Parsons Public Library is declaring October to be “Amnesty Month”. Any item that is overdue may be returned in good condition during October, and the overdue fines that have accumulated on the item will be forgiven.
“This is a great opportunity for people to have their fines forgiven and for the library to get missing books, DVDs, and other material returned and put back into circulation again,” said Jean Strader, Library Director. “During October, I encourage everyone to look through their bookshelves, in their closets, under the seats of their cars, and in the cracks of their living room couches. See if there are any library books or other items that have somehow escaped being returned. Bring them back to us in a usable condition, and, no matter how old they are, we will waive the fine.”
Patrons will still be responsible for the replacement cost of any damaged or lost materials and any outstanding fines on items that were previously returned.
The library plans to upgrade its circulation and cataloging system in November. According to records kept under the current system, which was installed in 1992, over 2,000 patrons have around 4,500 items checked out that have not been returned and are past due by fifteen days or more. By waiving fines on the current system, Strader said the library staff will not have to transfer fines to the new system, and patrons will be able to start over with a clean slate.
The library’s current policy on overdues will resume on November 1. Under the current policy, patrons are allowed a three day grace period after the due date. If the item is not returned within the grace period, fines start accumulating as of the due date, and the patron is prohibited from further checkouts and renewals until the item is returned and fines are paid. Fines are .50 per day per item. When a maximum of $9.00 per item is reached, fines stop accumulating.
Library materials may be returned at the circulation desk, by dropping in the return slot at the front of the library building, or by using the book drop located on Broadway across from the Municipal Building. For any questions, contact the library at 620-421-5920.