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The library will be closed Monday, October 14th for staff in-service day.


Library Policy


The purpose of the Decatur Public Library is to provide to all those who live, work, own a business, or attend school in Morgan County, Alabama access to resources to fulfill their informational, educational, cultural, and recreational needs and interests.


Rules of Conduct
Library Cards

Decatur Public Library's service area includes all of Morgan County. Residents of Decatur Public's service area may get a library card without charge. People who live outside the service area but work, own a business, or attend school within the service area may also get a free card by verifying employment or school enrollment (payroll check stub, company ID, report card printout.) The card can be used at Decatur Public Library and Eva Public Library.

All other persons living outside Decatur Public's service area may use the library by purchasing an out-of-system card for $15. An out-of-system family rate of $25 provides each member of a family with a card. An out-of-system card is good for one year and can be used at Decatur or Eva.

Students and faculty of Athens State University and Calhoun Community College are eligible for a free library card with proof of enrollment or occupation.  Cards are valid for one year.

There is no minimum age for obtaining a card but those under 16 must have a parent or legal guardian to sign the application.

People who qualify for a free library card may send in a completed application (available online) along with a copy of their photo ID with correct address and a self-addressed stamped envelope.  Those applying for a Non-Resident card should send the application, a copy of current photo ID, self-addressed stamped envelope, and the non-resident fee.

LIMIT: Only two items may be checked out on a new card.

Cards must be presented for all transactions.

Charge for replacement of lost card is $5.00.

Card cannot be used if patron owes fines in excess of $5.00 or has more than one overdue book.

Books- Loan Period and Overdue Fines

Most books are loaned for three weeks. If not on reserve, items may be renewed two times. EXCEPTIONS: Some reserve books are loaned for two weeks only.

Overdue fines are 25¢ per day, per book.

Interlibrary Loans are $3.00 each including postage. They are due as indicated on book; no renewals; overdue fines are $1.00 per day. Copies of articles: 10 pages or less, $1.00; 11 pages & up, 10 cents per page.

To protect your tax-dollar investment…

Persons not returning items within the time required by the rules of the Board may be subject to:

a) court action as outlined in City Ordinance; or

b) referral to a collection agency/$12 collection fee will be added to charges already incurred


Books that are on reserve cannot be renewed.

Reserve books in high demand are loaned for two weeks only.

To reserve a book that is checked out, fill in reserve form available at the front desk. You must supply name of book, author, and your library card number.

LIMIT: four reserves per patron.

You will be notified by mail when the book is available.

The book must be checked out on the same library card that was used to reserve it.


Books may be renewed in person, by phone, or online.

LIMIT: 2 renewals per book.

Books cannot be renewed if they are on reserve for someone else or if they are more than 14 days overdue.

To renew a book in person, present library card at Circulation Desk.

To renew by phone, supply library card number.

To renew online, go to the online catalog and click My Account. Enter your library card number and PIN (the default PIN is the last four digits of your card number and can be changed after signing in). This will bring up a record of what is checked out. Check the boxes next to the items you wish to renew and click "Renew Checked Items."


Copies are 10 cents each; public copier is coin-operated. Pay for microform and Internet copies at front desk. Patrons must pay for every sheet they print.


Phones/Cell Phones

The library's phones are for conducting library business but may be used by patrons in a stated emergency situation. Disruptive cell phone use is not permitted in the library so please set phone to silent. People needing to receive or make a cell phone call should move to the library entrance or step outside.


WARNING: Videos/DVDs are damaged by heat! If left in a car on a hot day, even for a few minutes, the item may be damaged and you will be required to pay the replacement cost.

You must possess a valid, personal library card. You must be 17 or older to check out "R" rated titles.

Loan period - seven days. Overdue fines: $1 per item, per day. Maximum fine $10 per item.

Limit: 3 DVDs and 4 video tapes per card (Eva limits may differ)

No interlibrary loans or renewals. A title can be held for a patron until the end of the business day.

Tapes/DVDs must be returned inside the library from which they are borrowed. Decatur Public videos/DVDs may be returned in the Video Drop. A $1.00 fine is levied on tapes/DVDs returned in the bookdrop.

Replacement cost plus $7.00 processing fee is charged for items that are lost, damaged or tampered with. Library privileges suspended until charge is paid.

Duplication, reproduction, public performance, or commercial use is prohibited. Patron is responsible for judging suitability for home viewing.

The Library is not responsible for damage to equipment resulting from use of library tapes/DVDs.

Other Audio Visuals

Audiobooks & Music CDs

Audio books and compact discs are loaned for three weeks. If an item is not on reserve, it may be renewed in person, on the phone, or online. Limit: two renewals per item.

Limit: four audio books and four compact discs per patron.

Overdue fines 25¢ per day, per item.


Puppets checked out for one week; no renewals

Two puppets per card

Overdue fines $1.00 per day, per puppet

Must return inside library

Replacement cost plus $7.00 processing fee is charged for puppets that are lost or damaged.

Computer Software

Software checked out for three weeks, no renewals, no reserves

Limit: two software programs per card

Overdue fines $1.00 per day, per item; maximum fine $10.00 per item

$1.00 charge for returning CD-ROM in book drop rather than video drop or inside library

Replacement cost plus $7.00 processing fee is charged for items that are lost, damaged, or tampered with

Library privileges suspended until charge is paid

Duplication/reproduction prohibited by law

Newspapers and Magazines

For use in the library only. Newspapers kept for three months.

In Decatur, The Decatur Daily is available on microfilm (1912-July 2009).

Computer Usage

Each person who has a valid library card may use the computers up to two hours Monday through Saturday and for up to one hour on Sunday taken in any number of minutes in any number of sessions per day.  Computers are available on a first-come-first-serve basis.

No one may use another person’s card to access the computers. 

No more than two individuals may share a computer (this does not include babies or toddlers).

No software may be loaded onto a library computer. All copyright and licensing laws must be observed and no electronic material will be duplicated unless it is in the public domain or shareware.  No private files may be stored on the computer as these files are deleted at the end of each day.

Altering or attempting to circumvent the computer controls will result in the loss of library privileges.  If the computer or the system is damaged, it will result in a call to the police. 

While federal laws require the library to filter Internet access to obtain federal funding for telecommunications, no filtering is fool-proof, and may not block access to material that may be objectionable.  Patrons may note the URL of an objectionable site and tell the library staff about the site.  The library Director will consider blocking it.

Pornography may not be viewed on library computers.  Section 13A-12-200.3 of the Alabama Code forbids the dissemination (display in public) of obscene material. 

The library reserves the right to prohibit violators from future access or use of the library Internet services in the case of repeated violations of these rules.

Only children twelve and under may use the computers in the children’s department.

It is the responsibility of parents or guardians to determine what is appropriate for their own children.