Personal Gifts

CJRL employees should be especially careful to avoid using, or appearing to use, an official position for personal gain or giving unjustified preferences.

CJRL employees may not solicit or accept gifts or mementos (i.e. cash, books, paintings, prints, jewelry, clothes, etc.) while representing the agency in an official capacity to vendors or patrons.  

Supervisors may not solicit or accept gifts from employees whom they directly or indirectly supervise.  This does not include items (i.e., flowers, memorials, wedding or baby shower gifts, etc.) that may be given as a result of illness or death.  Holiday and special event gifts are acceptable as long as (1) the overall value of an individual gift is $10.00 or less or (2) the gift represents all supervised staff members and all staff members had the option of participating in the gift giving.

Recognizing the hospitable culture of Mississippi citizens, the on-site manager may authorize the acceptance of patrons’ gifts to library staff if all of the following conditions are met:

  1. The gift was not solicited in any manner by any CJRL employee.
  2. The gift is food, flowers, or other equally consumable non-cash product.
  3. The gift remains on the library premises.
  4. The gift is equally distributed to all library members.
  5. The gift has a value of $10.00 or less per facility employee and a total value less than $50.00.
  6. The patron has no business relationship with CJRL.

LSTA/Federal Restrictions

CJRL employees may not solicit or accept a gift (1) from a “prohibited source” or (2) if given because of your official position.  A “prohibited source” is a person or organization seeking official action by CJRL;  a person or organization with an interest that may be substantially affected by the performance or nonperformance of CJRL official duties, or an organization whose members are either of the above.  There are certain common exceptions to this rule that may permit acceptance of an otherwise prohibited gift to which the CJRL Board of Trustees has imposed further restrictions.  These exceptions include:

The Director and/or staff designated by the Director may accept meal invitations from product (i.e. non-service) vendors of a value $20.00 or less, provided that (1) one source does not give more than an aggregate of $50 per year and (2) the vendor is not associated with an active (non-audited) library grant.

CJRL employees may accept gifts based on outside business, volunteer, or employment relationships.  Employees are encouraged to participate in professional and civic organizations if such participation does not adversely affect the employee’s role as a public employee.  When considering the acceptance of gifts from such relationships, the employee should consider whether a “reasonable person” would conclude that the acceptance of the gift would not appear to post a prejudicial influence on the employee’s library relationships.

E-rate Restrictions

The E-rate gift rules, set forth in the FCC's 6th Report and Order (, were adopted to help ensure fair and open competition for the provision of E-rate products and services.   During any time periods that CJRL is applying for or receiving E-rate funds, it is bound by these rules (and any updates to these rules).  Specifically, employees should…

Material donations to the library

Guidelines for the acceptance of the donation of material goods are outlined in CJRL’s Donations and Memorials policy.  Unsolicited receipt of materials goods by vendors are not considered “received” by the library unless formally received into the library’s collection/inventory following these preset guidelines.