Colorado Libraries Collaborate – Still Going Strong in 2023

As we settle into the new year, we’d like to take a moment to reacquaint you with a program that is actually rather old. Colorado Libraries Collaborate (CLC) has been Colorado’s reciprocal borrowing program since 1991. CLC allows patrons of member libraries to borrow directly from other member libraries. Most libraries in the state already participate in the program, but with all of the employee turnover libraries have experienced in the past few years, some staff may not be aware that their institution participates, or how to facilitate the program for borrowers. Not only is CLC a great way to give patrons access to many more materials than are available from any one library, it also makes participating institutions eligible for Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) funds. So, how does CLC work?

  1. Libraries sign up to participate as a CLC member by submitting a CLC Program Participation Agreement (either online or in paper) with the State Library and make the program available to patrons. (See CLC Member Libraries to determine if your library has already submitted the participation agreement.)
  2. The library educates its staff about the CLC program. (See CLC Marketing and Promotion for downloadable materials.)
  3. The library extends lending privileges to patrons of other CLC member libraries. This includes taking steps to:
    • Adopt a CLC policy that states the local library’s lending privileges for CLC Borrowers.
      1. See our Sample CLC Policy for recommendations and guidance.
    • Eliminate non-resident fees for authorized CLC Borrowers.
    • Determine a process for issuing patron barcodes.
    • Make CLC policy available on your website.
    • Educate library staff about the program.
    • Publicize and promote the program among their community.

For additional details about CLC and more information on how libraries participate, visit our Colorado Libraries Collaborate website at:, or contact us at

Marisa Wood