The City of Huntsville and Huntsville Public Library are working hard to provide high-quality library services and a welcoming space. Library staff is continuing to improve all areas of the library by using best practices and data to inform decision-making.
The Library serves everyone in the community with a collection of books, materials, and technology tailored to the Huntsville community. The Library also offers spaces for residents to gather, study, learn and to have fun. Library staff works to ensure the collection is up to date and library space is balanced between space for collection and space for patrons.
Public libraries use a process called weeding to keep the collection fresh and ensure all materials are in good condition. Ideally, libraries weed continuously. Weeding is the systematic review, evaluation, and removal of library items based on selected criteria. Criteria for each item include the overall physical condition of the item, the number of times the item was borrowed from the library, and accurate and current information.
Weeding has long been part of Huntsville Public Library operation. The Library has, however, not completed a comprehensive weeding project since approximately 2017 due to a lack of storage space as discarded items are typically stored for auction. The Library is working with Better World Books, a company that will remove the discarded items from the Library to resell. Eligible items will receive a credit that can in turn be used to support the collections budget.
Library Director Rachel McPhail and staff are ready to do a weeding project with the unanimous support of the Library Advisory Board. The library board met on Thursday March 30, 2023 and voted to support the recommendation of staff to the weeding process to open up space for new
materials to the library collection.