A quick guide to making the most of your visit to the library.
This is where you will find a lot of the stuff that will make you ask "The library does that?" HCPL is a 21st-century library and as such our library services are not limited to reference questions and copying machines. Here you will information about income tax services, proctoring, borrowing WiFi hotspots, and a lot of other services you might know we offer!
When branch libraries are open to the public, branches offer printers and photocopiers for self-service use at minimal cost.
Mobile Printing allows you to upload and pay for print jobs to be picked up at your nearest branch library.
Visit Printing and Copying page for details.
Besides computers, laptops, and printers, many HCPL locations have an assortment of equipment for in-library use. These range from scanners, DVD players and typewriters to CAC readers for military personnel and 3D printers. Visit your branch page for a full list of available equipment.
To learn about borrowing laptops, kindle e-readers, CAC readers and our gardening tool library, go to Frequently Asked Questions: Special Equipment
The Harris County Public Library system offers free proctoring services for individuals at most of its branch libraries. The availability of personnel, facilities, technology, and hours of operations vary from branch to branch. Please contact a librarian at your preferred location well in advance of your exam to determine if the branch will be able to accommodate your request.
For full Proctoring Guidelines, Go to Library Policies
This year, avoid the stress and let AARP Tax Aides help prepare your tax return. AARP's friendly, trained volunteers have been helping folks with their taxes for over 50 years and they will be happy to do the same for you (and in case you are wondering, no, you don't have to be an AARP member, You don't even have to be eligible to be a member. Everyone is welcome).
The AARP Tax Aide service is offered on designated days from February 1 to the IRS tax deadline on April 15 at several Harris County Public Libraries. Visit our program calendar for times and locations: AARP Tax Aide Schedule at HCPL NEED LINK to EVENTS
Below is a checklist of documents you should bring with you.
What to bring:
- A copy of last year's income tax return(s)
- Social Security numbers for all adults and dependents
- W-2 forms from each employer
- Unemployment compensation statements on 1099-G
- SSA-1099 form if you were paid Social Security benefits
- All 1099 forms (1099-INT, 1099-DIV, 1099-B) showing interest and/or dividends and documentation showing original purchase price and purchase date of sold assets
- 1099-misc showing any miscellaneous income
- 1099-R form if you received a pension or annuity
- All forms indicating federal income tax paid
- All receipts or canceled checks if itemizing deductions
SCORE Small Business Counseling
SCORE is the nation’s largest network of volunteer, expert business mentors, with more than 10,000 volunteers in 300 chapters. As a resource partner of the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), SCORE has helped more than 10 million entrepreneurs through mentoring, workshops and educational resources since 1964. Go to Score Small Business Counseling in Events
Small Business Reference Center
A collection of state-specific resources (including videos) supported with demographic data and other local information Go to Small Business Reference Center in Research
Disaster Relief Centers
HCPL is currently working with Harris County Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Management (HCOHSEM) on an agreement to designate HCPL branches as official Disaster Recovery Centers. HCOHSEM Disaster Recovery Centers are where people can access the assistance and services they need most in times of emergency. Representatives from government agencies like FEMA, Small Business Administration and social services will be on hand, as well as aid organizations like the American Red Cross.
HCOHSEM will announce when and if Disaster Recovery Centers will be activated.
Summer heat can be dangerous, especially for seniors and people suffering from certain chronic conditions. When heat waves hit (and they will), HCPL encourages you to check on your neighbors who might be at risk and, if need be, offer to drive them to an HCPL location to cool off. All HCPL locations are cooling centers during normal business hours.
Because all HCPL branches (except LSC-CyFair Library), are closed on Sundays, HCPL, in partnership with Harris County Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Management (HCOHSEM), has designated seven branches to be Sunday cooling centers in the event a heat wave occurs on a Sunday.
Barbara Bush Branch Library
Crosby Branch Library
High Meadows Branch Library
*Lone Star College CyFair Library*
Maud Marks Branch Library
Octavia Fields Branch Library
South Houston Branch Library
Please NOTE: These locations, with the exception of Lone Star College CyFair Library, will only open on a Sunday if there is a heat wave. The operating hours are 1:00 pm – 6:00 pm.
We are working on ways to resume this helpful and popular service. We will keep you posted as we progress. Until then, please visit Travel.State.Gov for your questions about applying for and renewing your U.S. Passport