BATH, Maine — Patten Free Library in Bath is giving patrons a chance to convert their guilt about late fees into satisfaction for contributing to a worthy cause in the community.
From Nov. 27 through Dec. 8, the library’s Food for Fines program will allow patrons to pay their overdue fines by donating to the Bath Area Food Bank. For each packaged item turned in at the library, $1 in fines will be forgiven, though lost or damaged items will require full payment.
The Food for Fines program bills itself as letting a few dollars that would have been paid in late fees to do triple duty: clear up overdue fines, save a little money for holiday gifts and help neighbors who rely on the local food bank.
The food bank needs items including canned vegetables, baked beans, canned meat and tuna, canned or dried fruit, juice, soup, pasta, spaghetti sauce, peanut butter and toiletries. Damaged and expired items will not be accepted.
Patten Free Library, which serves Bath, Arrowsic, Georgetown, West Bath and Woolwich, is open from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Tuesdays and Wednesdays; from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Thursdays and Fridays; and from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturdays. The Bath Food Pantry is at the United Church of Christ, 150 Congress Ave., and is open from 6 to 8 p.m. Tuesdays and from 2 to 4 p.m. Fridays.