Washington County (Minn.) Library has brought a new community asset to the City of Hugo, as well as all Washington County Library patrons, with the introduction of the Washington County Library Express – a high-tech kiosk called iLibrary (developed by LEID Products in Auburn Hills, Mich. www.leidproducts.com) where patrons can order, pick up and return library materials, using a self-service kiosk, locker system and book return.

Carver County Library ExpressLibrary Director Patricia Conley called the Library Express an innovative new way to deliver services to areas where a full-service library may not be close by and during a time when budgets are tight.

“Hugo is a community which is seeing substantial growth. We want to make sure access to library services is a cost-effective benefit which can contribute to that growth,” Conley said.  “This is a new system for us, the first in the state, and we’re excited about the possibilities,” Conley said. “We’re cooperating with Carver County Library, and applied for a federal grant together and will share what we learn. Carver County is installing an Express Library in the City of Victoria. We hope this will be seen as a model for local governments working together to provide service more efficiently.

“Once customers have a chance to give it a try and see how easy it is, I think they’ll be impressed by it,” Conley said. “We envision people stopping by the Library Express to pick up their books in the midst of their other daily errands. It’s a fast process and only takes a few minutes to pick up the items they have put on hold. Because the Library Express is self-service and located outside Hugo City Hall, it will be open 24 hours a day. It can really be a convenient part of our customers’ daily lives,” Conley adds.

To request books, customers use their library card number and must have an e-mail address on file with Washington County Library. Library cards are available online or through any Washington County Library. Using either the Library Express kiosk or the Washington County website from their own computer, customers designate the Library Express (Hugo City Hall) as the pickup point. They will be informed via e-mail when their materials are available. The items will be available for 48 hours from the time of delivery to the library.

LEID Products, LLC was originally founded to assist police departments in securing their assets (guns, weapons and radios) through an electronic tracking and fingerprinting system.  LEID’s products since have been utilized to track many other type of business assets such as radios at amusement parks; books, tapes and magazines within a library system; and even the securing of business documents to selected personnel.  For more information and to see on-line demonstrations of our products, log on to www.leidproducts.com