Circulation Guidelines

Library Charges & Fees
Library Card
Material Limits
Loan Periods
Request for Reevaluation of Library Material


Circulation Guidelines - Charges for Late, Damaged or Lost Items - October 25, 2010 

Policy Statement:

The Tuscaloosa Public Library is committed to serving all residents of Tuscaloosa County with excellent service that includes the ability to check out library materials for use at home, at work or in other locations. The Tuscaloosa Public Library is also committed to being a good steward of its resources as it serves the public. Library charges include overdue fines, replacement charges, and billing and processing fees. These charges are levied in order to encourage prompt return of library materials and to recover costs for damaged and lost materials.

Regulations:

Overdue fees:
Overdue fees are charge to encourage patrons to promptly return borrowed materials. Overdue fees are not charged on materials checked out on the bookmobile as bookmobile schedules are subject to change.

Books, books on tape and CD, and music CDs have an overdue fee of $0.10 per day to a maximum fee of $10 per item.

Video tapes and DVDs have an overdue fee of $1.00 per day to a maximum fee of $10 per item.

Books borrowed from another library through Interlibrary Loan have an overdue fee of $0.10 per day to a maximum fee of $10 per item.

A balance of $6.00 or more on a patron account prevents the patron from checking out library materials or using library computers. An aggregated balance of $10.00 or more on linked accounts prevents all holders of linked cards from checking out library materials.

Replacement charges for items not returned or reported lost:
The charge includes the cost of the item plus a $10.00 processing fee.

A refund for the cost of the item minus the $10.00 processing fee will be issued if the item is returned within 6 months of the payment date. After 6 months no refunds are issued.

Replacement charges for items damaged beyond use:
The charge includes the cost of the item plus a $10.00 processing fee and any overdue fees.

Charges for items returned missing or with damaged parts:
There is no schedule for charging for partial damage to library material such as writing in part of the book, underlining, or spills. The following charges are for missing parts or parts damaged beyond use.

Barcode   $0.50
RFID tag   $1.50
Booklet   $2.50
Cassette   $5.00
     
Cassettes from multiple set   Cost of the set
Single CD or DVD item   Cost, plus processing fee
CDs or DVDs from multiple CD set   Cost of the set
DVD or video case    $5.00
     
Hanging bag   $2.50
Book Jacket   $2.50

Circulation Guidelines - Library Card

Policy Statement:

The Tuscaloosa Public Library is committed to providing all residents of Tuscaloosa County with excellent library service that includes the ability to check out library materials for use at home, at work or in other locations as well as access to public use computers in library facilities. The Tuscaloosa Public Library is also committed to being a good steward of its resources as it serves the public. The issuing of library cards for use in checking out library materials or for use of public computers in the library is therefore subject to the regulations listed below.

Regulations:

Library cards are issued to residents of Tuscaloosa County free of charge upon completion of a library card application, the presentation of currently valid picture ID, and proof of current address. The address must be a physical location, not a post office box. The following are appropriate forms of picture ID:

Government issued ID – passport, driver’s license, non-driver’s ID, military ID
School or work issued ID

If the picture ID doesn’t include the current address of the resident the following are appropriate proof of address:

Bill or officially postmarked mail
Car, voter or school registration
Checkbook

Individuals living in temporary residences in Tuscaloosa County (e.g. Hannah Home, Salvation Army, VA hospital) may get a Courtesy Card with a picture ID and a signed letter from an administrator at the institution where they are living. Courtesy Cards are valid for 3 months. At the end of this time period, the patron will need to showproof of a permanent residence, or bring another letter from the institution that is providing their housing.

The Courtesy Card entitles the patron to full computer privileges, and the ability to borrow up to 3 books, 2 DVDs and 1 Book on CD.

The library application requires the patron to sign the following agreement:

Present your card each time you check out items. Do not lend this card. Inform the library of any change in address or phone number. Report lost card immediately. You will be responsible for all uses of lost/stolen card until it is reported. Cardholder is responsible for any fines or fees incurred on this card. Fee will be charged to replace lost card.

I agree to be responsible for all materials borrowed on this card, to obey all library rules, and to follow the Library’s Internet Usage Regulations.

Library cards are issued to children between the ages of 3 and 15 residing in Tuscaloosa County without charge upon completion of a library card application signed by the parent or legal guardian. The parent or legal guardian must also present currently valid picture ID and proof of current address as described above. The patron records for family members residing at the same address are linked.

