FRANKFORT, Ky. (WTVQ) – A new era of driver licensing services, offering an array of options and conveniences for obtaining or renewing driver’s licenses and state identification cards, will soon begin in nine Kentucky counties.
The traditional trip to the local Office of Circuit Court Clerk is being replaced in those counties with a visit to a secure, specialized Driver Licensing Regional Office operated by the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet (KYTC).
“To make a better Kentucky, we have to strive for constant improvement in our public services and the manner in which they’re delivered,” Gov. Andy Beshear said. “The transition to licensing through a network of Driver Licensing Regional Offices, with greater flexibility for customers and greater security for personal information, takes this essential service to the next level.”
Making the transition this month will be Adair, Breathitt, Floyd, Hopkins, Madison, McCracken, Pulaski, Rowan and Russell counties. The Office of Circuit Court Clerk in each of those counties will cease nearly all in-person driver licensing services on Monday, April 26. More information about regional offices can be found here.
The lone, temporary exception is processing of remotely submitted applications for renewal or replacement of standard-issue licenses and IDs. Circuit clerks in every county except Fayette will continue that processing until June 30, 2021. It was an emergency measure to limit person-to-person contact and safeguard public health during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The remote renewal option – by mail or by leaving applications in drop boxes – is not available to anyone whose name or address has changed or who requires testing by the Kentucky State Police. Get more information here.
Three other counties – Fayette, Franklin and Woodford – made the transition earlier. The new system is to be phased in for every Kentucky county by June 30, 2022.
“Our driver licensing regional offices are exclusively dedicated to licensing services,” KYTC Secretary Jim Gray said. “It’s a modernized system that offers convenience and choices to the customer, plus greater security for personal information and the credentials themselves.”
Residents of counties making the transition may renew or apply for a REAL ID or new standard card version of driver licenses, permits, commercial driver licenses (CDLs) and ID cards at any KYTC Driver Licensing Regional Office.
Regional offices – the only places to get a REAL ID – are operating in Paducah, Madisonville, Owensboro, Bowling Green, Elizabethtown, Louisville/Hurstbourne, Burlington, Frankfort, Lexington, Richmond, Morehead, Prestonsburg, Catlettsburg, Somerset, Columbia and Jackson. More offices are on the way. There also is a temporary, appointment-only office at Louisville/Bowman Field.
All customers are encouraged to make an appointment online. A limited number of walk-ins will be served due to COVID-19 safety guidelines.
Kentucky State Police will continue to oversee all permit and license testing. Appointments for written or road testing can be made online at kentuckystatepolice.org/driver-testing. Until further notice, testing will continue in current locations for counties making the transition. Once testing is successfully completed, a customer will visit a Driver Licensing Regional Office to apply for the permit or license.