Every Monroe resident who has a valid Edith Wheeler Memorial Library card in good standing may borrow items from this library’s collection. In addition, under the Connecticard reciprocal borrowing system of the Connecticut State Library, any resident of another Connecticut town or city may borrow items from this library’s collection provided he or she presents a valid borrower card in good standing from his or her own hometown public library.
It is the policy of the Edith Wheeler Memorial Library that parents or guardians, not the library staff or trustees, are responsible for monitoring and approving the selection of items made by their minor children. It is the parents or guardians – and only these – who may restrict their children – and only their children – from borrowing specific library items. Parents or guardians who wish their children not to have access to certain materials should accompany or otherwise advise their children. The library staff and trustees cannot and do not act in loco parentis.
The library staff may impose requirements on the eligibility to borrow particular items, such as cultural site passes or equipment, but these restrictions must be based on some reasonable consideration.
SECTION 2: STANDARD LOAN PERIODS
Every item in the library collection, whether print and non-print, may be borrowed for 21 days, with the following exceptions:
14 day loan period:
- Adult books classified as New Books and under 500 pages, all magazines
7 day loan period:
3 day loan period:
- Passes to cultural sites (exception: Beardsley Zoo, Peabody Museum, Discovery Museum and Stepping Stones are one day loan)
42 day loan period:
- Items interlibrary loaned to other libraries for the borrowing libraries’ cardholders
- Reference books
In-house use only:
- The most recent issue of each adult & children’s magazine
Passes to cultural sites acquired by the library itself may be borrowed by any cardholder in good standing. In compliance with the wishes of the Friends of the Edith Wheeler Memorial Library, passes to cultural sites donated by the Friends organization may be borrowed only by Monroe residents, non-resident Monroe taxpayers, and Friends members.
SECTION 3: SPECIAL LOAN PERIODS
In order to satisfy the occasional, non-recurring needs of cardholders, the Library Director or his/her designee may make exceptions to the above loan periods for reasonable purposes. “Designees” include the Circulation Manager, the Adult Services Librarian, or the ranking staff member on duty in the Adult Department; and the Children’s Services Librarian or the ranking staff member on duty in the Children’s Department.
A total of 12 items may be borrowed on a special loan period by the same cardholder. Special loan periods may not exceed 8 weeks from date of loan.
The following items are not eligible for special loan periods: items on reserve for other cardholders, reference books, items interlibrary loaned from other libraries for Monroe residents, and books listed on the Monroe school system’s required high school reading list (summers only).
SECTION 4: RENEWALS
Most circulating items may be renewed twice, each time for a period equal in length to the
original loan. Renewals can be made in person, by telephone, or online via the library homepage.
The following items may not be renewed: DVD’s & videos, items on reserve for other cardholders, passes to cultural sites, items loaned on special loan periods, items designated as “lost” in the online catalog, reference books, items interlibrary loaned from other libraries for Monroe residents, and books listed on the Monroe school system’s required high school reading list (summers only).
SECTION 5: RESERVES
Any circulating item in the collection may be reserved except passes to cultural sites.
If an item wanted by a patron is not available, he or she may reserve it using the procedures and forms established by the library. Only items out in circulation or otherwise not immediately available at the time of request may be reserved.
Items may not be reserved for specific dates. A reserve will be satisfied at the time the item becomes available.
As soon as a reserved item becomes available, the library staff will notify the requesting cardholder. Reserved items of all types will be held aside for 3 business days following the day of notification. Any reserved item not called for by the end of this period will be given to the next requesting cardholder or, if no additional reserves exist, re-shelved.
When notifying requesting cardholders, Connecticut law forbids the revealing of item titles reserved by borrowers age 18 and over to anyone other than the borrower him/herself. Messages stating titles and delivered via other persons are forbidden.
SECTION 6: QUANTITY LIMITATIONS
Quantity limitations on borrowing collection items are not imposed except for the following:
- DVDs and CDs – limit of 20 of each.
- Books listed on the Monroe school system’s required high school reading list (summers only): 1 per cardholder at a time.
