The Wright County License Bureau has been playing the waiting game throughout the month of June as the office prepares to fully open for business. The holdup has been the arrival of a retrofitted window for the south side of the License Bureau on the parking deck behind the Wright County Government Center that would allow residents needing anything that doesn’t require a photo to have a walk-up window option to get plates, tabs, licenses and title transfers.
License Bureau Supervisor Becky Aanerud said that the wait has been long and changing as June has progressed.
“It’s been frustrating,” Aanerud said. “When we closed the License Bureau in March, we immediately started thinking of ideas that we could do when we were going to reopen. One of those ideas was to install a sliding window at the back of the office so we could handle walk-up traffic and still maintain social distancing. That’s when the delays started.”
The initial estimate was the custom-made window would take four to six weeks to complete and ship. The expectation was that it would arrive around June 4. When that date came and went, the new delivery date was pushed back to the week of June 22. That has come and gone as well. The current word is that it is on its way and could arrive any day. Aanerud said her staff is ready to go, but are left waiting for the window to arrive.
“We understand that the company that does these windows is busy,” Aanerud said. “We’re not the only ones that need a walk-up window. With COVID shutting businesses down, there has been much more demand for windows like the one we’re getting. We just get frustrated because we should have had it already.”
When the window finally does arrive, it’s estimated that it could be installed in less than one day and would make the License Bureau fully open for business immediately. There is an awning and crowd control stanchions in place outside the License Bureau. All that’s left if for the window to arrive.
“Hopefully it will come this week,” Aanerud said. “We’ve been keeping up with all the drop box requests. We’ve been mailing out tabs and title transfers like crazy over the last couple of months. We understand the frustration of people who come to the courthouse looking to get something done that should only take five or 10 minutes and get turned away. Trust me, we’re as frustrated as they are.”
When the window arrives, residents will be made aware of the change and business at the License Bureau will take its next step in the “new normal” of life in the COVID-19 era.