On Wednesday, August 25, Seattle Public Library's Board of Trustees will discuss and hear public testimony on some proposed overdue fee rate hikes.
The daily fine for an overdue book, CD, or DVD would change from 15 cents a day to 25 cents a day;
The daily fine for an overdue interlibrary loan (an item borrowed from outside The Seattle Public Library) would change from 25 cents a day to $1 a day; and
The daily fine for an overdue reference resource would change from 15 cents a day to $1 a day.
In addition, the proposed print charge from Library computers would increase from 10 cents to 15 cents per page and parents would be notified when their children's (patrons 17 and under) overdue fines were above $25.
Raising overdue fees on books by ten cents to a quarter would put SPL in line with the New York Public Library, but NYPL charges $1 a day for overdue CDs and DVDs. (The San Francisco Public Library, however, charges a dime a day for everything except videos.) I understand that interlibrary loans cost SPL money, but the new $1-a-day fee seems a bit exorbitant, and the reference increase seems incredibly high to me.
If you'd like to discuss these increases with the board, the meeting and public hearing will take place at 4:30 pm, a time so inconvenient that even Board of Trustees President Michael Parham was fifteen minutes late to a meeting last year.