Fines are not implemented for the benefit of the library -- they are in effect for the best interest of our patrons. Fines are an incentive for people to return their items on time: less than 8% of our patrons accrue fines, and less than 5% have repeated fines. We try to keep fines to a minimum by the use of courtesy, overdue, and fine notices.
Please see Circulation & Usage for details on fine rates.
Courtesy, Overdue, and Fine Notices
For patrons who have an active e-mail address registered in their library account, the library's database and server will automatically generate the following e-mail notices:
- A courtesy notice, sent 3 days prior to the due date as a reminder of the items that are due.
- An overdue notice, sent the day after an item is overdue and periodically after that until the system designates the item as lost and missing.
- A fine notice, sent when items are returned and the fine is not paid, or when a book is designated lost and missing.
Please note that these notices are provided as a courtesy. Non-receipt of a courtesy, overdue, and fine notice does not exempt the patron from payment of overdue fines. The library is not responsible if an internet service provider or e-mail client rejects these notices or if they are not received prior to the due date.
For lost materials, borrowers have two options. The borrower may buy a replacement copy of the item for the library, which must be exactly the same version of the item as the one that was lost: date of publication, publisher, edition, and ISBN must be identical, and the copy must be in good condition. The borrower must order, purchase, and deliver the item and pay all overdue fines in full. If the exact version of the book is out of print and is not available through used book agents, the borrower may discuss other possibilities personally with the Director of Library Services.
If the borrower chooses not to or is unable to replace the lost item with an exact version, (s)he will be charged the cost of replacing the item, plus a processing fee of $35.00. Any overdue fines that have accrued on the item will be forgiven once the item is replaced and payment has been made. The processing fee covers the cost of researching the replacement of the item, ordering it, shipping and handling on the order, processing its receipt, replacing the MARC catalog record, and preparing the item for addition to the library collection. All borrowing privileges for the patron will be suspended until these fees are paid in full, or until acceptable arrangements are made with the Director of Library Services for their payment.