205-minute wait at Sandy Springs drivers license office on last day of voter registration

SANDY SPRINGS, Ga. - Tuesday, Oct. 11 was the last day to register to vote in the state of Georgia, and long wait times were spotted at at least one drivers license office where people could obtain their state I.D. and register.

RELATED | Register to vote before tonight's deadline

Tuesday afternoon, the Georgia Department of Driver Services office on Roswell Road in Sandy Springs had a wait time of 205 minutes for those in line, according to the website. This wait time was logged 20 minutes before the DDS office was scheduled to close.  There was no way to know how many of the people in line were wanting to register to vote, and how many were in line for other DDS services.

One of the people in line wanting to register to vote was Regina Gaskin of Brookhaven.  She just moved to Georgia and was trying to get a Georgia I.D. so she could register.  But she was still in line when the office closed at 6:30, so she was not able to get an I.D., which meant she missed the midnight deadline to register to vote, on-line.

A spokesperson with the Georgia Department of Driver Services said there are resources available to avoid long wait times in the future.

"We apologize to her," said the spokesperson.  "We have worked with Secretary of State's Office and also disseminated info from DDS encouraging our customers to plan ahead, but understand that some can not. Our examiners should have been making lobby announcements today as to what the wait time was, and provided directions to the other locations who would have been able to process customers.... Sandy Springs is one of our busiest centers.  DDS is always closed on Monday so today we faced typical Tuesday crowding, plus we were closed on Saturday as well for Columbus Day which added even more folks today. Customers are encouraged to travel 8 miles to Marietta or about 15 to Kennesaw for better service. Kennesaw had a three-minute wait and Marietta had about 30. The best advice is check the DDS website before visiting and plan to avoid Tuesdays. The middle of the week the middle of the day is the best time to find optimal wait times. This week the delays at Sandy Springs are expected to continue as we rebound from the closing. The DDS website and Georgia DDS social media pages provide wait times.”

As it is, record numbers of Georgians have registered to vote in the November elections.

As of Tuesday afternoon, a few hours prior to the midnight deadline to register, 6,579,594 people had registered, according to the Georgia Secretary of State's Office.  

Compared to the number of people registered to vote in November, 2008, that is an increase of 14 percent.

It is an eight percent increase over the number of people registered to vote in November 2012.

The Secretary of State's Office was planning to release the final voter registration number, for the November, 2016 elections, soon after the midnight registration deadline.

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(© 2016 WXIA)


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