Sussex County Clerk's Office Receives Letter of Commendation
The U.S. Department of State recently awarded the Sussex County Clerk's staff with a letter of commendation and accompanying certificate for their skill and attention to detail in their role as passport acceptance agents. If you ask any of those agents though, they'll tell you it's all in a day's work.
"We're here to serve the public, and we try to make the passport application process as seamless as possible for people," said Sharon, a senior acceptance agent on staff. "Some scenarios are more complicated than others, and applicants don't always have all the supporting documents they need. We help guide them through the process."
Clerk Jeff Parrott was pleased to see his staff acknowledged for their efforts. "Everyone here is committed to excellence," said Parrott, "I know my staff does a great job, because I see it firsthand. I think it's great that others are noticing it, too."
The Clerk's staff may make it their goal to keep every customer satisfied, but when it comes to passports they also realize their responsibilities extend beyond just good customer service. As acceptance agents for the U.S. Passport Agency, they are the first line of defense against potential fraud. "Our agents have a responsibility to carefully scrutinize supporting documents and applicant behavior," said Parrott, "and to alert the National Passport Center to submissions that might appear suspicious. I think the recent commendation means we're doing our job well."
The County Clerk's Office is a certified Passport Acceptance Facility for the U.S. Department of State and routinely accepts passport applications from citizens who want to renew an expired passport or apply for a first-time passport book or card. Everyone applying for a first-time passport must apply in person - even infants. The Clerk's Office processes approximately 1,200 passport applications a year. For more information on how to obtain a passport, visit the Clerk's web site at www.sussexcountyclerk.org or call the Clerk's Office at 973-579-0900.
Quick Passport Facts...
Fees: Adult passport book (valid for 10 years) $110.
Child's passport (age 15 and under; valid for 5 years) $80.
$25 (cash only) agency fee, if processed through Clerk's Office.
Standard turnaround time is 4-6 weeks.
For an additional cost, process can be expedited to as little as 2-3 weeks.
Children age 15 and under must have both parents appear with them during application (if one parent cannot appear, call our office for options).
Proof of citizenship and identification are required. If birth certificate is presented as proof of U.S. citizenship, it must be the original or certified copy and must show both parent names.
Driver license most often used for personal identification (must be valid, not expired).
One color photo, 2" x 2" must be submitted with application; Clerk's Office can take photo for $10 (cash only).
Passport Cards also are available, but can only be used for land or sea travel. Adult card fee is $30, child card is $15 (plus $25 agency fee if processed through our office). Card's validity period is same as passport book.