Use of library materials will be free to all citizens of Halifax County.
The library does reserve the right to restrict or deny the use of materials to an individual or group for the following reasons:
* Failure to return borrowed materials
* Failure to pay fines and fees
* Failure to adhere to the library’s Behavior Policy, leading to temporary or permanent barring from the library
Initial library cards will be issued free of charge to any resident of the State of Virginia. Non-residents will be charged an initial fee of $25.00 per individual.
Library Card Applications
A library card application must be properly filled out, and proof of residence produced, before a library card will be issued. The following documents may be used to verify residence:
* A valid driver’s license or state-issued identification card
* A bill from a utility company or retailer that is addressed to the person applying for the card and that is dated in the last twelve months
* A tax bill from a local or state government that is addressed to the person applying for the card and that is dated in the last twelve months
* A copy of a current lease or deed with the address of the person applying for the card and that is dated in the last twelve months.
* Government issued work permits will be accepted for individuals under the age of 18, provided that they contain the individual’s address and are dated within the last twelve months
Individuals younger than 16 years old must have the library card application signed by a parent, grandparent, or legal guardian who agrees to assume responsibility for materials borrowed with the card, any fines accumulated on the card, and the cost of any lost or damaged materials associated with the card.
An institutional library card may be issued to an organization that assumes responsibility for all materials borrowed on the card, any fines accumulated on the card, and the cost of any lost or damaged materials associated with the card. The library card application must be accompanied by a signed letter from a representative of the organization, acknowledging the aforementioned responsibilities. The letter must be on the organization’s official letterhead.
The following information must be provided as a part of the library card application process:
* Current full legal name * Full address, including house/apartment number and street, city/town, state, and zip code
* Telephone number
* Date of birth (Optional for those 18 years old and older)
The following information will be requested as a part of the library card application process, but do not have to be provided:
* E-mail address
Patrons are responsible for notifying the library about any change in contact information.
Patrons are responsible for notifying the library about lost or stolen cards. Replacement cards are charged at the rate of $2.50 per card.
Circulation of Materials
Patrons must have either their library card or a picture ID in order to check out materials.
Patrons may check out up to 50 items at any one time.
There is a limit of 5 DVDs per card and DVDs may not be checked out on a juvenile patron’s card.
Circulation periods for materials are as follows:
* Items on reserve circulate for 10 days with no option for renewal.
* DVDs circulate for 5 days with the option to renew once.
* eBooks and eAudio materials circulate for 7, 14, and 21 days with no option to renew. Items not on reserve can be checked out again.
* The current copies of magazines and newspapers do not circulate.
* All other materials circulate for 21 days with the option to renew twice.
* Renewals may be done in person, over the telephone, or online.
* Items that have a hold list cannot be renewed.
Circulation-related fines and fees are as follows:
* $0.15 per day overdue fine for all print and audio materials with a maximum fine of $5.00 per item.
* $1.00 per day overdue fine for all DVDs with a maximum of $5.00 per item.
* Lost and damaged items are charged at the current retail price of the item plus a $2.00 processing fee per item.
* Replacement library cards are charged at the rate of $2.50 per card.
Notification of overdue materials will be done via either mail or e-mail, depending upon the preference of the individual patron. Courtesy reminders, sent three days before an item is overdue, are available to patrons who receive e-mail notices.
Mailed overdue notices will be sent out on a regular basis and in a timely manner. Patrons will receive first and second notices for overdue items. If items are not returned after the second notice then a billing notice will be sent, which is a notice for the replacement costs of the items in question. If a patron receives a billing notice and returns the items then the patron only needs to pay the overdue fines and a $2.00 processing fee.
E-mail overdue notices go out when an item is 14 days overdue and again at 30 days if the item is still overdue. A billing notice will be sent via e-mail once an item is 45 days overdue. The billing notice is a notice for the replacement costs of the items in question. If a patron receives a billing notice and returns the items then the patron only needs to pay the overdue fines and a $2.00 processing fee.
Lost and Damaged Items
Items that are lost or damaged will be charged at the current replacement price of the item, plus a $2.00 processing fee per each item.
Anyone paying for a lost or damaged item will receive a receipt indicating the payment.
Damaged items that are paid for become the property of the patron.
If a lost item which has been paid for by the patron is subsequently found by the patron tha item then becomes the property of the patron and no refund will be issued.
Any overdue fines associated with a lost or damaged item will be waived once the item is paid for by the patron.
Fine and Fee Collection
Patrons are expected to return materials on time and to pay any fines and fees incurred. Staff may waive fines and fees only in cases of patron illness or inclement weather. Other instances should be referred to the Library Director or Branch Manager.
Borrowing privileges are suspended if a patron owes $15.00 or more on his/her account. The Library Director or Branch Manager may arrange for an installment payment plan for patrons who owe $15.00 or more. Guidelines for payment plans are as follows:
- The patron must owe $15.00 ore more in overdue fines.
- A payment plan may only be used to pay off fines, not to pay off lost or damaged items.
- The patron must agree to pay a minimum of 20% of the amount owed each month until the entire amount is paid in full.
- While in a payment plan patrons may use library computers and may check out no more than 2 items.
- Information concerning payment plans will be entered into the patron's record and removed once the payment has been received.
- Failure to make a payment will result in termination of the payment plan and the patron will not be able to check out materials or use library computers until the amount is paid below $15.00
On occasion a library patron may state that an item has been returned when the item still shows as being checked out on the patron’s account. In cases such as this it is up to the discretion of library staff whether or not to mark the item as “claimed returned.”
A patron is allowed up to five items marked as claimed returned. Each instance will be noted in the patron’s account. A patron who has reached the claimed returned limit and is disputing another item must be referred to the Library Director.
Items on hold will be retained for the patron for five days. If the item has not been picked up after five days, and the patron has not contacted the library concerning the item, then the item will become available to the next person on the hold list or returned to the shelf if there are no more holds on the item.
Patron records are kept confidential and are exempt from disclosure in the Virginia Freedom of Information Act. Parents or guardians of minors may request information about their child’s record.
Approved by the Library Board of Trustees 03/11/2014 Updated 11/10/2014