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Passport acceptance facility now open in Cleveland County
Cailey Speer issuing Commissioner Hutchin's Passport Oath.

No longer will Cleveland County residents need to travel to neighboring counties to get their passports. On May 22, 2018, the Cleveland County Register of Deeds office becomes an official passport acceptance facility.
Betsy S. Harnage, Register of Deeds for Cleveland County, began researching the idea of processing passport applications in March of 2017. "Since my election, I have been looking for new services to offer the citizens of Cleveland County. I spoke with several Register of Deeds, and found only few were Passport Acceptance Facilities," she said. In January 2018 she applied to have the Register of Deeds office designated as a passport acceptance facility. Preliminary approval came through in February; and in March two employees, Cailey Speer and Kathy Greene, as well as the Registrar became certified by the U.S. State Department as passport acceptance agents. On March 14th the final process of applying began and construction was started on the new passport and recording station. "The Cleveland County Maintenance Department did a great job building an area to separate passports from our vital records area," Harnage said. Final approval was given on May 7, 2018 designating the Cleveland County Register of Deeds as an official passport acceptance facility.
"Often times when people come to our office to get certified copies of their birth or marriage certificates, they ask about getting a passport," Mrs. Harnage said. "Our citizens have had to go outside the county to apply for a passport for far too long. This was a wonderful opportunity to bring a new and important service to the citizens of Cleveland County while keeping application processing revenue within our county borders."
The Register of Deeds Office is located at 311 East Marion Street in Shelby. Applications will be processed by appointment only- Tuesday through Friday, 9:00 a.m. to 12 Noon and 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. Appointments can be made by calling 704-484-4780. It is always best practice to plan ahead as all applications are processed by the federal government for approval and processing time can be four to six weeks.
The application fee to the US Department of State, which must be paid by check or money order, is $110.00 for the Passport Book or $140.00 for Passport Book & Card. Additionally, local processing fees, which must be paid by cash only, are $35.00. The office will provide passport photo services for $10.00.
Submitted by Kerri Melton


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