CHICAGO (CBS) — A north suburban library has eliminated fines for overdue materials.
The Vernon Area Public Library in Lincolnshire said overdue fines added up to only about half a percent of their annual budget, and eliminating the fines allows them to save money on the staff time and service costs needed to collect them.
“Certainly a chunk of the revenue that we took in from fines was offset by the time we spent collecting that revenue, so if you owe us a dime, it’s going to take us more than a dime’s worth of effort to get that back from you,” spokeswoman Catherine Savage said.
So the library has waived more than $42,000 in uncollected overdue fines, and won’t collect new fines.
Savage said the library isn’t worried they’ll start losing books and DVDs.
“People really do bring materials back, because they’re done with them; and people bring materials back, because they’re due, and they know that their neighbor might be waiting to read that hot new book,” she said. “It’s not really the 10-cent-a-day threat that motivates them to bring it back.”