Theis calls on Benson to reopen secretary of state offices

LANSING, Mich. — State Sen. Lana Theis on Monday urged Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson to reopen the department’s branch office locations to walk-in customers.

“Now that Michigan is reopening and people are getting back to work, it no longer makes sense for our secretary of state branch offices to remain closed to walk-in service,” said Theis, R-Brighton. “Having access to the SOS is essential for modern living. If people can’t get in to get their ID, renew their driver licenses and license plate tabs, transfer titles, take exams and other important business, they are being assessed late fees and putting themselves at risk, through no fault of their own. It is time that state government get back to work serving the people of Michigan.”

Last week, as part of the fiscal year 2022 state budget approved by the Senate, the SOS would be required to open branch offices that have been closed to walk-in customers over the past year. Prior to the Senate action, Benson announced a plan to continue only serving residents with an appointment even after the COVID-19 pandemic is over.

Theis noted the excruciating wait times people are experiencing under the current Benson plan.

“I continue to hear from Livingston and Washtenaw County residents who are angry with how long it is taking the secretary of state to schedule an appointment, and rightfully so,” Theis said. “At this point, there is no acceptable reason why people should have to wait three to four months to get an appointment with their local SOS branch office. Benson has created a problem where one didn’t exist. It shouldn’t be this way, and I’m calling on her to reopen these offices immediately.”

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