Pickerington Public Library has rolled out two changes for 2014, both with an eye on improving customer service.
Effective Jan. 1, the library altered its hours for Fridays and Saturdays. It will be open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Additionally, Pickerington Public Library Director Suellen Goldsberry said, the library in November reduced fines for overdue DVDs and video games from $1 per day to 50 cents per day.
Both moves, Goldsberry said, were done to better serve the public.
"Our Friday and Saturday hours are now 10 (a.m.) to 6 (p.m.)," she said. "It was 9 (a.m.) to 5 (p.m.).
"For some time I've been watching the daily circulation by hour and I kept noticing that Friday afternoon between 4 and 5 was the busiest hour, often of the whole week."
Goldsberry said the library's other operating hours will remain 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 1 to 5 p.m. on Sunday.
"I surveyed the public and the majority said they liked our hours Monday through Thursday, but indicated they'd like to see that additional hour on Friday," she said. "We wanted Saturday to be consistent with Friday, and traditionally on Saturday morning we're rather slow," Goldsberry said.
"We don't have a lot of business in that 9 to 10 (a.m.) hour. This was mostly responsive to trends I saw."
As for the reduction of fines for DVDs and video games, Goldsberry said the move was made in response to both a gradual reduction in costs for those materials and as a show of appreciation for the community's continued support of the library.
"The community has always been very supportive of the library," she said.
"This is our way of acknowledging the support and trying to be more user-friendly."
Additionally, Goldsberry said, the library has reduced overdue fines for its "Quick Reads" materials from $1 per day to 50 cents per day.
Quick Reads materials generally are print books that are atop various "best seller" lists or among the library's most popular offerings and therefore cannot be placed "on hold."
Overdue fines for the remainder of the library's collection will remain at 10 cents per day.
Goldsberry said the change in the library's fine structure is expected to reduce the library's revenue by approximately $40,000 per year.
She said that's significant, as the library's annual expenditures are about $1.6 million.
However, she said the library continues to try to balance its bottom line with customer service.
"I appreciate their support and I didn't want to nickel and dime them," Goldsberry said of library patrons.
"I still encourage them to return items on their due date, though."
Additional information about the library's hours and reservation policies is available at www.pickeringtonlibrary.org.