Opening for Modified Service When Covid 19 Cases Are On The Decline. Enjoy Curbside and Online Services Until Then

We are looking forward to opening your library just as soon as it is safe to do so. This opening is directly related to the number of new virus cases that may appear. We have postponed our opening due to huge increase in cases over the past weeks. Stay tuned for any and all updates that will be forthcoming while we work through this time together and take precautions to protect each other. We will follow all the orders of the governor once we open.

This information is subject to change and/or additions at any time. Please call the library at (606) 787-9381 for the latest information.

Hopefully in to not too distant future, patrons will once again walk through the aisles of books, movies, computers, and more when the Casey County Public Library reopens the building for modified service. This timeline hinges on the count of new Covid 19 cases before that date. Hours will be Monday-Friday 9-5:45 and Saturday 9-2:45.

“We will be eager to welcome everyone back,” says director Jan Banks. She notes that the library will reopen on a phased schedule because the well-being of the staff and customers is the library’s main priority. Phase one included the availability of 24-hour wi-fi availability, online digital services (free access to eBooks, audiobooks, and movies, along with, hundreds of databases, and over 500 classes), and lots of local library programming – all of which was available while the library was closed to the public because of the pandemic.

Curbside service of books and movies, access to computer services and printing, and Summer Reading programming with prepared activity set pickups kicked off phase two of library community services on June 1st. Banks wants the public to know the reasons behind the cautious approach. “Before the advent of Covid-19, an average of 150 people entered the library each day not including participation in 5 – 7 weekly programs.” She goes on to say “Hundreds of hands touched the same books, computers, newspapers, movies, tables, and public areas daily. Over 60 people would sit in close quarters to attend programs together each week. Young children would interact, play with toys and computers, and look at books – only for another child to touch those same things just minutes later.”

“We are a place that is designed for lingering, browsing, and encouraging people to sit in our building and read a book, work at a computer, study, and share common resources,” Banks says. “By reopening in the midst of this pandemic, we have to think about how we can engage and assist our customers, but from a distance and with the safety of everyone in mind.” Banks notes that she and the library board are following federal guidelines set out by the White House’s Coronavirus Guidelines for America and the executive orders of Governor Andy Beshear.

Safety precautions will include, but are not limited to, plexiglass guards installed at the checkout desks and a hand-sanitizing station available for patrons when they walk through the door. Staff will be wearing masks for the foreseeable future and at the present time all patrons without an exempt status will be required to wear a mask as well. Social distancing, at a minimum of six feet, will be practiced while on site. Library customers will have access to the library’s entire collection, including books, DVDs, audios, and children and young adult material. Printing, document scanning, and fax services will be available. Restrooms and water fountains will not be available for use. Four computers, that will allow for social distancing, will be available. A maximum occupancy of 14 people (10 for browsing and 4 for computer use) will be maintained each hour. People may enter the building the beginning of each hour and stay for 45 minutes (e.g. 9 – 9:45 am, 10 – 10:45 am, etc.) leaving 15 minutes each hour for cleaning and disinfection. At this time no face-to-face meetings may be held in the meeting rooms.

The first 45 minutes of each day (9 – 9:45 am) will be reserved for those over the age of 65 and other high-risk individuals. “Since they are some of our most compromised population, we wanted to provide that additional service for our senior citizens,” Banks says.

If you come later in the hour, you will still only get to stay until 45 minutes past the hour. This is “grab and go”, not a leisurely browsing situation.

Banks notes that curbside service, online digital access, and all the items available in phases I and II will continue for those who want to continue to use them. Call (606) 787-9381 with any questions you may have.

“This is not forever and we ask that patrons continue to be patient. We want to get back to everything as soon as we can. We just want to do it in the safest way possible.”