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Our gift to you: fine free every day!
We're eliminating fines for overdue items!

The season of kindness and giving is fast approaching. In keeping with that spirit a gift of sorts has been in the making at “your” Marion County Public Library. November 13th 2019, The Marion County Public Library Board of Trustees voted to go Overdue Fines Free year round. After much consideration the library board and staff have determined that in keeping with their mission to make the library as accessible and welcoming as possible it would be only right to remove the long held practice of charging patron’s overdue fees for returning their items late.

No charges will accrue on your account if an item isn’t returned upon it’s due date. While this may seem counter-productive to some there is a reason for this decision. You see we, and other libraries as well, often find that the fact that a person has a fee on their name actually keeps them from returning the item at all. It hinders them from utilizing our services, keeps them from allowing their children to take part in programs and even keeps them from utilizing resources like online access to help with job searches, furthering their education and more. When the “free” public library adds stress to your day and pocketbook it can become one more place where you just “can’t get ahead.”


No overdue fees won’t mean that items can stay out indefinitely. Patrons who do not return their items will be restricted from checking out further items until the time that their overdue items are returned.  Likewise, if a patron damages, loses or doesn’t return their item after a designated grace period they will be held responsible for the fee associated with replacing the item.

The decision to make this change has been made in the hopes that all members of our community can feel that their library services and resources truly are a utilization of their tax dollars at work. We hope that this change will make the community come out and take advantage of the wonderful books, movies, online access and so many more exciting assets that are ready right here and waiting for you and your household to use!

In other such rule changes, we want to note that while children under eleven cannot be left unattended  and must be accompanied by an adult 18 and over when visiting the library freely (outside of a program setting), children in the Tween/Teen Age Ranges of 9-up may be left to attend a library supervised program alone. A parent or guardian simply need be there to accompany the child at the end of the program. This is done as a safety precaution as that staff cannot always be available to ensure that young children in the library at large are supervised.

We hope to see as many from the community as possible during the holiday season. Make sure to check out all of the great new resources from the “Library of Things” and “Design Den” like baking pans, large format printing and other such tools that can assist with your homemade gift giving this year. (Please note utilization of the large printer is not an on demand/while you wait service, please give staff ample notification of your need, at least 24-48 hours if not sooner).

From all of us here at MCPL we hope to see you soon and wish you and yours Seasons Readings!