PAYETTE — At an emergency meeting on Wednesday, March 18, at the direction of the city of Payette the Payette Public Library Board of Trustees made the decision to close the library to patrons.

In a press release, Library Director Clay Ritter said this was determined to be the best way to keep its facilities and the public safe.

“We have decided this is the best way to have a safe environment and continue service to the best of our abilities while mitigating the possible spread of COVID-19,” said Ritter via the release. “While no cases of COVID-19 have been linked to Payette we must remain vigilant so it does not run rampant throughout our community.”

During the closure, Ritter said that no library fines will be assed during the closure, nor will any library cards expire. He adds they will not restrict access to online resources because of any existing fines at this time.

Library WiFi will continue to be available 24 hours a day for use outside the library and online resources remain available. Ritter said the library intends to add curbside checkout during the closure.

“We understand that access to materials is very important to our community and will continue to attempt to provide these,” said Ritter. “This service will take some time to set up and create some procedures to ensure the safety of both patrons and staff. Look for an update on what this service will entail and how to access it!”

Library staff will remain available during normal business hours to answer questions. The library will also continue to livestream stories, fingerplays, and songs every week. Ritter said other programming to be broadcast over the library’s livestream are in the works.

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