Closure FAQs

COVID-19 FAQs

Provided below are answers to questions you may have over our current closure. Should you have additional questions, or these do not answer your question well enough, please reach out to us via email, phone, or our live chat.

Our Business Reopening Safety Plan is now available.

Borrowing and Returns During the Closure

Will I get overdue fines?
Yes. Although our services are limited, we have resumed our most critical processes, and therefore our due dates and related fines and fees schedule have resumed as normal.
Should I - or how do I - return materials while the library is closed?
Please return items you've borrowed. Due dates for digital collections still apply and will simply automatically expire and be returned if you do not return it before its due date. Our building's external drop-bins are still opening and functioning as normal.
How is the library minimizing the spread of the coronavirus on returned materials?
All returned items are being quaratined, separately by returned date, for a minimum of 96 hours (4 days). All evidence and laboratory testing by an independent study have shown the virus is no longer active, and is undetectable, on physical items after 96 hours.

Library Accounts During the Closure

How can I apply for a library card / I would like access to digital resources and need a library card, please advise.
If you live in the Saratoga Springs School District, please see our page, Your Library Card, for more information.

If you do not live in the Saratoga Springs School District, please refer to your local library for assistance.

Services During the Closure

Are staff available by phone, email or chat during the closure?
YES! Look for the chat box on our website to connect to a staff member. You can also email us or leave a phone message when we are closed. Phones and phone messages are being checked during our current business hours. Someone will return your call as soon as possible. Please note that the number returning your call may come from a private/blocked number - staff may not always be able to call back from the library's line.
What library services and resources are available during this time?
Standard In-Library Materials
The library is currently open, with adjusted hours, for full browsing. Should you physically visit the library, most of our items are circulating, with a few exceptions (such as museum passes and other specialty items).

Various Online Resources:
The library offers various digital resources, such as research databases (some may require a library card number). Learn about popular entertainment and information options, resources geared towards youth, or even more help and tutorials about these options.

Reference and Readers’ Services:
We are still available for direct reference questions. Library staff are checking phone messages and emails during our current business hours. You can also reach us via our live chat from our website. If you have questions or are looking for reading1 suggestions2, please contact us and we will get back to you as soon as we can.

Homework Help:
The library offers substantial homework help resources found from the SSPL website; these resources are free. Also available is phone, live chat services from our website, or email for any additional requests.

Digital Programs and Activities:
We are using our Facebook page, YouTube account, and Summer Reading platform to share many ideas and activities – including live video streaming - for everyone to try. New content is being added regularly for both children and adults so check back often.
When the library was closed, why did it do that when not all patrons have access to PCs, an internet connection, or books at home?
The library takes both its duty to provide service for our community, and the safety of our patrons and staff very seriously. SSPL, among many other area libraries, closed for reasons of safety. All non-essential workers have been ordered by state mandate to stay home. We are providing as many services as we can online during this time for those with access to the internet and hope to re-open our doors as soon as it is safe for all.

Phone service is also still available. Please call the library and leave a message – staff are checking phones periodically throughout the day and will get information to you as efficiently as possible.
Why is the library using Zoom for its virtual programs?! Isn't it insecure??
The security research in the media is based on the standard configuration for Zoom, and how it's used by an organization. Although it's not recommended to use for highly classified communication, for a typically public program the researchers say it is safe to use. We've taken steps (even before Zoom did) to ensure that only those intended to take part in the program will access the program when used properly.
Source: https://citizenlab.ca/2020/04/faq-on-zoom-security-issues/
Your own use of the software is determined by your circumstance. You do not need to enable (or have) a microphone or a videocamera to join in on the programs - though we love seeing your smiling faces. If you do enable your microphone or camera do be aware that others will also be able to hear and / or see you and your surroundings.