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Library Card Policy and Borrowing Rules

Library Card Policy and Borrowing Rules PDF

The Baxter Memorial Library will issue a free library card representing his/her library account to all residents and property taxpayers of Gorham upon completion of a library card registration form. Non-resident households may purchase a library card. The non-resident fee is determined in June of even numbered years and will be in effect as of July 1st of that year. The non-resident household fee is established by the Trustees and approved by the Town Manager. Free library cards may be issued for non-resident patrons under special circumstances, listed later in this policy.

General Rules

A library account is not required to participate in library programs or to use library resources while at the library.

A library account in good standing is required to check out or renew library materials, as well as to reserve or request materials from other lending libraries. A valid library card must be presented for all transactions associated with a given account. If the library card is not available at that moment, patrons may use valid photo identification to access their own account. To access or inquire about the status of any other patron’s account, including the accounts of children of any age, the card associated with that account is required. No alternative means may be used to access or inquire about the status of another patron’s account.

Checkouts

A current library account in good standing is necessary to check out library materials. To help ensure accuracy and confidentiality, patrons are asked to present their library card for each transaction. If the library card is not available at that moment, patrons may use valid photo identification. When not presenting a library card in person or when giving a library card number by telephone, the patron may be asked by a staff member to verify personal information.

Renewals

Patrons may renew items online using their name and all digits of their library card number or by calling the library and providing the last 6 digits of their library card number. Patrons may also renew items at the library by presenting their library card or presenting the item(s) they would like to renew. If the library card is not available at that moment, patrons may use valid photo identification. When not presenting a library card in person or when giving a library card number by telephone, the patron may be asked by a staff member to verify personal information.

Reserves/Requests

A current library account in good standing is required to place reserves and interlibrary loan requests. Patrons may reserve or request items online using their name and all digits of their library card number or by calling the library and providing the last 6 digits of their library card number. Patrons may also reserve or request items at the library by presenting their library card. If the library card is not available at that moment, patrons may use valid photo identification. When not presenting a library card in person or when giving a library card number by telephone, the patron may be asked by a staff member to verify personal information.

Account Inquiries

Patrons may inquire about the status of their own account or another patron’s account by presenting the library card attached to the account in question.

Patrons may also check their account online using all digits on their library card or by calling the library and providing the last 6 digits of the library card. When not presenting a library card in person or when giving a library card number by telephone, the patron may be asked by a staff member to verify personal information.

Without a library card in hand, the alternative methods listed above will only allow access to the patron’s own account and not to anyone else’s account. This includes the accounts of children of any age.

Accepted forms of identification are valid driver’s license or state identification, passport, student identification, or other photo identification with current photo and name. For young adults and children under age 18, school and grade may be used as identification.

Accepted proofs of residency are valid driver’s license or state identification with current address, check book with preprinted address, official mail (utility bill, insurance paperwork, or similar), lease or rental agreement, or similar proof of residency. Post Office boxes are not proof of residency as one does not need to live in Gorham to have a post office box in Gorham. For young adults and children under age 18, school name and grade may be used as proof of residency. If the young adult is not in school and does not have identification, a piece of current official mail or other proof of residency will be accepted.

At the discretion of the Library Director or his/her designee, a patron may be issued a temporary library card with proper identification. The library card may be used at the time it is issued and will be held at the library until the patron presents proof of residency.

It is the responsibility of the library card holder to inform the library immediately of change of name or address and/or telephone number. Proof of new address is required.

The library patron is fully responsible for all items checked out to his/her library card. By using his/her library card, the library patron agrees to pay for any damaged or lost items checked out to his/her card.

Replacement cards

Each patron will be granted one free replacement card in the event of a lost library card. After that, the fee for replacing a library card is $2. For patrons 18 years and older, a proper identification is required to replace a library card. Patrons or legal guardians of children under the age of thirteen may be granted replacement cards for those children. Young adults age 13 and older must request their own replacement cards.

Resident Library Cards

Residents or property tax payers of Gorham that are age 13 or older may apply for a free library card with proper identification and proof of residency. Children (ages 12 and younger) may apply for a free library card but a parent or legal guardian (court appointed) must sign the application form. A parent or legal guardian of a child who is not yet in school must present a valid library card or proper identification and proof of residency before the child is issued a library card.

