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Frequently Asked Questions

Here’s a list a of frequently asked questions along with their answers about the library.

1. How long can books be checked out of the library?

Answer: Books may be checked out for three weeks at a time with one renewal, as long as it has not been requested by another individual. DVDs are checked out for one week. Some popular books have either a 7 or 14 day check out limit. The borrower is responsible for presenting his/her library card each time they desire to check materials out.

2. How many books can be checked out of the library at one time?

Answer: 15 books per adult and 10 books per child. Since a variety of types of materials may be check out, the total limit is variable, although a patron should be alerted of financial responsibility.

3. How can I hold/request a book?

Answer: There are many ways to place a book on hold. One way would be to call your local library and speak to the circulation desk clerk. The clerk will take your library card number and your request and place it on hold for you. Another way to request a book is to come to the library and speak directly to the circulation desk clerk. They will take your information and library card and fill in the required spaces. Last way to request a book is to go through the NC Cardinal website. Click here for the link. Go on there, find your book you wish to request, insert the desired information (library card number and pick up location), and you’re set to go. There is no charge for placing books on hold.

**Books that are on hold will be held for three days after notification.**

4. Can anyone get a library card?

Answer: If you are a new patron to the area outside of North Carolina, yes you may get a library card with ID showing your current address in the area. If your ID does not have your current address, bring in a recent utility bill or phone bill showing the current address. If you have lived in North Carolina and moved across the state and visited a library under the NC Cardinal system, then you are able to use your current card at any library who uses NC Cardinal. If you have lived in North Carolina, moved across the state, and your library did not use NC Cardinal, then you will need to get a new library card. Children are able to get library cards as long as the parent/guardian is there to sign the form. Be sure to see the circulation desk for questions and answers.

**Patrons owing fines for overdue materials or lost materials will not be allowed to check out additional materials until their record is cleared.

5. What happens if I lose a book?

Answer: Lost or damaged materials will be charged at full replacement value. Should the price not be available, the charge will be $10.00-$20.00 for hardcover books and $5.00 for paperbacks. There is no charge for trading post books. The Regional Director will set replacement prices for art or equipment. DVDs and audiobooks will be charge at full replacement value.

6. What happens if I return a book after the due date?

Answer: For every day late the item is, a fine will incur. Fines for print items (books) are 10 cents per day. The maximum fine per print item will be $7.00, or the cost of the book if it is less than $7.00.

Audiovisual items (CDs, DVDs) are 50 cents per day. The maximum fine per audiovisual item will be $15.00, or the cost of the item if it is less than $15.00. There is also a fine of $1.00 if a DVD is placed in a book return drop.

Kits, story bags, nursey boxes, and other multi-item collections will have fines of $1.00 per day, up to $15.00, or the cost of the item if it is less than $15.00. Fines are only calculated on the days the library is open.

7. Can I use the Internet at the library?

Answer: Yes you can! The Library offers Internet services to provide its patrons access to information beyond its own collections. A library card is not required. The Internet, however, is an unregulated medium. Library staff cannot control the availability of information, nor its accuracy, completeness, or currency. When you log on to a computer, your must accept the Internet Usage Agreement. The user acknowledges that all the Library’s information resources, including the Internet, are to be used in a responsible manner, consistent with the purposes for which they are intended, and to follow the rules and regulations attendant to them. A parent’s signature is required for a child to use the Internet. All users under the age of 18 must have a parental permission agreement on file at each library location in which they use the Internet. If the child is under 12, the parent must stay with the child at the computer. Parents are to monitor their children at all times while using the Internet. BHM Regional Library assumes no responsibility for any damages, direct or indirect, arising from use of its Internet access or Internet computer equipment. BHM Regional Library system policies for the Internet comply with the Child Internet Protection Act.

8. Can I donate books to the library?

Answer: Absolutely. You can donate as many books as you wish to any local library. Just take your donation to the circulation desk and they will give you a tax receipt for your records. All materials become the property of the BHM Regional Library. The Library, however, will not function as a museum or storehouse for community memorabilia.

9. Do I need to bring my library card to check out?

Answer: Yes, your library card identifies you and the items you have checked out. Please do not ask staff to check out materials without your library card. This avoids mistakes being made when there are common names. Otherwise, anyone would be able to come to the library and check out books under different names.

10. Can I print from the computers?

Answer: Prints are 15 cents per page. After printing from the computer, please pay for the prints at the circulation desk.

11. How much do photocopies cost?

Answer: Copies from the photocopier are 15 cents per pages.


Additional Frequently Asked NC Cardinal information:

Managing Your BHM Library Account From Home

  1. Go to Click on the “My Account” button located in the upper right corner.
  2. To login, please enter the 14 digit number on your library card without any spaces between the numbers (example: 28344100123456).
  3. Your PIN will be the last 4 digits of your telephone number.  If for any reason your PIN does not work, please call and BHM staff will gladly reset it for you.
  4. You may now search the catalog and place holds on the items you would like to receive. You will also be able to check on several different components of your account.
  5. BHM staff will call you when your items arrive and arrange the time for you to pick up your items.
  6. If you don’t wish to place your holds yourself, please call your local library and the staff will gladly place your holds for you.

Thank you for your patience. BHM staff will strive to assist you with your reading, listening and viewing requests.