronic resources, and to develop and adapt new electronic delivery systems within existing City of Flagstaff staffing and budget constraints.

While the library strives to make available materials in support of student research needs, the library does not support the specific curricula of local educational institutions.

Library staff, while professional, are not qualified to and may not interpret medical or legal information to the public.

When appropriate and cost effective, the library adds new proven formats, integrating the old with the new, ultimately eliminating the obsolete.

Intellectual freedom is one of the fundamental principles of a democratic society and as such will be protected by the Library and staff. The Library supports individual access rights of adults and youth, to books and other library resources and services, as expressed in the American Library Association's Library Bill of Rights,* The Freedom to Read,* the Freedom to View,* and the Policy on Confidentiality of Library Records,* as well as the Intellectual Freedom Manual for Arizona Libraries.* The library also supports American Library Association policies in regard to an interpretation of the Library Bill of Rights, as related to the Intellectual Freedom Statement, Challenged Materials.* (* See: Appendices)

No member of the community will be denied access to materials or information based on age, race, background, or personal views, with the exception of R-rated videos and DVDs to minors. Because parents and guardians are responsible for their child's use of materials, they are encouraged to assist their minors in choosing appropriate materials and information. Patrons are encouraged to use all levels of the collection appropriate to their needs. In addition, members of the community will not be denied access to any materials or information deemed objectionable by another member or group in the community. A formal review process may be pursued by anyone seeking to challenge the ownership of any materials held by the library. (See Appendices)

Within the context of public access for all, the Library makes every effort to comply with national, state, and local information access laws.

The Library will not disclose any information regarding patron records without a court order or other criteria, as required by Arizona State Law, ARS 41-1354. This is a legal right of privacy issue.

The Library makes every effort to comply with national copyright laws (Title 17, U.S. code) and guidelines designed for the protection of authors and publishers. Notices about the use of copyrighted materials are placed on or near copy machines and Internet terminals to remind users of legal restrictions.

The Library also makes every effort to comply with national and state laws and guidelines in relation to use of the Internet in a public place. Electronic resources may only be used for legal purposes; per federal order (FCC 03-188), filtering software is applied to all PC's. Public display of obscene materials on the Internet and gambling on the Internet are prohibited. (Children's Internet Protection Act, Pub. L. 106-554, ARS section 13-3501-3512, ARS section 34-501 and 502, ARS section 13-3304, FCC 6-01-001-0012 See: Appendices). Notices regarding the law and library policy are posted near Internet terminals.

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  • materials that meet general patrons' interests and needs in a timely manner;
  • materials that promote literacy in adults and children;
  • a broadly based and diverse collection that can support the role of the Library as a popular source of materials and an independent learning center for the general public;
  • materials that provide a balance of viewpoints on all subjects in the collection;
  • current materials proportionate to levels of demand and use;
  • electronic resources that are accessible, useful, equitable and affordable;
  • avoidance of duplication of resources that are available in other local libraries and fit within the mission of that institution;
  • participation in cooperative programs concerning collection development of shared resources within the state of Arizona.
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Collection maintenance entails making decisions about the purchase of new materials and particular items that need to be replaced, added, deselected, or reassigned. This includes the addition of popular materials into subject areas where demand is high. Collections should allow for better and quicker accuracy in retrieval of current materials either in print or electronic formats.

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De-selection is one of the best tools available for improving the quality of library collections. Materials should be deselected from the collection when they no longer meet the original criteria for adding them to the collection. Examples of this include materials that are dated or have inaccurate information, superseded editions, duplicates that are no longer needed, classic titles that need to be replaced, items that are damaged or seriously worn. Such items complicate space constrictions and storage costs, prevent the speed of access to accurate and current information, or remain on the shelves unused.

De-selection and collection maintenance practices will be used as suggested by current library guidelines, using the judgement of professional staff to adapt them to local needs. Deselected materials will be sold through The Friends of the Library book sale, saved as backup copies, offered to other libraries if deemed appropriate, or recycled.

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The Collection Development and Management Policy will be reviewed yearly for changes and updated on an as needs basis.

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The responsibility for administering the Library Collection Development and Maintenance Policy lies with the director. The director and staff are responsible for selecting materials for purchase, with high priority given to suggestions from the public. Most items are chosen based upon professional reviewing sources such as Booklist, Publisher's Weekly, and School Library Journal, as well as popular book lists and awards. When choices exist, selection is based on readability, clarity, appeal, and cost. Each title must be considered for its value, its format, and the audience for which it is intended. No single criterion is applicable to all purchase and access decisions. Some resources may be judged primarily for their artistic merit, scholarship, or value to humanity; others are chosen to satisfy the informational, recreational, or educational interests of the community, or for price affordability. Available budgets also limit purchases.

