Library Accepts Food for Late Fees - KMOT.COM - Minot, ND - News, Weather, Sports

Library Accepts Food for Late Fees

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People will tell you that nothing in life is free. Libraries come close, although obviously our tax dollars support them. But it's nice to read magazines and newspapers, check the internet and check out books without charge. There is an exception, however, and this is the time of year to come clean.

It can be a busy but quiet place. People find a subject or author they're interested in. They can take several books home and return them in a timely manner. Unfortunately, some library users forget, and they start incurring fines.

"Everyone is different. Some people want to pay it immediately as soon as they can. Others are happy to just keep checking out books until they can't any more, I suppose," says Alyssa Feik, Bismarck Public Library.

It's not a huge deal. The overdue fine is ten cents per book per day. And the average late returnee owes less than $2.50.  But now comes amnesty time. The Food for Fines programs forgives those fees.

Every item you bring in can waive $3 off your fines. So that equals about a month of fines for one book.

The items will go to Aid Incorporated's food pantry. Truthfully, the majority of the donations come from patrons who don't owe any fines. And it gives librarians the opportunity to demonstrate that they're not stern sourpusses that run around shushing people.

"We try to always be the friendly librarians. And I love every opportunity I can waive someone's fines," says Feik.

Food for Fines is being offered at both the Bismarck Library and the Morton Mandan Library.

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