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Fine Free

In the spirit of celebrating our 150th anniversary, Ottawa Library has gone FINE FREE for all items except laptops and eReaders. 

Why fine free?

  • Most libraries are now going fine-free. We want everyone to feel welcome coming to the library. We may have patrons who have not returned to the library because of late fines and our hope is that they feel they can return.

  • Electronic resources, such as Kanopy and Hoopla, are growing in use and popularity. Such resources don’t incur overdue fines. Changing our physical items model helps us align our services across the board.

  • Overdue fines are not an effective incentive to return books on time.

How it works

  • All due dates still apply. Patrons can still be notified by text message or email when items are due. Patrons will be notified when an item remains unreturned for 7 days. At 21 days overdue, the patron’s account will be blocked. At 45 days, the patron will be billed for overdue items.

  • When an item is seven (7) days overdue the patron will be sent a notice.

  • When an item is twenty-one (21) days overdue, the patron’s account will be blocked, stopping additional checkouts and use of resources like computers and databases.

  • When an item is forty-five (45) days overdue, the item will be considered “lost” and the patron will be billed. This “lost” charge will be removed if/when the item is returned to the library up to one-hundred eighty (180) days overdue.

  • Patrons will continue to be charged for items that are damaged.

🔗 ALA Blog - Why Have Libraries Gone Fine-Free The Past Few Years?

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