AS OF SEPT 14: We have made schedule changes at Riverton and Burbank in order to expand their pickup hours. See the new schedule here -- PPL To Go Place a hold. Wait for your pickup notice. Then make an appointment to pick it up. We look forward to seeing you! Our COVID-19 page continues to have links to current health information in multiple languages. Reference will be answering questions Mon-Fri, 10am-4pm, 871-1700 x725. If you would like to get a library card, please email

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Employment at PPL

Health and Science Librarian

Portland Public Library has an opening for a Health and Science Librarian–full-time,37.5 hours per week. The pay range for this position begins at $44,852/annually (Grade 64). Benefits include health, dental, retirement, and generous vacation leave.

The primary focus of this position is the planning and delivery of services related to health and science. To meet this goal the Health and Science Librarian will work with many community partners and community members.

Reporting to the Adult Services Director, the Health and Science Librarian is responsible for leading a collaborative approach to develop the collections related to health and science, creating programming, and establishing general planning. 

This position provides professional reference and information services to the public at the Reference desk and various other locations. This position is in the Research and Information Services department, a major public service component of the Library. 

Nature and Scope

  1. The Health and Science Librarian meets with internal staff regularly to plan and implement library services to the public as well as to select materials. This position is charged with broad collection development, programming, and outreach. This includes proposing publicity, maintaining content on the Library’s web pages, creating reading lists and displays, and determining scope and budget.The librarian seeks out, establishes, and maintains contacts and collaborations with community leaders and organizations (especially Cornerstones of Science and USM) in order to embed the library firmly within the larger community, foster awareness and appreciation of the library, discover avenues of help the library can provide, and encourage support (financial and otherwise) of the library.Within a budget, the Librarian selects or approves purchases in all formats of the reference and circulating materials that fit the subject area.  The area served by this budget includes the Main library, the branches, and the Portable Library and recognition is given to Portland Public Library’s role as an Area Reference and Resource Center (ARRC) for the Southern Maine Library District.
  2. The librarian is responsible for the selection of new health and science materials. The librarian must regularly obtain and evaluate information about new and future releases as well as previously published materials applicable to fiction.  Based on this information and the available funds, he/she determines which materials to purchase in print and digital formats.In addition to selecting popular and previously published adult nonfiction materials that fall under the 150-159, 333, 360-369, 500-599, 610-619, 620-649, and 660-699 Dewey Decimal call numbers, the librarian is also responsible for special collections including microscopes, telescopes, science backpacks, and a seed library.The area served by this budget includes the Main library, the branches, and the Portable Library and recognition is given to Portland Public Library’s role as an Area Reference and Resource Center (ARRC) for the   Maine Regional Library System Region 1

    Collection management is a key component of this position.  The librarian is also responsible for the on-going (day to day) management of the above collections including such activities as monitoring the demand for use of specific materials to determine if additional copies are needed, weeding, identifying missing/lost items, determining whether or not to replace missing/lost items, identifying outdated items for removal, and evaluating poor condition materials for repair or removal.

    The librarian is responsible for programming within the designated subject scope.  Programming can be Library planned and produced programs, collaborations with outside groups, and/or the hosting of outside programs which promote the Library’s goals.  The librarian will work with the Library’s Programming Manager to conceive, develop, and schedule publicity for these events.

  3. The librarian is responsible for reference service when staffing the Research and Information desk. He/she will do the same when called to other service desks in the Adult Services department.The librarian answers reference, directional, reader’s advisory, and ILL questions in person and via the variety of communication avenues available.  This means interacting, always, with a broad cross-section of the general public.  The librarian exercises professional judgment and expertise in developing a search strategy and selecting the appropriate resources to use in answering.   When a question cannot be answered directly, the librarian will make appropriate referrals or effectively assist the patron in using resources to conduct his or her own research.  The librarian must be thoroughly familiar with the resources of the library. The librarian must also be knowledgeable of the local, state, and national resources in other libraries and institutions.He/she stays abreast of information technology trends and actively participates in helping library patrons access and use all available electronic resources, software, and hardware. The Literature & Language librarian is the library’s eBook & eAudiobook specialist and oversees troubleshooting and training in relation to these collections.

    The librarian serves as the subject specialist for queries regarding literature and languages. As a member of the Reference staff, he/she selects reference resources, trains co-workers in their use, and promotes those resources to the public through the library’s web site and additional publicity.

  4. The librarian participates in special projects or tasks. Examples of activities include conducting adult tours of the library, help in the training of substitutes, participating in committees that develop and recommend library policy.
  5. The librarian is responsible for professional development by reading professional materials, by participating in workshops, meetings, and other learning/teaching opportunities, and by consulting with other librarians and professionals. As a member of the ARRC staff, this librarian also supports Maine Regional Library System Region 1 staff development.

