WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) — When Michael Elliott walked into the Douglas Tag Office Tuesday to renew his tags, he was surprised to have been turned away. He says he was told all slots that day were full and that he would need to text to reserve a slot first thing Wednesday morning.

When he did just that, Elliott says he was in for another shock.

“Called in at 7:15, I was 185th in the cue,” Elliott said.

Moments later, Elliott received a text message stating his estimated wait time was 600 minutes.

“I thought, ‘well, that’s 10 hours’, but then I refresh it, and it was down to four and a half, and so, I just kept checking, you know, throughout the day,” Elliott said. “Probably four-and-a-half hours from when I first texted them. I’m not sure, but I think that maybe just two offices now to service all the people just seems like it’s not enough.”

“For the last three months, it seems like every day is almost like the last day of the month for us,” Sedgwick County Treasurer Brandi Baily said.

Baily says both county tag offices are currently serving a combined 800 people per day — each office averaging 300 titles per day. Baily says both numbers are significant increases for the department since mid-March.

“There are so many cars being sold right now — that’s what’s really kind of baffled us is, where are all these cars coming from that are being sold?” Baily said.

Baily says a staffing shortage due to the pandemic is making the problem worse.

“We are currently down 15, about 15 employees,” Baily said.

Baily says Sedgwick County is taking steps to help with the holdup soon.

“Starting tomorrow, our lines will have a renewal only line starting July 1st. We will start having appointments available in the Cueless,” Baily said.

Resources:

For more information about reserving a spot to renew your tags in-person, online or via text, click here.

To learn more about how Kansas residents can renew vehicle registrations online, click here.

The Kansas Department of Revenue also encourages the use of mobile renewal with iKan. The iKan app can be downloaded from the Apple App or Google Play stores on your mobile device or by visiting iKan.ks.gov.