Students in Palm Beach County now have the opportunity to pay off library fines in a rather constructive way: They can read their way out of it.
Children up to age 17 can now redeem one “Dewey dollar” for every 15 minutes they read in their local public library. They can read books, magazines, newspapers, or even on electronic devices. As long as the reading takes place in a Palm Beach County library, students are eligible.
The Dewey dollars can be used to pay off overdue library book charges, which are 10 cents per day. Once library fees add up to $5, borrowing privileges for students can be suspended.
County Commissioner Paulette Burdick said the idea is to offer an incentive for reading, as well as an alternative to families who may not have the financial means to pay off library debt.
This isn’t the first program of its kind. In 2007, Palm Beach County tried a similar program for the summer. Commissioners are hoping that extending the initiative for a year will yield better participation.
Dewey-dollars cannot be used to pay off library debt acquired by adults.
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