Basic Qualifications:

  • An MLS in Library and Information Services from an ALA-accredited institution, or equivalent
  • Customer service driven
  • Ability to remain calm, courteous, and accurate in an often demanding environment, juggling tasks and using excellent judgment.
  • Excellent communicator with the patron community and colleagues.
  • Astute ability to balance and reconcile individual and institutional needs.
  • Comfortable working independently.

Physical Demands and Work Environment:

  • This position may require lifting of up to 30lbs.
  • This position is performed in a busy public library environment and requires regular use of a computer.
  • Public interaction sometimes can present challenging situations.

To apply, please send a cover letter and resume to  Initial consideration will begin on August 31st and this posting will remain open until filled.


Maintenance Technician II

Reporting to the Facilities Manager, this position is responsible for performing a wide array of maintenance and repair work duties to support library operations and facilities in order to maintain a clean, pleasant and safe environment for library patrons and staff. This work is performed throughout the Main Library’s large public space and at branch locations across Portland. This position is also responsible for delivering materials using library vehicles. 

Nature and Scope

  1. In responding to emergent needs throughout the library, the incumbent must be able either to perform work independently or to assist the Facilities Manager as directed.  In the absence of the Facilities Manager, must be able to assume responsibility for identifying what needs to be done and taking the appropriate steps to ensure the work is handled properly, as well as communicate to the Facilities Manager the resolution of problems. 
  2. This individual is responsible for the performance of routine library operations and general cleaning functions.  Library operations functions include opening and closing the building; operating the security system; setting up meeting rooms; moving furniture and equipment, etc.  General cleaning functions include sweep, mop. strip, wax and polish floors; dust and vacuum; collect and remove trash and recyclable materials; wash windows; clean restrooms, etc.
  3. This person monitors the performance of various building systems to determine if they are operating properly.  If problems are detected, judgment must be exercised to determine if service or repairs by technicians are requires, or if a simple adjustment can be made.  Such systems include HVAC, elevators, fire protection, gas, electric and water utilities.  Identifies safety issues and resolves or reports to those who can resolve; ability to follow OSHA requirements and exercise proper judgment and initiative regarding resolution of problem. 
  4. This person is responsible for library maintenance and repair activities that ensure the library is clean, safe and comfortable for patrons and staff.  Examples of tasks include: check, test, adjust or repair equipment; replace light bulbs; check circuit breakers; minor plumbing or electrical repairs; assemble or repair furniture; maintain landscaping, draining pipes; washing windows; snow removal including appropriate sanding and/or salting; painting or repairing building surfaces.  
  5. Ability to assist in performing plumbing, painting and electrical tasks as well as carpentry tasks such as refurbishing furniture, and/or creating structures to solve ergonomics and safety issues is helpful.  Using power tools without supervision while practicing good safety measures is essential.
  6. This position is responsible for making van deliveries of library materials between the Main and Branch libraries according to established procedures and schedule.   
  7. Handles conference room set- up and special projects such as setting up for special events such as book sales and receptions, or assembling and/or disassembling shelving.
  8. Backs up security as needed and other duties as assigned. 

Basic Qualifications:

At the entry level, this position requires some experience in maintenance work; or any equivalent combination of experience and training which provides the following: 

  • Knowledge of the materials, methods and practices used in cleaning operations. 
  • Ability to understand and carry out oral and written instructions; and to work cooperatively with others. 
  • Ability to work effectively and cooperatively with library staff in other departments and administration. 
  • Sufficient physical stamina and general health to perform tasks as noted above. 
  • Ability to communicate well verbally and in writing with all members of the public and to enforce library rules effectively while maintaining a calm and professional demeanor. 
  • Ability to evaluate safe and unsafe practices and to follow OSHA requirements; communicates to appropriate personnel for resolution. 
  • Ability and/or experience to operate basic carpentry tools.  
  • Commitment to using safety equipment such as safety glasses, ear plugs, machinery guards, and other items appropriate for good safety practices. 
  • Valid driver’s license and clean driving record. Ability to drive box truck and plow truck. 
  • Ability to communicate effectively with Facilities Manager and other PPL staff who may not always be on the same work schedule; ability to communicate and to follow through to “person in charge” for security issues and follow-up. 

Physical Demands and Working Environment:

This position includes physically demanding tasks, such as lifting and carrying boxes up to 50lbs. and shoveling snow.  

Position also includes exposure to potentially harmful working conditions such as in and around machinery, climbing ladders, working on rooftops and use of cleaning agents, paints and solvents. 

This position is performed in a busy public library environment and requires regular use of a computer and may be required to respond to after hours needs when the library is closed, such as responding to burglar/fire alarms or plowing snow.  Additional compensation may be available for these duties as described in the CBA. Public interaction sometimes can present challenging situations. 

To apply, please send a cover letter and resume to Initial consideration will begin on August 31st and this posting will remain open until filled.


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