Library Cards and Loan Periods

The Alta Community Library is happy to offer a wide range of materials available for check out. Checking out materials requires a library card, but library cards are always free.

Who is eligible for a library card?

The Alta Community Library serves the people of the city of Alta and rural Buena Vista County. The Library also participates in the State Library of Iowa's Open Access porgram, enabling any Iowa citizen to obtain a library card, with limited provileges. Children 5 and up are eligible for a library card, with parental permission.

How do I obtain a library card?

You can get a library card by visiting the Alta Community Library. Proof of residence is required, and parents must provide proof of residence for children. Proof of residence can be a government ID, piece of USPS mail, utility bill, bank statement, lease agreement, or other piece of official documentation. Those under 18 years of age will need parental permission for a library card.

What if I am an Alta-Aurelia School District student or staff member?

A-A students and staff are eligible for an unrestricted library card, regardless of residence but may be subject to the school's checkout limits. See a librarian if you have any questions.

What can I check out with my library card?

Patrons with library cards in good standing can check out up to 20 materials on their library cards, five of which can be movies. The library also maintains a growing Library of Things, such as mobile hotspot devices, available for check out with some limitations, such as one per household.

How long can I check out materials?

Books check out for three weeks with two renewals, and movies check out for one week with one renewal. Some special collections, such as mobile hotspots, are only available for one week checkouts. See the library with any questions.

Can I access Overdrive with my library card?

City of Alta, rural BV county, and A-A students and staff are also able to check out digital books, audiobooks, and magazines via Bridges, the State Library of Iowa's Overdrive consortium. Non-residents must see their home library for Overdrive access.

Can I access inter-library loan services?

Alta Community Library participates in Iowa's inter-library loan (ILL) service, and offers ILL services for free to patrons who reside in Alta or rural BV county, or are A-A students or staff. All others must go to their home library for ILL services. You can always submit an ILL or purchase request online.

What if I want to access Overdrive but my home library doesn't offer it?

See the library for more information.

What if I don't return my materials on time?

Alta Community Library is proudly fine-free for all books so you won't incur fines if you don't turn your books in on time--although we always appreciate prompt returns! Movies and mobile hotspots will incur a $1 per day overdue fine when late. You can return materials 24/7 in our two book drops, located outside out front door and within the school. 

What does it mean to have a library card "in good standing"?

"In good standing" means that you do not have overdue or lost/billed materials on your account, and that your total overdue fines owed is under $5. If you owe under $5, you may still check out materials.