Due to continued possible hazardous road conditions, all branches and buildings of the Central Arkansas Library System will be open reduced hours Wednesday, January 17, from 12pm - 6pm.

Library Card Basics

Library Card Basics: Online Application & Book Fines & More

How to Get a Library Card Online or in Person

Pulaski or Perry County residents can get a library card online by completing an online application** or in person at any CALS library. Your library card will be mailed to your home address, and photo identification must be presented to complete the application process. A parent or legal guardian should accompany minors who apply to get a library card online but do not have photo identification. If you live in a nearby county, ask about the Gateway Project. If you are not a resident of Pulaski or Perry County or of any of the counties that participate in the Gateway Project, you may purchase a nonresident library card for the fee of $60 per year.

Please note: Nonresident card holders may not use CALS’s OverDrive eBook/downloadable audiobook collection.

** You must be 13 years old or older to apply online for a library card. Parents or guardians may submit an online application for children who are 12 years old or younger.

Types of Library Cards

Individual Card
Available to individuals 14 years of age and older who meet ID requirements.
Children younger than 14 years of age with parent/guardian permission (signature) on their application can be issued regular individual accounts.
Library cards may only be used at check out by the account holder. The rights and responsibilities of the card are not transferable, except in instances where informed written consent has been given.
Family Card
Individuals who are 18+ may create a family account. If they do not currently have a CALS card, they must be eligible for one with full borrowing privileges. If they already have a CALS card, their account must be in good standing.
One patron account with multiple barcodes. Barcodes not linked to specific titles that are checked out.
Limited to 10 authorized users. Additional users added at manager’s discretion.
Authorized users must reside in same household as primary account holder and need not be present at time of application.
The person who establishes the account is the primary account holder and is responsible for any fines/fees incurred.
Primary account holder’s signed written consent grants access to authorized users.
Authorized users, along with their assigned barcode, will be listed in the consent field of the record.
Card may be edited / renewed only by the primary account holder. Confirm permission for all authorized users as part of renewal process.
Check-out limits and fine limits for the entire account will be the same as for an Individual account.
New cards will be mailed as a group. If primary card holder is an existing patron, the cards may be given to the patron at the time of application.
Patrons may have a family card and an individual library card.
Any person listed on the account may check out books, pick up holds, and renew materials.
Child's Provisional Card
A child's provisional card will be offered for children who need or would like to obtain a library account without a parent/guardian's signature.
Child must be able to give their full name and all other required account information.
5 item check out limit.

Circulation Periods

Newer materials: 2 weeks
Older materials: 4 weeks
DVDs: 2 weeks
High demand DVDs: 1 week
Games: 1 week

Requesting Books

You may request all circulating items located at all CALS branches. You may also request items that are currently being used by another patron. There is no charge for this service. Items will be sent to the library of your choice when they become available and will be held for seven days. Items not picked up within this time will result in $2 library book fines on each item.

Cardholder History Confidentiality and Proxy Use

In accordance with changes in the Arkansas Library Confidentiality Act 757 of the General Assembly, which amended Arkansas Code 13-2-704, Central Arkansas Library System patrons aged 18 and older can appoint a designee for the purpose of picking up items placed on hold by the cardholder, or for viewing and paying the cardholder's library book fines. Changes in the law took effect July 31, 2009.

Current cardholders should visit their local branch to complete a form to add the information to their library record. New applicants can make this designation on the library card registration form.

A/V and Library Book Fines for Overdue Materials

Adult Books and Audio/Visual Items — 10¢ per day; $5 maximum fine per item
Juvenile Books — 10¢ per day; $3 maximum fine per item
Interlibrary Loan — $1 per day; $60 maximum per item.
Book Kits — $1 per day; $60 maximum per kit

Patrons may renew library books online before their due date.

Suspension of Cardholder Privileges

Any patron who owes more than $50.00 will have his or her borrowing privileges suspended until his or her record is cleared.

No patron who owes $50.00 or more may log into library computers until his or her record is cleared.