Selection criteria are essentially the same for all collections. The youth collection focuses on materials appropriate for infants through sixteen year-olds, and is selected in response to the needs and interests of young people, recognizing their diverse tastes, backgrounds, abilities, and potentials, as well as reading levels.

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The collection as a whole is designed for the general population in the community, with consideration given to local ethnic populations and those with special needs. Both adult and youth collections are maintained at essentially the same levels. Reference materials may be purchased on a less frequent basis using a rotating schedule of standing orders. Books and media are purchased on a monthly basis for circulating materials. The acquisitions budget is divided among various categories based upon usage patterns and demand.

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Minimal Level
  • Materials of limited demand or availability, selected for local interest.
  • Basic Level Overview of a subject, adequate to meet general needs, or may be introductory in some instances.
Popular Level
  • Frequently requested subjects or locally popular fiction authors, may be best sellers, may be of transitory value for less than 5 years.
Extended Level
  • Materials in sufficient depth to allow for independent study by the general public.
Comprehensive Level
  • Most materials published on a given subject.
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Generalities: 000-099 Basic/Popular
Encyclopedias Basic/Popular
Computer Science Basic/Popular
Library and Information Science Basic/Popular
Journalism Basic/Popular
Organizations & Museums Basic/Popular
Philosophy & Related Disciplines: 100-299 Basic/Popular
Paranormal Basic/Popular
Psychology Basic/Popular
Logic Basic/Popular
Religion Basic/Popular
Social Sciences: 300-399 Basic/Popular
Sociology & anthropology Basic/Popular
General statistics Basic/Popular
Political science Basic/Popular
Economics Basic/Popular
Law Basic/Popular
Public Administration Basic/Popular
Social Services Basic/Popular
Education Basic/Popular
Commerce, communication, transportation Basic/Popular
Customs, etiquette, folklore (Juvenile is extended level) Basic/Popular
Language: 400-499 Basic
Linguistics Basic
Dictionaries and grammar of various languages Basic
Natural Sciences and Mathematics: 500-599 Basic/Popular/Extended
(Juvenile are extended levels wherever possible)
Natural history Basic
Mathematics Basic
Astronomy Basic
Physics Basic
Chemistry & Minerals Basic
Earth Sciences Basic
Paleontology & Paleozoology Basic
Life Sciences Basic
Botanical Sciences Basic
Zoological Sciences Basic
Technology & Applied Sciences: 600-699 Basic/Popular
Inventions Basic/Popular
Medical Sciences & Health Basic/Popular
Engineering Basic/Popular
Agriculture Basic/Popular
Animal Husbandry & Pets Basic/Popular
Home Economics Basic/Popular
Cooking Extended
Family Living Basic/Popular
Management Basic/Popular
Manufacturing Basic/Popular
Building Basic/Popular
The Arts: 700-799 Basic/Popular
Philosophy Basic/Popular
Civic/Landscape Architecture Basic/Popular
Architecture Basic/Popular
Sculpture & Ceramics Basic/Popular
Drawing & Decorative Arts Basic/Popular
Painting and Paintings Basic/Popular
Graphic Arts Basic/Popular
Photography & Photographs Basic/Popular
Music Basic/Popular
Games, Sports Basic/Popular
Performing Arts Basic/Popular
Literature and Rhetoric: 800-899 Basic
Poetry Basic
Drama Basic
Essays Basic
Speeches Basic
Letters Basic
Satire and Humor Basic
Classic American Literature Basic/Popular
Classic Literature from other countries Basic
Geography and History: 900-999 (Juvenile is extended levels wherever possible) Basic/Popular/Extended
Geography and travel Basic/Popular
United States - general Basic/Popular
United States - western region Extended
Other countries Basic/Popular
Collected biography Basic
Genealogy Basic
History of ancient world Basic/Popular
General history of Europe Extended
General history of Asia Basic/Popular
General history of Africa Basic/Popular
General history of North America Extended
Mexico, Canada, other areas Basic/Popular
General history of South America Basic/Popular
General history of other areas Basic/Popular
General history of the U.S. Basic/Popular
General history of U.S. Civil War Extended
General history of WWI Basic/Popular
General history of WWII Extended
General history of Korean War Basic/Popular
General history of Vietnam War Extended
Other wars Basic/Popular
Biographies Basic/Popular
Arizona Materials Extended
Northern Arizona Comprehensive
Federal Government Documents Minimal
primarily distributed documents pertaining to regional environmental concerns produced by the U.S. Forest Service, BLM, and USGS.
State of Arizona Government Documents Minimal
primarily distributed documents pertaining to northern Arizona.
City of Flagstaff/Coconino County Documents Minimal
primarily distributed documents
Maps Minimal
primarily local area topographic
Foreign Language Materials
Spanish Basic/Popular
Navajo (little is published) Basic
Other languages (low demand and limited availability of appropriate materials limit purchases)
Fiction, General Basic/Popular
Mysteries Basic/Popular
Science-Fiction & Fantasy Basic/Popular
Westerns Basic/Popular
Graphic Novels Basic/Popular
Youth Collection fiction for juveniles, same as above
Picture Books Extended
Beginning Readers Extended
Baby board books Popular
Arizona books Comprehensive
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As new formats become available, they will be evaluated for inclusion in the collection.

