[Koha] Handling Fines in the ILS and Relate Matters

James L Weinheimer weinheimer.jim.l at gmail.com
Sat Nov 13 03:21:57 NZDT 2021

When I used to have to deal with circulation at a small, undergraduate
institution, circulation was one of the parts of the job that irked me the
most. The college administration didn't want much library interaction with
the general population so almost everything had to go through them (except
recalls) and the result was that little was accomplished. There was
supposed to be a system of fines but those were never collected. All that
was enforced was at the end of the year when students had to bring back
whatever library materials they had or pay for them. If they didn't they
wouldn't be allowed to graduate. I was thankful I didn't have to deal with
any of that.

Concerning faculty, many of them considered the library's books as their
own personal property and would "check them out" for years. None of that
worried me much unless someone actually asked for the book and it was
checked out. Students would normally bring the materials back fairly
quickly when asked, but much of the faculty simply ignored us.

That was one reason I was so much for digital materials: circulation
becomes irrelevant.

I don't know if that helps but you do have my sympathy!

James Weinheimer

On Thu, Nov 11, 2021 at 11:11 PM Charles Kelley <cmkelleymls at gmail.com>

> Hi, all!
>     There has been a lot of movement towards abolishing late fees and
> fines. I don't ask why here, for I understand the reasons. My question is
> more of a mechanical one.
>     You see, the library at the beginning of my career did charge fines,
> but when a patron protested the fine and had a legitimate or legal
> argument, it was either reduced or voided. A few years later, the FBI
> showed up and demanded records of several patrons; and that was that.
> Circulation records were kept only when fines were imposed; and then the
> fines were transferred to the institutional billing office.
>     The other libraries I have worked in didn't keep circulation (and fine)
> records, so it it was not an issue to them. And I am working what is likely
> my last job for I will probably retire in two years or so.
>     But I have to ask out of curiosity: how are fine records kept in the
> library? Are they transferred to the billing office or are they kept
> inhouse? How is an appeal handled? Who handles the appeals, the library or
> the institutional billing office? Where are the records kept? Is the ILS
> involved after the initial circulation and subsequent fine calculation?
>     As I wrote above, this is just a curiosity to me. But I read a lot
> about fine cancellation but I recall very little about the mechanics and
> the related policies.
>     Thanks, all.
> --
>     気を付けて。 /ki wo tukete/ = Take care.
>     -- Charles.
>     Charles Kelley, MLS
>     PSC 704 Box 1029
>     APO AP 96338
>     Charles Kelley
>     Tsukimino 1-Chome 5-2
>     Tsukimino Gaadenia #210
>     Yamato-shi, Kanagawa-ken
>     〒242-0002 JAPAN
>     +1-301-741-7122 [US cell]
>     +81-80-4356-2178 [JPN cell]
>     mnogojazyk at aol.com [h]
>     cmkelleymls at gmail.com [p]
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>     Meeting Your Information Needs. Virtually.
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