KCLS updates printing policy

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Seattle Space Needle; local news graphic to be used for local news. Art by Aditi Jain

Minita Layal, Feature Editor

Starting Mar. 1, new pay stations installed in all King County Library System (KCLS) libraries can be used to pay fines or pay for printing as part of the new printing policy instituted by the library. This implementation comes after the decision in January to switch to paid printing due to sustainability and budgetary reasons.  

This new policy is part of KCLS’s Green Initiative, the framework the library system implemented to become more environmentally focused.

“Through this initiative,” the FAQ page stated, “KCLS is working to implement sound environmental practices, including reducing paper and plastic waste, cutting costs of supplies and improving operational efficiencies.”

As part of the initiative, the library system is changing internal printing policies, including offering email receipts instead of paper copies and digitizing some aspects of their daily operations. 

The previous policy allowed patrons to print 75 pages a week for free, a practice KCLS said is unsustainable. 

“The cost for paper, toner, printers, maintenance and repairs exceeded one million dollars per year and used 10,000 trees worth of paper,” the KCLS FAQ page said. 

Under the new policy, each patron will get an allowance of $1.50 which covers the cost of printing 10 black and white or three colored sheets. The allowance resets every week or patrons can print more with an additional fee. 

KCLS is the only library system that still offers some free printing and copying services. For more information about the updated policy, go to the KCLS website.