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Fees and Fines

Overdue Fines

The library does not collect fines on most overdue items. There are still fines on museum/park passes ($5/day) and materials borrowed through the Clover interlibrary loan system, beyond the libraries in our catalog ($.50/day)

Please continue to return and renew items on time so that others may use them! Renew materials by logging into “My Account” at or by calling 254-5290 ext.0.

Book drops are available for after-hours return.

Fines will continue to accrue on overdue items, but will be dismissed upon their return. Items more than 43 days overdue will be billed to the patron account.  Borrowing privileges will be suspended when the amount owed reaches $10 and will be restored when materials are returned or payment is received.

Loan periods and other details 

14 Days
New books (10)
New audio (3)
DVDs (2 new/4 other)
Magazines (7 weekly/10 other)
Kindles and e-readers (1)

21 Days
Books (no limit)
Audio (10)

3 Days
Museum and park passes. Overdue fines $5/day.

Variable loan period
Items from the Clover interlibrary loan system, beyond the libraries in our catalog. Due date is noted on the band. Overdue fines $.50/day

FAQs about the no-fines policy

Why did the Board of Trustees eliminate overdue fines?

The mission of Brooks Memorial Library is to connect people and resources to inspire, inform, and empower our diverse community. Our vision is for all members of the community engage with the library to spark curiosity, enrich lives, and achieve aspirations.  The presence, or even the potential of fines can deter people from availing themselves of library resources. Fines disproportionally affect people with low income and people who are dependent on others for transportation. Our Strategic Plan includes the objective to institute policies and explore efforts to ensure access and diminish barriers. We want every member of the Brattleboro community to thrive by experiencing the riches available through the library.  That intention was strengthened by the community discussions at Selectboard meetings surrounding diversity and equity and the observation that for a community to truly commit to equity, resources must also be committed.  Brooks Memorial Library is contributing to that commitment through this reform.

Will overdue fines be waived on all materials?
All materials from the Catamount Library Network (CLN) will no longer have overdue fines. Materials that are obtained through Inter-library Loan (CLOVER) are borrowed from other libraries, and therefore are still subject to fines ($.50/day). Museum passes are also still subject to overdue fines ($5/day).

How will BML get people to return borrowed materials?
Library materials belong to the entire community and borrowers have an obligation to return them in a timely manner so that others may use them. Our automated circulation system will continue to add accrued fines to patron accounts at the current rate.  Borrowing privileges for library cards with a balance of $10 will be suspended and will be restored when materials are returned, at which time overdue fines will be dismissed. When an item is more than 43 days overdue, the patron will be sent a bill for replacement and borrowing privileges will be restored upon return of the item or payment. At that time fines will be dismissed.

Will I still receive reminders about returning materials?
Yes, we will continue to send out email reminders:
               3 days before the due date:  Courtesy reminder
               Due date: Courtesy reminder
               10 days after due date: Overdue notice
               20 days after due date: Overdue notice
               43 days after due date: Overdue notice and bill for replacement

How is the Library budget affected by the loss of fine income?
We are extremely fortunate that our budget is stable enough that we can pursue this priority.  Projected fine revenue accounted for approximately 2% of our overall expenditures, though the amount collected has been declining.  Due to a reduction in costs (postage, heating oil, etc.) and an infusion in the endowment funds we are able to implement this new policy without cutting services or seeking additional funding from the Town.

I love the library and I consider paying fines as my way of contributing to the library’s efforts.
That’s great!  We are always happy to accept monetary donations of any amount.  Please feel free to continue to give to Brooks Memorial Library through donations at the circulation desk, donation boxes, or the fundraising efforts of the Friends of Brooks Memorial Library.  Thank you for loving and supporting your library.

Library Cards

Cards are FREE for:

  • Brattleboro Residents, including renters and homeowners
  • Brattleboro Business Owners, including owners of small and micro businesses that rent space in town
  • Students in grades 7 though 12 who live out of town but attend school in Brattleboro. Student card limit: 3 checkouts at a time
  • Temporary Residents in specific temporary locations in Brattleboro, including motels, the Brattleboro Retreat, Phoenix programs, and others. Signed certificate of residency required. Please visit the circulation desk to consult our list of temporary Brattleboro residences. Temporary card limit: 1 checkout at a time, for one week

Library users outside Brattleboro: Welcome! 

Costs for library borrower cards: $32 for six months,$62 for one year, or $110 for two years. Additional members of household for any nonresident card: $5 each per year. 

In accordance with policy of the Library Board of Trustees, the nonresident fee never exceeds the amount of tax support, per capita, provided to the Library by Brattleboro taxpayers.

Fee to replace a lost borrower card in any of the above categories: $.50

Computer User Cards

Available free to all, but higher replacement cost if card is lost (see note below). Voluntary donations are encouraged and appreciated.  Computer user cards are for computer access only. Patrons with borrower cards use those to access computers; a separate computer card is not needed. 

Fee to replace a lost computer user card: $2.00

Other Fees

Printing and photcopying (self-service, but we're happy to help!) $.15 per standard black and white page; $.25 per standard color page. Other paper sizes incur additional costs; please see posted signs or check with staff for more information.

Document scanning to flash drive or email: FREE

Fax $.15 per fax, up to 10 pages (covers the cost to print document confirmation sheet)

Occasional pre-approved fees charged by lending libraries in the Clover Interlibrary Loan system. The library never incurs charges from lending libraries without patron's prior approval.

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