The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Library system has had budget woes for the past couple of years, resulting in library closings and reduced hours. It also meant that towns around Mecklenburg County, including Mint Hill, have had to pitch in funds to help keep branches open. Now the library is looking for more revenue by raising everything from overdue fines to the cost of black and white copies.

“Demand for Library services and materials is high, but the Library budget has decreased dramatically,” said Director of Library Experiences David Singleton. “We’re all very aware that the recession has drastically impacted the amount of funding the Library receives from the County. Our policy changes reflect difficult decisions about more limited services that the Library is able to deliver to the public based on funds and staffing. We hope the new fines and fees schedule will encourage the timely return of books and materials so that the next person in line can check out the item, optimizing access for the increasing number of people using the Library.”

Overdue fines for books, CDs and Playaways will go up by nickel, and it will cost a bit more to replace a library card or make black and white copies. In addition, the maximum allowable amount an individual can carry on their account will change from $10 to $5 and the number of items that can be placed on hold will be cut in half. Also, non-profit organizations will have to pay to rent library meeting rooms and for-profit organization meeting room rental fees will double.