PLANO, Texas — Live in Collin County and need a new passport? Well, according to a statement from the district clerk, you won't be able to apply for one with the County Passport Offices after an "indefinite suspension."
In a statement released Thursday morning, District Clerk Lynne Finley said the county's district clerk office has been barred from handling new applications for an "indefinite" period "over conflicting federal agency investigation results."
The Dallas Passport Agency ordered the suspension in late December.
"Ms. Finley says that despite her office’s cooperation and being cleared of any wrongdoing or procedural missteps, both of her passport offices have been shut down, and at least four employees’ jobs are now at risk," read the statement from the district clerk.
According to the district clerk, the suspension is in connection to a five-year, "multi-agency criminal investigation relating to passport fraud over documents dating back almost a decade."
"After an interview with two of Ms. Finley’s clerks and checking the office’s procedures, DSS agents exonerated Ms. Finley and her staff," the statement continued. "In January, the DSS provided the Bureau of Consular Affairs with findings that exonerated the Collin County offices from their on-going investigation."
However, Finley claims the Dallas Passport Agency "retaliated" against her office because "she pointed out flaws in that agency’s own procedures during the DSS investigation."
The office says they handled nearly 40,000 applications in 2018 and collected more than $1 million in handling fees for the county at the clerk's two walk-in locations in Plano and McKinney.
So with their indefinite suspension, what does that mean for those looking to apply for new passports in the county? If you're a first-time applicant, you still have to apply for a passport in person. You can do that at selected post office locations, which you can find here.
DMV.org lists the items you'll need, including a $110 money order and acceptable color passport photo, on their site.