Frequently Asked Questions

Library CEO Scott Thomas Answers Frequently Asked Questions

about COVID-19 and Library Re-Opening

Dear Scranton Public Library Patrons,

We have been receiving a lot of questions about when we plan to re-open. It makes us very happy to hear that our patrons are eager to come back to the library. We miss everyone, and we want to open our doors as soon as it is safe for staff and the public.

Here are some Frequently Asked Questions:


  1. Do you have a re-opening date?At this time we do not. As you may know State officials are constantly assessing the situation in individual counties. When businesses begin to re-open in Lackawanna County, the library won’t be far behind. We just don’t know when that it is yet, and it is not a decision that the library can make unilaterally.
  2. I have a bunch of books due. Will I be responsible for them?You will not need to worry about returning items until after we re-open. The due dates have been extended for all materials.
  3. When you do come back, will it be “business as usual?”This would depend on the local situation. We don’t know yet what restrictions may be in place when we do re-open.
  4. Do you foresee any changes or limitations?If so, they will not be permanent and will be designed to protect staff and library patrons. For instance, we could see limits on how many people can be in our buildings at any time, how much one-on-one help we can provide, how long someone can use a computer, and changes in service hours. We may even try some new and exciting services like curbside pickup of holds.
  5. I am worried about the library. How do you think it will come out of this?This crisis shall pass, and the library is doing its best during the closure to provide services. We are gratified and heartened by the affection the community has shown for the library.
  6. What can we do in the meantime while we wait for you to re-open?
    While our doors are closed, we are still here to help. Our library staff are on-call Monday through Friday from 12:00 pm – 4:00 pm to answer your reference and local history questions. Give us a call at (570) 348-3000. You can also email our Readers’ Advisory staff at to get book recommendations and to put items on hold. For children, we have weekly story times using Facebook Live, brought to you by the staff of the Lackawanna County Children’s Library. Online services are available 24/7 on our website. This includes the movie-streaming platform Kanopy, eBooks & eAudiobooks through Libby or RBDigital, and homework help from to see a complete list of online services.


Scott Thomas
Chief Executive Officer / Director
Scranton Public Library
500 Vine Street
Scranton, PA 18509-3298
570-348-3000 x3011

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