Highland County Clerk of Courts Ike Hodson received notice this week from the U.S. Department of State Passport Services with updated information concerning service processing times on applying for or renewing a U.S. passport.
“Americans are wanting to resume travel outside of the United States, which will require an official U.S. Passport and the clerk of court’s office is the only official agency in Highland County authorized to handle their passport needs,” Hodson said.
According to the notice, effective immediately, “routine service” processing time when applying for a passport is 18 weeks from the time the passport agency opens the envelope containing the application at its facility. Hodson said his office sends all applications via USPS Priority Mail, with a guaranteed two- to three-day delivery. Once an application leaves the local office, that office no control over processing times.
Routine service (18 weeks) cost is $110 per application payable to the U.S. Department of State and $45 payable to the clerk of courts office, which includes your passport picture.
There is an “Expedited Service” available that would reduce the processing time from 18 to 12 weeks. However, that would cost the applicant another $77.56 for a total amount of $187.56 to the U.S. Department of State and $45 payable to the clerk of courts.
“These new processing times could greatly affect someone’s vacation and travel plans. I would encourage everyone who needs to apply for a new passport or who currently has a passport to check the expiration date and plan accordingly,” Hodson said.
Whether applying for a new passport or renewing an old passport, check out the Highland County Clerk of Court’s website at www.highlandclerkofcourts.org and click on the passport link to get all the information you need. If you have further questions, contact the clerk’s office at 937-393-9957.
Information for this story was provided by Ike Hodson.