Magazines/Newspapers Basic/Popular
Arizona Extended
Northern Arizona Comprehensive
Large Type Books Popular
Videos & DVDs Basic/Popular
Non-fiction videos Basic/Popular
Arizona Comprehensive
Audio Books
Fiction Popular
Non-fiction Basic
Music CDs Popular
Electronic Resources Basic
(As materials become available in this format, decisions will be made based on need, affordability and cost effectiveness, ease of use, and for archival considerations. Electronic resources may not necessarily be purchased to replace print materials, but to augment available choices.)
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The reference collection supports general research needs of the community in a variety of formats, including print, microform, and electronic resources. Many titles are intended for use as backup information when the public borrows circulating materials. Budget and space constraints prohibit the purchase of all materials on a yearly basis. These items do not circulate, but are available to the public when the Library is open. This collection includes several independent sub-collections:

General Reference works in Adult and Youth Services
  • Business collection
  • Foundation Grants collection
  • Arizona non-circulating collection in Adult and Youth Services
  • Genealogy collection
  • Local Topographical maps
  • Arizona Daily Sun & Arizona Republic (may include microfilm, CD-ROMs, or electronic resources, depending on availability and access)
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At this time the library is not actively collecting materials to place in this collection. The Library has never been designated as the official City of Flagstaff Archive, but it has a collection of City of Flagstaff records dating back to the late 1800's. These records are not comprehensive but serve as a sampling of primary documents from various city departments. There is an inventory of materials in outline format. The materials are available by appointment to researchers for in-house use. Other materials include Library records and history, archival copies of oral history projects, maps, plans, and other items that need to be kept in a controlled climate. As time permits, these materials will be cataloged and included in the Library OPAC. Selected materials currently in the public non-circulating Arizona collection may be moved into this climate controlled area because of their age, condition, rarity, and value.

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Subject fields and formats that are excluded for purchase are: those more appropriately provided by other libraries in the community.

Items excluded are:
  • Highly technical and specialized research materials normally purchased by a university library;
  • Rare books, except for affordable books about northern Arizona;
  • General textbooks, except when they provide the best or only treatment of a needed subject;
  • Any item that will not withstand repeated public use;
  • Expensive media or formats no longer collected;
  • Art works and other realia;
  • Most out-of-print materials;
  • Books seldom used and that are available via interlibrary loan.
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Donations are welcomed for the following materials:
  • Arizona/Southwest titles;
  • Current books (copyright within last 5 years and fits within scope of collection);
  • Current magazines (within 2 years and fits within scope of collection);
  • Classic titles considered within the scope of a public library.
The Library will not accept the following:
  • Textbooks;
  • Academic or curriculum type of materials;
  • Out-dated computer manuals (over 2 years old).

Donations become the property of the Library and may be accepted, rejected, or given to the Friends of the Library for book sale purposes. (See Appendices for Policy)

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Appendices to the Collection Development Policy

Library Bill of Rights
The Freedom to Read statement
52. Services and responsibilities of libraries : 52.4 Confidentiality of Library Records
Arizona Revised Statutes 5/02

Library Bill of Rights

The American Library Association affirms that all libraries are forums for information and ideas, and that the following basic policies should guide their services.

I. Books and other library resources should be provided for the interest, information, and enlightenment of all people of the community the library serves. Materials should not be excluded because of the origin, background, or views of those contributing to their creation.

II. Libraries should provide materials and information presenting all points of view on current and historical issues. Materials should not be proscribed or removed because of partisan or doctrinal disapproval.

III. Libraries should challenge censorship in the fulfillment of their responsibility to provide information and enlightenment.

IV. Libraries should cooperate with all persons and groups concerned with resisting abridgment of free expression and free access to ideas.

V. A person's right to use a library should not be denied or abridged because of origin, age, background, or views.

VI. Libraries which make exhibit spaces and meeting rooms available to the public they serve should make such facilities available on an equitable basis, regardless of the beliefs or affiliations of individuals or groups requesting their use.

Adopted June 18, 1948.
Amended February 2, 1961, and January 23, 1980,
inclusion of "age" reaffirmed January 23, 1996,
by the ALA Council.

