are eligible for a free Kern County Library Card. Open the door to your imagination, gain access to resources, and discover what's available to your community through the Kern County Library.
Access Your Account 
  • Check out books, ebooks, eAudiobooks, CDs, & Movies.
  • Request items to be sent to your local library branch.
  • Use Library public computers.
  • Access Library databases from home, including full-text journals, auto repair manuals, job & employment resources, hobby & craft DIY resources, legal information & forms, small business information, and more.

The Kern County Library is a member of the San Joaquin Valley Library System. Your library card can be used at all of the member libraries: Coalinga-Huron District, Fresno County, Kings County, Madera County, Mariposa County, Merced County, Porterville Public, Tulare County, & Tulare Public.

All California residents are eligible for a free Kern County Library Card, with proof of residency and a valid photo ID.
Visit any Kern County Library branch, in person, to get your library card. Application forms are available in person at the library, or may be printed online (ENGLISH/SPANISH).adobe pdf file icon

A completed library card application and one item from each table below is required from the adult taking financial responsibility for the account. (Minors, 17 & under, require a parent/guardian’s signature. To receive the card at the time the application is submitted, the parent/guardian must be present.)

Table 1 – Proof of Identity (Complete List)

A current unexpired:

  • Driver’s License/ID
  • Military ID
  • Border Crossing Card
  • Mexican Matricula Consular Card
  • Passport
  • Prison ID
  • Resident Alien Card

Table 2 – Proof of California Residency (Complete List)

Recent in your name or family name:

  • Utility Bill issued in last 30 days with California Address
  • Checkbook imprinted with a California Address
  • California Issued:
    • Driver’s License/ID
    • Car Registration
    • Car Insurance
    • Mortgage/Rental/Lease Agreement
    • Temporary Driver’s License/ID
  • Following California Documents when presented with a recently deliver piece of mail
    • Employment ID
    • School ID
    • Assistance: WIC, Food Stamps
    • Check Cashing Card

Non Residents:
Non-residents of California can get a library card to check out materials for an annual fee of $25.
A completed library card application and one item from Table 1 above is required from the adult taking financial responsibility for the account. (Minors, 17 & under, require a parent/guardian’s signature. To receive the card at the time the application is submitted, the parent/guardian must be present.)

Computer Use Only:
If you wish to use the computers, and you are unable to get a regular library card, you can apply for a computer use only card.
A completed library card application and a photo ID (with your First and Last name) are required.

  • You will be responsible for all items checked out on your library card.
  • You will pay for any lost, damaged, or late items charged on your card.
  • You and your card must be present to checkout.
  • You will not allow anyone else to use your card.
  • You will report the loss of your card immediately.
  • You will report any change in your address, phone number, or email address.
A Kern County Library card can be used at any library in the San Joaquin Valley Library System to checkout materials.

  • A library card is for use only by the person to whom the card is issued.
  • The library card must be present. Checkouts will not be permitted if the library card is not present.
  • The library card holder is responsibile for all items checked out with the library card.
  • A printed receipt will be provided each time materials are checked out. The receipt will include the items checked out and their due dates.
  • A limit of 30 items may be checked out on the library card.
  • Due dates are determined by the type of materials, see chart below.
Type of Material Loan Period Checkout Fee
Most Books & Magazines 3 weeks No cost
Music CDs 3 weeks No cost
Audio Books 3 weeks No cost
DVDs & VHS Tapes 1 week $2  + tax (per title)
Rental Books Pay for the Days You Keep the Item 25¢ per day
Interlibrary Loan Varies; determined by lending library $5 (request fee) – Other fees may apply
Access the My Account link, at the top of the Kern County Library website.

  • Use your Library Card number and PIN to log in.

From your account, you can:

  • View items you have checked out
  • Renew checked out items (some restrictions apply)
  • Manage Hold Requests
  • View and Pay any Library fees
  • Update your email address and PIN #
  • The Library attempts to send courtesy notices for hold notifications and overdue materials.
  • In regards to your hold notification and the first overdue notice, you have the ability to choose how you will receive the notice either by email, phone, or US mail. All other notices will be sent via U.S. mail.
Notice When Sent How it is sent
Pre-Overdue Notice 3 days before item is due Email ONLY
Hold Notification 1 day after hold is received at requested location Email, Phone, or US Mail
First Overdue Notice 10 days overdue Email, Phone, or US Mail
Final Overdue Notice 30 days overdue US Mail ONLY
Lost Item Notice 50 days overdue US Mail ONLY
Reminder of Fees on Account Account owes $25 or more & 60 days from item due date US Mail ONLY


Would you like to receive the following notices by email?

