McArthur Library Association
The McArthur Library Association shall have the purpose to establish and maintain a free public library and reading rooms in the City of Biddeford, Maine. Its mission is to connect the Biddeford community with materials, programs, services, and informational and cultural resources need to lead fuller, better, and richer lives.
History of the Association
When the City Building burned in 1894, the library serving the people of Biddeford was destroyed. The Mayor of Biddeford recommended that a private association take up the responsibility of maintaining a public library for the benefit of the city’s residents. In 1902, with seed money willed to the Library Association by Elizabeth Stevens, a retired employee of the Laconia Mills, and the energy of Robert McArthur, an Agent of the Pepperell mills, the Library Association bought and dedicated the McArthur Public Library. The McArthur Public Library is housed in the former Pavilion Congregational Church built in 1863. The Association has improved the building including major renovations and additions in 1962 and 1996.
The Board of Trustees
The officers of the Association shall be a President, Vice-President, Clerk, Treasurer, Assistant Treasurer, and Board of Trustees. The Board of Trustees shall consist of: All the above officers, ex officio, the Mayor of the City of Biddeford, the Superintendent of Schools of the City, both also ex officio, plus no fewer than 7 nor more than 13 other members of the Association. The President and Vice-President shall each be elected annually at the annual meeting of the Association.
The President shall preside at all meetings of the Association, when present; shall be Chairman of the Board of Trustees, Chairman ex officio of the Library Committee and Member ex officio of the Finance Committee, and shall appoint an Auditor to examine the Treasurer’s books, vouchers, and accounts as hereinafter provided.
Any member of the State of Maine twenty-one (21) years of age or older may become a member of the Association, upon written application, when a majority of those present and voting at any regular or special meeting of the Association shall vote to receive such person to membership.
The Library Committee
The Library Committee shall have the charge of the general operation and management of the McArthur Library. It shall employ all assistants to the Librarian and all janitor service, and shall be empowered to make all selections of literacy and library material necessary to the proper operation of said Library. Said Committee shall be further empowered to establish all necessary and proper rules and regulations governing conduct of all persons using the facilities of said Library. Said Committee shall also authorize and control all necessary repairs and improvements upon the building and buildings used by this Association as a public library.
The power of said Committee to do all acts involving the expenditures of monies shall be limited to the sum of money appropriated for such purposes in the budget established and approved by the Board of Trustees for the fiscal year during which said Committee shall serve. The Library Committee shall be further empowered to delegate any or all of the above-mentioned powers to the Librarian. Upon the delegation of such powers to any of them to the Librarian, he shall be empowered to the same extent and limited in the same manner as said Library Committee. Said Library Committee may at any time revoke such authority as it may have delegated to the Librarian by a majority vote of said Committee.