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Institutional Policies

Policy ACAF-LIB-012

logo of The University of Southern Mississippi  
Responsible University Administrator: Vice President for Academic Affairs
Responsible Officer: Dean of University Libraries
Origination Date: N/A
Current Revision Date: 02/18/13
Next Review Date: 02/18/17
End of Policy Date: NA
Policy Number: ACAF-LIB-012
Status: Effective




Policy Statement

University Libraries' Reserves Policy governs the use of reserve materials in Cook Library, Gulf Coast Library, Gunter Library, and all teaching sites.

Each borrower assumes full responsibility for all materials charged to his or her account and for knowledge of and adherence to library policies concerning loan periods and penalties.


Reason for Policy/Purpose

This policy is required for the effective communication of university policies regarding reserves lending in the University Libraries.


Who Needs to Know This Policy

All patrons of the University Libraries.


Website Address for this Policy





Each borrower assumes full responsibility for all materials charged to his or her account and for knowledge of and adherence to library policies concerning loan periods and penalties.



It is the responsibility of the borrower to maintain current name, mailing address, telephone number, and e-mail address with the University (Office of the Registrar and Department of Human Resources) and University Libraries.  Please check with personnel at the circulation desks of any library to update this information with University Libraries.



  • Identification is required for circulation privileges according to the following categories:
    University Permanent Employees: Faculty, Staff, and Administrative Officials - Current employee identification card.
  • University Students: Current student identification card.
  • Community Borrowers: Current alumni cards; retired faculty and staff identification cards; special programs and nontraditional studies verification cards; temporary University personnel cards, and reciprocal agreement borrowers' cards.



Consistent with FERPA (Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act) and Mississippi Code 39-3-365, University Libraries does not release personal information to a third party, or by telephone, without prior written consent.



Borrowers may check out two Reserve items, library system-wide, at any given time.



Reserve materials have the following loan periods, regardless of patron category:

  • 3-hour - for three hour loan; if checked out within the last 3 hours of library operations, due at closing
  • Overnight - due the following day, by closing
  • 3-day - due three days from check out, by closing
  • 1-week - due seven days from check out, by closing



It is the responsibility of the borrower to return materials on or before the due date/time.


Overdue notices are provided only as a courtesy.



Holds may not be placed on Reserve materials.



Materials borrowed from Reserve collections must be returned to those locations.



Overdue fines — All borrowers are subject to fines for items returned after the date due/time.  Fines on Reserve materials are calculated at a different rate than regular circulating material.  Three-hour reserves are calculated at $.50 per hour; overnight, 3-day, and 7-day reserves are calculated at $5.00 per day, per item, for each day the library is open.  Maximum fines assessed will be $50.00 per item.


Returned checks — $30.00 will be assessed for returned checks.



Borrowing privileges are suspended when five items are kept beyond the date due or library charges exceed $20.00.



Charges for damaged items are determined and assessed by University Libraries' personnel based on the extent of damage and the format. Extensive damage may require full replacement charges of item.



Library materials declared lost or kept at least 42 days beyond the due date will be billed replacement charges as follows:


Items still in print:

  • list price,
  • $25 non-refundable billing fee,
  • $50 processing fee, and


Items out of print or no longer available:

  • original purchase price if known or default replacement price not less than $50.00,
  • $25 non-refundable billing fee,
  • $50 processing fee, and


Borrowing privileges will be suspended, and fines will continue to accrue until payment is received for lost library materials.



All legitimate objections related to library charges will be considered.  Problems that do not constitute a legitimate basis for appeal are:


  • Lack of knowledge of library policy
  • Lack of understanding of library policy
  • Disagreement with library policy
  • Inability to pay fines and charges
  • Failure to receive an overdue notice


Unwillingness to take responsibility for materials loaned to a third party, for example, loaning materials charged to you to a classmate, family member, faculty member, etc.



Lost library materials returned within six months of charge are eligible for credit of the replacement price and processing fee.



The Dean of University Libraries is responsible for the review of this policy every four years (or whenever circumstances require immediate review).








Related Information




Amendments: Month, Day, Year – summary of changes

11/01/11: Formatted for Institutional Policies website.

11/01/12: Updated.

02/18/13: Formatted for template. Minor editing throughout.

04/26/13: Revisions made to monetary amounts in Lost Items section and length of time in Lost Items Returned section


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