Non-Resident Public Library Cards

Non-Resident Public Library Cards for Teachers

Q: Under what conditions can an Illinois public library issue a non-resident library card to a teacher in a local school district?

A: While each case may have specific requirements, several provisions of Illinois law provide a general framework. Under current Illinois law, a public library can issue an individual (personal) library card to a “non-resident” teacher if the public library has a program to issue non-resident cards, and charges the teacher the same fee as other non-residents. The public library cannot issue an individual card to a non-resident teacher at a lower cost, or no cost, based on the fact that the teachers’ school, or school district, is within the public library service area. However, the public library can enter into a contract for service with the school district which could allow the school district’s students, teachers, and staff to use the library if that contract recognizes “the principle of equity of cost of services to non-residents.”

See full report from ILA General Counsel, Kiplund R. Kolkmeier (available to ILA members only).

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