Non-Resident Library Cards

Non-resident households may purchase library card privileges by paying the non-resident fee. This fee is established by the Board of Trustees and approved by the Town Manager. A household is defined as any and all persons living at the same residence (house or apartment unit). Each household member may have his/her own library card at no extra charge. The library card privileges expire one year from the date of issue (payment of fee). Positive identification is required. Non-resident children (ages 12 and under) may apply for a library card but a parent or legal guardian must sign the application form.

Free Non-Resident Library Cards

The following are special circumstances under which non-resident library patrons may be issued free library card privileges:

Non-Resident Employees of the Town of Gorham

Non-resident employees of the Town of Gorham may apply for a free library card. Proper identification and proof of employment with the Town (i.e. pay stub) are required. The library card will be issued only to the employee who may choose to share it with family members but who is personally responsible for all items checked out to the library card. The library card must be renewed each year and is not valid once the library cardholder leaves employment with the Town.

Non-Resident / Exchange students of Gorham Public Schools

Non-resident students and exchange students of Gorham Public Schools may apply for a free library card. The application cards of children (ages 12 and younger) must be signed by a parent or legal guardian. The library card may be renewed each year as long as the student attends a public school in Gorham.

College Students

A student of the University of Southern Maine (USM) may present his/her valid student identification to check items out of the Baxter Memorial Library. The student must be in good standing with the University of Southern Maine Libraries. Failure of the USM student to return items borrowed on his or her USM identification or to pay for lost/damaged items he or she borrowed from the Baxter Memorial Library will be reported to the USM library and may result in consequences (i.e.: inability to register for classes, loss of access to transcripts, inability to graduate) at USM.

Non-Resident Directors of Gorham kindergartens, preschools, daycare centers, group homes, and senior center Activity Directors

These library patrons may apply for a free library card for work related use. These cards may be renewed each year as long the patron is employed in Gorham in one of the positions listed above. The library card is not valid after the patron leaves employment. Proper identification and proof of employment is a position listed above is required. The patron may use the work contact information but must also provide a home address as he/she is personally responsible for items checked out to the library card.

Additional “special circumstances” free library cards may be issued at the discretion of the Library Director or his/her designee.

Borrowing Rules

Loan period

All Baxter Memorial Library items circulate for established loan periods. Library items borrowed on behalf of a patron via interlibrary loan are subject to the lending library’s loan periods.

The prompt return of library items ensures that all patrons can continue to use the library’s collections. Although Baxter Memorial Library does not charge overdue fines, notices will be sent for items kept past their due dates. Library items more than two weeks overdue will result in a suspension of borrowing privileges until the overdue items are returned.

Loan limits

Patrons may check out up to four (4) DVD items at a time from the library. All other circulating library materials are available on an unlimited basis. In order to provide equal access to the collections for all users, patrons are requested not to take more than half the available items on a single subject.

Renewals

Library items may be renewed once by phone, in person or online using the library card number to which the items were checked out. Renewals are subject to demand; if another patron has placed a reserve on that item, it cannot be renewed.

Returns

Library materials must be returned to one of Baxter Memorial Library’s four book drops, either inside the building at the circulation desks, at the library entrance, or on the South Street porch. Patrons are encouraged not to place items in outside book drops that are blocked or full as the items can be damaged or stolen. Items returned to an outside book drop are the responsibility of the patron until they are checked back into the library.

Lost or damaged library materials

As a condition of library use, the patron agrees to pay for any lost or damaged library items checked out to his/her library card. Replacement and/or mending costs are determined by the Library Director or his/her designee.

Confidentiality

The Baxter Memorial Library is committed to patron confidentiality. The Library's confidentiality policy is on file at the library.



Recommended by the Baxter Memorial Library Board of Trustees
January 12, 2006

Adopted by the Gorham Town Council
February 7, 2006

Revisions Recommended by the Baxter Memorial Library Board of Trustees
November 9, 2006

Revisions adopted by the Gorham Town Council
December 5, 2006

Revisions Recommended by the Baxter Memorial Library Board of Trustees
June 10, 2009

Revisions adopted by the Gorham Town Council
July 7, 2009

Revisions Recommended by the Baxter Memorial Library Board of Trustees
November 4, 2010

Revisions adopted by the Gorham Town Council
December 7, 2010

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