Norfolk Public Library goes fine-free for overdue books, materials

Books on a shelf
Posted at 2:09 PM, May 13, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-13 14:09:52-04

NORFOLK, Va. - After a one-year trial period, the Norfolk Public Library will extend its fine-free services indefinitely.

All fines and fees incurred before 2010 have been charged off and removed from patron records. All fines and fees incurred on juvenile accounts before January 1, 2021, were removed as well.

According to the NPL, the library used to charge 20 cents per day, per item, up to a $6 maximum for late books and materials. All DVDs, reference books, interlibrary loan materials, book club kits, and Toddle Totes were charged $1.25 per day, up to a $10.00 maximum.

Once items were kept 28 days beyond the due date, they were assumed lost, and the patron’s account was charged the replacement cost and processing fee.

Accounts delinquent 30 or more days were referred to the Norfolk Department of Finance, and a $25 non-negotiable fee was added, even if items were returned.

The NPL said fees for lost or damaged books and materials will continue, and the remainder of the circulation policies remain in effect.

To date, more than 200 libraries in America have successfully eliminated overdue fines. To see who else has adopted this policy, view the interactive map of fine-free libraries.