About MCPL

News & Recognition

Overdue Fines – What’s Changing?

Why is Middle Country Public Library getting rid of most overdue fines?
The library’s goal is to ensure its patrons are able to access all the books and services it has to offer. Overdue fines can prevent some patrons, especially children, from checking out books and other materials. MCPL does not rely on overdue fines to run the library.

Which items will still have overdue fines?
Overdue fines will still be charged on the following collections, because of their limited size and popularity: Video Games, Museum Passes, Library of Things, and Games Collection.

How is the library going to make sure borrowed materials are returned?
We will still be charging patrons for lost or damaged materials. When an item is overdue by more than 20 days, the patron’s library card will be stopped and they will be unable to check out any additional materials or register for library programs. When an item is 35 days past its due date, the item will be treated as lost and a replacement fee will be charged to the patron’s record.

What happens if my library card is stopped because of a long overdue item?
Patrons with items more than 20 days overdue will not be able to check out items or register for programs until the items are returned or the replacement fee has been paid.

When will this take effect?
Beginning January 14th, 2019, overdue fines will not be charged on items returned late, except on items from our video game, museum pass, library of things, and game collections.

Does this mean current fines are being wiped away?
No. We are unable to waive the current fines on everyone’s records. However, library staff are encouraged to use their best judgement in waiving individual overdue fines. Patrons should speak with a customer service supervisor regarding any issues with existing fines.