ILL for Libraries

6/4/24 Important Update

Sharing between libraries is one of the best and most valuable services that libraries provide to their members.

The ability to smoothly deliver materials between libraries is what makes this work.  The contract for the book delivery service is held by the Maine State Library and is subject to State Procurement Laws and procedures. This contract was required to go to through a competitive bidding process (Request for Proposal, or RFP) this year since all contracts that use public funds have to ensure competitive bidding at the state level.

Contracting as a result of this RFP for book delivery is currently working its way through a legal appeals process. Because of this transition to a new vendor who won the competitive bid, and an appeal to overturn that decision by an unsuccessful bidder, there will be an interruption to book delivery between libraries at the end of the current contract which expires on June 30th.

We do not currently have firm dates for the length of this interruption, but we expect that there will be no delivery for at least six weeks this summer, starting on July 1.

In anticipation of this interruption, the Maine InfoNet Board and the Minerva Executive Board have made the difficult decision to turn off all requesting between libraries within the MaineCat environment, including Minerva, MILS and URSUS, as of June 4th.

Patrons will still be able to request and place holds on locally owned items, but will not be able to request materials from other libraries. 

Turning off requesting between libraries will allow materials currently in transit to be delivered and will reduce the flow of new material entering delivery. This will help get as many items back to their owning libraries as possible and will help ensure materials are not stranded in the delivery system.

We know that this is a challenging situation that we are all facing. We recognize and feel the same frustration with this situation that you all are feeling. Your local library provides many other valuable services to your community, and we encourage everyone to explore those many services.

If you would like more details regarding this, please visit the FAQ that further explains this situation: Van Delivery FAQ (

Bangor Public Library is the Area Reference and Resource Center (ARRC), serving and representing the following seven Maine counties: Aroostook, Hancock, Knox, Penobscot, Piscataquis, Waldo, and Washington. 

Librarians at the Bangor Public Library wish to help staff at other libraries get books to their patrons. If the book is in our library when we receive your request, we will do our best to send it out within 1 business day of the receipt of your request. If not, we will try to get the item to your library as soon as possible.


Borrowing Materials
(see above regarding temporary interruption)

The easiest way is to have your patron request materials through MaineCat. If you aren't a member of Maine InfoNet, or, if you need to borrow another way, here are other ways you can ask the Bangor Public Library for materials:

Instructions for library making the request:

Please put ILL in the subject line and include your Library’s name and mailing and email addresses in the body of each request. Email sometimes gets forwarded and always gets printed, so without your “signature” we may lose who is making the request.

Please specify if you only want us to search for items available in-state, or if would like us to expand the search out-of-state.

Instructions for library making the request:

Please print or write legibly. If you are using a sheet of paper (you may use postcards or forms), limit the number of titles on each sheet to six. (You may send as many sheets at a time as you wish). We use these sheets to search for your books. Having a long list of requests on one sheet slows down our searching procedures.

Mail requests to:

Bangor Public Library
145 Harlow Street
Bangor, ME 04401

Instructions for library making the request:

Please use the phone only for emergency requests with no more than three items. Please try not call between noon and 2 (lunch hours).  If you call at another time and get our voice mail, please leave a message and include your Library’s name, address and phone number in case we have a question.

PHONE NUMBER: (207) 947-8336
800 NUMBER (in-state libraries): (800) 427-8336

Interlibrary Loan Services were made possible in part by the Institute of Museum and Library Services.