Borrowing Policies


Unless otherwise specified, library materials will be loaned to patrons for 21 days. The standard library card allows patrons to have up to 100 items checked out on their account at one time. Patrons may place holds on materials and pick them up at their preferred Anoka County Library. The loan period for the library’s circulating materials shall be determined by the Library Advisory Board and reviewed annually. Loan periods shall be as generous as possible yet consistent with the need to secure the prompt return of materials so that they may be used by other borrowers.

Category/Type of MaterialLoan Period
Standard loan period (all items not otherwise specified)21 days
Books by Mail items45 days
Book Club in a Bag6 weeks

Patrons are responsible for all materials borrowed with their library card. Parents or legal guardians are responsible for all materials borrowed by their children.


Anoka County Library will attempt to automatically renew borrowed items three days before the due date. If successful, loan periods will be extended for a full borrowing period from the existing due date. Eligible Library materials may be renewed up to four times. 

An item won't renew if: another library user has requested it, the item has reached its maximum number of renewals, the patron owes more than $10 on their account, the account is expired, or the item is ineligible for renewal.

If renewal is unsuccessful, patrons will continue to receive notices about overdue items. 


Patrons may return material to any MELSA public library regardless of where the items were borrowed. All Anoka County Library branches have 24-hour book returns.


Materials kept past the due date will accrue fines. Fine rates are based on material type. See Fine and Fee Schedule.

Overdue Collection Fees

When overdue accounts reach a set amount (currently $75.00), they are referred to Anoka County Collections. When an account is sent to Anoka County Collections for action, their fee (currently $10.00) is passed through to the overdue account.

Lost or Damaged Materials

Items are declared lost 30 days after the due date. Borrowers are responsible for the replacement cost (retail value plus processing fee) for lost or damaged materials. Refunds will not be made for materials which a customer has already paid. Replacement copies are never accepted as payment.

Restricted Borrowing

Patrons that owe $10 or more in fines may not borrow materials until the fines are paid. Checks that are dishonored and returned will be subject to recovery fees and activity on the patron library account will be restricted.


This policy is reviewed by the Library Advisory Board (or a committee thereof) every four (4) years, or more frequently when deemed appropriate. The Library Advisory Board may recommend proposed changes subject to final approval by the Library Director and the Anoka County Board of Commissioners.

Policy History
Date Approved: September 2023
Next Review Date: September 2025