One of the public services that the City Clerk for the City of Kent picked up on behalf of all our international travelers was providing passports. That may not strike the casual observer as unique but passports are not a traditional city service — it turned out to be an opportunity that our City Clerk saw the need for and she has been filling ever since.
It may be a little thing but it’s an important little thing that helps us achieve all those cultural and economic benefits that I’ve blogged about this week related to Kent’s international scene. International travel is a two-way street and she helps make sure that Kent residents and visitors have an easy way to safely get where they want to go and return home when they want. Sounds small from the comforts of your lounge chair but when you’re 2,000 miles away from home it’s definitely not such a small thing.
Last week the City Clerk sent around a notice that the US State Department was increasing passport fees. She said that if you have a passport that needs to be renewed, the cost of renewal will increase by $35.00. For first time applicants, the cost for an adult passport will be $135 and for those under 16, $105. Currently, those fees are $100 and $85, respectively. The US Dept. of State has not told us the exact date of these impending increase but she says that past experience tells her it is in the not-so-distant future.
Here’s the State Department notice: