Guidelines for Load Leveling in TexShare


TexShare is a vision of shared intellectual resources, both physical and electronic, between academic and public libraries in Texas. The broader the participation in this endeavor, the greater the benefit to the entire group.  This protocol encourages TexShare Libraries to be as generous as possible with each other while maintaining institutional priorities for interlibrary loan service. The goals of resource sharing and cooperation established by TexShare would best be achieved by removing as many barriers as possible from interlibrary loan service.

2.0. General Agreements

2.1 All participants agree to abide by the National Interlibrary Loan Code for both borrowing and lending. See also the Supplement to the National Interlibrary Loan Code

2.2 TexShare Libraries will adhere to the Copyright Law of the United States (Title 17, U.S. Code), and the Coalition for Networked Information (CNI) Guidelines.  Libraries obtaining a significant number of copies should consider registering with the Copyright Clearance Center (CCC).

2.3 TexShare libraries will enter lending policies in OCLC's ILL Policies Directory.

2.4 TexShare Libraries are encouraged to lend materials in all formats. As a general guideline, TexShare Libraries will lend materials in any format that an on-site patron could check out according to standard circulation policy unless the item is in high demand at the owning institution. Formats may include, but are not limited to:

  • Audio-visual materials (sound recording, video, slides) See ALA guidelines for lending videos
  • Books (regardless of imprint date) See ALA guidelines for lending rare materials
  • Computer software and data (diskettes, CD-ROMs)
  • Dissertations and theses (not to include archival copies)
  • Electronic journals (as licenses permit)
  • Genealogy (copies may be provided as an alternative to loan)
  • Government documents (local, state, US, foreign, and international)
  • Microforms (fiche, film, and card)
  • Photocopies (of any length)

2.5 TexShare Public Libraries will lend to other TexShare Libraries free of charge.

2.6 TexShare Libraries will make every effort to ensure that no single library is unduly burdened and that interlibrary loan traffic is distributed equitably among the member libraries. To that end, each library will adhere to the attached load leveling guidelines.

2.7 TexShare will make available copies of the statistical reports on interlibrary loan activity by emailing the Interlibrary Loan Program Coordinator at the Texas State Library and Archives Commission. This data will provide information on borrowing and lending patterns and serves as a guide to load leveling for each library. Interlibrary loan managers are encouraged to send requests to net borrowers and to avoid net lenders whenever possible.

3.0. Access to Holdings

3.1 TexShare Libraries will list and update their holdings at least annually in OCLC.

3.2.1 TexShare Libraries are encouraged to make their issue-specific serial holdings available in the OCLC database. If local data records for all serial titles cannot be included, libraries should consider entering data for selected records.

4.0. Delivery

4.1 Libraries are encouraged to use TExpress whenever possible and electronic delivery for articles.

4.2 TExpress

4.2.1 TexShare libraries are encouraged to use TExpress for loans (and article copies when Ariel, Odyssey, or fax is unavailable) because deliveries are fast, and TExpress reduces postage costs for all lenders. Refer to the TExpress Shipping Guidelines for details.

4.2.2 Bags are provided by Amigos and must be used for loans to ensure safe delivery. Refer to Amigos' packaging guidelines.

4.2.3 TExpress libraries must submit monthly usage statistics to Amigos.

4.2.4 If libraries use TExpress to return non-lLL items, they must be clearly labeled inside the mailing envelope to indicate where the item should be routed at the receiving site, e.g. Circulation Department

4.2.5 TExpress members are encouraged to join the TexShare Courier mailing list.

4.3 USPS Delivery

4.3.1 TexShare libraries are encouraged to deliver any materials via USPS Library Rate or Media Mail.

4.4 Electronic Delivery

4.4.1 Electronic document delivery of articles to patrons is encouraged as a cost effective of delivery. Ariel or Odyssey specific software is available to facilitate electronic delivery.

4.4.2. Borrower will: Check and request re-sends within one (1) working day of receipt or consider it a second request. Use the header page supplied by the lender to request re-sends and indicate why the re-send is required. Request re-send with “dither on” if required to obtain good quality illustrations.

4.4.3 Lender will: Re-transmit error pages within one working day. Include header page with all transmissions including re-sends.   Information to be included on header page: Institution name and/or OCLC symbol or DocLINE identification Patron name OCLC, DocLINE, or other relevant ILL request numbers. Notification in the notes field when re-transmission is a re-send.

4.4.4 A separate header page should be used for each document. Send only one ILL request/document in each transmission.

4.4.5 Use “dither on” for transmitting or re-transmitting pages, with important illustrations at the request of the borrower.

4.4.6 If a document fails to transmit within 24 hours, the supplier may notify the requester and request a reboot of the system. The document can be sent by TExpress, mailed, faxed, or retained for Ariel transmission at the supplier's discretion.

