Monthly Archives: November 2016

San Francisco Public Library Welcomes Back Patrons and Materials During Fine Forgiveness Program

For Immediate Release:
Media Contact: Katherine Jardine
(415) 557-4295;


San Francisco Public Library Welcomes Back Patrons and Materials During Fine Forgiveness Program


San Francisco Public Library will offer a Fine Forgiveness program from Jan. 3 to Feb. 14, 2017.  During this six-week period, late fees will be waived on all returned books, CDs, DVDs and other materials, regardless of how long overdue.

The fine forgiveness program is an opportunity for residents to reconnect with their library. The program allows the Library to recover materials and gives patrons with overdue items a clear record. The program aligns with the Library’s commitment to eliminating barriers to service and providing basic access for all San Franciscans, especially those most in need of library services.

The amnesty period was unanimously approved on Tuesday by the San Francisco Board of Supervisors.  “We are hoping that Fine Forgiveness program will be successful in helping us not only reduce outstanding fines but also bring back folks that we want to be able to use the library,” said City Librarian Luis Herrera.  “The Library’s fine forgiveness campaign supports the values of equity and inclusion that mirror San Francisco’s values.”

Recovering overdue materials increases the availability of materials for circulation, and reduces material replacement costs. 55,000 patrons currently have outstanding fines, representing approximately $4.5M in overdue fines.

When SFPL last offered an amnesty program in 2009, the Library received more than 30,000 overdue items, waived $55,000 worth of fines and welcomed back thousands of patrons.

“We look forward to welcoming back residents of all ages and to connecting them to one of San Francisco’s greatest resources.” said Michelle Jeffers, Chief of Community Programs and Partnerships.

San Francisco Public Library provides traditional library services and 21st century resources, including access to computers, the internet and digital skill building. The diverse range of programming for kids, teens, and adults is focused on free and equal access to information, knowledge, independent learning and the joys of reading.