Are YOU a library debtter or a booknapper? If so, Steve Pratt thinks you need to learn some respect.
He has got some figures about library fines from the government and discovered the amount of outstanding fines increased by 10,000 per cent from 2001 to 2005.
It is hard to tell if he is more worried about the $200,000 owing to the government this year or about the books missing from the library, but either way he is Concerned.
“This is a depreciation in our asset and I am calling on the Government to make more of an effort to have these books returned to our public libraries,” Mr Pratt said.
“I realise that some members of the community may simply have forgotten that they still had a book on loan and a simple reminder may prompt them to return the book. But unfortunately there are others who appear not to have any respect that someone else may want to borrow the book they have not returned for years on end.”
He wants the minister responsible, John Hargreaves, to come with a plan for recovering both the money owed and the publicly-owned books which are residing on private bookshelves.
I would like it on the record that earlier this year I returned several books few weeks late and avoided the library for months so as not to have to pay the fine. I eventually yielded to the temptation however (buying books got too expensive) and returned and paid my $5.60 so I am no longer one of Mr Pratt’s booknappers or library debtters.