Government of New Brunswick

The New Brunswick Public Library Service (NBPLS) is the network of public libraries in New Brunswick and is made up of one provincial office, 5 regional offices, 52 public libraries, 11 public-school libraries, a virtual branch and a provincial Talking Books Service by Mail. In New Brunswick, public library service is provided in partnership between the provincial government and participating municipalities and is regulated by the New Brunswick Public Libraries Act.

The provincial library system is designed to maximize resource sharing and allows public libraries to share a single library card as well as collections, programs, statistics, online services, administration, and an automated library system. The provincial service has been in place since 1954.

Through NBPLS, the provincial government is responsible for strategic planning, general administration, provision and supervision of programs and services, managing human resources, collection development, cataloguing and processing of materials, the provincial library catalogue, automation, and online resources including the virtual branch of eBooks and audiobooks.

Participating municipalities are responsible for providing and maintaining library facilities. This includes providing and maintaining furnishings, equipment, computers, and communication lines. Municipalities also provide funding for marketing, promotion, local programming and library board expenses. The municipal partner appoints trustees from the community to serve on local library boards. The role of the trustees is to support the Library Manager/Director in the delivery of quality public library service in their community.

There are eleven public-school libraries operated by NBPLS. In the case of public-school libraries, school districts are a third partner, contributing half the salaries, curriculum-related collection development, and providing and maintaining facilities to serve school users. In this type of partnership, municipalities fund the same areas of responsibility as in public library partnerships in order to ensure that the facility is suitable for use by the public.

There are also many volunteers that provide invaluable support to the public library system in New Brunswick.


New Brunswick Public Libraries Board

The New Brunswick Public Libraries Board (NBPLB) is composed of 10-14 members appointed by the Minister of Post-Secondary Education, Training and Labour. Five (5) members are elected by the regional forums, while up to 9 may be appointed by the Minister to represent the general public. The Board's mandate is to advise the Minister on policy, service levels and provincial standards for public libraries and library services.

The Board also assists the New Brunswick Public Libraries Foundation in its role and recommend three of its members to be appointed as trustees of the New Brunswick Public Libraries Foundation.


Regional Forums

Regional forums give representatives (trustees) of the local library boards and the Regional Director the opportunity to meet and discuss issues and share information of interest regarding the development of libraries in their region. The forums are presided over by the Regional Directors.

Each Regional Forum elects a representative to sit on the New Brunswick Public Libraries Board and bring issues for the consideration of the provincial board that have been raised at the regional level.


New Brunswick Public Libraries Foundation

The New Brunswick Public Libraries Foundation was established in 1997 by the Province of New Brunswick to receive donations and conduct fundraising activities for the development of public library collections in New Brunswick. The Foundation is a body corporate and an agent of the Crown. It is composed of 10 trustees appointed by the Lieutenant-Governor in Council.


New Brunswick Public Library Trustees Association

The New Brunswick Library Trustees Association Inc. is an independent organization whose goal is to train effective library trustees, and to promote public library services in the province. The Association receives financial and administrative support from NBPLS. Trustees of local library boards join the Association on a volunteer basis.