Guilty read­ers flood li­brary with re­turns

Townsville Bulletin - - Christmas Lights Trail -

AN amnesty on over­due books in Townsville li­braries has been her­alded a suc­cess, with more than 3000 re­turned.

Al­though down on last year’s re­turn of more than 5200 items, Townsville Act­ing Deputy Mayor Jack Wil­son said there was still time for the pub­lic to re­turn over­due books and not re­ceive a fine.

Dur­ing the month of De­cem­ber the Townsville City Coun­cil wiped fine charges for ex­ist­ing over­due books if they were re­turned to the city’s li­braries with a tin of food.

Cr Wil­son said the tins were do­nated to the food bank for dis­tri­bu­tion to those in need over the Christ­mas pe­riod.

‘‘There has been a fan­tas­tic re­sponse to the drive,’’ he said. ‘‘We have filled eight shop­ping trol­leys.

‘‘More than 3000 books have been re­turned so far and the amnesty still has more than a week to go.’’

Cr Wil­son said A busi­ness­man had been ap­proached by a man try­ing to sell a hand­ful of li­brary books.

‘‘Some mo­ron tried to sell them so he could make some ex­tra cash,’’ Cr Wil­son said.

‘‘But the store owner must have had a good sense of val­ues be­cause he re­alised they were li­brary books and de­cided to take them back to the li­brary.’’

Cr Wil­son said over­all the De­cem­ber amnesty ini­tia­tive was very suc­cess­ful.

‘‘We have all forgotten to take back books in the past but when we’re re­minded and an ini­tia­tive comes along like this, peo­ple usu­ally come through.

‘‘I think it is a won­der­ful re­sponse from the peo­ple of this city.’’

Start­ing from 2007, Townsville City Coun­cil will do away with fines for over­due li­brary books and the sys­tem will be re­placed by a se­ries of over­due no­tices.

‘‘With this ini­tia­tive, next year we will ex­pect to see a bet­ter re­la­tion­ship with the city li­brary and the peo­ple of this city,’’ Cr Wil­son said.

AMNESTY . . . Cr Wil­son with li­brar­i­ans (from left) Wilma Bar­tels, An­nette Burns and Robin Lee

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