BELOIT (WREX) — In celebration of National Library Week, the Beloit Public Library is eliminating fines on all youth and young adult (teenagers) materials.
This new policy will include books, magazines, music and movies. In addition to getting rid of fines the Beloit Public Library will erase existing fines for youth and teenagers.
The policy is based on the type of item and not the actual age of the borrower.
“Beloit Public Library continues to be the community’s leader in early literacy efforts,” said Beloit Public Library Director Nick Dimassis. “This is one more way we are putting students and their families first."
When the new rule took effect, all pending fines on youth and young adult materials also were removed.
Before the change, patrons could be charged a fine of $0.10-$0.25 a day up to a maximum of $5.00 for each book returned after its due date.
This new rule only applies to fines; fees will still accrue for items that are lost or damaged. Items that are long overdue will be considered lost and billed for replacement; the return of those materials immediately removes those charges from an account.
"For those for whom even a few dollars might be enough to prevent them from checking out books, this is an important initiative in opening the world of learning to all children," said Dimassis.
The BPL Library Board of Trustees unanimously voted during its regular March 17 meeting to change its circulation policy and remove the fines.
This new fine-free policy aligns BPL with the American Library Association, which has published a resolution claiming that “monetary fines present an economic barrier to access of library materials and services.”