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FAQs

Locations/Hours

How many branches are in the Lafayette Public Library System?
What hours are you open?
What are your holiday hours?
When will the Main Library reopen? What is the latest information on your other library construction projects?

Library Cards

How do I get a library card?
Can I apply for a library card online?
Why do I need a library card?
If I live in another parish, can I get a library card?
Can the same library card be used at all of the branch libraries?
What happens if my library card is lost or stolen?

Checking Out

How long are your check-out periods?
How long can I keep a book?
How long can I keep a DVD?
How many items can I borrow?
How do I request an item (place a hold on an item) that is currently checked out?

Returning

Can I return my items at a branch library?

Renewing

How do I renew library materials?

Fines

What are the fines for books and DVDs? For a lost library card?
Do you accept credit card payments for fines? Can I pay my fines online or over the phone?

Overdrive Digital eBooks/Audiobooks

Everything about our Overdrive service.
Returning eBooks

Collection/Card Catalog

Do you have books in foreign languages?
I am having problems using the online catalog.
I have an AOL browser and I can’t place more than one request.
Help! I can no longer access the library’s online catalog (IPac).

Computer Usage

Do you have Wireless Internet?
How much does it cost to print from a library’s public computers?
Can I print in color at a library?

Miscellaneous

Does the library accept donations?
Can a patron buy a book on the shelves?
Do you offer tutoring services?
Do you have study rooms and/or meeting space?
How can I apply for a job with the library?
Do you have any information on applying for state civil service jobs?
What is the name of the mural on the second floor of the Main Library?
Library Website Short Links

 

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Locations/Hours

How many branches are in the Lafayette Public Library System?

Currently, we have ten open branches throughout Lafayette Parish, including four in the City of Lafayette. View the complete list here. We are also in the process of renovating our Main Library in Downtown Lafayette, as well as building our East Regional Library in the Youngsville/Broussard area. We also have plans to open a West Regional Library in the Scott/Duson area in the coming years.

What hours are you open?

Our regular hours are available on our website by clicking on the “Hours/Locations” menu tab at the top of any page.

What are your holiday hours?

Because we are part of the Lafayette Consolidated Government, we generally observe all LCG-approved holidays. The only exceptions are Acadian Day (the day after Thanksgiving), on which all of our branches are open, and Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, on which our Butler Memorial Branch is open part of the day. Some of our locations also have abbreviated hours for special occasions like Mardi Gras parades and Festival International de Louisiane. For a complete list of holiday/special occasion closings, click here.

When will the Main Library reopen? What is the latest information on your other library construction projects?

Construction on our Main Library in Downtown Lafayette is currently on schedule to end in mid-to-late-2014, after which it will take us a few months to move our collection and staff back into the building. We do not yet have a specific opening date, but do plan to publicize it as we get closer.

We have set up blogs for updates on all of our library construction projects. You can get photos and the latest updates by visiting our Main Library Construction Blog, East Regional Library Construction Blog and West Regional Library Construction Blog.

Library Cards

How do I get a Library Card?

In order to borrow materials from the Lafayette Public Library System (LPL) collection, you must have a current library card. Library cards are issued at all LPL branches. New library cards are issued at no charge. A $2.00 replacement charge is required for all replacement cards.

Individuals applying for a LPL card must show proof that they currently live, work or attend school in Lafayette Parish (a valid driver’s license or a work or school I.D.). If your current address is not on your I.D., you may need to show a printed check with your current address, or mail with your address, or a current rent or lease receipt showing your address.

Children: Children from birth to 8th grade may receive their own library cards. A child’s parent, stepparent, grandparent or legal guardian must apply for the card and provide current proof of residency, employment or school attendance in Lafayette Parish. A person other than a parent, stepparent, grandparent or legal guardian cannot fill out the application. Both the child and guardian must be present when applying for the card. Exceptions are made for homebound parents or children and specific groups with prior library permission.

Adults: High School students and older may get a library card on their on recognizance. Students who have completed 8th grade and are currently in the summer before entering high school may also apply for a card without a parent present. The individual must provide current proof of residency, employment or school attendance in Lafayette Parish. The patron must apply for the library card in person. Exceptions are made for homebound individuals or specific groups with prior library permission.

For specific information on qualifying for a library card, please call (337) 261-5784. The card is free. We also issue library cards to cardholders of surrounding Bayouland member library systems with proper ID.

Can I apply for a library card online?

Yes! Right here! Please note that only current residents within Lafayette Parish may apply for a card online. All other qualified applicants must apply in person at one of the LPL branches.

