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North Adams Library to Expand Services
By Jack Guerino, iBerkshires Staff
04:01PM / Friday, October 16, 2020
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NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — The North Adams Public Library will remain closed for the time being but it will be offering certain services
.
Library Director Sarah Sanfilippo told the trustees Wednesday during a remote meeting that the library plans to expand some technology services by appointment even though the building is closed to the general public. 
 
"We get calls every week asking when we will be open … but at least with this, we are offering our basic services," she said. "We are offering materials for people to read, although it is a little weird the way you get them now, we are offering limited programming online ... and now with this, we are adding in the technology."  
 
Sanfilippo said the library start Monday will allow people to use the computers, printers, and fax machines by appointment. She said these are services people ask about the most.
 
"These are services people are not getting right now," she said. "There are people on the other side of the digital divide who do not have computer access." 
 
As for actual materials, curbside pickup remains the only way for library patrons to make selections from the collection.
 
With this likely being the norm for the coming months, Sanfilippo said staff may move pickup into the foyer and out of the elements.
 
"We are looking at ways to just do it in the foyer when the weather gets bad," she said. "We have had a few rainy wet days so we have had a couple of experiments."
 
Sanfilippo said some libraries in Berkshire County have opened while others are only allowing curbside pickup or other incremental services 
 
"It depends on what the local administrators and what people are comfortable with," she said. "Some limit the amount of time and people, some are just doing circulation. It is all over the place."
 
Sanfilippo said she is in contact with the mayor, who will ultimately decide if and when the library will open. City Hall also remains closed to the public although it will offer limited access for voting. 
 
In other business, the trustees thanked longtime Trustee Donald Pecor, who has retired from the board.
 
"This is someone who has given over six decades of his life to the city of North Adams," Trustee Richard Taskin said. "He is irreplaceable."
 
The mayor must now appoint a new trustee.
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