The Freedom to Read

The freedom to read is essential to our democracy. It is continuously under attack. Private groups and public authorities in various parts of the country are working to remove or limit access to reading materials, to censor content in schools, to label "controversial" views, to distribute lists of "objectionable" books or authors, and to purge libraries. These actions apparently rise from a view that our national tradition of free expression is no longer valid; that censorship and suppression are needed to avoid the subversion of politics and the corruption of morals. We, as citizens devoted to reading and as librarians and publishers responsible for disseminating ideas, wish to assert the public interest in the preservation of the freedom to read.

Most attempts at suppression rest on a denial of the fundamental premise of democracy: that the ordinary citizen, by exercising critical judgment, will accept the good and reject the bad. The censors, public and private, assume that they should determine what is good and what is bad for their fellow citizens.

We trust Americans to recognize propaganda and misinformation, and to make their own decisions about what they read and believe. We do not believe they need the help of censors to assist them in this task. We do not believe they are prepared to sacrifice their heritage of a free press in order to be "protected" against what others think may be bad for them. We believe they still favor free enterprise in ideas and expression. These efforts at suppression are related to a larger pattern of pressures being brought against education, the press, art and images, films, broadcast media, and the Internet. The problem is not only one of actual censorship. The shadow of fear cast by these pressures leads, we suspect, to an even larger voluntary curtailment of expression by those who seek to avoid controversy.

Such pressure toward conformity is perhaps natural to a time of accelerated change. And yet suppression is never more dangerous than in such a time of social tension. Freedom has given the United States the elasticity to endure strain. Freedom keeps open the path of novel and creative solutions, and enables change to come by choice. Every silencing of a heresy, every enforcement of an orthodoxy, diminishes the toughness and resilience of our society and leaves it the less able to deal with controversy and difference.

Now as always in our history, reading is among our greatest freedoms. The freedom to read and write is almost the only means for making generally available ideas or manners of expression that can initially command only a small audience. The written word is the natural medium for the new idea and the untried voice from which come the original contributions to social growth. It is essential to the extended discussion that serious thought requires, and to the accumulation of knowledge and ideas into organized collections.

We believe that free communication is essential to the preservation of a free society and a creative culture. We believe that these pressures toward conformity present the danger of limiting the range and variety of inquiry and expression on which our democracy and our culture depend. We believe that every American community must jealously guard the freedom to publish and to circulate, in order to preserve its own freedom to read. We believe that publishers and librarians have a profound responsibility to give validity to that freedom to read by making it possible for the readers to choose freely from a variety of offerings. The freedom to read is guaranteed by the Constitution. Those with faith in free people will stand firm on these constitutional guarantees of essential rights and will exercise the responsibilities that accompany these rights.

We therefore affirm these propositions:

1. It is in the public interest for publishers and librarians to make available the widest diversity of views and expressions, including those that are unorthodox or unpopular with the majority. Creative thought is by definition new, and what is new is different. The bearer of every new thought is a rebel until that idea is refined and tested. Totalitarian systems attempt to maintain themselves in power by the ruthless suppression of any concept that challenges the established orthodoxy. The power of a democratic system to adapt to change is vastly strengthened by the freedom of its citizens to choose widely from among conflicting opinions offered freely to them. To stifle every nonconformist idea at birth would mark the end of the democratic process. Furthermore, only through the constant activity of weighing and selecting can the democratic mind attain the strength demanded by times like these. We need to know not only what we believe but why we believe it.

2. Publishers, librarians, and booksellers do not need to endorse every idea or presentation they make available. It would conflict with the public interest for them to establish their own political, moral, or aesthetic views as a standard for determining what should be published or circulated. Publishers and librarians serve the educational process by helping to make available knowledge and ideas required for the growth of the mind and the increase of learning. They do not foster education by imposing as mentors the patterns of their own thought. The people should have the freedom to read and consider a broader range of ideas than those that may be held by any single librarian or publisher or government or church. It is wrong that what one can read should be confined to what another thinks proper.

3. It is contrary to the public interest for publishers or librarians to bar access to writings on the basis of the personal history or political affiliations of the author. No art or literature can flourish if it is to be measured by the political views or private lives of its creators. No society of free people can flourish that draws up lists of writers to whom it will not listen, whatever they may have to say.

4. There is no place in our society for efforts to coerce the taste of others, to confine adults to the reading matter deemed suitable for adolescents, or to inhibit the efforts of writers to achieve artistic expression. To some, much of modern expression is shocking. But is not much of life itself shocking? We cut off literature at the source if we prevent writers from dealing with the stuff of life. Parents and teachers have a responsibility to prepare the young to meet the diversity of experiences in life to which they will be exposed, as they have a responsibility to help them learn to think critically for themselves. These are affirmative responsibilities, not to be discharged simply by preventing them from reading works for which they are not yet prepared. In these matters values differ, and values cannot be legislated; nor can machinery be devised that will suit the demands of one group without limiting the freedom of others.

