Frequently Asked Questions

If you have a more in-depth question, why not set up a 30 minute session with one of our reference librarians?  Call the Reference Desk at 914-231-3056, or email your questions to

Your Library Card:

Q: Who can get a library card?
A: Library cards are given free to anyone of any age who lives, works or attends school in the Village of Dobbs Ferry.You must be able to sign your name! If you work, or attend school and are a Westchester resident, you must get a card at your “home” library.

Q: How do I get a library card?
A: To apply for you may register in person at the library. You may also complete the on-line form and submit it (your card will be mailed to your residence).

Q: What will I need to bring as proof of residency?
A: We need to verify your current address which can be found on identification such as a driver’s license, telephone bill, utility bill, etc. For on-line registrations, your card will be mailed to you and that acts as your proof of residency. Please note that a P.O. Box is not acceptable for a primary address, but can be listed as your secondary address.

Q: How long does it take?
A: With proper identification, your new card is available in only a few minutes, while you wait.

Q: Where can I use my card?
A: Your library card may be used in any Westchester County Public Library. The card must be presented whenever materials are checked out, and you are responsible for anything borrowed on your card.

Q: What if I lose my card?
A: You can easily replace a lost card. Come to the library, provide identification and apply for a replacement. There is a $1.00 replacement fee. If you change your address and phone number, notify the Library for further information, asap.

Q: May I use my spouse’s card to check-out books?
A: No; no one may use another person’s card to check-out materials. However, you may pick-up your spouse’s holds if you both fill out the necessary form at the circulation desk.

Q: I just moved to Dobbs Ferry from another town in Westchester, do I need a new card?
A: Yes. If you’ve moved within Westchester please notify the staff member of your old address when creating a new one.

Q: I attend Mercy College/the Masters School/Children’s Village, can I get a card at your library?
A: Yes, but you must have your school ID.

Q: I attend St. Christopher’s/Clark Academy, can I get a card at your library?
A: Yes, but you must bring an official letter from your school.

Q: I work in Dobbs Ferry but do not live in Westchester, can I get a card at your library?
A: Yes, but you must bring a signed letter from your employer, and identification with your legal home residence.

Q: May my child get a card?
A: Any child under the age of 12 that can write his or her name may get a card ONLY if accompanied by a parent/guardian (with proper address identification).

Q: What is my PIN Number?
A: Your default PIN is the last 4 digits of your phone number. To change your PIN go online to ‘My Account’ or ask the library staff to reset your PIN to 0000.


Q: Why did I just get my hold when I was #200 in the holds queue?
A: The hold priority is determined by the patron’s home library.
If you have a Dobbs Ferry barcode and Dobbs Ferry owns a copy of the item you put on hold, you will get your item based on a shorter list of Dobbs Ferry cardholders. The holds queue that you can access online only tells you the number of holds that are on every copy of the item, within the entire library system.
If Dobbs Ferry does not own the item, you are placed in the queue for the next available copy, after owning libraries’ holds are filled.

Q: I’m going on vacation, how can I suspend a hold I placed?
A: The Library Catalog lets you suspend (make inactive) existing Hold Requests from your Patron Account Requests list. Any hold request in “active” status may be converted to “inactive” status until a future reactivation date of your choice. You do not lose your place in the Hold Queue during the inactive period.

Q: How do I place a hold?
A: To place a hold, first perform a catalog search. When you see the item you want listed in the search results, press the PLACE HOLD button to the right of the item’s image, wait for the Place Hold page to load, and then follow the instructions posted there.

Borrowing Library Materials:

Q: What if I Lose or Damage Library Material?
A: You Must pay the current cost of each item. We DO NOT accept replacements. Library materials are expensive to replace, so please take care of the items you borrow. We accept cash or checks as payment.

Q: Can I get a refund if I find an item that was lost and paid for?
A: To receive a refund for a lost item, you must return the item with the library receipt(s) showing full payment, within three (3) months. Maximum overdue fines will be deducted from the refund amount.

Q: How do I renew an item?
A: You can renew an item once, unless it has a hold on it, is an express check out or is an ILL. You may do so online, in-person, or by calling either the circulation desk or the automated number on the bottom of your check-out slip.

Q: Do I have to return my materials to the library I checked them out at?
A: No (unless otherwise marked), any materials, can be returned to any Westchester public library.

Library Services:

Q: Is there a public photocopier?
A: Yes, there is a photocopier for public use at 15 cents per copy.

Q: Is there a public fax?
A: Yes; $1.00 for the first page and 50 cents for every additional page.

Q: Can I scan pages at the library?
A: Yes, $2.00 for the first page and $1.00 for each additional page.

Q: Is there a Notary at your library?
A: Yes. Notarizations are $2.00 per signature. Please call ahead to ensure availability.

Q: Do you have study rooms?
A: No, but we have study tables upstairs, with outlets for your laptops.

Q: Do you have wireless internet?
A: Yes, and no password is needed to connect.

Q: Do you have computers for public use? Do I need a library card?
A: Yes, we have computers for the public upstairs. You will need your Westchester Library barcode on the back of your card. If you do not have a card, you can ask the reference librarian for a guest pass.

Q: May I print on the computers?
A: Yes, from library owned terminals for 15 cents a page for black and white and 35 cents a page for color.

Miscellaneous Questions:

Q: Is there a parking lot for the public?
A: We only offer metered street parking. There is one handicapped permit parking spot available in the staff lot.

Q: I have a flyer, may I hang it in your library?
A: Please give any flyers to the staff; we will hang it once the director has approved it. We are unable to post anything for profit or any flyer larger than 8 1/2″ x 11″.

Q: Are you accepting book donations?
A: Currently we are not accepting donations due to the Coronavirus.

Q: May I photograph/video record in your library?
A: Only if given necessary permission. Find out how here.

Q: I have a problem with my eReader, who should I contact?
A: Call the Reference Desk at 914-231-3056, or email your questions to