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Dekalb County Libraries Offering Fine Forgiveness Through January

/ The Upper Cumberland's News Leader
Dekalb County Libraries Offering Fine Forgiveness Through January

The Dekalb County Library System will allow you to start fresh this January by waiving overdue fees on any returns.

Dekalb County Library System Director Kathy Hendrixson said the program does not include damaged or lost books. She said the system is eager to work with people on whatever is necessary to bring them back to the libraries.

“People are starting new beginnings and New Year’s resolutions and things like that, so we thought, you know, what a good opportunity to have people, maybe they haven’t been in in a while, and maybe start all over again,” Hendrixson said. “New beginnings at the library. Bring your books back and forgive your fines.”

Overdue books result in a fine of 10 cents per day, with movies costing $1 for each day overdue. Hendrixson said while those may seem like small fines, sometimes people let them add up and then miss out on what the libraries have to offer. The fine forgiveness program runs from January 2 through Jan 31.

“We work with people,” Hendrixson said. “We’re here to serve the public, so that’s our goal. Give people the things that they need and serve them.”

Hendrixson said people miss out on the many services provided by both Justin Potter Library and Alexandria Library when they stay away because of looming overdue fees. She said the libraries feature one of the most popular notaries in the county, summer reading programs for kids, and a genealogy room.

“We try to offer as many free services to the community as we can, and programs,” Hendrixson said. “That’s what we’re here for. We’re here to serve the public and our community, so anything we can do to kind of help people, that’s what we’re here to do.”

She said fees are often forgiven when people have circumstances that do not allow them to return a book on time, so this forgiveness program is not out of the ordinary. People can also renew the book they have checked out online to avoid a penalty. Hendrixson said that like in most communities, the libraries are the hubs of Dekalb County. She said they forgave fines last December and when they saw more people visiting the library once free of their debts, they decided to waive fees again.


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