5. It is not in the public interest to force a reader to accept with any expression the prejudgment of a label characterizing it or its author as subversive or dangerous. The ideal of labeling presupposes the existence of individuals or groups with wisdom to determine by authority what is good or bad for the citizen. It presupposes that individuals must be directed in making up their minds about the ideas they examine. But Americans do not need others to do their thinking for them.

6. It is the responsibility of publishers and librarians, as guardians of the people's freedom to read, to contest encroachments upon that freedom by individuals or groups seeking to impose their own standards or tastes upon the community at large. It is inevitable in the give and take of the democratic process that the political, the moral, or the aesthetic concepts of an individual or group will occasionally collide with those of another individual or group. In a free society individuals are free to determine for themselves what they wish to read, and each group is free to determine what it will recommend to its freely associated members. But no group has the right to take the law into its own hands, and to impose its own concept of politics or morality upon other members of a democratic society. Freedom is no freedom if it is accorded only to the accepted and the inoffensive.

7. It is the responsibility of publishers and librarians to give full meaning to the freedom to read by providing books that enrich the quality and diversity of thought and expression. By the exercise of this affirmative responsibility, they can demonstrate that the answer to a "bad" book is a good one, the answer to a "bad" idea is a good one. The freedom to read is of little consequence when the reader cannot obtain matter fit for that reader's purpose. What is needed is not only the absence of restraint, but the positive provision of opportunity for the people to read the best that has been thought and said. Books are the major channel by which the intellectual inheritance is handed down, and the principal means of its testing and growth. The defense of the freedom to read requires of all publishers and librarians the utmost of their faculties, and deserves of all citizens the fullest of their support. We state these propositions neither lightly nor as easy generalizations. We here stake out a lofty claim for the value of the written word. We do so because we believe that it is possessed of enormous variety and usefulness, worthy of cherishing and keeping free. We realize that the application of these propositions may mean the dissemination of ideas and manners of expression that are repugnant to many persons. We do not state these propositions in the comfortable belief that what people read is unimportant. We believe rather that what people read is deeply important; that ideas can be dangerous; but that the suppression of ideas is fatal to a democratic society. Freedom itself is a dangerous way of life, but it is ours.

This statement was originally issued in May of 1953 by the Westchester Conference of the American Library Association and the American Book Publishers Council, which in 1970 consolidated with the American Educational Publishers Institute to become the Association of American Publishers.

Adopted June 25, 1953; revised January 28, 1972, January 16, 1991, July 12, 2000, by the ALA Council and the AAP Freedom to Read Committee.


52.4 Confidentiality of Library Records

The ethical responsibilities of librarians, as well as statutes in most states and the District of Columbia, protect the privacy of library users. Confidentiality extends to "information sought or received, and materials consulted, borrowed, acquired," and includes database search records, reference interviews, circulation records, interlibrary loan records, and other personally identifiable uses of library materials, facilities, or services.

The American Library Association recognizes that law enforcement agencies and officers may occasionally believe that library records contain information which may be helpful to the investigation of criminal activity. If there is a reasonable basis to believe such records are necessary to the progress of an investigation or prosecution, the American judicial system provides the mechanism for seeking release of such confidential records: the issuance of a court order, following a showing of good cause based on specific facts, by a court of competent jurisdiction.

The American Library Association strongly recommends that the responsible officers of each library, cooperative system, and consortium in the United States:

1) Formally adopt a policy which specifically recognizes its circulation records and other records identifying the names of library users with specific materials to be confidential.

2) Advise all librarians and library employees that such records shall not be made available to any agency of state, federal, or local government except pursuant to such process, order, or subpoena as may be authorized under the authority of, and pursuant to, federal, state, or local law relating to civil, criminal, or administrative discovery procedures or legislative investigatory power.

3) Resist the issuance or enforcement of any such process, order, or subpoena until such time as a proper showing of good cause has been made in a court of competent jurisdiction.

Challenged Materials:

An Interpretation of the Library Bill of Rights

The American Library Association declares as a matter of firm principle that it is the responsibility of every library to have a clearly defined materials selection policy in written form which reflects the Library Bill of Rights, and which is approved by the appropriate governing authority. Challenged materials which meet the criteria for selection in the materials selection policy of the library should not be removed under any legal or extra-legal pressure. The Library Bill of Rights states in Article I that "Materials should not be excluded because of the origin, background, or views of those contributing to their creation," and in Article II, that "Materials should not be proscribed or removed because of partisan or doctrinal disapproval." Freedom of expression is protected by the Constitution of the United States, but constitutionally protected expression is often separated from unprotected expression only by a dim and uncertain line. The Constitution requires a procedure designed to focus searchingly on challenged expression before it can be suppressed. An adversary hearing is a part of this procedure. Therefore, any attempt, be it legal or extra-legal, to regulate or suppress materials in libraries must be closely scrutinized to the end that protected expression is not abridged.

