The Bangor Public Library this month stopped charging patrons daily late fees for overdue books.

As of Jan. 1, the Bangor Public Library has ended its practice of tallying 10 cents per day for an overdue book. It still charges a $5 fine for adult titles and $2.50 for children’s books after a title is one month late, but the daily accumulated fine is a thing of the past.

Daily late fines will still be assessed for late inter-library loan books that are not part of the BPL’s collection, and if a book is never returned, patrons will also be billed for its full price.

For library director Barbara McDade, abolishing daily late fees was a simple solution to a larger problem. The majority of patrons that are late on books are less than one month late, so eliminating a barrier to regular usage for most patrons made sense to the library’s board of directors, she said.

“The biggest excuse that we get as to why some people don’t use the public library is they’re afraid of overdue fines,” said McDade.

The move is part of a growing national trend among libraries to get rid of late fees, including in Columbus, Ohio, Ipswich, Massachusetts and San Jose, California.

Follow the Bangor Daily News on Facebook for the latest Maine news.

Emily Burnham

Emily Burnham is a Maine native and proud Bangorian, covering business, the arts, restaurants and the culture and history of the Bangor region.