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August 28, 2019
By isilva

No more fines!

We have joined a growing number of libraries dropping fines for items returned late.

Haven't quite finished your book by its due date? Don't want to go out in bad weather just to get your book back on time?

 As of August 30, 2019, the Belvedere Tiburon Library is no longer charging overdue fines for late returns and past fines for overdue materials are being waived. 

Why are we dropping fines?

We want you to use our Library and borrow extensively from our collections, so we’re changing our policy to get rid of overdue fines.

Research shows that fines cause some people to stop visiting libraries and penalize those who can least afford them.


How is it going to work?

Borrow, renew, return, repeat. No more late fines! But make a habit of always returning items on or before the due date.

We mark an item lost a month after its due date, and we’ll add a replacement fee to your account while curtailing borrowing privileges.


Are late fines forgiven for all items I check out?

If your books or other items are from another library in Marin County they may still be subject to late fines.

  • Overdue items from these libraries may accrue fines: Larkspur, Mill Valley, Pickleweed, San Anselmo, San Rafael, Sausalito
  • Marin County Free Libraries do not charge overdue fines – Bolinas, Civic Center, Corte Madera, Fairfax, Inverness, Marin City, Novato, Pt. Reyes, South Novato, Stinson Beach


What will this cost?

Revenue from overdue fees came to less than one-half of a percent of the Library’s budget last year, and cost more than that in staff time to collect and account for the income.

The saved staff time will be devoted to improving our services for all our library users.


What is the difference between library fines vs. library fees?

Fines are a daily penalty assessed for late return of library items. We will no longer be charging fines.

Fees are replacement charges assessed for materials lost, damaged, or unreturned after a length of time. We will continue to assess fees as necessary.


I didn’t lose these items, can I still bring them back?

Yes! Return any items as soon as you can, and we’ll drop the replacement fees.