Materials returned more than 12 months after the latest due date will no longer be eligible for payment of the maximum overdue fine, but will be assessed the full replacement cost for the item.

Material Replacement Costs

  • Adult Fiction – $30
  • Adult Nonfiction – $40
  • Adult Paperbacks – $15
  • Juvenile Hardbacks – $25
  • Juvenile Paperbacks – $15
  • Book Kits – $100
  • In cases of damaged binding, patrons may, at the discretion of the branch/department manager, pay a bindery fee of $10 in lieu of the full replacement cost.
  • RFID Tag Lost or Damaged – 50¢

A/V Container Replacement Costs

  • Spoken Word and Audio CDs/DVDs – Full replacement cost plus $7.50 processing fee
  • DVD Binge Boxes – Full replacement cost of DVDs plus $20 processing fee
  • Full recasing and processing – $7.50
  • CD Wallets – $1.50
  • CD Cases – $1.50
  • DVD cover art (includes individual Binge Box DVD covers) – $1
  • DVD case (single DVD; includes individual Binge Box DVD cases) – $1.50
  • Any additional trays in the DVD case – 50¢
  • RFID Tag Lost or Damaged – 50¢ (CD Book) or $1 (DVD/Music CD)
  • Binge Box (Box only) – $20
  • Accompanying Materials for AV Items
  • Pamphlet or booklet from any AV item – $5.00
  • Regular replacement charges apply for books accompanying audios and videos, such as children's read-along

Other Costs and Fees

  • Printing (black & white): $0.10 / page
  • Printing (color): $0.50 / page
  • Photocopying (black & white): $0.15 / page
  • Photocopying (color): $0.50 / page
  • Patron sending fax charges: $1.00 / page
  • Receive fax charge: $1.00 / total
  • Telescope – $500
  • Tools – Full replacement cost plus $7.50 processing fee
  • Lost Cards – One free card per 12-month period; $1 replacement fee for each card after that within the 12-month period
  • Unclaimed Holds/ILL – $1 charge if materials are not picked up
  • Returned Checks – $22.50 per check; original charge and returned check fee must be paid in cash

Replacement Cost Refunds and Substitutions Policy

The total replacement charge per item will be refunded if the item is returned in good condition within 6 months of when the item was paid for. You must present your receipt in order to receive the refund. Replacement charges will only be refunded by check mailed to the address listed in your library account.

Replacement of lost material with another copy of the same item may be permitted at the discretion of the branch manager or department head. A processing fee of $7.50 will be charged. This option is not available for Easy Children's Books.

Interlibrary Loan

Replacement cost is determined by the lending library.

Return Policy

All CALS materials may be returned to any branch in the Central Arkansas Library System.

Corporate Library Cards

Companies, service agencies, churches, and other organizations operating within the Central Arkansas Library System service area may apply for corporate library cards.

To apply, complete a corporate library card application and submit a request on the organization's letterhead, signed by the director or other authority figure. Library cards will be issued in the organization's name, in care of the president or director, and sent to the given address. The company or organization is responsible for all charges incurred through the use of their library cards.

The Gateway Project

Library patrons who are Gateway cardholders have reciprocal borrowing privileges at any of the participating libraries. Cardholders have access to a 1.5 million-volume collection at no cost. Residents of Arkansas, Bradley, Chicot, Clark, Cleburne, Cleveland, Conway, Dallas, Desha, Drew, Faulkner, Garland, Grant, Hot Spring, Jackson, Jefferson, Lincoln, Lonoke, Montgomery, Nevada, Perry, Pike, Polk, Pope, Prairie, Pulaski, Saline, Van Buren, and White are eligible to participate in the program.

You must be at least 14 years of age to be eligible for a Gateway card, and you must begin the application process for the Gateway card at your home library before visiting the library for which you wish to obtain the card.

Please note: Gateway card holders may not use CALS’s OverDrive ebooks/downloadable audiobook collection or the Hoopla digital movie collection.

Download a brochure with more information about the Gateway Project.