- Children’s holiday books: A total of 3 titles per cardholder during the appropriate season, as determined by the Children’s Services Librarian.
- Magnifiers and closed-caption decoders: 1 per type per cardholder at a time.
- Electronic devices: 1 per person
SECTION 7: OVERDUE ITEMS
Cardholders are responsible for returning borrowed items on or before the due date, as noted on the check-out receipt. Returns may be made in person, via the outside bookdrops, or at any Connecticut public library participating in the Connecticut State Library’s Connecticar program.
SECTION 8: OVERDUE FINES AND FINE MAXIMUMS
Overdue fine charges are:
- 15 cents per business day on adult items
- 10 cents per business day on children’s items
- $2 per business day on overdue reference books, DVD discs and VHS tapes, magnifiers, closed captioned decoders, and passes to cultural sites
Overdue fines will not be charged to patrons receiving homebound delivery service. In addition, the library does not charge overdue fines incurred due to the death, hospitalization, or serious illness of a cardholder or a member of the cardholder’s close family (“close family” as determined by the library staff). The Library Board of Trustees may establish other fine-free cardholder categories as deemed appropriate from time to time.
No overdue fine may exceed the cost to replace the item involved.
Maximum fines are:
- $6 on most items
- $2 on children’s paperbacks and board books
- $10 on reference books, DVD discs and VHS tapes, magnifiers, closed-captioned decoders, and passes to cultural sites.
No maximum overdue fine is established for individual library cards.
SECTION 9: REPLACEMENT CHARGES
Cardholders who lose or damage library items borrowed on their library cards will be charged to replace those items. The replacement charge for a lost or damaged item will be either the actual replacement cost of the item or the minimum replacement charge established by the library staff for that format of item, whichever is higher. The library staff will develop and annually update a chart showing the minimum replacement charges for lost or damaged items, format by format.
Provided the item has not yet been replaced, a new copy of a lost or damaged item, or of a reasonable substitute for a lost or damaged item that is out-of-print (“reasonable” as determined by the Library Director, Adult Services Librarian, or Children’s Services Librarian), may be donated by cardholder in lieu of paying replacement charges. The donated replacement copy
must be in at least as sturdy a condition as the original item (i.e., a hardcover for a hardcover, etc.).
SECTION 10: FINANCIALLY-RELATED BORROWER SUSPENSIONS
A cardholder will have his or her borrowing privileges suspended whenever he or she owes the library $5.00 or more in overdue fines and/or replacement charges.
SECTION 11: DISCRETION IN FINANCIAL TRANSACTIONS
At the discretion of the library staff, payment to remove a financially-related borrowing suspension may be delayed until a future date and the cardholder may be allowed to borrow items during the intervening time.
The Library Director may authorize staff members to reduce or cancel overdue fines, replacement costs, and other charges owed to the library by cardholders, if circumstances warrant. It is library policy that staff members will never be reprimanded or disciplined for erring in favor of a cardholder or for giving a cardholder “the benefit of the doubt.”
SECTION 12: CLASSROOM COLLECTIONS
The public and parochial schools of Monroe, as well as those in surrounding towns, receive funds through their governing boards to develop school library collections that respond to the specific curriculum needs of their students and teachers. Moreover, the items purchased for the collection
of a public library are intended to be available for the benefit and enjoyment of all the citizens of Monroe. Therefore, it is the policy of the Edith Wheeler Memorial Library not to lend large numbers of items from the library collection to schoolteachers for use in their classrooms as “classroom collections”.
As a courtesy to Monroe’s public, parochial, and nursery schools, the Children’s Services Librarian may, at his or her discretion, lend from the Children’s Department collection a maximum of 20 items, no more than 6 of which can be nonfiction items on the same topic, to a teacher needing such materials in the classroom via use of a school’s “institutional library card”. Such loans will be subject to the same rules regarding loan periods, renewals, overdue fines, and replacement charges as those specified above.
Adopted by the Library Board of Trustees: February 21, 2001
Revised: October 18, 2007
Revised: February 27, 2009
Revised: July 10, 2009
Revised: January 21, 2010
Revised: February 27,2012
Revised: March 13, 2014