Circulation Policies

The library serves the common good by collecting resources of interest to its clientele, maintaining these resources, and making them available for either circulation or in-house use.  The library must strike a balance between access and accountability.  We have attempted to define our loan periods with that balance in mind – offering a relatively long loan period for the convenience of the individual user, while enforcing policies to insure that materials continue to be accessible to all of our library users.

To check the status of your library account online:

Circulation Periods and Notes


Material Loan Period for Public Borrowers Notes
  • All books
  • Audiobooks
  • Curriculum materials
  • Government publications
  • Musical scores
  • CDs
  • Children’s books
4 weeks These materials may be renewed once unless there is a hold or recall on the item.
  • DVDs
  • Blu-Rays
  • Periodicals
1 week These materials may be renewed once unless there is a hold or recall on the item.


If materials are checked out, another patron may request a hold be placed on the items.  When the items are returned to the library the patron is notified by email that their hold items are available at the library’s 3rd floor circulation desk. The items are on hold for one week.  If the items are not picked up within a week, they are placed back into circulation.

Interlibrary Loan

If Cole Library does not own material you need, we may be able to borrow it from another library.  Some material, such as recent best sellers, some reference books, and multiple copies of an individual title, are often not available through interlibrary loan.  In addition, material owned by Cole Library is generally not borrowed from another library unless our copy is lost or missing.  Cole Library abides by copyright guidelines governing interlibrary loan.

For further information regarding interlibrary loan or your ILL account, click here.


Notices are sent via e-mail.  

Overdue notices: The library will send three overdue notices once an item’s due date has passed. If materials are not returned or renewed thirty days after the due date, we consider the material lost. This status results in a replacement fee.

Recall notice: All library users may recall material that is currently checked out to another user.  Because of academic needs of students and faculty, it is critical that those recalled materials be returned to the library as quickly as possible, at least by the due date.  Fines are assessed at the rate of $1.00 per day after the due date to users (including faculty members) who don’t return recalled materials by that date.  Please contact the Circulation Department if you are unable to meet that due date because of travel or other obligations.

In the case of materials checked out for the academic year and subsequently recalled by another library user, once the faculty borrower has had the material for four weeks (i.e., the circulation period for non-faculty borrowers), recalled material is due back in the library within two days.  Please contact the Circulation Department if that is not possible.

Failure to respond may result in suspension of further borrowing privileges.


Overdue Fines for Public Borrowers:  The Cole Public Library Board of Trustees voted to stop charging overdue fines starting July 2020.  We will continue to charge fees for lost and replaced items (see policy below).  Cole Library is currently working on removing fines from patron accounts.  If you have any questions regarding this change or charges on your account, please email

Replacement Fees:  The library considers an item lost after three overdue notices have been sent. At this point, the borrower will be assessed two fees: a processing fee and a replacement charge. The processing fee ($10) covers the cost of generating notices, postage, searching for the item, and other related activities. If an item is returned within two months after the fee has been paid, a refund will be generated. However, the processing fee will apply because the library has expended these efforts already. The replacement cost is based on the following schedule:

Academic books


Browsing Room books


Children’s books


Videocassettes & DVDs


Audio books


CDs & LPs


Browsing Room periodicals


The replacement cost does not cover the costs to the library for cataloging and processing the replacement item. As a result, replacing lost items takes away from our overall buying power.

Questions. If you have questions about a specific item, please call our Circulation Desk at 895-4271.

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