Circulation Policy


Madrid Public Library                                 Board Approved: April 2007

Section: Library Operations                       Reviewed & Revised: Oct 2010,

Subject:  Circulation Policy                        July 2013, September 2016

Revised & Approved:

Dec 2018 – includes new book fine policy and circulation table adopted in Nov 2018

January 2019



The Madrid Public Library strives to provide all patrons with fair and equal access to library materials.  Some library services require having a valid library account.  To be eligible to check out library materials, patrons need to have a library account in good standing.


Library Accounts


  • Residents of the state of Iowa are eligible to register for a library account, although residents of cities not in compliance with Iowa’s Open Access agreement are not allowed to open an account.


  • In order to receive your library card, proof of residence and a photo id are needed. A photo id may be a valid driver’s license (can be from other states or countries), passports, employee or school photo ids.  Proof of residence may include a valid driver’s license, recent utility bill, rental, lease or home purchase agreement, or a piece of mail received in the last 30 days.  Your new card will be given to you after presenting this information.  New patrons are limited to 1 movie and 4 books at any one time for the first 60 days. 


  • Customer borrowing privileges are suspended when the maximum limit set for fines or fees has been reached.  


  • Warning letters and Municipal infractions may be issued whenever the library has a concern regarding the return of materials or a customer’s satisfaction of an outstanding obligation.


  • Library cards expire every three years. Renewal requires verbal or written verification of street address and other contact information.


  • Replacement cards are $1.50 to replace.


  • Patrons whose accounts have been expired over seven (7) years will have their fines waived and be deleted from the library system.


Patron Responsibilities


  • Personal account holders and/or the responsible adult on a child’s account are responsible for any items checked out on their account and any fines or fees accrued on their account.


  • If a library card is lost or stolen the patron must notify the library immediately. Patrons are responsible for all account activity until the library is notified about the lost/stolen card. Once notified, no materials will be loaned against that card.


  • Patrons are expected to comply with the library’s policies and procedures.


  • Patrons are expected to comply with copyright laws, and the library assumes no responsibility for patron infractions of copyright laws while using library materials.


  • Patrons with valid library accounts may request items to be held for them; requests will be added to the reserve list in the order they are received.


  • Patrons must notify the library of changes in account information (name, address, phone numbers, etc.)


  • Patrons must not tamper with or alter library materials and must return library materials, including all parts and packaging, in good condition.



Check out periods and procedures


  • Check out periods for library materials is calculated on calendar days.


  • Books, audio books, music CD’s, magazines, informational/instructional DVD’s and video games: 3 weeks with 2 renewals


  • DVD’s: 1 week with 1 renewal


  • New DVD’s: 3 days with no renewals


  • Cake pans: 1 week and 1 renewal


  • Newspapers, Yearbooks and the Madrid/Boone County History items may only be used in the library.


  • Interlibrary loan items are to be returned by the time the lending library has set.  Renewals are decided by the lending library.


  • Materials may be renewed over the telephone, in person or online unless the material is reserved for another patron.  Renewals are not permitted for items with pending holds.


  • Regular circulated items (such as books and magazines) have a limit of 35 items that can be checked out at a time.  DVD’s have a limit of 5 per family.  Video games are limited to 2 per family.  At staff discretion, limits may be placed on seasonal items or other high demand items.


  • All materials can be reserved in person, over the telephone or online.  Reserved items will be held for the person for 3 days.


  • Fines and fees will be assessed per the library’s fine policy.


  • There is no grace period for any items.


  • In-house loans of laptops/iPads are for use within the library and cannot be removed from the library building.  They are due back before the library closes the same day as the loan was made and must be given directly to a library employee.


Fine Policy

Libraries exist to enrich the lives of their communities, and they strive to provide stress-free and open access to their patrons.  Therefore, the Madrid Library is adopting a fine-free book policy with regard to the majority of checkout materials. 

Libraries across the country have shown that imposing late fees to patrons is not an effective deterrent to return late materials.  Instead, it creates barriers for youth, or may cause patron guilt, making library use less likely.  To promote access and to overcome these barriers, the Madrid library’s show of good faith will encourage patrons to check out and return materials in a timely manner.


Fines and fees

What is the difference between fines and fees?  Fines are punitive.  Fees are for library services such as copies, faxes, replacement library cards, lost or damaged items, etc.

The library will not charge fines on books, audiobooks and magazines.  Some library items will still incur fines.  All DVD’s, video games, music CD’s and cake pans are excluded from the fine-free policy.  Those items will accrue .50 per day per item late until a maximum fine of $5.00 is reached.  Patrons with total fines or fees of $10.00 or more will not be allowed to check out materials until the account is under $10.00.


Overdue Materials

While fines will not accrue for some materials, a replacement cost for all items will be charged if items are not returned within a reasonable time.  If any item becomes 90 days overdue, replacement cost of the item will be charged to the patron’s account.  If items are returned those charges can be waived.  Patrons will be responsible for replacing lost or damaged materials. 

A reminder email or text will be sent three days before an item is due, the day it is due and when an item is overdue.  To ensure patrons received these notices, please notify staff of any changes to email or phone numbers attached to the account.  Not receiving library emails/texts does not negate the patron’s responsibility for returning library items.  Staff will also do monthly reminder phone calls or letters when items are overdue. 

If an item is late due to being lost or damaged, patrons should notify the library of the item’s status.  The policy regarding lost or damaged items are listed in the following sections.


Damaged Materials

When items are returned, staff will look for any damage.  Damage does not include pages falling out of broken spines; this is normal wear and tear.  If an item is damaged, patrons are asked not to repair the item but to notify staff of the problem.  If an item is moldy or unsafe to keep in the library, the item will be disposed of, and the patron may be charged for the replacement of the item if necessary. 


Lost Materials

Items are considered lost after 90 days overdue.  The value of the item will be charged to the patron’s account.  Patrons will not be allowed to check out other materials until the lost material is either replaced or paid for. Patrons with lost items may take care of this in two ways.  Patrons can pay the cost for the item or patrons can find an exact match for an item. (i.e. an exact title and format)


Prior late fees

All late book fines existing before the adoption of this policy will be waived.  Lost/damaged item charges will remain.

(Adopted: November 2018)


Madrid Public Library – Fines

Circulation Table

  Circulation Type    Limit  Loan Period  Grace Period  Fine Amount  Maximum Fine  Renew Limit
Regular Circ (Bks, Mags, Audio)3521 days00$0.002
New Movies33 days0.50$5.000
Movies57 days0.50$5.001
Informational/Instructional DVD’s521 days0.50$5.002
Interlibrary Loan530 days00$0.000
Cake Pans37 days0.50$5.001
Reference530 days00$0.001
Music CD’s521 days0.50$5.002
Video Games221 days0.50$5.002

Revised and adopted: November 2018

No check outs allowed once a fine of $10.00 is reached. 

Maximum fine is the “cap” amount of a fine for an item