WASHINGTON (dpa-AFX) - The US Department of State has said it intends to raise the passport execution fee by $10, from $25 to $35.
The Department of State Thursday published a notice of proposed rule-making that notifies the public of the intention to change the passport execution fee.
The passport execution fee is applicable to all first-time passport applicants and certain other applicants who must apply in person, such as minors under the age of 16. Passport execution involves the submission of a passport application in person to a passport acceptance agent for identity verification and document review. The majority of these passport applications are executed before a U.S. Postal Service passport acceptance agent, and many are executed before state and local government officials as well. Approximately 10 percent of in-person passport applications are executed before a Department of State official.
The Department of State generally sets consular fees at an amount calculated to achieve recovery of the costs to the U.S. government of providing the consular service. The Department of State's Bureau of Consular Affairs determines the cost of each service through a Cost of Service Model. The most recent update to the Cost of Service Model showed that the costs associated with passport execution were higher than the current fee of $25. A similar study conducted by the U.S. Postal Service came to the same conclusion. In both cases, the studies showed that the cost of the passport execution service was close to $35. The Department said it seeks to recover, as far as possible, the cost of providing consular services through the collection of consular fees.
The proposed fee change was published in the Federal Register as a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on September 19, 2016. Comments will be accepted until November 18, 2016, 60 days after the Notice's publication. At that time, the Department will consider the public comments, and the published final rule will include the Department's response to relevant comments received. The passport execution fee change will take effect at some point no earlier than 30 days after publication of the fee change as a Final Rule in the Federal Register.
The fees for all other consular services will remain the same.
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