Why do I need a library card?

A patron wishing to borrow library materials, use a library computer workstation, or have online access to the library’s electronic resources must have a valid library card. A patron with a valid library card and in good standing with the library may check out library materials in accordance with material type restrictions and use computer workstations and electronic resources following LPL’s Electronic Resources Policy.

If I live in another parish can I get a card in Lafayette Parish?

Yes. If you have a valid library card from a Bayouland member library system you can apply for a card in Lafayette Parish. The following library systems are Bayouland members: Acadia Parish, Allen Parish, Iberia Parish, Opelousas-Eunice, St. Martin Parish, St. Mary Parish and Vermilion Parish.

Can the same library card be used at all of the branch libraries?

Yes, the bar-coded library card can be used at any branch in the Lafayette Public Library System.

What happens if my library card is lost or stolen?

Notify the library immediately by calling (337) 261-5784. The cost for a replacement library card is $2.00.

Checking Out

How long are your check-out periods?

  • Most books, magazines, audiobooks and CDs check out for three weeks.
  • Bestsellers and high demand titles check out for two weeks.
  • EBooks can be checked out for one, two or three weeks, depending on the reader’s preference. (Please note that patrons who owe more than $5.00 in fines cannot check out eBooks.)
  • DVDs check out for one week.
  • Wii games check out for one week.

Materials can be returned to any Lafayette Public Library System location.

Library materials can be renewed for a limited number of times, as long as there are no outstanding requests for that item. Items can be renewed on our website (click on My LPL Account on the top right side of this page), by calling 261-5771 for 24-hour renewal service or by calling 261-5784 during regular business hours. Items can be renewed after the due date; however, late fees are charged.

How long can I keep a book?

Most books check out for three weeks. Bestsellers and high demand titles check out for two weeks. See the question above for specific check-out periods for each type of item.

How long can I keep a DVD?

All DVDs check out for one week.

How many items can I borrow?

Currently you are allowed to have up to 50 items checked out on your record at any one time. Some collections, such as DVDs, music CDs and audiobooks, have specific limits. These limits are based on the size of certain collections and public demand.

Current items with limits:

  • DVDs – 10 at any one time
  • Music CDs - 10 at any one time
  • Audiobooks - 10 at any one time
  • Wii Games - 3 at any one time
  • South Louisiana Records and Southwest Louisiana Records (Father Hebert books)—6 at any one time

How do I request an item (place a hold on an item) that is currently checked out?

To have an item reserved for you (or to “place a hold” on that item), visit our online catalog and search for the item by title, author or keyword. Once you have found the item you want, click on the “request item” button. You will be asked to log in with your library card number and PIN (usually the last 4 digits of your phone number), and then you will be placed in the next available spot in the queue for that item.

If several people have requested that item or it is already checked out, you may have to wait several weeks before the item is available to you. Once the item is ready to be picked up, you will be notified by email or phone call with the library location where your item is being held.

If you would prefer to request your hold over the phone, you may call the Information Services desk (Adult: 261-5787 or Children’s 261-5779) and ask a librarian to place your hold. Holds can be placed on all types of library materials, although some specific items may be restricted.

Returning

Can I return my items at a branch library?

Yes, your items can be returned at any library location in the Lafayette Public Library System, regardless of where the item was checked out. All library branches have an after-hours book return.

Renewing

How do I renew library materials?

Library materials can be renewed up to six times, as long as no one else has requested that item and the patron does not owe more than $5.00 in fines. Items can be renewed on our website (click on My LPL Account on the top right side of this page), on our mobile app, by calling 261-5771 for 24-hour renewal service or by calling 261-5784 during regular business hours. Items can be renewed after the due date; however, late fees are charged.

Fines

What are the fines for books and DVDs? For a lost library card?

  • 5¢ per day (up to a $2.00 maximum) per item for most books, music CDs and CD-ROMs
  • 25¢ per day (up to a $2.00 maximum) for interlibrary loan items (items borrowed from another library)
  • 25¢ per day (up to a $5.00 maximum) per item for DVDs and Wii games

Additional Charges

  • $2.00 for a replacement library card
  • $1.00 for each removed or damaged barcode on a returned item
  • $1.00 for each damaged bag or case on a returned item
  • For lost items, you are charged the price of the item plus a $5.00 replacement and processing fee.

Do you accept credit card payments for fines? Can I pay my fines online or over the phone?

At this time, LPL cannot take credit/debit cards or electronic check transactions. As such, we cannot take online or phone payments. Cash and checks are welcome in our branches; however, a fee* will be charged for any checks that are returned for insufficient funds.

