NYS Library Circulation Services

General Circulation (Loan) Policies

The New York State Library (NYSL) circulates or loans a large portion of its collection to NYSL registered borrowers and to other libraries through Interlibrary Loan.

Some materials in the New York State Library collection are not available for loan. For instance, fragile materials and individual volumes marked as "non-circulating" do not circulate. Materials in paper format published before 1870 do not circulate without the approval of one of the Associate Librarians in the Public Services Unit.

Borrowing

Individuals

Individuals must have a valid Borrower's Card or NYS Resident Borrower's Card from the New York State Library in order to borrow materials. For information on eligibility and/or applying for a NYSL Borrower's Card or NYS Resident Borrower's Card, see How To Apply For A Library Card. If you have questions about an existing card, contact staff at the Circulation Desk by calling (518) 473-7895 or send an e-mail message to nyslcirc@nysed.gov.

All NYSL material must be properly charged out and its prompt and safe return is the responsibility of the library or individual to whom it is loaned. All individual borrowers and libraries are responsible for those materials borrowed from the NYSL until the materials are returned and for any charges incurred for lost or damaged materials.

Individuals who have a valid New York State Library Borrower's Card or NYS Resident Borrower's Card can request and/or borrow materials from the NYSL by doing one of the following:

  • Send an e-mail message to nyslcirc@nysed.gov.
  • Send a fax to (518) 474-5279.
  • Request books electronically through the NYSL online catalog located at http://nysl.nysed.gov.
  • Call the Reference Desk (518) 474-5355 to request up to three items.
  • Visit the New York State Library in person.

Please include the following information with your request:

  • title and author of the book,
  • call number of the book,
  • your NYSL Borrower's Card number,
  • your name,
  • your office address and
  • office telephone number.

Tell us if you'd like the book(s) held for you at the Circulation Desk or if you'd like the book(s) charged to you and sent to your office. (See Pick-Up And Delivery Options.)

Libraries

Libraries can request to borrow items electronically through Excelsior http://nysl.nysed.gov, via OCLC, Docline or by using the New York State Library Interlibrary Loan web form available on the Library's web site at https://nysl.illiad.oclc.org/illiad/lending/lendinglogon.html.

The New York State Library charges out-of-state and foreign libraries $20.00 for each interlibrary loan request we fill for them with circulating items.

Loan Periods and Renewals

Loan Period

The normal loan period for registered individual borrowers is four weeks. The normal loan period for libraries is six weeks, which includes the shipping and handling process.

Renewals

Materials may be renewed for four additional weeks, provided that no one else has placed a reserve on that material. Materials can be renewed:

  • in person at the 7th floor Circulation Desk,
  • over the telephone at (518) 473-7895,
  • via fax at (518) 474-5279 or
  • via our online forms for libraries or individuals.

Please provide staff with the following information:

  • your name,
  • your daytime telephone number,
  • your NYSL Borrower's Card number,
  • the name of the book that you want to renew and
  • the item ID or barcode on the book. (The item ID or barcode of a book appears on the charge-out slip.)

Renewals should be made on or before the due date.

Long-term Loans

In special circumstances, materials may be loaned to New York State government registered borrowers on "long-term" loan. (Long-term loan is defined as 3-6 months.) Items charged out to a NY State government registered borrower on "long-term" loan are subject to recall if another customer requests those items.

Lost Books And Other Materials

Individual borrowers and libraries should notify staff at the Circulation Desk immediately at (518) 473-7895 or nyslcirc@nysed.gov if NYSL materials are damaged, missing or lost. Individual borrowers and libraries are responsible for any charges incurred for lost or damaged materials.

Individual borrowers and libraries will be sent a bill for the damaged or lost materials. The bill will include the replacement cost of the item and a processing fee of $ 25.00. If a lost item is later found by the borrower and returned to the NYSL, the replacement cost of the item will be refunded. Processing fees are not refunded.

Overdue Books And Other Materials

Borrowers assume the responsibility of keeping track of due dates and returning materials on time. If materials are out on loan longer than the due date and have not been renewed, they will be periodically recalled with an overdue notice. Overdue notices are sent as a courtesy to remind borrowers that items should be renewed or returned; failure to receive a notice does not absolve the borrower of the responsibility to renew or return items in a timely manner.

