Senate: Extend lapsed licenses, plates; keep walk-in option


FILE – In this Sept. 24, 2020, file photo, Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson speaks in Detroit. Benson said Tuesday, June 8, 2021, her office is adding 350,000 appointments over nearly four months to address a pandemic-related backlog as Michigan residents try to renew driver’s licenses, transfer vehicle titles and conduct other business in person. (AP Photo/Paul Sancya, file)

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — The Michigan Senate has voted to give drivers more time to renew an expired license and vehicle registration during the coronavirus pandemic.

It’s also voted to pressure Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson to restore people’s ability to visit branches without an appointment.

The bills won approval Thursday from all 19 Republicans in the majority and six Democrats. They now go to the House.

Benson is a Democrat who opposes a return to the take-a-number system. She is adding 350,000 appointments to help address a backlog caused by a 13-month grace period for expired license plates and driver’s licenses during the pandemic.

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