  • Hold Notices (when items have been received to fill your request)
  • Pre-Overdue Notices (3 days prior to due date of item)
  • Overdue Notices (when items are still otu and overdue on your account)

To sign up for email notifications, enter information in the form below and click submit.

By submitting a request for email notices, I am authorizing the Kern County Library to send notices to me via email instead of regular mail or by phone, including notices about items I have requested and items that are overdue. I understand that if notices cannot be delivered to the email address I have given, the library will send notices via U.S. mail.

Notice of Holds & Overdue Materials:

Select a Request Type.

I want to START receiving notices by email. I want to STOP receiving notices by email. 

Pre-Overdue Notices:

Yes, I want to receive a reminder email 3 days before my materials are due. 

Please update my address and/or phone information on my Kern County Library account. Enter your current information in the form below.

Be advised that clicking submit will NOT automatically change the information on your account. It may take anywhere between 1-3 days for change to take effect. Confirmation of update will be emailed to the provided email address.

By clicking send, I understand that it is my responsibility to keep the Kern County Library informed of my current contact information.

The library catalog lists materials available in the San Joaquin Valley Library System (SJVLS). If the materials you want are within SJVLS, you may Request the item without charge.

Materials not in the catalog may be requested through the InterLibrary Loan service (ILL).

  • Media, such as DVDs, CDs, and Cassettes are not available through ILL.
  • You may make up to 5 requests per day.
  • While the ILL office is not always able to retrieve a requested item, the staff will always try to obtain it.
  • A fee of $5 by the Kern County Library will be applied per request. In addition, the lending library may charge a secondary fee. Please specify the amount you are willing to pay. (You will be contacted before the request is filled, if there are any additional charges.)
  • The loan period for each item is based on Kern County Library’s due date from the lending library.
  • ILL items cannot be renewed.
  • Requests take at least 2 weeks to obtain. The Library cannot guarantee a delivery date.

To make an ILL request, please complete the form below.

Book or Journal Information


  • Renew online, via Tele-messaging (automated system), or by contacting/visiting your local branch. (The online and automated system is available at any time.)
  • Your Library card and PIN number are required, if renewing online or with our automated system.
  • The new date will be determined by the date of renewal, and not by the original due date of the item.
  • Most items can be renewed twice. After two renewals, the item must be returned.
  • Items already overdue can only be renewed by contacting the library directly.
  • Items that are request by someone else cannot be renewed, even if there appear to be other copies available.

Items already overdue can only be renewed by contacting the library directly.

  • During open hours:
    • By Phone or In Person at the library during library open hours
  • 24/7
    • Online (My Account)
      • Library card and PIN# required
      • View/Renew Items checked out and then select the items you wish to renew
      • Items unable to be renewed will be noted in red
    • Tele-Messaging: toll free (866) 290.8681
      • Library card and PIN# required
      • Choose the menu number for renewal. You can choose to either be prompted by title, to enter item barcode numbers, or to renew all items.
Library materials may be returned to any library in the San Joaquin Valley Library System, regardless of where they were checked out.

  • You are responsible for returning materials on or before the due date.
  • There are book drops located outside the library to return items during closing hours. Audio-Visual items should not be returned in the book drops, unless it is clearly marked for Audio-Visual materials (Not available at most locations).
  • If materials are returned after the due date, late fees will be charged to the account. These fees are assessed, per title, on a daily basis and includes holidays, Sundays, and the days the branch is closed.

If you find an item on your account which you believe you have returned or never checked out, please file a claim using the form below.

After submitting the claim, we ask that you do the following:
· Continue searching in your home, car, & any other location where you use & keep library materials.
· Request a return receipt for all materials returned to the library.

For the next 30 days, library staff will check library shelves regularly.

Be advised:
· The items will remain on your account throughout the search process.
· The Kern County Library card may continue to be used until the item is found or set to lost status, as long as there are no other fees due.
· If the item is returned after the Due Date, overdue fees will be added to your account, from the original due date of the item (Fees are charged 7 days per week, including holidays).
· If the item is declared Lost, the cost of the item, without overdue fees, will be added to the account (some items may include a lost processing fee, which is assigned at the time the item is declared lost). Once an item is declare lost, checkout privileges will be suspended until the account is paid in full.

I believe:

Branch Item Was Returned to: (Required)

What was the date the item was returned?

Additional Comments:
(Please provide any other information that you feel is relevant to this claim. This would include information on how you returned the item, such as if you gave it to staff, placed it on the counter, or put it in the outside book return.)

It is the Card Holder's responsibility to check on the status of the account.

