Due to the alarming increase in new COVID-19 cases in Dane County over the last week and a half, I have decided to delay the partial reopening of the Stoughton Public Library from July 6th until at least July 20th, at which point we will reevaluate the situation based on current data from Dane County Public Health.
I know that many in the community will be disappointed, and please believe me when I say that this decision, like all others related to library operations during the pandemic, was not taken lightly. I especially regret that we've raised the hopes of the community by announcing the partial reopening last week only to reverse course less than a week later.
However, when we made the decision to partially reopen a little over two weeks ago, Dane County was averaging about 15 new cases per day. As of June 30, the 7-day average of new cases is approaching 100.
All along, I've promised that I would closely monitor data from public health officials and use this data to make informed, science-based decisions. And right now the data is telling me that to reopen now, to allow the public back into the building even in reduced numbers, would be nothing short of irresponsible, and in direct contradiction to my duties as a public servant.
It's not all bad news, though! Starting Monday, July 6th:
- We are increasing curbside pick-ups, which will reduce wait times considerably
- Staff will be in the building Mon-Thurs 9 am-7 pm and Fri-Sat 9 am-5 pm to answer phones
- Our Wi-Fi signal has been strengthened on the south side of the building so now patrons can get a reliable signal in the parking lot (still strongest in the spots closest to the building)
Stoughton Public Library