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Help the library chart its future

Cabarrus County Library Assistant Angela Love entertains children during storytime at the Concord branch

Cabarrus County will host several community input meetings in February and March to set direction for the Library System’s strategic planning process.

Residents, businesses and organizations are asked to provide input through the sessions.

Cabarrus is using the strategic planning process to define what our community wants and needs in their library over the next five to 10 years.

The public forum schedule is as follows:
  • Kannapolis Branch (850 Mountain St): Monday, February 25 at 6:30 p.m.
  • Western Cabarrus Fire Station #9 Community Room (1020 Ivey Cline Rd): Tuesday, February 26 at 6:30 p.m.
  • Mt. Pleasant Branch (8556 Cook St): Monday, March 11 at 6:30 p.m.
  • Concord Branch (27 Union St N): Tuesday, March 12 at 6:30 p.m.
  • Harrisburg Branch (201 Sims Parkway): Wednesday, March 13 at 6:30 p.m.

Library Director Emery Ortiz says the plan will rely heavily on community input. The sessions are the second phase of the research process, which began with a public survey in the fall of 2018. She invites newcomers in particular.

“We’d like to see people new to the area,” said Ortiz. “We want to learn about innovative programs and services that we can replicate here. We want to hear from people who don’t use the library. Tell us how we can reach you and what needs we can meet.”

The library system received funding for the strategic planning process through one of 48 competitive Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) grants awarded to North Carolina libraries this fiscal year. Nationally, libraries received $4.6 million from this year’s federal allotment.

The LSTA grant program, administered by the State Library of North Carolina, funds library projects across the state that advance excellence and promote equity by strengthening capacity, expanding access, and community engagement in North Carolina’s libraries.

For more information, follow the Cabarrus County Public Library System on Facebook (@cabarruscountylibrary), call 704-920-2050 or email library@cabarruscounty.us.

Fast Facts about the Cabarrus County Public Library System
  • Last year, there were 812,500 items circulated and more than 369,000 visitors at the library system’s four branches: Concord, Harrisburg, Kannapolis and Mt. Pleasant.
  • A new branch will open in Midland next to Town Hall at the end of February.
  • Combined, Cabarrus branches hosted more than 77,500 participants in 372 programs from July 2017 to June 2018.
  • Nearly 5,200 residents took part in the 2018 Summer Reading Program.
  • Cabarrus County’s 2018 Community Survey showed several strong indications for support of the library:
  • More than half of the residents in Cabarrus County have used the Cabarrus County Public Library System in the past year.
  • 86 percent of survey respondents believe the libraries are very important or important to the quality of life in the County.
  • When asked what non-mandated services residents are most-willing to pay more for to avoid reductions in service or decreased quality, the libraries tied emergency preparedness for second place, seven points behind parks.

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