Policy on Circulation, Overdues, and Refunds

Statement: Books and other library resources are available for loan with a valid library card with a fine balance under $5.00. Rahway residents are issued a free first card for a three year period if they have no prior library record and they provide proof of residency. Employees in Rahway may apply for borrowing privileges with proof of employment. Non-residents may apply for MURAL borrowing privileges if their library participates or purchase a card for an annual seventy-five dollar fee. Cardholders must keep their address and phone information current and agree to be financially responsible for all materials borrowed for themselves and their minor children (children under the age of 18 at the time the materials are borrowed) and recognize that privileges will be suspended for charges on their own or their children’s library cards. All members of a family will be blocked if the collective charges exceed $25.

The Library will make every effort to recover fines and fees including the use of collection services, credit reporting agencies, and legal proceedings as outlined in local Ordinance 38-3 in the Code of the City of Rahway, New Jersey.

Borrowers must have their own library card or acceptable identification present to charge out materials. Borrowers exiting the library must return to the circulation desk if the security gates sound an alarm in order to permit staff to check materials for proper charging. Materials must be returned on time and in good condition or fines and fees will be charged. Staff will inspect all materials when circulated and returned. The borrower is responsible for the condition of materials once they have checked the item out.

Cards or IDs must be presented to use library computers. Patrons with library accounts will be prohibited from using computers if their fine balance reaches $5.00.

  1. Apply for a library card by presenting identification to staff.
  2. Acceptable identification has a future expiration date and provides proof of current address i.e.: New Jersey driver’s license or New Jersey non-driver identification card or 2 pieces of mail less than 3 months old (utility bills, bank statement, etc.)
  3. Minor children must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian with proof of address identification; proof of custody may be required.
  4. Employees in Rahway must have current proof of employment for at least 3 months.
  5. MURAL borrowing privileges are given to card holders of other libraries covered under the agreement.
  6. Hotel/Motel and other temporary residents must have letter from management on letterhead confirming residency of at least three months. Borrowing is limited to one item at a time.
  7. Patrons will present their library card and materials to be charged to staff at the circulation desk.
  8. There is a global limit of ten total items per library card.
  9. Circulation of audiovisual materials ends fifteen minutes before the library’s closing time.
  10. Renewal of materials can be done by phone or the library’s web page (some limits apply). A PIN (obtainable at the library) is needed for renewal on the webpage.
  11. Books can be returned at the library circulation desk or when the library is not open, in the external book drops. Audiovisual materials must be handed in at the circulation desk or placed in the external book drop labeled AUDIOVISUAL.
  12. Borrowers will be charged full list price plus a $10.00 processing fee for lost materials.
  13. Staff will inspect all items returned for damages.
  14. Borrowers will be charged for damage to materials (up to $5.00 for repairs) or full replacement price plus a $10.00 processing fee for materials damaged beyond repair or continued use. Borrowers may replace lost materials with an identical, new item. A $10.00 processing fee will still be applied.
  15. Patrons may replace lost library cards according to the following schedule - $1.00 for the first replacement, $3.00 for the second, and $5.00 for all subsequent replacements.
Schedule of Loan Periods-Fines-Fees
MaterialLoan periodFeeFineRenewalOther Information
Books4 weeksNo$0.25 / day2 weeksOverdue materials can be renewed only after fine is paid, need pin # to renew online Limits: Nonfiction – 2 on a subject
New Books2 weeksNo$0.25 / day2 weeksOverdue materials can be renewed only after fine is paid, need pin # to renew online Limits: Nonfiction – 2 on a subject
Audiobooks3 weeksNo$0.25 / day2 weeksLimit - 2 per card
Music CDs2 weeksNo$0.25 / day2 weeksLimit 5 per card per day. One boxset per card.
Feature films3 days$1.00$2.00 / day3 days3 per card, 5 per family
TV/Movie Boxset7 days$3.00$2.00 / day7 daysLimit 3 per card, 5 per family
Large TV/Movie Boxset21 days5.00$2.00 / dayNoLimit 1 per card
Nonfiction DVD7 daysNo$2.00 / day7 days3 per card, 5 per family
Magazines2 weeksNo$0.25 / dayNo8 per card

From time to time, refunds will have to be issued to account for items that have been found on the shelf after having had been paid for, credit cards being charged an incorrect amount, etc. To account for these instances, the following guidelines will be followed so as to ensure the proper documentation and execution of the refund:

  1. Only the director, assistant director, or access services manager may issue a refund.
  2. Patrons must fill out the library’s refund form. This form will document such information as the reason for the refund, the patron’s name, his or her address, phone number, etc.
  3. Patrons will be allowed up to sixty days to challenge a charge for which they have already paid. Once this window has closed, refunds will not be granted.
  4. Refund checks will be mailed to patrons at the address they specify. Cash refunds will not be given unless the refund occurs on the same day as the original transaction. These refunds will be issued from the register.

In keeping with our mission to foster and encourage lifelong learning, the Rahway Public Library offers a special teacher's card for instructors working at schools within the City of Rahway. The Rahway Public Library teacher's card allows educators expanded borrowing privileges for books used within their classrooms. By providing a current pay stub or school ID, educators can check out fifteen books instead of the regular global limit of ten. There is no limit on the amount of books they may check out on one subject provided it is less than the maximum allowed.

Date of Board Adoption: November 18, 2008, Revised August 9, 2010, October 17, 2011, and June 15, 2012.

