The Texas State Library and Archives Commission, in cooperation with the Texas Library Association, has been working to identify disaster recovery resources and options for use by libraries in the Houston and gulf coast area.
First, it is important to be aware that libraries are considered essential services by the Federal Emergency Management Agency and, according to FEMA Recovery Policy, they are given priority for relocation if they are severely damaged in a natural disaster. Today I spoke with Lori Foley at FEMA. Lori is the administrator of the Heritage Emergency National Task Force and is responsible for recovery of cultural heritage institutions. She was generous to allow her name and contact to be published here. To get started recovering your collections and buildings, start with Ms. Foley:
Administrator, Heritage Emergency National Task Force
Office of Environmental Planning & Historic Preservation
Federal Insurance and Mitigation Administration
FEMA | DHS
Mobile number: 202-826-6303
Yesterday, we had a conference call with Susan Quinn, Director of the Ocean County Library in New Jersey, and her staff along with Michele Stricker at the New Jersey State Library. Susan and her staff generously shared with us their experiences in coping with Hurricane Sandy and the aftermath. Based on that conversation, Katherine Adelberg of our staff has put together a blog post, “Lessons from Superstorm Sandy,” on our Library Developments listserv.
We are compiling a database of Harvey-related damage to Texas libraries. If you have damage to report, please send it to Valicia Greenwood at email@example.com and please copy me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Our State and Local Records Management Division offers webinars on disaster recovery for records managers. This will be helpful to librarians, archivists, county clerks, and others responsible for such collections. Those webinars can be accessed at: https://slrmtraining.tsl.texas.gov/course/index.php?categoryid=11
We look forward to providing more information in the coming days.