Library FAQs

How do I…

Welcome to the Council Bluffs Library FAQs page. Find answers to the most common questions asked by our users. Can’t find what you’re looking for? Contact us here.

Library cards are issued to individuals and organizations at the Library Circulation Desk. In addition to allowing you to check out library materials, your library card provides access to online content including electronic books, media, and databases. You will need to provide identification to show you are a resident of Council Bluffs. Apply online here.

If you have forgotten your PIN and need to reset it, begin by clicking “My Account” in the upper left corner of the screen. Click “Forget Your PIN?” to the left of the “Log In” button. After entering your library barcode, you will be sent an email containing directions that will allow you to reset your PIN. If you do not have an email account connected to your library account, you will need to visit the Circulation Desk with your photo ID.

If you know your PIN and want to change it, begin by clicking “My Account” in the upper left corner of the screen.  Select the “Personal Information” tab and then the “Change PIN” header.  Fill in the “Current PIN,” “New PIN,” and “Confirm New PIN” fields.  Click “Update” when finished. 

You can rent one of our four meeting rooms for a business or club meeting at the Library. For information on room availability and pricing, please contact the reference department at reference@councilbluffslibrary.org or call 712-323-7553. Learn more about our rooms here.

To download an e-Book, go to the e-Library page and select e-Book. From here you will be redirected to Overdrive. You can begin using Overdrive by downloading a mobile app to your mobile device – you can find detailed instructions for each app here. The Overdrive help page provides instructions on getting started, borrowing e-Books, listening to audiobooks and troubleshooting. The Device profiles page details which devices work with Overdrive and provides instructions specific to each device. Useful links below:

Getting Started With Overdrive

Instructions for your device

Get the App

Instructions for borrowing

To download an audiobook, go to the eLibrary page and select audiobook. From here you will be redirected to RB digital.

  1. Login using your library card number and pin
  2. Click on the Register link in the top right corner. You’ll be asked to provide your email address, and to select a username.
  3. Browse through the audiobooks and click one you would like to read
    If the item is available, click “Check Out.”
  4. Listen to your book using your browser or on the App*

*Apps available for PC, Mac, iOS (iPad, iPhone), Android, and Kindle.

To place a hold, begin by signing into your account by clicking “My Account” in the upper left corner of the screen – you will be prompted to enter your barcode (found on your library card) and PIN number. Once you are logged in, you can browse and search titles. The availability of an item will display under the description. To place a hold, click “Place Hold” to the right of the description. This will place you on a hold list and you will be notified when the item is available for pick up. Requested items are located on the first floor near the Circulation Desk.

Occasionally you may want to freeze a hold and then unfreeze it later. For example, if you are going on vacation you can freeze all of your holds and unfreeze them when you return. This ensures that no holds are missed in your absence. To suspend a hold, login into the library catalog using your name and the barcode found on your library card. Selecting the “Holds” tab will detail all outstanding holds. To freeze a hold, check the box next to the requested item, then press “Edit/Suspend Hold(s).”  Select the dates you would like the freeze to begin and end.  Then select “Suspend.”

If you are looking to cancel a hold, login to the catalog by going to “My Account”  and click on your name in the upper right corner. From there, you will be taken to a page detailing your account information. Selecting the “Holds” tab will detail all outstanding holds. To cancel a hold, check box next to the requested item, then press “Cancel Hold(s).” Confirm that you want to renew the items by selecting “Yes” when prompted.

To renew an item, login to the library catalog and click on your name in the upper right corner. You will be taken to a page detailing your account information. Selecting the “Checkouts” tab will detail all items checked out on your card. Check the “Renew All” box, or to renew individual items, check the boxes next to the requested items, then press “Renew.” Confirm that you want to renew the items by selecting “Yes” when prompted.  Each item renewed will display a status in the status column – in most cases this will be the new due date. If the item can’t be renewed (because it is too new, too early to renew, or is on hold for another patron), the status will indicate that the materials were not renewed.

Interlibrary Loan (ILL) is a service which allows you to borrow materials from other libraries. To request an item, you can contact the Reference Department at 712-323-7553 (ext. 134). Questions about ILL services can be sent to ill@councilbluffslibrary.org. You will be notified when your item is available for pick-up. Requests for new items (less than a year old) should be sent to the Suggest We Buy form.

The library does consider patron requests when making purchasing decisions. Suggestions for new items can be submitted by the Suggest We Buy form. located on the Books, Music and More page. If the item is ordered, a hold will be placed for you and you will be notified when the item is available.

For a list of library fines & fees, click here.

For a list of library policies, including information on fines & fees click here.

Groups from local schools and other organizations are welcome to visit the Library for an orientation and tour. Library staff are also available to visit your school for special events. Both of these services are a great chance to interact with Library staff and learn about what the Library can offer. To arrange a tour and/or school visit, please submit your information here and a staff member will be in touch.