Public library use is on the rise. Americans made 1.4 billion visits to libraries in 2009, and used them for wider and wider purposes. Increased demand for internet services especially have changed libraries’ community role, making education and training more vital. More and more, libraries are helping community members seeking web connections find new jobs or access government, health and business information. And, as we observed in the aftermath of the 2010 August floods in Southern MN, local libraries have remained the places to get the information and government forms desperately needed once the water receded.
The Library in Cannon Falls shared a space with City Hall for decades, but is now ready to build a new, updated building. However, the cities budget is too tight to fund it and local government aid (part of which goes to support city libraries), has declined by 26.6% since 2002. The library foundation has begun a campaign for private donations to raise funds and start construct in the next two years.