Library Use FAQ
How old does my child have to be to get a library card?
Children must be at least 6 years old or must have completed kindergarten in order to be eligible for a library card from the Cannon Falls Library.
I live in Dakota County; can I still use this library?
Yes, you can use all the same materials and services as residents of Cannon Falls or Goodhue County. Because of a cooperative agreement with the Dakota County Library, you can even register for and receive your Dakota County Library card at the Cannon Falls Library.
Why do you ask for my driver's license/birth date?
The Cannon Falls Library shares a computer system with over 70 other public and school libraries in southeastern Minnesota. Because of this, there is a great likelihood of duplicate names. Driver's license numbers and birth dates help to ensure that the right information is related to each individual. Also, from a fiscal standpoint, uniquely identifying information such as drivers license numbers and birth dates are required by libraries which use collection agencies, revenue recapture, or the legal system to recoup losses.
Can I borrow books, etc. without my library card?
We require your library card for all transactions that will alter your record, including each time you borrow materials or use in-library equipment, such as the Internet workstations. We do allow a once-per-year exception, but you must provide photo ID.
Can my spouse/child/friend use my library card?
We discourage patrons from sharing their library card, since the person whose name is on the card is responsible for all items borrowed on that card. However, if you do lend your card to someone, we will honor the card for all purposes other than Internet use, unless the card has been reported lost or stolen.
Why can't my spouse/child/friend use my library card for Internet?
Use of the Internet requires that the patron have signed our Internet Use Agreement in addition to having a valid library card. In the case of minors, a parent or legal guardian must also sign this policy. The person using the Internet workstations must present his or her own card in order for us to verify that they have a signed Internet Use Agreement on file.
My spouse/child/friend has a book, etc. on hold, but I do not have his/her card. Can I borrow the item(s) on my card?
No. Library policy requires that the library card be presented for all transactions that alter the patron record. It also specifically states that items on reserve be loaned out only against the card which was used to place the loan. The reasons for this are varied. First, requiring the requesting card ensures that we do not inadvertently send an item home with the wrong person and thereby bump another patron out of place in the waiting list. Second, privacy laws specify that what a person borrows from a library is to be kept private to that individual. While state law does also allow materials to be released to an authorized member of the same household, requiring the card is our way of assuring that such authorization has been given.
What if my spouse/child/friend calls or sends a note to give perrnission?
Opinions from the Attorney General have indicated that phone calls and notes are not sufficient to prove authorization.
I am the parent of a minor child. Don't I have a right to know what they are checking out?
Yes, under Minnesota law, parents and legal guardians are considered to be part of the legal definition of"individual" for persons under the age of 18. Unless a minor child specifically requests that you be prevented from obtaining his/her library records, you have the right to view them. In order to do so, we would prefer that you present your child's library card, but we will look up the minor child's record based upon the address in your own library record or on your photo ID.
If I can access my minor child's account information without their card, why can't I pick up their reserve items without their card?
We require the library card for all transactions that will alter the patron record. We would not let your minor child pick up the items on hold for him/her without his/her library card, so we will not let someone else do so, not even a parent or legal guardian.
I'm just passing through town and do not live in the area, can I borrow books, etc.? Can I use the Internet?
Yes to both. If you wish to borrow items from this library, you will have to apply for a library card following our normal procedures, unless you live within the SELCO region and have a valid library card already in the system. If you are from outside the state of Minnesota, state law requires that we charge a user fee of $40 per year. This fee can be prorated for a shorter term. Please see our current fine/fee schedule for shorter-term rates. If you only need to use the Internet and do not wish to borrow materials, you need not become registered in our system. You will need to read and sign our Internet Use Agreement and provide basic personal information, but will not need to pay an out of state user fee or have your registration information added to our database.
Can I renew my books, etc. over the phone or on-line?
Yes, you can renew your items on-line at www.selco.info. Click on the iPAC icon and log in, then choose the "my account" tab. You can also renew by calling us at 263-2804 during open hours to renew your items or contact any other SELCO member library (except Rochester, which does not share our computer system). Please do not leave renewal requests on the answering machine. Such requests usually leave us without necessary information and many times there are items that are not renewable (someone else is waiting for it, you've already renewed it once, etc.).
Isn't there a maximum amount that a person will be charged for late books, etc.?
Yes, there are fine maximums on most items. These maximums are on a per-item basis and will nearly always be less than what you will be charged if the item is not returned. Please see our fines and fee schedule.
I have/my child has a large fine on my/his/her card. Can't you reduce the fines just this once?
Reducing fines on a case-by-case basis is inherently inconsistent and therefore unfair to other patrons. Fines are charged as an incentive to return items promptly so that others may make use of them. The library does realize, though, that items are sometimes forgotten or temporarily lost. Likewise, children, especially, do not always have the means to pay fines. We will, therefore, allow patrons to work off fines. Contact the library director to learn more about this option.
My videos are due today and I am unable to get to the library. Can't you renew them for me?
We do not generally renew videos. We will give a one or two day extension in cases of extreme foul weather or other extraordinary circumstances. Such extensions are solely at the discretion of the library staff and are not to be counted on.
If I return my books, etc. in the bookdrop after the library closes on the day they are due, will I be charged a fine?
Library books are due before closing on the due date. Items in the book drop when it is first emptied each day are given the benefit of the doubt and checked in as though they were returned the previous day. There is no guarantee as to what time of day this initial emptying will take place. To be assured that you will not be charged a fine, all items should be in before closing on the day they are due.