Adopted June 25, 1971; amended July 1, 1981; amended January 10, 1990, by the ALA Council.


13-3501. Definitions

In this chapter, unless the context otherwise requires:

1. "Harmful to minors" means that quality of any description or representation, in whatever form, of nudity, sexual activity, sexual conduct, sexual excitement, or sadomasochistic abuse, when both:

(a) To the average adult applying contemporary state standards with respect to what is suitable for minors, it both:

(i) Appeals to the prurient interest, when taken as a whole. In order for an item as a whole to be found or intended to have an appeal to the prurient interest, it is not necessary that the item be successful in arousing or exciting any particular form of prurient interest either in the hypothetical average person, in a member of its intended and probable recipient group or in the trier of fact.

(ii) Portrays the description or representation in a patently offensive way.

(b) Taken as a whole does not have serious literary, artistic, political, or scientific value for minors.

2. "Item" means any material or performance which depicts or describes sexual activity and includes any book, leaflet, pamphlet, magazine, booklet, picture, drawing, photograph, film, negative, slide, motion picture, figure, object, article, novelty device, recording, transcription, live or recorded telephone message or other similar items whether tangible or intangible and including any performance, exhibition, transmission or dissemination of any of the above. An item also includes a live performance or exhibition which depicts sexual activity to the public or an audience of one or more persons. An item is obscene within the meaning of this chapter when all of the following apply:

(a) The average person, applying contemporary state standards, would find that the item, taken as a whole, appeals to the prurient interest. In order for an item as a whole to be found or intended to have an appeal to the prurient interest, it is not necessary that the item be successful in arousing or exciting any particular form of prurient interest either in the hypothetical average person, in a member of its intended and probable recipient group or in the trier of fact.

(b) The average person, applying contemporary state standards, would find that the item depicts or describes, in a patently offensive way, sexual activity as that term is described in this section.

(c) The item, taken as a whole, lacks serious literary, artistic, political or scientific value.

3. "Knowledge of the character" means having general knowledge or awareness, or reason to know, or a belief or ground for belief which warrants further inspection or inquiry of that which is reasonably susceptible to examination by the defendant both:

(a) That the item contains, depicts or describes nudity, sexual activity, sexual conduct, sexual excitement or sadomasochistic abuse, whichever is applicable, whether or not there is actual knowledge of the specific contents thereof. This knowledge can be proven by direct or circumstantial evidence, or both.

(b) If relevant to a prosecution for violating section 13-3506, 13-3506.01 or 13-3507, the age of the minor, provided that an honest mistake shall constitute an excuse from liability under this chapter if the defendant made a reasonable bona fide attempt to ascertain the true age of such minor.

4. "Nudity" means the showing of the human male or female genitals, pubic area or buttocks with less than a full opaque covering, or the showing of the female breast with less than a fully opaque covering of any portion thereof below the top of the nipple, or the depiction of covered male genitals in a discernibly turgid state.

5. "Sadomasochistic abuse" means flagellation or torture by or upon a person clad in undergarments, a mask or bizarre costume, or the condition of being fettered, bound or otherwise physically restrained on the part of one so clothed, for the purpose or in the context of sexual gratification or abuse.

6. "Sexual activity" means:

(a) Patently offensive representations or descriptions of ultimate sexual acts, normal or perverted, actual or simulated.

(b) Patently offensive representations or descriptions of masturbation, excretory functions, sadomasochistic abuse and lewd exhibition of the genitals.

7. "Sexual conduct" means acts of masturbation, homosexuality, sexual intercourse, or physical contact with a person's clothed or unclothed genitals, pubic area, buttocks or, if such person is a female, breast.

8. "Sexual excitement" means the condition of human male or female genitals when in a state of sexual stimulation or arousal.

9. "Ultimate sexual acts" means sexual intercourse, vaginal or anal, fellatio, cunnilingus, bestiality or sodomy. A sexual act is simulated when it depicts explicit sexual activity which gives the appearance of consummation of ultimate sexual acts.

13-3502. Production, publication, sale, possession and presentation of obscene items; classification

A person is guilty of a class 5 felony who, with knowledge of the character of the item involved, knowingly:

1. Prints, copies, manufactures, prepares, produces, or reproduces any obscene item for purposes of sale or commercial distribution.

2. Publishes, sells, rents, lends, transports or transmits in intrastate commerce, imports, sends or causes to be sent into this state for sale or commercial distribution or commercially distributes or exhibits any obscene item, or offers to do any such things.

3. Has in his possession with intent to sell, rent, lend, transport, or commercially distribute any obscene item.

4. Presents or participates in presenting the live, recorded or exhibited performance of any obscene item to the public or an audience for consideration or commercial purpose.

