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Resources for SEAL: Re-starting

Re-starting Plans

Starting on August 3rd, libraries will once again be able to borrow and lend items through SEAL!  At this time, all public libraries will automatically become active again. It is important to note that, for now, lenders will primarily include RCLS and MHLS members and the New York State Library. Many of our regional academic libraries are not currently lending materials through inter-library loan. Items can be delivered via usual methods.


Turning Lending Off / On

 After August 3rd, special, academic, and school libraries can change their lending status to active as needed. They can also contact Kelsey to do this for them. In that same vein, public libraries who are not able to lend at this time can change their lending status back to inactive after August 3rd. To change your lending status: head to the "library lending profile" option under My Account. Switch "suspend your library's lending status" to yes or no, depending on your library's needs. This will automatically change your status.


To make it easier to locate lendable SEAL items, we’ve added different categories to the SEAL search. These categories determine which libraries will be searched for a particular item. The new default search is "All lenders" for active SEAL lenders. When searching this category, the search results will only include materials from libraries that are presently lending. To search all regional libraries (including ones that are not SEAL lenders) select the category option "all". You can also search by specific library type.


If you need any assistance with your account, or have any questions at all, contact Kelsey at, or by phone at 845-883-9065 ext 115.

Returning Items

Instructions for MHLS & RCLS libraries returning materials: You can return the following items via your public library system courier as usual (be sure to use typical SEAL routing slips to aid in sorting):

  • Materials for the other public library system.
  • Materials for academic libraries participating in Empire Library Delivery (see list below). Items will be held at the system until they can be delivered to the library via ELD.
  • Materials belonging to the New York State Library.


School / Special Library Systems Returning Materials: Returning items to libraries using methods such as US Mail, UPS, and Fedex is a bit trickier. Some libraries are not currently accepting item returns, and prefer people to hang on to materials for the time being. One of the best ways to ensure a library is accepting returns it to reach out to them directly before sending an item back. Contact information for individual libraries can be found in the SEAL directory

There are a few places you can also check to see if a library is open:

  • The current status of RCLS libraries is available here.
  • The current status of MHLS libraries is available here.
  • OCLC created a spreadsheet and map tracking academic libraries' return status across the country. Several of our regional libraries have submitted information indicating whether they are accepting returns. This information is available both as a searchable spreadsheet and a map.

If you have any questions or concerns about returning materials, contact Kelsey at, or by phone at 845-883-9065 ext 115.

Empire Library Delivery Updates

Empire Library Delivery is slowly re-starting around the state. ELD members who would like to request a re-start date can do so by filling out this survey. Requests will be reviewed by the courier who will then determine a date based on a variety of factors, including route and location. Locations that have started deliveries are highlighted in yellow on the ELD roster.

The following SEAL members participate in Empire Library Delivery (Last updated 9/17):

  • Columbia-Greene Community College, SUNY (Re-started delivery)
  • Dutchess Community College, SUNY
  • Mid-Hudson Library system member libraries (Re-started delivery) 
  • Mount St. Mary College (Re-started delivery)
  • SUNY New Paltz (Re-started delivery) 
  • New York State Library   (Re-started delivery) 
  • Orange County Community College, SUNY (Re-started delivery) 
  • Ramapo Catskill Library System member libraries (Re-started delivery)
  • Rockland Community College, SUNY (Re-started delivery)
  • Sullivan County Community College, SUNY
  • Ulster County Community College, SUNY (Re-started delivery
  • Vassar College (Re-started delivery) 
Southeastern NY Library Resources Council
21 South Elting Corners Road | Highland, NY 12528
Phone: (845) 883-9065