*Effective 8/15/05: “In accordance with Ordinance O-198-2005 of Lafayette City/Parish Council, if any payment is made to the Lafayette Public Library for any fine, permit, license or other fee or service with a check that is returned as unpaid by reason of insufficient funds, the drawer of the check shall be charged a service charge of $25.00 or 5% of the face amount of the check, whichever is greater.”

Collection/Card Catalog

Do you have books in foreign languages?

Yes! We offer many titles in French and Spanish. Ask a librarian to help you find them.

We also offer online language learning tools through our Mango Languages service. This is offered free to anyone with a LPL card.

I am having problems using the online catalog.

Renewal or checking your account is available by calling (337) 261-5771. Library Staff can also assist you during regular hours with renewals or placing holds. Please contact your local branch or call the Main Library at 261-5785 (renewals), Information Desk at 261-5787 (requesting adult or teen books), or Children’s staff at 261-5779 (assistance with Children’s books).

I have an AOL browser and I can’t place more than one request.

Most AOL users are able to use our online library catalog successfully with their AOL browser. Some AOL users cannot place more than one request on the catalog without logging out and logging back in. Using a different browser (such as Internet Explorer, Firefox or Chrome) may solve this problem.

AOL 9.0 and Topspeed: AOL 9.0 has a feature called TopSpeed, which uses webpage caching to speed up web surfing. (This means the AOL browser stores copies of webpages on your computer and displays those copies instead of reloading the page from the Internet. This speeds up your Internet connection, because it reduces load time.) We believe it is TopSpeed that causes the problem with placing requests.

If you do not want to use a different browser, we recommend you turn off TopSpeed and clear the AOL browser cache. The following instructions are from the AOL help screens on TopSpeed (you will be leaving the library system’s website if you follow these steps):

To turn off TopSpeed:

  • Click “Settings” on the AOL Toolbar.
  • Click “Internet (Web) Options” on the Essentials tab.
  • Uncheck the box next to “TopSpeed.”

To clear the AOL browser cache:

  • Click on either the AOL icon or the Dialer icon on the right of the system tray.
  • Click “System Information.”
  • Click the “Utilities” tab.
  • Click “Clear Browser Cache.”
  • This procedure clears both the TopSpeed cache and the Internet Explorer cache. However, clearing the Internet Explorer cache using the normal Internet Explorer method will not clear the TopSpeed cache.

Help! I can no longer access the library’s online catalog (iPac).

After successfully using iPac for months, you find you can no longer search or access your account. You may have heard the ads from some ISPs about surfing “faster.” The way an ISP allows you to surf faster is to have an “accelerator” in its software. The accelerator enables faster downloads. Unfortunately, these accelerators can cause a problem accessing iPac due to the way they split the files you are downloading (to gain a faster download overall). This is a problem for iPac, particularly because we use the nontraditional “http” port of 8080 instead of 80.

This could be the problem if:

  • You recently downloaded an accelerator or something to help speed up your Internet downloads.
  • You recently changed Internet providers.
  • You downloaded an upgrade to your ISP’s software. Upgrades often include an accelerator.

To use iPac, you will need to disable the accelerator. Usually, you can do this without entirely disabling the accelerator feature. After you’ve done this, clear your browser cache (temporary Internet files and history), and then restart the browser (with the accelerator disabled) to see if you can now get to iPac.

  •  This is a known problem with Eatel and AT&T.
  • It is also a problem with the AOL 9.0 software, which includes an accelerator. You can also try minimizing AOL and using a different browser to search the iPac.

If you still encounter problems, please e-mail us with the following information:

  • Your operating system (e.g. Windows 8, Windows 7, Mac, etc.)
  • The web browser and version you use (e.g. Internet Explorer 11, Safari 5.1, etc.)
  • Your Internet Service Provider (e.g. AOL, Cox, LUS Fiber, AT&T, etc.)
  • What type of connection you have (e.g. dial-up, DSL, cable, etc.)

Computer Usage

Do you have wireless Internet?

Yes, there is free wireless Internet access (WiFi) at all 10 branches of the Lafayette Public Library System.
Library WiFi

How much does it cost to print from a library’s public computers?

The first 5 black and white pages are free.
There are NO free color pages.

  • Black and White = 5¢ per page after the first 5 free prints
  • Color = 25¢ per page

Can I print in color at a library?

While all of our branches have black and white printers, only the following have a color printer for patron use:

  • North Regional Library
  • South Regional Library

Miscellaneous

Does the library accept donations?