5.0. Processing Requests, TexShare Libraries agree to:

5.1 Both borrowing and lending requests must be processed through OCLC or DocLINE.

5.2 Borrowing Request will include:

5.2.1 The term "TexShare" in the affiliations field.

5.2.2 Ariel or Odyssey address

5.2.3 Email address

5.2.4 Fax number

5.2.5 Phone number

5.2.6 US Mail address

5.2.7 Those libraries on TExpress must include hub and site number as the first line in the SHIP TO: address followed by the US mail address. See 4.2 for correct format.

5.2.8 Patron name

5.2.9 Include the need by date and time.

5.2.10 Indicate preferred method of delivery.

5.2.11 Agree to pay for overnight delivery, if this delivery method is required.

5.2.9 Indicate RUSH on the request if necessary. The term RUSH will not be used routinely and will not be in the constant data record.

5.3 Recommended borrowing strategies and the order in which to employ them are outlined in the attached Guidelines for Load Leveling in TexShare.

5.3.1 Libraries will use the custom holding feature of OCLC to facilitate load leveling. OCLC provides instructions on how to set up the Custom Holdings (See Guidelines for Load Leveling in TexShare).

5.4 Submitting Lending Requests:

5.4.1 Use of direct request in Navigator is the preferred method to ease staff workload and shorten turn around time for the patron.

5.4.2 Process within three (3) working days or by need by date and time, whichever is sooner.

5.4.3 Use the term COND to inform the borrower of citation errors.

5.4.4 Use Reasons for No on all unfilled requests to indicate why the request was not filled.

5.4.3 Use preferred delivery method as indicated by borrower. Send item via overnight delivery if borrower agrees to pay for the cost of this service.

5.4.4 Reserve the right to refuse a RUSH request, if staffing or other factors prevent successful compliance. If a lending library thinks a borrower is abusing RUSH, the lender will so notify the requester and/or ignore the RUSH status. Libraries that refuse to supply RUSH processing cannot expect RUSH processing for their borrowing requests

6.0. Lending Policies and Loan Periods

It is the goal for the TexShare Libraries to be as liberal with regard to lending policies as possible for the convenience of the borrowing clientele. The borrowing library under all circumstances will honor the policies and restrictions of the lending library. When creating lending policies, please keep in mind items requested by your library's patrons.

6.1 TexShare Libraries agree to the following minimum guidelines. Libraries wishing to follow more liberal policies may do so.

6.1.1 Lend items allowed to circulate to patrons. Although encouraged to lend these materials, a library may choose not to lend new releases, DVD/videos, or sound recordings. (See section 2.4 of this document)

6.1.2 The normal loan period for materials borrowed from another TexShare Library is a minimum of four weeks, including time required for delivery and return. Longer loan periods and renewals will be permitted at the discretion of the lending library. Lending libraries may require a shorter loan period for specific materials.

6.1.2 Recalls of materials on interlibrary loan will be honored as promptly as it is possible to retrieve materials from clientele.

7.0. Communication

At least one staff member from each TexShare Library's ILL unit should join and participate in the ILL mailing list. This group will serve as a think tank, information dissemination mechanism, and survey instrument for the interlibrary loan services of TexShare Libraries.

8.0. Costs

The goal is for TexShare Libraries not to charge for interlibrary loan services for all libraries.

8.1 TexShare Public Libraries will not charge other TexShare Public Libraries for lending materials or processing fees for lost materials except for the following conditions:

8.1.1 Overdue fines

8.1.2 Lost Books

8.2 The TexShare Public Libraries will not charge for interlibrary loan services to their patrons except for the following conditions:

8.2.1 May charge your own patrons for either the actual cost of postage or a flat rate of $3.17, which is an equivalent of sending a 2 lb package at library rate via USPS.

8.2.2 If a patron requests overnight delivery, patrons may be charged actual costs for this service.

8.2.3 Overdue fines assessed by lending library

8.2.4 Lending fees if required by the lending library

8.3 Lending libraries should notify borrowing libraries promptly when materials are overdue. Invoices for lost materials should normally follow within three months. Invoices for lost books should be paid promptly by borrowing library unless other arrangements are made with the lending library.

8.4 Borrowing libraries will be responsible for the replacement costs of items lost or damaged (replacement or repair cost of the item only; not additional processing fees. See section 8.3 of the Interlibrary Loan Protocol). Borrowing libraries are responsible for items from the time they are shipped by the lending library until the lending library receives them upon return in accordance with the National Interlibrary Loan Code.

8.7 Lending libraries will not charge more than the price that appears in Books in Print for lost books that are still in print. Out-of-print materials may be subject to the Lending library's default cost for lost books. Lending libraries are encouraged to permit borrowing libraries to replace lost or damaged books in kind (same title, same publication date, same format as lost item). In no case may the default replacement cost be higher than what the lending library would charge its own patrons for a lost book.

9.0. Review and Assessment

9.1 The Working Group will periodically review and revise the protocol. The Working Group will act as an advisory group on protocol issues to TexShare management.

(Revised January 2010)

Page last modified: February 20, 2018