washington department of licensing

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Thanks to coronavirus, one dreaded chore is temporarily off limits. No need to brace for long lines at the DMV to renew a driver license because those offices are closed for now in Washington state and perhaps soon in Oregon.

The infamous long lines at the DMV produced wait times exceeding one hour at several Oregon Driver and Motor Vehicle Services field offices Tuesday, despite federal Centers for Disease Control guidance to minimize gatherings of groups of more than 10 people to curb the spread of the new coronavirus.

Tom Banse / NW News Network

Effective this October, a standard Oregon or Washington driver's license won't pass muster with the Transportation Security Administration to board a domestic flight. Both Oregon and Washington drivers licensing managers are expecting long wait times this summer as a surge of deadline-driven travelers apply for upgraded IDs that are federally acceptable.

Tom Banse / NW News Network

Thursday was supposed to be the day that a Washington state ballot measure to lower car registration fees took effect. But the state Supreme Court has let an injunction stand against what is known as the $30 car tabs initiative. That means hundreds of thousands of drivers will get full price bills in the coming months that they thought they had voted to reduce.

Oregon DMV

The options to share your fandom or your love of nature through your car license plate keep growing in Oregon and Washington. But not all license plate ideas go down smoothly: A proposed Washington wine country license plate, like Oregon already offers, drew some whining at the state legislature this week.

Washington Department of Licensing

This story has been updated.

A batch of late-arriving ballots is going out to nearly 7,000 Washington voters in advance of next Tuesday’s special election. That’s because of an error in the state’s Motor Voter system that allows people to register to vote when they get a drivers license.

Department of Homeland Security

Washington state is moving toward a showdown like Oregon went through two years ago about issuing driver’s licenses to undocumented immigrants. Washington legislators were warned Monday that current state Department of Licensing policy to not check for legal residency could lead to trouble for everyone at the airport in just over a year.

Washington State Dept. of LIcensing

If you live in Washington state and you like your license plates, starting January 1, you’ll get to keep them.

Washington Department of Licensing

A new report reveals the state of Washington issued nearly 3,000 fictitious driver’s licenses to police agencies over the last 25 years.

Taylor Winkel / Northwest News Network

Lucha Libre wrestling has a huge following in Mexico. In fact, it’s second only to soccer. And its popularity is rising here in the Northwest.

Washington Department of Licensing

OLYMPIA, Wash. – The Washington House has voted to allow the Department of Licensing to continue to issue fictitious driver licenses to undercover police officers. But with new safeguards. Even so, the vote Tuesday came over the objections of some Republicans.

The Department of Licensing has issued so-called confidential driver licenses for decades. But it never had direct authorization from the legislature to do so. The program is supposed to be for law enforcement officers.

Washington Department of Licensing

OLYMPIA, Wash. – Stricter guidelines may come to a program that lets undercover police officers in Washington obtain fictitious driver licenses. The Washington House could vote soon on a measure that would require additional safeguards to ensure the false IDs are not misused.

Austin Jenkins / Northwest News Network

OLYMPIA, Wash. – For decades, police officers in Washington have been able to obtain false driver licenses for undercover work. But this quasi-secret program inside the Department of Licensing only recently came to light. It turns out the confidential ID program was never approved by the legislature. Now two state lawmakers are calling for more oversight to prevent possible abuses.

As a street cop in the early 1980s, Mitch Barker went undercover to work drugs and vice. The Washington Department of Licensing helped him assume a fake identity.