13-3503. Seizure of obscene things; disposition

An obscene or indecent writing, paper, book, picture, print or figure found in possession, or under control of a person arrested therefor, shall be delivered to the magistrate before whom the person arrested is required to be taken, and if the magistrate finds it is obscene or indecent, he shall deliver one copy to the county attorney of the county in which the accused is liable to prosecution, and at once destroy all other copies. The copy delivered to the county attorney shall be destroyed upon conviction of the accused.

13-3504. Coercing acceptance of obscene articles or publications; classification

A. No person, firm, association or corporation shall, as a condition to any sale, allocation, consignment or delivery for resale of any paper, magazine, book, periodical or publication require that the purchaser or consignee receive for resale any other item, article, book, or other publication which is obscene. No person, firm, association or corporation shall deny or threaten to deny any franchise or impose or threaten to impose any penalty, financial or otherwise, by reason of the failure or refusal of any person to accept such items, articles, books, or publications, or by reason of the return thereof.

B. A violation of any provision of subsection A is a class 5 felony. 13-3505. Obscene prints and articles; jurisdiction

A. The superior court has jurisdiction to enjoin the sale or distribution of obscene prints and articles, as described in subsection B of this section.

B. The county attorney of any county or the city attorney of any city in which a person, firm, association or corporation publishes, sells or distributes or is about to sell or distribute or has in his possession with intent to sell or distribute or is about to acquire possession with intent to sell or distribute any book, magazine, pamphlet, comic book, story paper, writing, paper, picture, drawing, photograph, figure, image or any written or printed matter of an indecent character, which is obscene, lewd, lascivious, filthy, indecent or disgusting, or which contains an article or instrument of indecent or immoral use or purports to be for indecent or immoral use or purpose, or in any other respect defined in section 13-3501, may maintain an action on behalf of such county or city for an injunction against such person, firm, association or corporation in the superior court to prevent the sale or further sale or the distribution or further distribution of the acquisition, publication or possession within the state of any book, magazine, pamphlet, comic book, story paper, writing, paper, picture, drawing, photographed figure or image or any written or printed matter of an indecent character, described in this subsection or in section 13-3501.

C. The person, firm, association or corporation sought to be enjoined shall be entitled to a trial of the issues within ten days after joinder of issue and a decision shall be rendered by the court within ten days of the conclusion of the trial.

D. If a final order or judgment of injunction is entered against the person, firm, association or corporation sought to be enjoined, such final order of judgment shall contain a provision directing the person, firm, association or corporation to surrender to the sheriff of the county in which the action was brought any of the matter described in subsection B of this section and such sheriff shall be directed to seize and destroy such obscene prints and articles.

E. In any action brought as provided in this section, such county attorney or city attorney bringing the action shall not be required to file any undertaking before the issuance of an injunction order provided for in subsection C of this section.

F. The sheriff directed to seize and destroy such obscene prints and articles shall not be liable for damages sustained by reason of the injunction order in cases where judgment is rendered in favor of the person, firm, association or corporation sought to be enjoined.

G. Every person, firm, association or corporation who sells, distributes, or acquires possession with intent to sell or distribute any of the matter described in subsection B of this section, after the service upon him of a summons and complaint in an action brought pursuant to this section is chargeable with knowledge of the contents thereof.

13-3506. Furnishing harmful items to minors; applicability; classification

A. It is unlawful for any person, with knowledge of the character of the item involved, to recklessly furnish, present, provide, make available, give, lend, show, advertise or distribute to minors any item that is harmful to minors.

B. This section does not apply to the transmission or sending of items over the internet.

C. A violation of this section is a class 4 felony.

13-3506.01. Furnishing harmful items to minors; internet activity; classification

(Chapter 334)

A. It is unlawful for any person, with knowledge of the character of the item involved, to intentionally or knowingly transmit or send over the internet an item to a minor that is harmful to minors when the person has knowledge or reason to know at the time of the transmission that a minor in this state will receive the item.

B. It is unlawful for any person in this state, with knowledge of the character of the item involved, to intentionally or knowingly transmit or send over the internet an item to a minor that is harmful to minors when the person has knowledge or reason to know at the time of the transmission that a minor will receive the item.

C. Posting material on an internet web site does not constitute the act of transmitting or sending an item over the internet.

D. In an action for a violation of this section, proof of any of the following may give rise to an inference that the person knew or should have known that the recipient of a transmission was a minor:

1. The name, account, profile, web page or address of the recipient contained indicia that the recipient is a minor.

2. The recipient or another person previously notified the person by any reasonable means that the recipient is a minor.

3. The recipient's electronic mail or web page contains indicia that the address or domain name is the property of, or that the visual depiction ultimately will be stored at, a school as defined in section 13-609.

E. It is not a defense to a prosecution for a violation of this section that the recipient of the transmission was a peace officer posing as a minor.

