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overdue fine 3 days, $30.00 (rant)

In all the time I've used our public library, i have never been one day late. Ever. Except for today. I borrowed 4 DVDs. They were actually a set, a Miss Marple DVD set from the TV shows. Except the library broke up the set and lent it to me as 4 individual items. They were 3 days late. I had forgotten to renew them. The fine was $30.00. When I protested, and said it was part of a set, they said I would still have to pay the full amount. I gave them all the money I had on me. $15.00. I still fuming when I got home. I had taken some money out because tomorrow was our annual crafts festival. I usually buy birthday gifts there. Now I won't be going. We've been having furloughs at work, so while I still have a job, I'm bringing home less money. It's been 3 years since I had a raise.

I'm just so angry at the public library for doing that. 3 days late $30.00.



( 19 comments — Leave a comment )
May. 15th, 2010 07:48 pm (UTC)
Holy hell just for 4 DVDs?
May. 15th, 2010 08:10 pm (UTC)
Yes. I think it's $2.80 each per day for DVDs. I'm still pretty upset. I called library back and protested. I spoke to the circulation manage and she finally agreed to waive the $15.00 additonal money I would have to pay. It just upset me so much. I'm angry I had to fork over $15.00. I gave them that because it was all the money I had on me at the time.
(Deleted comment)
May. 15th, 2010 08:13 pm (UTC)
Pretty bad. It's absurd. I could have purchased the whole set for less money then that.
May. 15th, 2010 08:16 pm (UTC)
I think you should e-mail the director or the library board or somebody and mention that those kinds of fines are a hardship for most people in this economic climate. You gave the DVDs back - no one was waiting for them, I'm sure. Since when is the library a for-profit enterprise? Fines are there to encourage people not to keep the property out too long - but as a tax payer, you have a stake in those DVDs. I think you should get all of the money back *and* the library should have another look at their policies.
May. 15th, 2010 08:25 pm (UTC)
When times are tough, all public places are for profit. I was so upset when I got home. My husband could nto believe they charged me that. Then felt badly and gave me $50.00 (for tomorrow at the art festival) I don't know if I want to take it.
May. 15th, 2010 09:26 pm (UTC)
Nightmare! but, take the money and console yourself :)
May. 15th, 2010 09:34 pm (UTC)
I decided to take it (at one point, I gave it back to him) So I'll go to the festival and buy birthday gifts. I always do that, because the gifts are unique. I buy them one full swoop. Gifts for my brother, sisters, co-workers, etc.

I still owe them (the library) another $15.00 :(
May. 15th, 2010 09:29 pm (UTC)
The common practice in our public libraries is that they don't charge you anything when you want to borrow a DVD, but if you are late returning it then you have to pay a fine. And like in your case, they always break the sets and lend them as individual items. If your situation happened to me in my public library, the late fine would amount to about 15$. And there would be absolutely no room for protest. I wouldn't be allowed to borrow or use anything from the library until all my fines were payed -- no books, no DVDs or CDs, public computers, nothing. :(
May. 15th, 2010 09:36 pm (UTC)
Same here. I have to pay the next installment of $15.00 before I can borrow anything again.

I am so annoyed, I could stomp on them! LOL...
May. 15th, 2010 09:33 pm (UTC)
Wow! That's steep.

Take the money, sounds like you'd enjoy the craft festival so take it and go.
May. 15th, 2010 09:39 pm (UTC)
Well, I love the festival. I go there to purchase gifts for my friends and family that I will give the rest of the year. I took out $100.00 from my savings to spend. I just didn't think the library would charge me so much for being 3 days late.
May. 15th, 2010 09:54 pm (UTC)
I didn't realize that fines are getting so steep. You should have been fined as a set, not individual DVD's. Why would someone only take home a part of a set?

I understand public libraries are having problems financially to keep running but there is a line that they have crossed that is very unfair.
May. 15th, 2010 10:35 pm (UTC)
They've become for profit institutions.
May. 16th, 2010 06:10 am (UTC)
Thats a lot of money for three days.:(
May. 16th, 2010 07:41 am (UTC)
That's a lot of money! Did they charge you a weeks rental for every day it was late or something? They do that at our library, you are charged £3.00 (i think) and you can borrow it for a week. After that it's £3.00 every day. Thats why i never borrow DVD's from them because i'am always late. They do charge as a set though, not independantly.
May. 16th, 2010 05:08 pm (UTC)
I can't believe they charged you that much for only 3 days overdue. It's unfair!
May. 16th, 2010 06:09 pm (UTC)
Well it is pretty unfair. I sent an email to the head of the library system. I'm curious to see his response (if he responds, that is).
May. 29th, 2010 07:02 pm (UTC)
Over Due Fine
I am sorry to here a public institution "robbing" a patron, masquerading as a "fine". Fines are suppose to be "gentle" reminders to return books on-time so others may also enjoy. Our local library (Northeast-USA) has a maximine dollar amount which they will fine you, (I have forgotten exact amt but it is reasonable). If a book/item is not returned you are billed the cost of the item so they may replace it, but they wait about a year just in case it shows up. We also have on-line services so we may renew our selections ourselves as long as they are not on a "hold" list for another patron.(This is particularly helpful since we don't live in town and try to plan several errands in to save on time/gas).I agree with another poster, your library director or overseers should review their policies and your letter may help them decide to revisit this issue. When our children were young we would borrow dozens of books at a time and some got misplaced. But, I found the librarians to be most accomodating and allowing us time to search for them before issuing fines. Our library understands the pupose of a library. Why would a library want to discourage the use of their services by issuing unreasonable fines? The more services that are used plus the more books borrowed makes a case for the library to ask for an increase in their budget. Good Luck.
May. 29th, 2010 07:30 pm (UTC)
Re: Over Due Fine
Thank you. The rest of the overdue ($15.00) wss taken off after I wrote to the director of the library. The library counted the CDs as separate items, not the one item it really was. I did feel initimated at that library desk, that's why I handed over all the money I had. A robber with a gun would have had a tougher time getting my money. Their policy will not change. I just have to be more careful.
( 19 comments — Leave a comment )