Contact Information:
Paula Sollami Covello
Mercer County Clerk
609-989-6465
psollamicovello@mercercounty.org

Mercer County Clerk Paula Sollami Covello announced today that her office had processed over 600 US passport applications, a significant rise, the week before a federal passport fee increase went into effect. The US Department of State implemented its fee hikes on July 13.  Federal passport fees now require adults applying for their first passport to pay up to $135, a rise from the past fee of $100, and up to $105 for a minor’s passport, up from the previous fee of $85.

The Clerk’s Office anticipated that there might be a rush of passport applications from residents wanting to beat the fee hikes and was fully prepared to assist the residents of Mercer County.  “We re-assigned and increased our staffing to meet the anticipated demand at both of our offices in Trenton and in Hamilton Township,” she said.

Sollami Covello noted that despite the federally mandated passport fee increases, the County’s charge for passport processing would remain steady and not increase from its current amount. On behalf of Mercer County constituents, Clerk Sollami Covello had opposed the federal passport fee increases last March in a letter to federal representatives she co-authored with the Union County Clerk. Sollami Covello stated that, “Raising fees could actually deter citizens from applying for their US Passport and hinder opportunities for individual and families to travel outside of US boundaries”.  “Unfortunately, the fee hike was implemented when families are already struggling to make ends meet,” she added.