Library eliminating late fees.

February 26, 2020

Library eliminating late fees.

The Mason County District Library has announced that it will eliminate overdue fines on all library materials beginning March 1, 2020. Children’s items are already exempt.

“We are delighted to remove this barrier to access,” said Thomas Trahey, head of circulation at Mason County District Library. “There is a shame element to late fees which is counter-productive and prevents people from accessing library services. This change will encourage a more positive library experience for everyone.”

According to a press release from the library, studies have shown that late fees disproportionately affect low-income households and create a barrier to access. Return rates and material availability are not affected when libraries eliminate overdue fines. Revenue generated through overdue fines is less than one half of one percent of the Mason County District Library’s annual operating budget.

As of March 1, 2020, all unpaid fines for overdue materials will be forgiven. Patrons will continue to receive notifications of due dates and past-due materials. Patrons will still be charged for lost or damaged items.

The district library has branches in Scottville and Ludington.

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