Lake Elmo library revises card rules

Lake Elmo library patrons can now be reimbursed for having purchased any Minnesota library card.

The Lake Elmo Library Board recently voted to revise a policy, which used to offer reimbursement for only Washington County library cards. Residents can now be reimbursed for one card per household, if they decide to purchase a card in another system.

Patrons must bring their original receipt and a reimbursement form to the library or the Lake Elmo City Hall. The form is available at

Since the city library separated itself from the county system in 2012, it has reimbursed Lake Elmo residents who purchase Washington County library cards for $60 to access the regional resources, including e-books and the inter-library loan program.

The new reimbursment rules were sparked after a November decision from the Washington County Board of Commissioners to not allow use of digital resources, such as e-books and databases, to people from communities outside of the county system, like Lake Elmo, who don’t pay taxes for libraries, but instead buy county cards.

Other libraries in the Metropolitan Library Service Agency, an alliance of more than 100 libraries in the Twin Cities area, also don’t allow those with paid cards to gain access to certain electronic resources, such as e-books.

The Lake Elmo Public Library has also expanded its e-book collection, which is available through Freading and OverDrive online for residents with a free Lake Elmo library card. Children’s books are available to anyone at through the e-book service TumbleBookLibrary.

For more information, contact the library at 651-773-4926.

--Kaitlyn Roby

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