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New Glarus Public Library Goes Fine Free


October 22, 2020

For anyone who has ever avoided the library because of their long-overdue books, we have great news: New Glarus Public Library will no longer be charging overdue fines, and previous overdue balances owed to New Glarus will be forgiven.

With this change, the library joins a global equity movement that recognizes fines as presenting a significant barrier to low-income patrons. As an institution dedicated to free and equal access for all, libraries across the world are moving away from punitive “late fees” while continuing to encourage engagement and responsibility.

You’ll still be expected to return materials by their due dates so that others have a chance to borrow them. Damaged items will need to be paid for. And if you keep something too long it will still be considered “Lost” and your account will be charged a replacement fee – but as always, that fee disappears as soon as you return the item in good condition.

But what if I want to pay?!

In our generous community, we often hear patrons say they are glad to pay their fines and support the library. We want you to know that support is still welcome! Donations from those who can afford $5 or $10 or $20 add up quickly and make a big difference to our budget. Happily, that kind support can still happen, no violator’s guilt required, and no risk of burdening those whose budgets have no wiggle room.

New Glarus Public Library was established in 1934, to serve the educational, cultural and entertainment needs of the greater New Glarus community. The library welcomes and serves all people, no matter their background, age, or economic status. For more information, visit


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