Lake County library reopens

Library branches have reopened their doors to the public.

As Lake County enters into Phase 1 reopening, the Lake County Library Board called a special session on Thursday, May 14, to discuss plans for opening branches in the county to the public starting Tuesday, May 19.

Libraries were never mentioned in any of Gov. Kate Brown’s Executive Orders, or in any of the guidance issued by the State. Instead Lake County Library Dir. Amy Hutchinson has been following guidelines issued for restaurants and retail businesses as she said that the library is a lot like both businesses.

With that in mind Hutchinson created a document for the libraries to follow with specific guidelines, with branch hours changed to allow staff time to clean and sanitize the buildings properly.

The public will be allowed inside the buildings with the recommendation that they stay six feet apart from other patrons. According to a document released by the library, if the library becomes too crowded then those that have been inside the library the longest will be asked to leave.

It has also involved moving computers and placing up barricades in between them to maintain social distancing. People will need to check out keyboards and mice from the library staff, who will then clean and connect them to the computer.

This has impacted the Lakeview branch hours. The Christmas Valley branch will be open Tuesday, Thursday from 10:30 a.m. – 6 p.m. and Saturday from 10:30 a.m. – 3 p.m. The Paisley branch will be open Tuesday and Wednesday from 10:30 a.m. – 6 p.m. While the Silver Lake branch will be open Monday from 10:30 a.m. – 6 p.m.

Lakeview will now be open Tuesday – Friday from 11:30 a.m. – 7 p.m., they will be only open for take out service on Saturday from 1 – 3 p.m.

“This will allow our staff the time they need to get the library properly cleaned and sanitized,” said Hutchinson.

This is one of the reasons the Lakeview branch will not be open Saturday as there is not enough money in the budget to have two people working in the branch on Saturday.

Hutchinson will continue to do the pick up service for patrons who do not wish to come into the library to get their books.

Inside all the branches there will be plastic sneeze guards placed at the circulation desks to protect both the patrons and the staff. Also staff will be wearing masks and gloves; that have been provided by Lake County Public Health which Hutchinson has called an amazing resource.

Hutchinson is confident that they will be able to keep the library clean during the initial phase of reopening.

For more information call the Lake County Library at 541-947-6019, the Lakeview branch is located at 26 S. G St.

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