THE MIGUEL de Benavides Library has doubled the penalty for students failing to return borrowed books on time.

The University’s central library imposed a P10 daily penalty to students beginning July 1, in a bid to discipline delinquent borrowers, said Estrella Majuelo, the chief librarian.

“Overdue books have become a very serious problem. Students and faculty members no longer give considerable thoughts to this predicament and so it has become severe over the years,” Majuelo said.

The library expects borrowers to be prompt in returning books.

“Because of the minimal overdue fine imposed on delinquent borrowers, they were not very keen in returning books and other library materials on time to the detriment of other library users who are also privileged to use the books,” she added.

There were even instances of students who had graduated and were still keeping library books. Majuelo clarified that the library was not after the money collected from the fines.

“It is to be made clear to the UST community that the library is not really after the monetary considerations but rather it is more to discipline the borrowers and to respect the rights of others who have the same need for the materials,” she said.

She also said that fines collected would be secured in a bank account and would be used for emergency and urgent needs of the library.

“We make it a matter of principle that all money collected from fines is returned through improvement of facilities,” Majuelo said.

Hourly rate

The Civil Law Student Council (CLSC) called for the reversal of the new policy through posts on social networking sites, saying the new rate was “exorbitant and unjust” for Law students.

Obra ng yumaong pintor, binigyang-pugay

The local student council said the P5-per-hour fine for books meant for overnight use was too much. It also added that the P5 daily fine was just enough to deter the practice of not returning books beyond the due date.

“The penalty is exorbitant and unjust considering the unique circumstances of Civil Law students. Law students rely heavily on law textbooks, and it is necessary for us to use such textbooks for long periods of time (sic) in order for us to fully comprehend extensive legal matters discussed,” the CLSC said in its Facebook post.

But Majuelo said the hourly rate had been there ever since and was not increased. The hourly rate is only applicable to books borrowed for overnight use and books on reserve. All other overdue books on circulation will be charged P10 per day.

Students can renew books for two consecutive times in case they still need it.

“There are many ways for them to renew the borrowed books without even coming to the library personally. Books can be renewed over the phone. Borrowers can renew through the library website and through the library’s OPAC,” Majuelo said.


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