Policy on Internet and Computer Use

Statement: The Rahway Public Library provides public access to computers that are connected to the Internet through a local area network and a wireless network. Library computers provide a variety of software and Internet options which meet the needs of the community in keeping with the mission of the Library. The Library uses a commercial filtering service for Internet access. The Trustees of the Library mediate Internet and other library service challenges. The Library cannot guarantee the integrity of web sites visited on library computers. The privacy of library computer users is of concern to the Rahway Public Library. Library computer users are urged to safeguard their personal information when using library computers in general and in particular on social networking sites. Print jobs with personal information cannot be guaranteed privacy in the networked printer environment. The networked printer also provides public fax service. Privacy cannot be guaranteed for fax services. Library computer users are subject to the privacy policies of web sites that they might visit using library computers. Information given to the Rahway Public Library and staff is retained only to assist with library operations, is treated confidentially, and shared only with appropriate authorities by court order. Criminal activity on library computers is prohibited and the Library will cooperate fully with authorities to apprehend those who do it.
  1. Library computer users must register using their library card or acceptable form of identification at the adult or children’s registration kiosk workstation. Library users with outstanding fees of $5.00 or more are denied computer privileges.
  2. Library computer user will be assigned a specific Internet station and password.
  3. Children under 12 yrs. old must register in the Children’s department to use a computer. A parent/guardian must be present for children under 8 yrs. old. Library staff can advise children on computers but parents are responsible for children’s Internet use. Library staff can assist parents who would like help setting guidelines for children using the Internet.
  4. Extensions may be granted by library staff if there is no one waiting until 3pm. After 3pm, Internet workstations may be briefly vacant to allow access for new users that day in preference over repeat users.
  5. Reference Internet Plus workstations are used exclusively for access to office software, internet, audio and databases. These computer users may save data to disks and memory sticks of their own or purchase disks from the library. There is a one hour time limit for using Reference Internet Plus workstations. The Library reserves the right to restrict the use of Reference Internet Plus workstations and refer library computer users to general Internet workstations.
  6. Library computer users are reminded that computers and printers are in a shared space and they are asked to be courteous, considerate and respect the rights of others. Audio is permissible only at designated computers with headsets, which are available at the Reference desk.
  7. Library computer users may ask for assistance but are subject to the discretion of the staff in terms of time available to help them at a computer. Staff will be helpful and accommodating but may also be very busy. Scheduled computer classes are available at the library for those who need basic instruction.
  8. Prints can be retrieved at the Circulation Counter. There is a charge of .20 cents per black and white print, $1.00 per color print. Advertising and non-text pages will be counted as part of a print job. Fax service is available at the Circulation Counter for $2.00 first page, $1.00 for each additional page. Originals will be returned to customer for safekeeping as the library does not shred originals.
  9. Computer sessions end 15 minutes before the library closes.
  10. The library is not responsible for documents lost due to technical problems.
  11. Library users may not hack, install or delete software. Computer users may save information on disks or remote memory sticks only on limited reference workstations.
  12. Laptops may be used anywhere in the library. Wireless internet service is available. Electrical power through a library outlet may be used only while working on the laptop. Other devices may be used in the library and plugged into electrical outlets or computers only while working on them, not for charging purposes. Talking on cell phones is not permitted in the library and cell phones are not to be plugged into library outlets. Using a cell phone’s non-talking functions is permitted if the audio is muted.
  13. Library staff organize and present access to the Internet through the library’s web site and databases so that our library users can understand and benefit from all that is available. The library is open to comment about what our users need from the Internet.
  14. All users, but particularly children are urged to keep personal information private and not engage in Internet activities or dialogue which requires them to reveal personal information.
  15. The Library maintains a list of web sites which provide guidance about the Internet.

Adopted by the Board of Trustees: November 18, 2008

Policy on Public Behavior and Rules of Conduct

Library users are asked to comply with the following behavior guidelines:
  • Eating and drinking are not permitted in the library.
  • The use of personal audio equipment that others can hear is not permitted
  • Cell phone use is limited to the lobby area.
  • Smoking and open flames are not permitted in the library.
  • Carrying a weapon is not permitted unless authorized by law.
  • Only those animals assisting a person with disability are permitted.
  • Misusing the restrooms is prohibited.
  • Talking loudly, making loud noise, or engaging in behavior disruptive to others in the library is not permitted.
  • Interfering with another person’s use of the library, or with the staff performance of their duties is not permitted.
  • Shoes and clothing covering the body must be worn in the library.
  • Sleeping in the library is not permitted.

Individuals who are not complying after being reminded of the rules, may be ejected from the premises by library personnel or security personnel. The Rahway Police may be called if library staff find it necessary. Children of school age unaccompanied by an adult may be asked to produce a library card or school identification card. Children 8 years and younger cannot be left unattended in the Children’s Department.

Library privileges may be terminated temporarily or permanently for the above or for:

  • Damaging or misusing library property including writing or carving on library furniture or fixtures, rearranging library furniture or fixtures, misusing library computers
  • Threatening, harming, or intimidating library staff or users with verbal or physical aggression
  • Stealing library property

Adopted by the Board of Trustees: March 21, 2006

Our Location

2 City Hall Plaza

Rahway, NJ 07065



Email: info@rahwaylibrary.org

Our Hours

Monday 9:30-7:30

Tuesday 9:30-4:30

Wednesday 9:30-7:30

Thursday 9:30-7:30

Friday 9:30-4:30

Saturday 10-4

Social Media