LPL accepts monetary contributions to purchase books and other library materials. Contributions can be made to the library in memory of or in honor of a particular individual or organization. A designated book or other material will bear a book plate to include the name of the individual, providing a lasting token of their legacy. Monetary Gift Memorial Form

Donations of used books and other materials are also appreciated. These donations go to the Friends of the Lafayette Public Library and are resold during the Spring and Fall Friends Book Sales. The profits from the Friends’ sales generate funds for various library programs and materials.

Book donations are accepted at the Library’s warehouse facility at 211 East Pinhook Road during these hours:  Mon.-Wed. 11:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. and Thurs. 9:00 a.m.-2 2:00 p.m. Friends donations are tax deductible and receipts are available at the time of donation. For more information on what can be donated, please visit the Friends website, www.FriendsoftheLafayetteLibrary.org.

Another way to donate and help LPL is through the Lafayette Public Library Foundation. Donations are accepted here.

Can a patron buy a book on the shelves?

No. Books on our shelves are not for sale. Library books can be borrowed. After an item has outlived its usefulness to the library, the library requests permission from the City-Parish Council to remove it from the collection. Once approval is given, the books are donated to the Friends of the Library for sale at their Spring and Fall Book Sales, at which time you may purchase any discarded library item that is offered.

Do you offer tutoring services?

Our patrons have access to free online tutoring through HomeworkLouisiana, offered by the State Library of Louisiana. HomeworkLouisiana provides live tutoring and academic resources from Tutor.com for kindergarten students through adult learners in subjects like math, science, social studies and English. The services can be accessed from any LPL public computer, from your home computer or from your mobile device.

We also offer the LearningExpress Library. This site contains practice tests for common aptitude tests like the ACT, SAT and GED, exercises, skill-building courses, eBooks, and information you need to achieve the results you want—at school, at work, or in life. Looking to land a job? You’ll find an entire Learning Center dedicated to helping you get the one that’s right for you.

For a complete list of all of the homework and learning resources we offer, click here.

Do you have study rooms and/or meeting space?

Yes! Our North and South Regional Libraries offer private study and meeting rooms of various sizes that are free to use by the public. However, you must reserve these rooms ahead of time and some restrictions do apply. Visit our Meeting Rooms page for more information on how to reserve a room or call the library.

How can I apply for a job with the library?

Library vacancies are handled through the Lafayette Consolidated Government Civil Service Department. To view a list of positions currently available at the library, please visit the Lafayette Consolidated Government website.

Do you have any information on applying for state civil service jobs?

Sample tests, job openings and other information are available on the State Civil Service website. You may use our public computers to access this site and print from it.

What is the name of the mural on the second floor of the Main Library?

“There comes a time when canvas simply cannot express what you want to say. Murals were the answer.

“I have completed several murals, but the commission to paint for the Lafayette Parish Public Library is the most important and the largest and certainly the most exciting.

“I’ve named the painting ‘ELIPSE.’ Because it is an abstract, contemporary painting, free of a hard and fast message, the viewer is left to think and see for himself. ‘ELIPSE’ suggests familiar shapes, but will allow the viewer to simply enjoy colors and form. I think it’s important to see that tradition and new ideas both have a meaningful place in the culture of Lafayette. When businesses, clubs and private citizens can see the freshness and value of ‘something different,’ there’s hardly a chance Lafayette will be just an ordinary city.”

— Tina Cook, Artist

BIOGRAPHY: Justyna Kurijlas Cook

–From El Dorado, Arkansas
–Graduated from Henderson State College, Arkadelphia, Arkansas
–Listed in “Who’s Who in American Colleges and Universities” for 2 consecutive years.
–Has had 4 one-man shows in Arkansas, Lafayette and New Orleans
–Exhibited in juried state shows

Library Website Short Links

http://lafayettepubliclibrary.org/overdrive
http://lafayettepubliclibrary.org/faq
http://lafayettepubliclibrary.org/search
http://lafayettepubliclibrary.org/login
http://lafayettepubliclibrary.org/calendar
http://lafayettepubliclibrary.org/contact
http://lafayettepubliclibrary.org/policy
http://lafayettepubliclibrary.org/getacard
http://lafayettepubliclibrary.org/hours
http://lafayettepubliclibrary.org/foundation
http://lafayettepubliclibrary.org/friends
http://lafayettepubliclibrary.org/ydl
http://lafayettepubliclibrary.org/atomic
http://lafayettepubliclibrary.org/app
http://lafayettepubliclibrary.org/reserve