Library cards are issued to nonresidents of Tuscaloosa County for an annual fee of $10 upon completion of a library card application, the presentation of currently valid picture ID and proof of current address as described above.

Library cards are issued to children between the ages of 3 and 15 not residing in Tuscaloosa County for an annual fee of $10 upon completion of a library card application signed by the parent or guardian. The parent or guardian must also present currently valid picture ID and proof of current address as described above. The patron records for family members residing at the same address are linked.

Library cards are issued to students of the University of Alabama, Shelton State or Stillman College for free upon completion of a library card application, presentation of currently valid picture ID, school ID and proof of current address as described above.

Library cards may be issued to students residing in Tuscaloosa through cooperation with local schools. Applications may be distributed to students by teachers or library staff visiting the school. The application must be completed and signed by the parent and returned through the school to library staff.

There is no distinction among library cards (except for Courtesy Cards as described above). Cards issued to adults, children, students, out-of-county and in-county residents are all subject to the same privileges and regulations. Special circulation regulations apply to patrons when using the bookmobile or the Books-by-Mail service.

In order to maintain accurate records of library card users, patrons must renew their cards annually. The patron must again present a picture ID. Any outstanding library charges need to be paid before the library card is renewed for the coming year.

There is a $5 fee for replacing library cards that have been lost or damaged. The replacement fee for stolen cards and cards destroyed in fires or natural disasters will be waived upon presentation of a police or insurance report.


Limits on Number of Items Checked Out - October 25, 2010

Policy Statement:

The Tuscaloosa Public Library is committed to serving all residents of Tuscaloosa County with excellent service that includes the ability to check out library materials for use at home, at work or in other locations. The Tuscaloosa Public Library is also committed to being a good steward of its resources as it serves the public. The limits on the number of items checked out at one time per patron or family assigned to different media and patrons are designed to provide the best service for a varied clientele.

Regulations:

Patrons with newly issued library cards at all locations: Three items may be checked out by a patron with a newly issued library card the first time the card is used. When the items checked out on the initial visit are returned, the patron may borrow the number of items as indicated below.

Patrons using the Main library and branches:
Patrons may have 20 books, 15 on books on tape, 6 books on CD, 6 music CDs, 6 video tapes and 6 DVDs and 1 Video Game checked out at the same time.

Patrons using Courtesy Cards:
Individuals living in temporary residences in Tuscaloosa County may get a Courtesy Card (see library card guidelines). The Courtesy Card entitles the patron to full computer privileges, and the ability to borrow up to 3 books, 2 DVDs and 1 Book on CD.

Patrons using the bookmobile:
Bookmobile teachers (teachers at schools and childcare centers visited by the bookmobiles) may have 40 books, 6 books on CD, 6 music CDs and 3 video tapes and 3 DVDs checked out at the same time.
Students at bookmobile school stops may have only 3 items. These limits only apply to materials circulated from the bookmobile.

Interlibrary loan libraries:
Libraries may have 40 books checked out at the same time. Books on tape or CD, music CDs, video tapes and DVDs are not lent to libraries. Individual patrons may only have 3 ILL books requested at one time.

Loan Periods - February 3, 2009

Policy Statement:

The Tuscaloosa Public Library is committed to serving all residents of Tuscaloosa County with excellent service that includes the ability to check out library materials for use at home, at work or in other locations. The Tuscaloosa Public Library is also committed to being a good steward of its resources as it serves the public. The loan periods assigned to different media and patrons are designed to provide the best service for a varied clientele.

Regulations:

The following regulations are based on the location and type of service offered.

For patrons using the main library and branch libraries:
The loan period for books, except for reference books that do not check out, books on tape or CD, and music CDs is 21 days plus 1 renewal for an additional 21 days unless other patrons have requested the item. If other patrons have requested the item the initial loan period is reduced to 10 days with no renewals.

The loan period for video tapes and DVDs and Video Games is 7 days with no renewals.

For patrons using the Bookmobile or the Books-by-Mail service:
The loan period for books, books on tape or CD, and music CDs is 28 days plus 1 renewal for an additional 14 days unless other patrons have requested the item. If other patrons have requested the item the initial loan period is reduced to 14 days with no renewals.

The loan period for video tapes and DVDs is 14 days with no renewals.

For Libraries requesting loans:
The loan period for books is 28 days plus renewal for an additional 14 days unless a Tuscaloosa Public Library patron has requested the item.
Books on tape or CD, music CDs, video tapes and DVDs are not lent to other libraries.




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