F. A violation of this section is a class 4 felony. 13-3507. Public display of explicit sexual materials; classification; definitions

A. It is unlawful for any person knowingly to place explicit sexual material upon public display, or knowingly to fail to take prompt action to remove such a display from property in his possession or under his control after learning of its existence.

B. A person who violates any provision of this section is guilty of a class 6 felony.

C. For the purposes of this section:

1. "Explicit sexual material" means any drawing, photograph, film negative, motion picture, figure, object, novelty device, recording, transcription or any book, leaflet, pamphlet, magazine, booklet or other item, the cover or contents of which depicts human genitalia or depicts or verbally describes nudity, sexual activity, sexual conduct, sexual excitement or sadomasochistic abuse in a way which is harmful to minors. Explicit sexual material does not include any depiction or description which, taken in context, possesses serious educational value for minors or which possesses serious literary, artistic, political or scientific value.

2. "Public display" means the placing of material on or in a billboard, viewing screen, theater marquee, newsstand, display rack, vending machine, window, showcase, display case or similar place so that material within the definition of paragraph 1 of this subsection is easily visible or readily accessible from a public thoroughfare, from the property of others, or in any place where minors are invited as part of the general public.

13-3509. Duty to report; classification

A. A person who is asked to record, film, photograph, develop or duplicate any visual or print medium depicting sexual activity, whether or not the person would be compensated, shall immediately report, or cause a report to be made of, such request to a municipal or county peace officer. The report shall include the name or names of the person, persons or business making the request, if known, and shall describe what was requested.

B. A person who knowingly violates this section is guilty of a class 6 felony.

13-3510. Evidence of obscenity

A. Expert testimony or other ancillary evidence is not required to determine obscenity if the allegedly obscene item has been placed in evidence. The item itself is the best evidence of what it represents.

B. If a person relied upon a rating given to a film or motion picture by the motion picture association of America or an equivalent rating association, the rating and evidence concerning the person's reliance on such rating shall be admissible in evidence in a trial for violation of this article.

13-3511. Exemption; broadcasts and telecasts

The provisions of this chapter shall not apply to broadcasts or telecasts through facilities licensed under the federal communications act or title 9, chapter 5, article 1.1.

13-3512. Obscene or indecent telephone communications to minors for commercial purposes; violation; classification

A. It is unlawful for any person to knowingly make by means of a telephone, directly or by a recording device, any obscene or indecent communication for commercial purposes to any person who is under the age of eighteen years. The communication is unlawful regardless of whether the maker of the communication placed the call.

B. A person who violates this section is guilty of a class 4 felony. 34-501. Definitions

In this article, unless the context otherwise requires:

1. "Harmful to minors" has the same meaning as prescribed in section 13-3501, paragraph 1.

2. "Public access computer" means a computer that:

(a) Is located in a public school or public library.

(b) Is frequently or regularly used directly by a minor.

(c) Is connected to any computer communication system.

34-502. Computer access; harmful to minors

A. A public school that provides a public access computer shall equip the computer with software that seeks to prevent minors from gaining access to material that is harmful to minors or purchase internet connectivity from an internet service provider that provides filter services to limit access to material that is harmful to minors. Standards and rules for the enforcement of this subsection shall be prescribed by the governing board of every school district.

B. A public library that provides a public access computer shall do one or both of the following:

1. Equip the computer with software that will limit minors' ability to gain access to material that is harmful to minors or purchase internet connectivity from an internet service provider that provides filter services to limit access to material that is harmful to minors.

2. Develop and implement by January 1, 2000, a policy that establishes measures to restrict minors from gaining computer access to material that is harmful to minors.

C. Rules for the enforcement of subsection B shall be adopted by the director of the Arizona state library, archives and public records.

D. A public school that complies with subsection A or a public library that complies with subsection B shall not be criminally liable or liable for any damages that might arise from a minor gaining access to material that is harmful to minors through the use of a public access computer that is owned or controlled by the public school or public library.

13-3304. Benefiting from gambling; classification

A. Except for amusement or regulated gambling, a person commits benefiting from gambling if he knowingly obtains any benefit from gambling.

B. Benefiting from social gambling as a player is not unlawful under this section.

C. Benefiting from gambling is a class 1 misdemeanor.

41-1354. Privacy of user records; exceptions; violation; classification

A. Except as provided in subsection B, a library or library system supported by public monies shall not allow disclosure of any record or other information which identifies a user of library services as requesting or obtaining specific materials or services or as otherwise using the library.

B. Records may be disclosed:

1. If necessary for the reasonable operation of the library.

2. On written consent of the user.

3. On receipt of a court order.

4. If required by law.

C. Any person who knowingly discloses any record or other information in violation of this section is guilty of a class 3 misdemeanor.

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Last updated on January 23, 2006

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