Late returners of library books across Preston could face a slightly harsher fine for their tardiness.Advertisement
Lancashire County Council is proposing to increase the amount charged per day for late book returns.
It’s one of a number of increases in fees relating to libraries and access to archives at the city’s libraries.
Currently the fine per item per day for a late return is 15p, but the county council’s cabinet is proposing to raise this to 20p.
Council officers state this would raise an extra £54,243 for the county council.
The maximum fine per item would remain capped at £6.
Reserving a book at a library is also going to rise from 60p per item to 75p per item, netting the county council an extra £11,946 per year.
Library fines have not been changed since 2012 and the cost of a reservation of a book have not increased since 2005.
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Cabinet member for community and cultural services county councillor Peter Buckley said: “The county council’s financial position means that we have to review our charges from time to time. We hadn’t increased these charges for a while, and although we would prefer not to have to, this situation had to be addressed.
“It was agreed that we couldn’t continue to absorb these costs. The increases are consistent with those that have already been introduced by other councils across the country.
“Although charges are never popular, this decision was necessary in order to reduce the pressure on the council’s finances and help to meet our priority of continuing to protect services for our most vulnerable people.”
The cost of making copies of specific items in the county’s archives, in Bow Lane, is also due to increase per item – but varies depending on the type of item.
Read more: Transport for some of the most vulnerable people in Preston faces being cut
The proposals are due to be discussed by the county council’s cabinet on Thursday (18 January) and they were approved.
Do you use the libraries in Preston? What do you think about the rise in charges? Let us know in the comments below