San Francisco Public Library to offer fine-forgiveness program to patrons

The Board of Supervisors has approved a proposal from the San Francisco Public Library to create an amnesty program to help people with fines to regain access to the library’s resources in an effort increase community involvement.


The SF Examiner reported that the 150,000 of library patrons who have overdue materials will be forgiven during the period of Jan. 3 to Feb. 14


“We are hoping that this six-week program will be even more successful in helping us not only reduce the obligation but also bring back folks that we want to be able to use the library,” City Librarian Luis Herrera told the Board of Supervisors Budget and Finance Committee last week during a hearing on the proposal.


The amnesty period is set to be given to people who return the overdue material, which also includes the over 55,000 users who have had their account frozen because they owe more than $10, the threshold for holds.


This is the fourth time an amnesty period will take place, and is not unique to San Francisco. Similar fine-forgiveness program can be found throughout the country, like the one that was offered in Los Angeles earlier this year, according to LA Times.


“We’re encouraging everyone — children, students and adults — to return their overdue materials so they can get back to discovering all that the library has to offer, and so others can enjoy these books,” said Los Angeles City Librarian John F. Szabo to the La Times.

About the author

Jessika Karlsson

Jessika Karlsson

Born and raised in Stockholm, Sweden Jessika Karlsson now lives in San Francisco, Calif. and attends San Francisco State University. Jessika moved to Santa Barbra a little under three years ago, where she continued her higher education. Transferring from Santa Barbara City College where she was the copy news editor for her school paper. She took her passion for journalism to SF State where she is now majoring in journalism and minoring in international relations. With her devoted passion for news stories, she hopes to pursue her dream job one day as a war correspondent.