  • The Library charges a late fee for each item that is returned overdue.
  • The fee is assessed on a daily* basis according to the Kern County Library’s Fee Schedule.
  • Loss of or damage to your checked out materials will result in Lost or Damaged fees being assessed to your account, according to the Kern County Library’s Fee Schedule.

*including holidays, Sundays, and days the branches are closed.

  • If you have fees due on your library card, you can pay them at any Kern County Library location.
Acceptable Forms of Payment In Person Phone Online Mail
Cash X
Check or Money Order X X
Visa – MasterCard – Discover X X X

Library accounts owing $25 or more can be referred to an outside agency for collection. If you are unable to pay the amount due on your account all at once, you may be able to setup payments to keep the account from going to collections.

Payment Arrangements:

  • Monthly payment is required
  • Each payment must be at least 10% of the current balance

If monthly payments are not made, the account will be sent to collections.

Library accounts owing $25 or more and delinquent 90 days from the item’s due date will be referred to an outside agency for collection.

Is your account in collections?

You can find out more information regarding your collection account by contacting:

  • Your local library branch
  • Kern County Library Collections staff: 661.868.0765
  • HP Sears: 888.269.7051 (Kern County’s Collection Agency)

Collection accounts can be paid (in part or in full) at the collection agency, at any Kern County Library location, online, or by mail.

(Fee Schedule – Printer-Friendly Version)

There shall be a fine each time library material becomes overdue; however, the maximum fine per transaction shall not exceed 70% of the replacement cost of the material. Accumulated charges totaling $2 or more will result in suspension of checkout privileges until the account is resolved. A handling fee of $35 per check shall be added to the account balance for each check returned by the bank. Accounts 90 days old will be assessed an additional $20 collection fee and referred to a collection agency. The agency may charge interest on accounts from the date of referral.

All materials except Videocasettes DVD & Reference $0.50 ea/day
Videocasettes & DVDs $1.00 ea/day
Reference Materials $5.00 ea/day
Expired Hold (not picked up within 10 days) $1.00 per item
Fee Name Fee cost
Microform Photocopies $0.50 per page
Color Photocopies & Color Laser Computer Printouts $1.00 per page
FAX (International) Sent/Received: $5.00 first page & $2.00 each additional pag
FAX (Domestic) Sent/Received: $1.00 per page
Research Fee (out of SJVLS area) $30.00/hr with 1/2 hour $15.00 minimum plus copy/fax charges
Rental Books $0.25 per day
Videocassettes & DVDs (7-day checkout) $2.00/each week per item
B&W Photocopies & Computer Printouts & Printer Paper $0.15 per page
Audio-Visual Listening/Viewing Equipment $1.00 per hour
Out of State Library Card $25.00 annually
Interlibrary Loans (ILL) (Outside of SJVLS area) $5.00 per item (plus any other charges from lending library)
Book Type Fee
Fiction Book – Adult $25.00/each
Juvenile (Fiction Book & Book/Casette or CD Kit) $16.00/each
Young Adult Fiction Book S$19.00/each
Juvenile Non-Fiction Book $24.00/each
Reference Materials replacement cost
Interlibrary Loan Materials charge set by lending library
Magazine $5.00/each
Trade Paperback – Non-Fiction $21.00/each
Trade Paperback – Fiction $15.00/each
Mass-market Paperbacks $8.00/each
Board Books $7.00/each
Pamphlets/Vertical File Material $4.00/each
Cassette Tape $11.00/each
Books-on-Tape & Books-on-CD $15.00/each disk/tape
Compact Disc $18.00/each
Videocassette $25.00/each
Audio-visual Cases $2.00/each
Uncatalogued Abridged Audio Books $8.00/each
DVDs $25.00/each set
Phonograph Record $10.00/each
Library Card $2.00
The cost for materials not returned will be the retail cost, if available in the library database. When the retail price is not available, the following replacement costs will be applied. 
*Refunds for materials not returned are issued only within one year of the due date.

Damaged Materials Fee
Bindery Charge – Books up to 8″ $8.00
Bindery Charge – Books 8-9″ $10.00
Bindery Charge – Books 9-10″ $11.00
Bindery Charge – Books 10-12″ $13.00
Bindery Charge – Books 12-14″ $17.00
Text Books – all sizes $9.00
Periodicals up to 10″ in height $14.00
Periodicals over 10″ & including 12″ in height $18.00
Periodicals over 12″ & including 14″ in height $23.00
Damaged Pages $1.00/page up to replacement

For materials damaged beyond repair, see Materials Not Returned.

Approved by the Kern County Board of Supervisors. Resolution No. 2011-157, June 21, 2011