Frequently Asked Questions
Borrow Library Items
Can I return borrowed Library items to a different library?
Yes, most borrowed Library items can be returned to the following libraries in our network of partner libraries. The items will be checked-in and removed from your Library Account at the time it is returned. They will then be sent back to the owning library. However, museum passes must be returned here to Bernards Township Library. Library items cannot be returned to Clarence Dillon Library in Bedminster.
How do I request items from outside the Main System?
Didn't find what you need in the Main Catalog? If the item is not owned by Main, you can use JerseyCat to search for and request materials from over 700 other New Jersey libraries. Items that can be loaned will be delivered to your local library for pickup (please allow up to two weeks for delivery). Please note that JerseyCat works best for items that are at least a year old and we limit requests to no more than 6 per person at one time. If you need assistance, please contact the Reference Staff (908-204-3031, ext. 4) for help with requesting materials through JerseyCat.
How many items can I have checked-out on my Library account?
There is a limit of 100 items checked-out on your Library account at one time. For eBooks and eAudiobooks there is a limit of 10 downloadables at time in Libby and a limit of 6 titles per calendar month in Hoopla. There is no limit to downloadable e-magazines. Please visit our Digital Library page for complete borrowing guidlines.
My borrowed library item (s) is lost/ damaged. What do I do?
1) Pay the replacement retail price of the item (ask a staff member for the replacement cost). We do not accept replacements. 2) If an item is owned by a different library, please contact them for procedures. 3) After a lost item is paid, no refunds are given if the item is later found. 4) Overdue fees and processing fees are not added to the replacement cost for Bernards Township Library items.
What are the fees if Library items are not returned on time?
- $.10 per day on most Bernards Township Library items
- Museum passes - $5.00 per day (no limit)
- New movies - $1.00 per day
- Launchpads - $1.00 per day (no limit)
Late fees accrue daily, until overdue materials are returned and may reach a maximum of $5.00 for all items (except Museum passes). Late fees will not be assessed on the Library's closed dates, or when the Library is unexpectedly closed for the entire day due to inclement weather or special circumstances. However, some items borrowed from other libraries in our network of partner libraries have different fees for late library items.
Fees are paid with cash or checks made payable to “Bernards Township Library”. The Library cannot accept credit cards or debit cards for payment.
What can I borrow from the Library and for how long?
- New adult books, new large print, new audio books, music CDs, children's movies, children's magazines, children's music CDs, downloadable eBooks and audio books, hotspots - 2 weeks
- Older adult books, large print, and audio books, teen books, children's books, children's audiobooks, book discussion kits, children’s parenting collection - 4 weeks
- New adult movies, adult and teen magazines, Launchpads, video games and Nintendo game players - 1 week
- Museum passes - 3 days
- Downloadable magazines - Unlimited loan
Where do I return Library items?
Return items 24/7 to our outside book drops. Return date is backdated to the previous pick-up from the book drop sites. Please return Museum Passes to Bernards Library or to the after-hours book drops located at the Library, not the remote book returns.
- The Hills - Hansom Road Clubhouse ; daily pick-up Monday – Friday
- Somerset Hills YMCA - 140 Mt. Airy Road ; weekly pick-up Fridays
- Bernards Township Library - after hours book drops located outside the upper and lower level entryways ; daily pick-up when the Library is open
- Ridge Oak Senior Housing (for use of Ridge Oak residents only) – Weekly pick-up Fridays
- Fellowship Village (for use of Fellowship Village residents only) – Weekly pick-up Thursdays
Do you accept donations?
The library circulation desk will now accept book donations at the following times:
Monday evenings from 6-8PM
Tuesdays-Thursdays from 10AM-4PM
Please do not leave books outside the library or in library book drops. Due to space constraints we may decline book donations at times. The Library will, upon request, provide a receipt for donated items, but cannot assign a value to donated materials.
We DO NOT accept:
Cassettes, VHS, CDs, DVDs
Books in very poor condition (stained, torn, moldy)
**Please note: We cannot accept more than 3 medium size cardboard boxes per week.**
Place a Hold Request
How do I place a hold request?
There are several ways to place a hold request:
- Visit the Library
- To place a hold request on an item online 24/7, go to your online Library account.
- Call the Library to place a hold request at 908-204-3031 ext. 2 for Adult and Teen items, ext. 3 for Children’s items
- Text the Library 908-365-0776.
How do I request an item that is not listed in the catalog?
- In the Catalog, select “Can’t Find It?” from the menu on the left; select “Request an Item” or "Search Other NJ Catalogs" from the drop down menu
- Visit the Library and place your request
- Call the Library at 908-204-3031 ext. 2 for Adult and Teen items, ext. 3 for Children’s items
- Text the Library 908-365-0776.
Register for a Library Card
How do I register for a Library card?
Residents and property owners of Bernards Township are entitled to free, full library privileges. Proof of residency or property ownership must be shown. Registration is for a defined period and must be regularly updated as appropriate.
Children age 12 and under can apply for a Library card in the Children’s Department. The parent/guardian must have a Library card in good standing, and be present when the child applies for the card. Children ages 13 and up may register for a library card at Adult Circulation or online.
Members in good standing of libraries in communities participating in the following reciprocal programs are welcome to use their community’s library card at Bernards Township Library.
- Morris Library Alliance
- Morris Union Federation (MUF)
- Raritan Valley Federation of Libraries (RVF)
- Open Borrowing Communities
Workers employed in Bernards Township may also be issued a free courtesy card by providing proof of employment in the township, e.g., current business ID or recent paystub.
Students who attend school in, but do not live in Bernards Township may also be issued a temporary library card by providing proof of school attendance, e.g., report card, tuition bill, or current student ID.
Patrons must present their library card to check out items.
Renew Library Items
Can I renew Library items?
The system will automatically renew eligible materials checked out on patrons’ accounts for the same period of time in which it was originally checked out. This period of time varies from library to library and material type to material type. Digital materials like eBooks are not auto-renewed.
Automatic renewal occurs three days before the due date. Patrons will receive a combined almost-overdue/auto-renew reminder email which includes:
- New due dates and titles for which items were renewed
- Titles of items that were not renewed
- Any other items outstanding on the patron’s account
If a patron does not have an email address listed in their account, library items will still be automatically renewed; the patron will simply not receive an email. Patrons can check their account online to find their current due dates or call the library. Patrons still have the ability to renew items through their library account.
Conditions that may prevent items from being automatically renewed are:
- Materials that are never allowed to renew
- Items that have reached their renewal limit
- Items with a hold or outstanding request
- Digital items, such as e-books
- Inter library loan items that are not part of Main
- Acccounts with fines and fees that exceed $10.00.
For questions regarding renewal of library items call the adult circulation desk at 908-204-3031 x 2 or the children's circulation desk at 908-204-3031 x3.
Renew My Library Account
How do I renew my library account?
Bernards Township Library accounts expire every three years. Non-resident accounts expire after one year. The system automatically sends an email notifying patrons that their accounts are due to expire. Patrons can call the library at 908-204-3031 to renew their library account. Additionally, patrons can renew their accounts while visiting the library. Patrons who are not Bernards Township Library card holds should contact their home library to renew their library account or present ID to renew at Bernards Township Library.