View of the Reno Sparks night skyline from Rancho San Rafael Regional Park
View of the Reno Sparks night skyline from Rancho San Rafael Regional Park

What are the policies and procedures for borrowing items from the library?
How to get a library card

All you need to get a borrower's card from Washoe County Library is proof of residence in Nevada and a photo ID. There is no charge. Acceptable identification includes:
  • Valid Nevada driver's license or Nevada identification card
  • Local bank checks with imprinted address
  • Local utility or phone bill
  • Current rent receipt or lease showing at least one month's residence
There are other acceptable forms of identification, but these are the most commonly used. There is a short application form to fill out as well.

Minors may obtain a card by showing local school identification from the current school year, or by their accompanying parent or guardian showing acceptable identification.

Non-Nevada residents may obtain a card if they own property or a business in Washoe County, are employed in Washoe County, or attend school in Washoe County. Proof of such ownership or employment is required. For non-Nevada residents not meeting these requirements, a card is available for a $50 annual fee.

Checking out items

To check out any items from the library, you will need your library card or photo ID.

Most library branches will give you a printed receipt with your due dates listed for each item, or each item will be stamped with the due date.

You may check out as many items as you wish to be responsible for, with the exception of limits on certain smaller collections and audiovisual materials.

Bags are usually available, but it is always helpful to bring your own if you think you will need it.

Loan periods

The loan period for most items is three weeks.

Certain items which are specially checked out, such as reference materials or items borrowed from other library systems, have shorter loan periods.

Returning items

Library items may be returned to any branch of Washoe County Library, regardless of which branch they were checked out from.

Most branches have a slot to drop off books after hours. If you drop off a book the night of the due date, the item will not be considered late. Check with your branch for drop slot availability and location.


All items may be renewed one time after being checked out, unless the item has been placed on hold for another patron.

Overdue items may be renewed to stop the accrual of fines, but fines will be charged for the number of days that the item is overdue.

Renewals can be made online though our library catalog at any time. Instructions on how to renew your own materils are here. Renewals may also be made over the phone by calling any library branch and giving them your card number. You may write the new due date in, but it will not be stamped. You are responsible for knowing when the books are due.

Items may be renewed without having the items present. If you have your card, items left at home may be renewed when you visit a branch.


Adult Library Cardholders: 25 cents per day per item, maximum fine per item $9.00. Minor Library Cardholders (age 17 and younger): 10 cents per day per item, maximum fine per item $2.00.