From 1 July 2020, the Swan Hill Regional Library will no longer charge overdue fines for late items.
The new policy applies only to overdue items. Payment is still required for lost, unreturned and damaged items.
Council’s Libraries Manager Camille Cullinan said eliminating fines for overdue items made the library service more accessible to everyone.
“We want to ensure families and others who need us the most can enjoy borrowing without having to worry about returning their library items on time,” Ms Cullinan said.
“In fact, fines actually appear to be more of a deterrent from using the library than helping to get library items back on time.
“Feedback from our community also indicated that overdue fines for late items often deterred people from using the library service,” Ms Cullinan added.
“Additionally, staff time that was previously spent administering overdue fines can now be spent helping customers with the many services we offer in the library.”
Ms Cullinan reminded the community that lost, unreturned and damaged items still required payment.
“If items are not returned, members will be restricted from borrowing again until the library items are returned or paid for,” Ms Cullinan said.
“Overdue items may also impact on the library member’s usage of other library services such as access to the public computers.