News Release Archive

Today's launching of NcompasS, a new automated circulation
system, and a provincewide library card shows why Nova Scotia
continues to be the Canadian leader in supporting its regional

"Today's announcement illustrates the importance our communities
place in their libraries," said Robbie Harrison, education and
culture minister. "Nova Scotia was the first province to connect
all of its libraries to the Internet, and NcompasS and the
provincewide library card are two more important steps as we move
forward to meet the challenges of the 21st century."

The NcompasS system will eventually connect the holdings of all
75 public libraries in the province through the Internet. Housed
on EDnet, the Department of Education and Culture's local area
network, NcompasS will give Nova Scotians access to information
resources anywhere in the province. As well, NcompasS users will
be able to access the catalogues of schools, universities and
colleges, putting more information at our fingertips than ever

Coinciding with the launch of NcompasS was the introduction of a
provincewide library card. Beginning with the Annapolis Valley
Regional Library and eventually encompassing all 75 libraries and
the 13 mobile branches in the province, this card will allow Nova
Scotians to borrow from any public library in the province.

"This is another example of libraries showing the rest of the
community how it can be done," said Mr. Harrison. "Libraries know
how to share resources and expertise and this confirms that our
libraries are ready to meet the challenges of today and look
forward to the future."

These improvements support the fact that people are relying more
and more on their public libraries as the focal points within
their communities. Today's announcement follows a recent public
attitudes survey that indicated 98 per cent of Nova Scotians
recognize their library as an essential or important service in
their community. As well, 90 per cent of library users rated the
helpfulness and knowledge of the staff as good or excellent.

"Our libraries are special because of the people who work and
volunteer inside them," said Mr. Harrison. "They are places we
trust, much like our schools and health care facilities, and
today's event is the result of many years of hard work and it is
truly a milestone day for Nova Scotia."


Contact: Marion Pape
         Provincial librarian

         Doug Hadley
         Education and Culture
         cell: 902-499-0264

trp                      May 26, 1997 - 2:05 p.m.