New Brighton’s full-service license bureau is here

New Brighton residents no longer have to venture outside the city to get a new driver’s licence, a driver’s licence renewal or to get an ID card. 

City Hall, located at 803 Old Highway 8 NW, now has a full-service licence bureau that accommodates these services, according to a Nov. 2 statement from the city. 

The licence bureau, in its new location on the lower level of City Hall, also continues the services available before, like motor vehicle title transfers, renewing registration tabs, selling fish and game licences, watercraft, snowmobile and ATV licences, replacement plates and more. 

New Brighton Mayor Val Johnson said in a statement the expansion of licence services “accomplishes several City Council goals.” Alongside providing New Brighton residents with better services, the new licence office will “generate more fee based revenues for the City” in order to keep the property tax “in check,” Johnson said.  

State Rep. Connie Bernardy, DFL-New Brighton, back in January, introduced a bill in the Legislature in order to provide New Brighton the authority to open a full licence office. Bernardy introduced the bill after being approached by New Brighton city officials saying residents had asked for the amenity. 

Before the full licence bureau, New Brighton residents had to drive to Roseville, Columbia Heights, Blaine, Arden Hills, downtown St. Paul or elsewhere to have all of their licence needs met. 

After Gov. Mark Dayton signed Bernardy’s bill in May, New Brighton officials filed paperwork with the Minnesota Department of Public Safety and ensured the office would be in full compliance with the federal REAL ID Act. 

In June, New Brighton City Manager Dean Lotter said he hoped to begin offering drivers licences by the end of this year.

That hope is now a reality. The city’s statement also thanked state Sen. Carolyne Laine, DFL-New Brighton, and state Rep. Mary Kunesh-Podein, DFL-New Brighton, for working to get the needed legislation passed. 

 

—Solomon Gustavo

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