Free and Equal Access to Library Material and Services
It is the policy of the Oliver Wolcott Library, as approved by the Board of Trustees, that the Library shall include in its Circulation Policy the American Library Association’s Library Bill of Rights (1980), its Freedom to Read Statement (1972), and its related intellectual freedom documents. These documents endorse free and equal access to library material and services for all people, regardless of race, creed, national origin, age, place of residence, or other personal criteria.
It is the policy of the Oliver Wolcott Library not to forbid or impede the circulation of items from the library collection to any of its cardholders in good standing, whether resident or non-resident, based upon that cardholder’s race, creed, national origin, age, place of residence, or other personal criteria.
It is the policy of the Oliver Wolcott Library that parents or guardians, not library staff or trustees, are responsible for monitoring and approving the selection of material made by children. It is the parents or guardians, and only these, who may restrict their children, and only their children, from access to library material and/or services, including access to the internet. Parents or guardians who wish their children not to have access to certain materials or services should so advise and supervise their children.
An Oliver Wolcott Library card may be used to borrow materials at any public library in the State of Connecticut that participates in the Connecticard Library Service Program. Any person eighteen years of age or older, or the parent/guardian of any person under eighteen years of age, with an Oliver Wolcott Library card is responsible for all charged materials, associated fees, and notification of card loss or change of address.
All cards are free of charge. A $1.00 fee will be assessed for any lost cards.
Residents and Taxpayers: Any person who is a resident or taxpayer of the Town of Litchfield (including Bantam, Northfield and Milton) are eligible to have a library card. The person must present identification (such as a valid driver’s license or a post-marked envelope) showing a current Litchfield address or taxpayer status. Library cards are valid for four years.
Teacher Cards: Teachers who teach at a public or private grade school located in Litchfield are eligible for a special library card. These cards are granted for one year, may be renewed annually, and can only be used at the Oliver Wolcott Library. Applicants must provide proof of employment.
Student residents: Students who live at a private school located in Litchfield are eligible for a special student library card. These cards are granted for one year, may be renewed annually, and can only be used at the Oliver Wolcott Library. Applicants must provide proof of residency at the school and a statement signed by the school administrator authorizing the student to obtain a special card and guaranteeing responsibility for material lost or damaged while checked out by the student.
Out-of-state residents: Any out of state resident for whom Litchfield is a temporary place of residency may be issued a temporary library card upon request for up to one year and with an annual $25 non-refundable deposit. The applicant must provide both a permanent out-of-state address and phone number as well as a temporary local address and phone number. An out-of-state temporary library card is only valid at the Oliver Wolcott Library.
Reserves, Interlibrary Loans, Requests for Purchase
Reserves: Materials (except reference materials and serials) that are “on order” or in circulation may be reserved.
Loans placed through our shared Network of about 50 Connecticut libraries (Bibliomation Global): Items may be requested from libraries that belong to our shared network in the Bibliomation consortium free of charge. These requests need to be placed by the patron online from a computer (either at home or on one of the library’s public-access computers). Intra-library loans will be automatically filled by any Bibliomation library with an available copy. It will be delivered to the Oliver Wolcott Library for the requesting patron and can be returned to any public library. Staff involvement is minimal. As a result, we are able to offer this service for unlimited requests free of charge to all patrons.
Loans placed through the Out-of-Network ReQuest iconn catalog: This catalog is out of our shared network, has state required staff management, and will be subject to a charge. All inter-library loan materials must be returned to the library where the request was initiated. Patrons requesting inter-library loans are responsible for following up on requests and returning the material promptly. Renewals are at the discretion of the original library. If granted, renewals are for two weeks. Inter-library loans through the statewide system require a large amount of staff time for each request. The state requires certain procedures be followed and requests (even when placed online by the patron) must be submitted and documented by the library staff. As a result, the library allows each patron one inter-library loan request per month for free. Every additional request will incur a nonrefundable service charge of $1.00 per item. Payment must be made in advance. We will process requests as soon as payment has been received. Special loans requiring out-of-state, university, and/or special format (non-book) requests are sometimes subject to an additional charge by the lending library. In these instances, the patron will be notified prior to the fulfillment of the request of the charge and is required to pay the charge if they want the request to be continued.
Community and library-sponsored book clubs may place one title requests for 10 copies or less of the same title each month at no charge. The contact person for any community book club must fill out a simple form in order to initiate this service. The form is available on our website at www.owlibrary.org or at the library.
Request for Purchase: Anyone may request an item for purchase for the collection. All requests will be reviewed according to the Oliver Wolcott Library Selection Policy. Requested items that are purchased will be placed on reserve for the requesting patron.
Connecticard Library Service Program
The Oliver Wolcott Library complies with the Connecticard guidelines as adopted by the Connecticut State Library. Any materials may be returned to any participating Connecticard library. The borrower is responsible for the materials until they are returned to the owning library.
The Oliver Wolcott Library maintains a “No Fines” policy for overdue items as long as they are returned to the Library in good condition. In lieu of fines, voluntary contributions to the “Conscience Box” will be encouraged and gratefully accepted.
As a courtesy, the Library attempts to reach patrons about overdue materials. Borrowers are responsible for returning materials on time and in good condition.
Suspension of Library Borrowing Privileges
A patron’s borrowing privileges will be temporarily suspended if an item is 60 days overdue, or there are 10 items or more that are overdue by a single day. Delinquent accounts may be forwarded to another agency for collection. Borrowing privileges will be reinstated when the overdue item or items are either returned in good condition or paid for. However, in cases of continued misuse of borrowing privileges, the Library Director may suspend that borrower’s privileges for an indefinite period.
Every effort will be made to handle suspension of borrowing privileges with the utmost discretion and courtesy. Such suspension is not meant as a punitive measure. Rather, suspension is viewed as a necessary measure in order to sustain availability of library materials for all patrons.
Lost or Damaged Materials
The fee for replacing an item which is lost or damaged beyond repair is the current replacement cost of the item. Out of print materials from the collection incur a fee of $25 or the current replacement cost whichever amount is higher.
Receipts will be issued upon receipt of fee payment. After payment of a fee, a damaged item may be kept by the patron. Refunds for found items are not possible.
The library is not responsible for any damage to patron’s incurred while playing or downloading library-provided material.
The circulating collection is available for loan. An item in circulation is considered on loan until it is returned intact. Adult reference materials are available for overnight loan at the discretion of the Library Director or Adult Services Librarian. Library material may be renewed one time unless a hold has been placed on the item by another patron. Recognizing that the library seeks to provide equitable access to its materials for all patrons, patrons may borrow a reasonable number of items as determined by the Library staff.
Loan periods are determined by the type of material and determined by the Bibliomation Consortium, our shared network of libraries. Please contact the Oliver Wolcott Library if you have a question about loan periods.
Adopted March 18, 2003, Revised 1/10/06, Revised 7/18/06, Revised 1/16/07
Revised July 29, 2014