St. Paul mayor suggests ending overdue library book fees

St. Paul Mayor Melvin Carter is proposing a clean slate for the 51,000 delinquent library cardholders who owe money for overdue books at the city’s public libraries.

The Star Tribune reports that Carter’s proposal would forgive more than $2.5 million in accumulated library fees and eliminate fines for overdue books altogether. He’s asking the City Council to approve $215,000 in extra library funding for next year. It would replace fines collected each year.

The mayor proposed a $20 million library budget for 2019, a 3.2 percent increase from this year.

Carter says the changes “will unlock the doors to our libraries” so that everyone in the community can afford to check out a book.

The St. Paul City Council will decide on Carter’s plan in October.

Library users would still be asked to pay for lost or damaged items.

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Information from: Star Tribune, http://www.startribune.com