Fine Free FAQ

CPLD is fine-ally fine free!

At its January 2021 meeting, the Board of trustees decided to remove the assessment of fines for overdue items from library policy. Additionally, past fines for items checked out at CPLD on a patron’s accounts will be waived.

Why is CPLD going fine free?

The primary reason for CPLD’s move to fine free is to provide more equitable access to library materials and services. It has been proven that fines are not an effective incentive to return library materials on time. This change will undoubtedly improve customer service and the overall library experience for many more individuals.

This move is also in keeping with current library trends, especially in our surrounding area. Most recently, Peoria Public and Fondulac libraries have adopted the fine free model along with Brimfield, Peoria Heights, and others.

When will the fine free policy begin?

CPLD officially became fine free on Tuesday, January 26 2021.

How does fine free work?

No overdue fines will be charged on any item checked out at CPLD, regardless of who owns the item, which library issued your card, or where the item is returned.

It’s important to understand that “no overdue fines” doesn’t mean “no responsibility.” Libraries work because borrowers are entrusted to return materials so that others may use them, so due dates will still apply and patrons are still expected to return borrowed items on or before the due date. Your card will have borrowing privileges suspended if items are overdue for 2 weeks. Items overdue for 30 days and videos overdue for 20 days will be assumed lost and your card will be billed for the value of the item. Once the item is returned or paid for, the fee will be removed and borrowing privileges reinstated.

What’s the difference between a fine and a fee?

Fines are punitive in nature. Fees reflect an actual value for goods and services such as copying, printing, faxing, item replacement, processing costs, collection recovery, etc.

Will the library lose money? Will my taxes increase because of fine free?

The answer to both is “no.” Overdue fine income represents less than 1% of the library’s annual income. The Board of Trustees considers this minimal loss of revenue as an investment in customer service, equitable access and increasing benefits to the community. Going fine free cannot and will not have any impact on taxes of any kind.