By Carlie Connolly
On Apr. 7, the CEO of Shortgrass Library System, Petra Mauerhoff presented to the Cypress County council.
Serving 103, 378 Albertans, the Shortgrass Library System has 11 member municipalities, 12 actively participating libraries, which is soon to be 13.
Out of Alberta’s seven regional library systems, Shortgrass is the smallest, but has good benefits to Cypress County.
Some of the benefits are the access to library services for all residents, the supply of books, DVDs, audiobooks and library books in person. There is also the supply of eBooks, eMagazines and other electronic resources beneficial to the county. There is also a summer reading program for the kids and good Internet and WIFI access for those using the system.
The library system has recently expanded and has new services like more electronic resources with eMagazines, hoopla streaming service and eBooks. Mauerhoff also talked about one card for Medicine Hat College. Anyone who has a college i.d can use it at the Shortgrass Library, so they don’t have to use another card. The Mecard/ Alberta Wide Borrowing can have an individual in Irvine use their Irvine card in Edmonton if they are ever there.
“It’s a great collaboration in the province,” said Mauerhoff.
She also went over the 2015 budget year in which the municipal transfer was at $4.90 per capita, equating to $35, 349. $5,000 was paid by CFB Suffield. The 2015 materials levy saw $4.64 per capita, which equated to $33, 473, with $5,000 paid by CFB Suffield.
The Shortgrass Collection is constantly growing with 662 print items in Ralston added to the 2014 collection and 12, 415 added in SLS other.
The size of the collection in 2014 out of print, non-print, overdrive Ebooks/eAudio and more saw the highest total number for print at 319, 014.
Some of the future plans for the system is that Irvine Library is now a full member library, and there is more resources for print-disabled patrons, with the official launch coming soon. There is also access to resources across Alberta, where people can get access to various books, eMagazines, eBooks and more. There is a sustainability initiative with solar panels that will be taking place down the road, where they will put the panels on the roof to be more green. All of the plans are to help grow the system and continuing to provide service to the customers of Cypress County.