Serving Westchester Township, Porter County, Indiana 

 It is the mission of the Westchester Public Library to be a dynamic library providing free and unprejudiced access to knowledge and information to improve the quality of life, learning, and the economy of the community.
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Circulation Services
 

revised 7/15/2013


LIBRARY CARDS
 

GENERAL INFORMATION 
A library card is a valuable asset. It can give you access to millions of dollars worth of books, magazines, and other library materials. You are financially responsible for the items checked out on your card, so protect it as dearly as you would a credit card. Do not let others use your card and report a loss or theft of your card to the library immediately.

RESIDENT ADULT 
Adult residents or real property owners of Westchester Township may apply for a free library card for the Westchester Public Library at either the Thomas Library, Chesterton, or the Hageman Library, Porter. An appropriate application form and signature card must be completed and proper identification must be shown. Appropriate identification includes a driver's license, automobile registration, property tax statement, fishing license, voter's registration card, or a piece of delivered mail.

RESIDENT MINOR 
The parent or guardian of a minor child must apply in person for a card for a minor child and have a valid library card in good standing with the library. The adult must also present appropriate identification and sign a signature card agreeing to be responsible for materials borrowed by the child. Library cards for adults and children are linked and a block for excessive fines or fees on one card will block the borrowing privileges for all other linked cards.

BUSINESS/CORPORATE CARDS 
Businesses located in Westchester Township may apply for library cards for business purposes. The business owner or manager must complete the application forms. The business will be held responsible for all items borrowed on the card.

RECIPROCAL BORROWING 
The Westchester Public Library participates in the Indiana Reciprocal Borrowing Program. Resident borrowers of our library district in good standing with the library may borrow materials without charge from other public libraries participating in the program. Nonresidents of our library district who reside in a participating library district may borrow materials from our library.

NONRESIDENT ADULT RECIPROCAL BORROWING CARDS  Nonresidents applying for a reciprocal borrowing card must be registered and be in good standing with their home library. Appropriate identification must be shown and an application form completed before we will issue a nonresident card.

NONRESIDENT MINOR RECIPROCAL BORROWING CARDS Nonresident minors may apply for a nonresident reciprocal borrowing card. The parent or guardian of a nonresident minor child and the child must both hold a valid library card in good standing with their home library.

NONRESIDENT PURCHASED CARDS 
Nonresidents of Westchester Township who are not residents of a reciprocal borrowing library district may purchase a nonresident library card for an annual fee of $175 per card per person. The card allows nonresidents to borrow materials from any of the library's regular circulating collections.

COMPUTER USE
Patrons who desire to use the library's public access computers must have a regular library card in good standing.

PLAC CARDS 
The State of Indiana has established a program to provide Indiana residents with the opportunity to purchase a Public Library Access Card for an annual fee. The fee is set annually. The card will be honored by any public library in the state. Patrons may only borrow books from the Westchester Public with a PLAC card.

TEMPORARY CARDS 
A temporary resident of Westchester Township may apply for a temporary card. Identification showing place of permanent residence and the local temporary residence are required. A refundable deposit of $10 is also required.

CARD RENEWAL 
Library cards are valid for 3 years, but address checks are made annually. Library cards not used for 3 years and that have no charges or associations will be purged from the system. Cards may be renewed by showing appropriate identification to reconfirm the address.

LOST CARDS
If your library card is lost or stolen, please notify the library immediately to prevent others from charging items to your account. There is a replacement charge of $1.00 for the first lost card. The charge for a second lost card within a year is $5.00.

LOAN PERIODS AND RENEWALS 
 

MATERIAL TYPE
LOAN PERIOD 
RENEWAL 
ITEM LIMITS 
New Hardcover and Paperback Books
14 days 
None 
5 
General Hardcover and Paperback Books
28 days 
1 renewal 
15 
Periodicals
14 days 
1 renewal 
15 
Toys
7 days 
1 renewal 
2 
DVD's
5 days 
None 
5 total video items 
Nonfiction Video Tapes
7 days 
None 
5 total video items 
Fiction Video Tapes
5 days 
None 
5 total video items 
Audio Tapes
14 days 
1 renewal 
10 total audio items 
Compact Discs - Music
14 days 
1 renewal 
10 total audio items 
Compact Discs - Audio Book
14 days 
1 renewal 
10 total audio items 
MP3 Player
14 days 
1 renewal 
3 items 
Language Instruction Materials
14 days 
1 renewal 
2 items 
  

A patron may only borrow a total of 25 items of all types.  

Reference books and new periodicals do not circulate.

Items on reserve for another patron may not be renewed.


FINES AND FEES
 

MATERIAL TYPE
DAILY FINE 
ADULT MAXIMUM FINE  
JUVENILE MAXIMUM FINE 
Hardcover Books
$.05 
$5.00 
$5.00 
Paperback Books
$.05 
$5.00 
$5.00 
Periodicals
$.05 
$5.00 
$5.00 
Toys
$.05 
$5.00 
$5.00 
DVD's
$1.00 
$5.00 
$5.00 
Nonfiction Video Tapes
$1.00 
$5.00 
$5.00 
Fiction Video Tapes
$1.00 
$5.00 
$5.00 
Audio Tapes
$.05 
$5.00 
$5.00 
Compact Discs - Music
$.05 
$5.00 
$5.00 
Compact Discs - Audio Book
$.05 
$5.00 
$5.00 
MP3 Player
$.05 
$5.00 
$5.00 
Language Instruction Materials $.25 $5.00 $5.00


FINES
 - In order to share library materials as widely as possible, patrons are fined for library materials held longer than the prescribed loan period. The borrowing privileges of patrons are blocked when their accumulated fines and fees total $5.00 or more.

MAXIMUM FINES - Fines for overdue materials owned by the Westchester Public Library do not accrue forever. A schedule of maximum fines is applied to all materials to encourage the ultimate return of items to the library's collections. Maximum fines are applied per item.

RETURNS- Library materials must be returned to a public service desk before the close of business on the date due. Materials returned in drop box late in the day or after closing will not be checked in until the following day and an overdue fine may be due.

INTERLIBRARY LOAN - The fees and loan periods for interlibrary loan materials are set by the lending libraries. Some libraries will allow interlibrary loan items to be renewed, others may not. The minimum overdue fine for interlibrary loans items is $1.00 per day with no maximum fine.

OVERDUE NOTICES - Overdue notification is expensive and not offset by fine collections so we encourage patrons to keep track of their due dates and return library materials on time to avoid overdue charges. We no longer send overdue notices through the mail, but we may make overdue notice telephone calls when staff or volunteers are available.

CLAIMED MATERIALS - Although we have experienced some minor problems in the past with our automated system and internal procedures, we have great confidence in our circulation records. Sometimes our patrons will claim that items have already been returned or never borrowed. We allow patrons to carry a limited number of such claims on their records, but we encourage them to keep searching for our materials.

LOST OR DAMAGED MATERIALS - Library patrons are expected to return library materials in as good of condition as when borrowed, less wear from normal use. Patrons will be charged the cost of a lost or damaged item plus an acquisition and processing fee of $5.00 for the reacquisition and cataloging of the replacement.

COLLECTION - Library materials are public property and the failure to return borrowed library materials is a serious offense. Patrons who do not return library materials may be referred to a collection agency for the recovery of our materials and collection expenses.

 

PDB
7/13

 

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