NARA facilities reopening update

Important notice regarding reopenining of National Archives facilities across the US

To: All Employees. 

Attention supervisors:
 If you have employees who do not have access to a computer, please ensure that those employees receive a copy of this notice. This includes employees on LWOP or paid leave.

I have authorized the National Archives at San Francisco and the Federal Records Center (FRC) in San Bruno, CA, to begin implementing the workplace safety measures associated with moderate transmission levels in our Updated Reentry and Post-Reentry Plan. I have also authorized the following facilities to begin implementing the workplace safety measures associated with substantial transmission levels.

  • Ronald Reagan Presidential Library at Simi Valley, CA
  • Richard Nixon Presidential Library at Yorba Linda, CA
  • National Archives Building at Washington, DC (Archives I)
  • Office of the Federal Register/Office of Government Information Services space in Washington, DC
  • Chicago, IL Archives and Federal Records Center (FRC)
  • Barack Obama Presidential Library at Hoffman Estates, IL
  • National Personnel Records Center (NPRC) building at St. Louis, MO
  • Kansas City, MO FRC (Subtropolis)
  • Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library at Hyde Park, NY
  • Dayton FRC at Moraine, OH
  • Kingsridge FRC at Dayton, OH
  • Philadelphia, PA Archives and FRC
  • Lyndon B. Johnson Presidential Library at Austin, TX

Effective today, these 14 facilities are no longer subject to an occupancy limit for staff and staff may return to the facility for on-site work on a voluntary basis. Archives I, NPRC, and Subtropolis are all now in substantial transmission areas, so we have lifted staff occupancy limits at those facilities this week (instead of raising them to 45 percent, as we announced last week).

Beginning March 7, local managers at all 14 facilities are authorized to require staff to report to the facility when they are needed for on-site work. On and after March 7, staff at these facilities are no longer eligible for incentive payments for on-site work. Staff will be provided at least seven days of advance notice before being required to return to the facility for on-site work. Staff should not return to the worksite until you are contacted by your supervisor and have scheduled your return.

On March 1, the research room at Archives I will reopen to the public with occupancy levels that are 25 percent of pre-COVID-19 occupancy and will expand to 50 percent occupancy the week of March 7. Public research rooms at the other facilities listed above will also reopen to the public at 50 percent occupancy on March 7. The San Francisco Archives will reopen its research room to 75 percent occupancy, consistent with our workplace safety measures for moderate transmission levels. Museums at these named facilities will expand occupancy to 50 percent beginning March 7.

All 14 facilities are located in counties where weekly public health metrics are now under 100 new cases per 100,000 population and less than 10 percent positivity. NARA facilities will be considered for progression to less stringent workplace safety measures if they experience local public health metrics associated with lower transmission levels for at least two consecutive weeks. If local public health conditions remain in substantial transmission or better this week, we will continue the expansion of operations at the facilities listed above on March 7 without additional notice. New case and positivity data for each NARA facility are posted weekly to the ICN COVID-19 Coronavirus Resources page here.

Late last week, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) updated its COVID-19 prevention procedures. The CDC has replaced the four-tiered transmission levels with three community levels. More information on community levels, including definitions, a map of community levels by county, and recommended actions at each level are available here. Federal agencies have been directed to delay implementation of the new community levels until the Administration issues additional guidance. NARA will continue to follow our current reentry plan, dated October 1, 2021, and we will provide additional guidance as soon as we receive it.


As of today, two of NARA’s 40 occupied facilities have implemented the workplace safety measures associated with substantial transmission levels. The facilities listed in today’s notice have lifted occupancy limits for staff volunteers only and will progress to full implementation only if they remain in substantial or better transmission levels this week. All other facilities continue to maintain safety measures associated with high transmission levels. We will continue to monitor local public health metrics at all NARA facilities and will adjust our workplace safety measures when local conditions require a change.

Thank you for your patience and flexibility as we carefully reopen our facilities and begin to restore our mission functions and operations, where appropriate.  

Archivist of the United States 

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