Emergency Closing Policy

The Genesee Area Library is a public service organization and makes every reasonable effort to remain open during posted hours. The decision to close the library under adverse conditions will follow the following:

Directives issued by the national, state, or local governments

Inclement Weather:

As a rule, the library will remain open during all but the most severe snow conditions. We use the Northern Potter School District weather-related closing and delays as a guide to making our decisions. If you hear that Northern Potter schools are closed or delayed due to road conditions, please check the Genesee Area Library’s Instagram and Facebook pages to see if we are open prior to your visit.

Generally, if we have heat, we do not close or delay to extremely cold temperatures.

Decisions for delays or library closing will be based on several factors that may include:

  • Road conditions
  • Projected forecast or worsening conditions
  • Conditions of library walkways and parking
  • A state of emergency for the immediate area declared by local, county, or state law enforcement agencies.

Power Outage:

If the building loses power, the emergency lighting system should activate. Staff will direct patrons to finish their transactions and exit the building. If emergency lighting does not activate, patrons will be asked to evacuate the building immediately. If power is not restored at the end of 60 minutes or the normal closing time (whichever comes first), the building should be closed and the Library Director as well the Library Board President should be notified.

The library may re-open if it can be done safely and if power is restored at least 2 hours before the normal closing times.

Other Emergencies:

For emergencies other than weather or power outages, staff will maintain operations if the safety of the staff and public are not endangered.

Extended Closure:

In the event that the library is closed for an extended period of time, patron services will be modified or temporarily suspended:

  • The library’s Facebook and Instagram pages will have the latest information regarding closures and library services.
  • All programs will be canceled or postponed.
  • All meeting room reservations will be canceled or postponed.
  • Patrons will still be able to request holds or reserves but will not be able to pick them up.
  • Checking out of physical materials will be halted.
  • Unless the emergency affects e-resources, they should still be available for patron use outside of the library.
  • Materials should be returned through the book drop located outside of the library building.
  • Late fees will not be assessed if patrons are not allowed to return materials during the closure.
  • When the library re-opens, it may do so with limited hours and/or services, temporarily.

Approved 2/21/2022