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National passport awareness month

September 11, 2016
Reinbeck Courier

The Bureau of Consular Affairs has selected September as Passport Awareness Month in order to increase familiarity with the United States Passport and provide helpful information and services to the traveling American public. Passport Awareness Month is dedicated to offering as much information as possible to American citizens about Passport Services.

The Grundy County Auditor's Office is authorized by the U. S. Department of State as a Passport Acceptance Facility. Rhonda R. Deters, Grundy County Auditor, is pleased that Grundy County residents and all U. S. citizens needing a new passport may apply for one at the Auditor's Office at the Courthouse in Grundy Center rather than having to travel out of the county.

It is recommended that you submit your passport application well ahead of your planned travel dates in order to avoid possible delays. In 2007, the U. S. Department of State experienced an unprecedented surge in passport applications, issuing over 18 million passports as a result of the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative. Those passports are now expiring, which has resulted in an increased demand for passport renewals. The U. S. Department of State issued over 15.5 million passports in fiscal year 2015, and the increased demand is expected to continue through 2018.

Applying early will also avoid the $60 expedite fee. At this time, routine applications are processed in approximately 4-6 weeks from the time of application. The expedited service commitment is to process a passport application in 2-3 weeks.

You can renew a passport conveniently by mail at any time if your most recent passport: 1) Is submitted with your application; 2) Is undamaged (other than normal "wear and tear"); 3) Was issued when you were age 16 or older; 4) Was issued within the last 15 years; AND 5) Was issued in your current name (or you can document your name change with an original or certified copy of your marriage certificate, divorce decree, or court order). The renewal form is available online at www.travel.state.gov or by contacting the Grundy County Auditor's Office.

 
 

 

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