Union County Clerk Joanne Rajoppi announced that expanded hours for Passport Days will take place on Saturday, April 9 and Monday, April 11 at the Westfield Annex Office. On both days, County residents can get a free photo when applying for or renewing a passport at the County Clerk’s Office Annex in Westfield.  Free photos will also be available on Monday, April 11 in the Elizabeth Office.

“Whether or not you have travel plans this year, I encourage you to take advantage of the free photo offer and the convenience of expanded hours,” said Ms. Rajoppi. “You can avoid having to rush any last-minute applications that might come up, and a valid U.S. passport is especially important now that new national security standards for driver’s licenses are being phased in.”

The County Clerk’s normal fee of $10.00 per passport photo will be waived for all new and renewed passport applications being submitted through her office on both days. 

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At the Westfield Office, expanded hours and free photos for Passport Days will take place on Saturday April 9 from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., and Monday, April 11 from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. The Westfield Annex is located at 300 North Avenue East in Westfield.

At the Elizabeth Office, free photos will take place on Monday, April 11 from 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. The Elizabeth Office is located in the Union County Courthouse, 2 Broad Street, Room 114 in Elizabeth.

No appointments are necessary at either office. However, applicants must arrive 30 minutes before closing in order to have their application processed.

Passport Day is an annual event first promoted by the U.S. State Department to encourage travelers to avoid the stress of last-minute passport applications. Federal budget cuts put an end to the national event in 2008 but Ms. Rajoppi’s office has continued the event and the free photo for Union County residents at the Westfield Annex. This year, Ms. Rajoppi also expanded Passport Day to a two-day event.

New national standards for driver’s licenses are being phased in to improve safety at airports and other federal facilities. Many states have already received approval for their security procedures, but New Jersey has an extended deadline of October 2016 for compliance. If New Jersey does not comply or receive an extension, New Jersey drivers’ licenses will not be accepted as approved identification to board a domestic flight.

For more details about the County Clerk’s passport services, including convenient links to passport information from the State Department, visit the County Clerk online at ucnj.org/county-clerk, call the Westfield Annex at 908-654-9859, or call the main office in Elizabeth at 908-527-4966.

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