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Honolulu Department of Customer Services suspends all in-person services

  • CINDY ELLEN RUSSELL / CRUSSELL@STARADVERTISER.COM
                                Residents await driver’s licensing services at Kapalama Hale recently.

    CINDY ELLEN RUSSELL / CRUSSELL@STARADVERTISER.COM

    Residents await driver’s licensing services at Kapalama Hale recently.

The Honolulu Department of Customer Services, which takes care of driver’s licensing offices, announced today it will suspend all in-person transactions starting Wednesday, until further notice, to comply with new mandates due to the COVID-19 outbreak.

In addition to issuing driver’s licenses, the department takes care of state identification cards and dealer drop-off services.

“This action is in direct response to the announcement today by the state Department of Transportation, which called for a suspension of all in-person transactions across the entire state,” said Customer Services in a news release. “This action also complies with Mayor Kirk Caldwell’s Emergency Order No. 2020-02.”

All appointments will be canceled, and operations will shift to online processing and mail-in transactions.

Earlier, the city had announced the suspension of road tests for regular driver licenses and commercial driver licenses until April 30.

The city recently extended the expiration date of driver licenses and state identification cards by 90 days.

In addition, the federal government has postponed the Oct. 1, 2020 deadline for REAL ID compliance requirements, but has not yet set a new deadline.

City officials said with these measures in place, there is no urgency to renew licenses or state identification cards at this time.

The city urges residents to take advantage of its online and off-site options for government services such as motor vehicle registration renewals, which are listed at this link

Separately, the Honolulu Department of Planning and Permitting has canceled all in-person appointments and meetings with the public, effective Wednesday, in an effort to prevent the spread of COVID-19 as well as to comply with the city’s social distancing mandate.

The public may continue to walk into DPP’s permit centers at the Fasi Municipal Building and Kapolei Hale to pay for and pick up an approved permit in person, but all transactions must now be done by credit card or check. No cash will be accepted.

In addition, customers may drop off and pick up paper plans from the first floors. Instead of in-person appointments, staff will hold conference calls and video conferencing when possible or communicate via email. Staff will work on permit applications in both electronic and hard copy formats.

Building permit applications and ePlans will still be accepted via honoluludpp.org.

“We apologize for this inconvenience as we know this will have an impact on the permitting process,” said Kathy Sokugawa, acting DPP director. “But it is a necessary and temporary measure in light of the worldwide public health pandemic.”

Click here to see our full coverage of the coronavirus outbreak. Submit your coronavirus news tip.

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