Library takes steps to reopen, quarantining books

In response to the Office of the Governor’s decision to place Josephine County in Phase One of the Oregon reopening plan, Josephine Community Library (JCL) is implementing its reopening procedures.

The week of May 18, library staff will reenter the buildings and prepare a safe working environment with the recommended personal protective equipment. Staff will then set up procedures for quarantining returned books.

The library will reopen the book drops Thursdays and Fridays in Grants Pass, Illinois Valley, Williams, and Wolf Creek beginning Thursday, May 28. This timeframe will allow for quarantining and sanitizing of 15,000 items due to be returned to the library.

“We’re excited to take steps to reopen our community’s libraries,” said Kate Lasky, library director. “The first step is to restart circulation by opening the book drops and sanitizing the returned items to make them safe for check out again.”

In mid-June, all JCL branch libraries will begin offering curbside service two days a week. More information will be made available on the library’s website as the time nears.

The JCL Board of Directors and staff are taking the necessary precautions to protect the health and welfare of patrons, volunteers, and staff. The facilities will not reopen until volunteers are able to safely return during Phase Two of the Governor’s reopening plan. Some considerations for reopening include supply chain availability of adequate personal protective equipment for staff and volunteers to follow regulatory orders.

Online library services such as instant online library card registration, ebooks, audiobooks, language and learning tools, and virtual programs will continue to be available. Internet and WiFi will remain accessible outside all four library branches 24/7. Library staff are also available for technical assistance by phone at all four branches during regular service hours.

For more information about the library’s reopening plan and digital services, send an email to or call 541-476-0571.