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Atlantic’s Library Director provides Annual Report to City Council


November 21st, 2022 by Ric Hanson

(Atlantic, Iowa) The Director of the Atlantic Public Library provided an Annual Report to the City Council, last Wednesday. Michelle Andersen updated the Council on the Library’s mission statement from over the past year, and set a new strategic plan. The Mission Statement, she said, sets the framework for talking about the services offered by the Library, last year.

Another part of their Mission Statement, is connecting people to resources, which you would probably think of as traditional library services .

While still not at pre-Covid levels, Andersen said they are on the way back to what the use was before Covid. One of the more interesting resources the Atlantic and other affiliated libraries in Cass County have utilized over the past year, is the Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library.

Atlantic Public Library (Kathy Somers, photo, via www.atlantic.lib.ia.us)

When the child gets their 5th birthday book through the program, they are invited and encouraged to get their very own library card. On another note, Michelle Andersen said they received a grant in the form or a Public Library Collaboration Award, from the Network of the National Library of Medicine to use for mental health resources. The collaboration was between the libraries of Cass County and Healthy Cass County to accomplish three goals.

The other part was buying mental health resources shared across Cass County, and mental health programming.

During the fiscal year 2022, there were over 38,000 visits to the library, and 300 programs attended by 3,595 people. Revenues were funded approximately 86% from the City, with the rest through various other sources, including grants. Andersen pointed out the “Fees do not run a library. Fees are a part,” that help them recoup some of the cost of what it takes to do things associated with their programs and necessities.