Wyndham City is delighted to announce that we are no longer applying overdue charges at our libraries. All existing overdue charges are removed, effective immediately, with no future charges imposed on overdue items.
We are also implementing an auto-renewal system, which allows borrowers to have an item on loan for a set number of automatic renewals, or until an item is placed on hold. Borrowers with overdue items will still need to return their items before they are able to borrow a new item.
We know that for people on lower incomes, library charges can have a significant impact on their financial situation and provide a barrier to borrowing items.
By removing these charges, Wyndham City is ensuring that every Wyndham resident – regardless of their background – can access pivotal materials that will enrich their lives and allow them to participate in lifelong learning.
In line with the Victorian Premier’s announcement of a return to stage three restrictions in Greater Melbourne, as of 5pm on 8 July 2020 all Wyndham City Libraries are closed to the public for a period of six weeks, or until restrictions are lifted.
Throughout the COVID-19 restriction period, Wyndham City encourages residents to take advantage of our full, 24/7 online library that has e-books, e-magazines, e-audiobooks movie streaming, children’s educational games, live tutoring, online programs for all ages and more!
In addition, our home delivery service for physical items, including books, is continuing and freely available to all library members.
Frequently Asked Questions
When does the removal of overdue charges at Wyndham City Libraries come into effect?
The policy is now in effect.
Do I still have to pay my existing overdue fee?
No, you do not. All existing overdue fines are now waived.
Can I get a refund for an overdue fee previously paid?
No, you cannot. This new policy applies to existing and future fees only, not previous ones.
What will be the incentive for people to return items to the libraries?
Borrowers with overdue items will be prevented from borrowing physical items until these items are either returned or renewed. This incentivises the timely return of items without imposing a financial penalty on borrowers. As is currently the case, staff will have some discretion in this matter.
Will this policy have an adverse impact on Council’s revenue?
No, it will not. Currently, Council receives a small amount of revenue from library charges, with significant time and resources being spent on the administration of fees.
In addition, for every $1 invested in public libraries, $4.30 is generated in benefit to the local community, so the benefits of this policy far outweigh the costs.
Has this policy been implemented elsewhere?
Yes, the worldwide movement to remove overdue charges in public libraries has gained significant momentum in recent years, with many Australian Councils adopting this policy.
The City of Sydney, Tasmanian Government and Casey Cardinia Libraries – to name a few – have all removed overdue library fines and found the policy to be a success.
What were the outcomes of this policy when implemented by other libraries?
- The City of Sydney no longer applied library fines for eight months and found that over three times as many overdue items were returned in this period.
- The Tasmanian Government no longer applied overdue charges, resulting in over 8,000 new members joining the State’s library service during the five months which followed.
- After a year-long trial, Casey Cardinia Libraries permanently removed overdue charges, discovering that the cost of collecting fines was greater than the revenue collected. Usage of the library service increased in terms of both number of items borrowed, and number of visits from borrowers.