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How much does the NHC library lose to damaged books, and how much does it collect in fines?

Ashley Withers

Q. In dollars and cents, how many books and DVDs from the NHC library system are lost or damaged vs. how much is collected in fines and repayments? Is this information available online for public review?

A. The New Hanover County Library System circulates more than 1.3 million items a year — a value of more than $20 million dollars of material — and while many books are returned late, only a very small percentage of those are ever reported as lost or damaged, according to library director Harry Tuchmayer.

In 2012, the library collected $33,266.22 for lost and damaged materials and $129,891.04 in fines for materials returned late.

“In those few cases when an individual ignores our reminders to return materials, a lien is put on their State Tax Return and the amount due to the library is deducted from their refund,” he said.

All money collected by the library is reported as revenue and appears as part of the overall library budget. It’s available online at http://www.nhcgov.com/Budget/Documents/FY12-13%20Adopted%20Revenue%20Detail%20line%20item.pdf and it’s on Page 157 of this report


How did the old Belk Beery building at Second and Chestnut streets become the main branch of the county library?

When does the city release the annual Comprehensive Annual Financial Report?



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