Long lines have been forming at driver services facilities around Illinois.
Lines stretching down the block have been reported at numerous facilities around the state from Schaumburg to Springfield.
Secretary of State spokesman Dave Drucker said the long lines can be deceptive because the facilities are practicing social distancing. He added the lines may be a case of a pandemic hangover.
“We are limited with the number of people that can be in facilities, and we are trying to social distance outside of facilities as well to keep people 2 and 3 feet apart,” Drucker said.
Driver facilities have been open since Jan. 5 after they were shutdown for a second time in November after COVID-19 cases surged in Illinois. Secretary of State Jesse White determined it was best to protect the “health and safety of employees and the public” at that time.
Drucker said that driver licenses that expired during the pandemic will have their expiration dates extended beyond Aug. 1.
The U.S. Department of Homeland Security also extended the federal REAL ID deadline to May 3, 2023. Illinoisans who don’t have a passport will be required to visit a Secretary of State driver services facility and provide documents that prove their identity, their Social Security number, and two documents that show proof of residency.
Drucker said another contributing factor for the congestion at driver service facilities could be the fact that Illinois is the only state in the country that requires senior citizens to be retested.
“By law people need to come back when they hit their 75th birthday and they have to come back every four years at that point,” Drucker said. “At 81 it is every two years, and at 87 it is annual.”
Drucker recommended that motorists who are able to take care of driver services online choose that option.
“There are some key services that can be done online, particularly the registration renewal sticker that goes on the back license plate can be done online,” Drucker said. “Go to the website, cyberdriveillinois.com.”
This article was originally posted on Secretary of State’s Office encourages online services as long lines form at driver services facilities