Niagara County Clerk Joseph Jastrzemski on Thursday said Gov. Andrew Cuomo issued executive order 202.79, which extends the expiration dates on licenses and permits that expired after March 1. The new date is Jan. 1, 2021. In addition, the executive order also continues to require that all in-person transactions at DMVs be done by appointment only.
“Our team has made tremendous progress in clearing up the backlog of expired driver’s licenses, but certainly an extension takes pressure off of people,” Jastrzemski said. “However, I recommend people do not wait and instead book an appointment to renew their licenses with our office.”
Jastrzemski said increasing cases of COVID-19 has county clerks across the state concerned Cuomo might shut down DMV offices again. He said he is opposed to any closure and said the New York State Association of County Clerks sent a letter to Albany opposing any curtailment of services.
“The public was exceedingly understanding when we were forced to close earlier this year and remained patient as we put protocols in place to keep people safe as we gradually reopened,” Jastrzemski said. “Today, we have an efficient system that, while not optimal, is getting the job done. Our safety measures are working so there is no reason to create another backlog by shutting us down.”
On Friday, Erie County Clerk Michael Kearns said this extension does not pertain to non-driver identification cards or vehicle registrations, which needed to be renewed by Nov. 3.
“The staff of the Erie County Auto Bureau has worked tirelessly to assist thousands of motorists to complete their transactions in order to reduce wait times for appointments and be compliant with DMV laws,” Kearns said. “I am pleased to say that our offices are now accepting same-day or next-day appointments.”