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Frequently asked questions about the library

What do I need to get a library card?
Adults (ages 18+) must show current, government issued photo ID with birthdate and proof of your current, physical Texas address.  If your Texas Drivers License has your current address, that is all you need.  Parents or legal guardians can get a card for a minor age 5 or older using the adult’s identification and proof of address (the child will need to be present in order to receive a card).  New library cards may be made in person at the library service desk up to 15 minutes before closing.

What does the library accept as proof of address?
If your current photo ID has an old address, you must present proof of your current address in order to apply for or renew your library card.  We will accept the following documents:  current lease or mortgage, utility bill, bank statement or check, paystub, insurance card, voter registration card, or official government correspondence.

Do I need to have my library card with me to check out materials?
If you do not have your library card with you, your current ID can be used instead.  You may not check out materials to a library account other than your own.

Can I use a family member or friend's library card?
Borrowing privileges are non-transferrable.  You may not use another person’s card or allow your card to be used by anyone else, even if they are within the same household.

If my child put a book on reserve using their card, can I pick it up for them?
Reserve items must be collected by the account holder.  We will not check out any items to a person's account unless that person is present.

Can my child play in the kids’ room or go to a program while I am in another area of the library?
 Children under the age of 8 must be actively supervised at all times by someone at least 16 years old in the same room. All patrons, including children, must follow the library's behavior guidelines.

What are the limits for computer use?
Computer sessions are 55 minutes long and may have the option of an additional 30 minute extension.  Library patrons in good standing may have two sessions each day.  Guests may have one session per day.  Sessions are non-transferable and must be used by the assignee.  Anyone who has a library account is not eligible for a guest pass.  Our computer reservation system shuts down 30 minutes before closing.  All computer sessions end automatically 15 minutes before closing, regardless of remaining session time. 

Can my child do homework on the computer?
Minors must have their valid library card with them and computer permission on their account. Please visit a library service desk to update or change the computer access allowed on a minor's account.  Minors are subject to the same session limitations as adults (see above). Children must be appropriately supervised at all times.  

How do I find out what items are overdue on my child’s account?
Minors are covered under the same Patron Privacy Policy as adult cardholders.  This prevents us from giving account information to anyone but the account holder.  Therefore, your child must be present with you in order to discuss their account.  Cardholders can access their account online to see checked out items and due dates by logging into the library's catalog page.

Why can’t I use the computer or check out items when a family member has fines?
Library accounts are linked by household.  If there are overdue materials or fines that reach $5, everyone in the household is blocked until the issues have been resolved. 

Do you accept the TexShare Card?
Since all Texas residents are eligible for a Wells Branch Community Library card without charge, we do not have any different service for holders of TexShare cards from other Texas libraries.  Please visit a library service desk to apply for a library card.

Can I get books from other libraries?
Materials from other libraries can be requested through Interlibrary Loan.  Restrictions and fees apply.  Active, adult patrons in good standing can also apply for a TexShare Card after 6 months.  Please see the Information Desk for details.

How many books/movies can I take at once?
You may borrow up to 30 materials at a time, including up to 5 DVD items.  Patrons are limited to 1 TV Series DVD set at a time.

Why happened to my computer time?  I only used 5 minutes earlier.
Computer sessions must each be used in one seating.  Extended inaction will cause the system to end your session.  Sessions cannot be resumed. 

Does the library offer printing, faxing, and copying services or have a notary public?
Printing is available at the library and costs either $0.10 per black and white page or $0.50 per color page. Patrons can print from the library's public computer stations. Scanning is available using the Library Document Station. Documents can be scanned free of charge and delivered to your email, smartphone, Google Drive, or Dropbox. Additionally, documents can be scanned to print for a cost.

Faxing is also available from the Library Document Station for a cost of $0.25 per page, up to a 20-page limit. Please bring coins or dollar bills to use faxing services.

Notary Services Policy: Select managers will notarize prepared documents with notarial certificates attached. The patron or guest must provide current and valid government issue photo ID at the time of notarization. Library notaries will NOT certify copies, take depositions or create a notarial certificate. Library staff cannot give legal advice, which includes any advice regarding the document(s) being notarized. There is no fee for this service.

Does the library provide proctoring services?
No, the library does not provide proctoring services. However, there are other organizations in the Austin area that do provide proctoring services.

I sometimes see people eating or talking on their cell phones in the library.  Is this allowed? 
Conversations in the library, whether in person or by telephone, must be quiet enough that other patrons are not disturbed.  We allow only covered drinks, no food, inside the library.  Our porches have seating and WiFi where patrons can enjoy louder chats and food. 

How is the library managed if you aren’t part of the city or county?
We are a library district, as created under local code 326.  The library is funded primarily by sales tax collected in the immediate area and governed by an elected volunteer board of five trustees.  Daily operations are overseen by the library director.