Borrowers will receive three (3) overdue notices:

  • The first overdue notice will be sent two (2) weeks after the due date of the material.
  • A second overdue notice, if necessary, will be sent four (4) weeks after the due date of the material.
  • A third overdue notice, if necessary, will be sent six (6) weeks after the due date of the material.

If the material has not been returned after the Library has sent the borrower three (3) overdue notices, the borrower will be sent a bill for those materials. The bill includes the replacement cost of the item and a processing fee of $25.00.

A borrower's privileges will be temporarily suspended until the materials have been returned or the replacement charges and processing fees are paid.

Pick-Up And Delivery Options For Registered Borrowers And Libraries

New York State Government Employees

Books can be held at the Circulation Desk on the 7th floor for pickup or can be charged out and sent to New York State Government employees.

Journals can be held at the Circulation Desk on the 7th floor for use onsite or journal articles can be copied and mailed, faxed or e-mailed to New York State Government employees. (See the chart of Photoduplication Charges.)

Books and photocopied journal articles can be sent to one of the following locations: the LOB Access Point, the State Campus Service Point, ENCON, SED/Education Building, NYC sites visited by the OGS courier or individual offices via Interagency mail. Materials will be sent to employees located outside the Capital District via UPS.

Exception: Books that the NYSL borrows for NYS Government employees from another library (via Interlibrary loan) must be picked up onsite at the Circulation Desk or at one of the service points listed above. Interlibrary loan books will be sent to employees located outside the Capital District via UPS.

Attorneys, Doctors or Historians

Books can be held at the Circulation Desk on the 7th floor for pickup or can be charged out and sent via UPS or US Mail to the office address of attorneys, doctors and historians.

Journals can be held at the Circulation Desk on the 7th floor for onsite use or journal articles can be copied (for a fee) and mailed, faxed or e-mailed to attorneys, doctors or historians. (See the chart of Photoduplication Charges.)

NYS Resident Borrowers, NYS Government Retirees and Friends of the NYSL (at the Contributing Level)

Books can be held at the Circulation Desk on the 7th floor for pick-up. The NYSL is unable to mail or ship books and microfilm to NYS Resident Borrowers, Retirees or Friends.

Journals can be held at the Circulation Desk on the 7th floor for onsite use or journal articles can be copied (for a fee) and mailed, faxed or e-mailed to NYS Resident Borrowers, NYS Government Retirees, and Friends of the NYSL. (See the chart of Photoduplication Charges.)

Libraries

Books, photocopies, microfilm and microfiche will be sent to libraries within the Capital District via the CDLC Courier.

Books, photocopies, microfilm and microfiche will be sent to libraries in the US outside the Capital District via UPS.

Books, photocopies, microfilm and microfiche will be sent to libraries in Canada and other countries via the US Mail. Libraries outside of the US must pay all shipping costs.

Copies can be sent to libraries via fax. There is no charge for faxing copies to libraries in New York State; libraries outside of NYS must pay for faxed copies. (See the chart of Photoduplication Charges.)

Copies can also be sent, at no charge, to libraries via Ariel or copies can be e-mailed to libraries.

Reserves

If the item being requested is already loaned to another individual or library, a registered borrower can request that the item be reserved for him or her. When the item becomes available, staff at the Circulation Desk will contact the borrower who placed the reserve. If the reserved material has not been returned at the end of the four-week loan period, Circulation Unit staff will recall that item.

To place a reserve, individuals should contact staff at the Circulation Desk at (518) 473-7895 or nyslcirc@nysed.gov.

Returning Books, Microfilm And Microfiche

Individual Borrowers

NYSL materials can be returned:

  • in person
    • at the 7th floor Circulation Desk,
    • in the book drop on the 1st floor lobby ,
    • at the LOB Access Point,
    • at the State Campus Service Point, or
  • via the NYS OGS courier;
  • via NYS Government Interagency Mail; or
  • via UPS. If UPS is not available, individuals can return NYSL materials via US Registered Mail.

Libraries

Libraries should return NYSL materials via UPS, rather than US Mail. If UPS is not available, libraries can return NYSL materials via US Registered Mail.

Libraries located within the Capital District can return NYSL materials via the CDLC Courier.

Talking Book And Braille Library

The Talking Book and Braille Library (TBBL), which is part of the NYSL, loans braille and recorded books to blind and physically handicapped persons. For information on the TBBL, contact staff in the TBBL Unit at (518) 474-5935 or TBBL@nysed.gov .

Last Updated: October 30, 2014