File Photo – Secretary of State Driver Vehicle Services Facility in Lake Zurich | Photo: Google Street View

Earlier this month, the Illinois Secretary of State closed all driving service facilities due to a surge in COVID-19 cases. The agency now says they are delaying the reopening until late this month.

Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White said that all Secretary of State departments stopped conducting in-person transactions, including driver services facilities, on January 3.

All departments and driver services facilities were scheduled to reopen on January 18.

On Thursday, White announced that the reopening was delayed a week and will now reopen on January 24 due to “the continued high number of COVID-19 cases.”

“The health and safety of employees and the public remains my top priority, and face-to-face transactions potentially increase the further spread of the virus. We are pleased to see what appears to be the beginning of a downswing in COVID-19 cases and, if this trend continues, we will reopen Jan. 24 for face-to-face transactions,” White said.

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He is encouraging the public to visit ilsos.gov for online services.

Three Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) facilities will open on January 18 for in-person CDL services only. The CDL facilities are: Rockford at 4734 Baxter Rd., Springfield at 2701 S. Dirksen Pkwy. and Marion at 1905 Rendelman St.

Online transactions remain open for all departments to conduct office services including renewing a license plate sticker, renewing a driver’s license or ID card for those who qualify, obtaining a duplicate driver’s license or ID card, obtaining a driver record abstract, and filing business services documents, such as incorporations and annual reports.

The Drivers and Vehicles Services hotline phone number also remains open at 800-252-8980.

Customers with issues involving administrative hearings may email adminhearings@ilsos.gov or call 312-793-3722 or 217-782-7065.

White recently extended all driver’s license and ID card expiration dates to March 31, 2022. The extension does not apply to commercial driver’s licenses (CDL) and CDL learner’s permits.

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“In addition, White greatly expanded remote renewal for driver’s license and ID card holders. Since this fall, White’s office mailed letters to eligible customers with expired driver’s licenses and ID cards requiring them to renew online, by phone or by mail. The office estimates that this helps to eliminate the need for approximately 1 million people to visit a facility,” the Secretary of State’s Office said in a statement.

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security has extended the federal REAL ID deadline to May 3, 2023.