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Department of State to temporarily lay off 60 percent of staff

The Michigan Department of State (MDOS) will temporarily lay off more than 900 members of its staff starting Sunday, April 26. The layoffs will last two weeks, and could be extended.

“This is an extremely challenging time for our state, our state government, and our department,” said Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson. “This decision was not easy, but is necessary to responsibly steward taxpayer funds at this time.”

The Department is laying off all staff who are not able work full-time under the Stay Home, Stay Safe order. The majority of them are staff who typically work in Secretary of State branch offices, which are currently closed. All laid off MDOS employees, like all state employees who will be laid off at this time, will be automatically enrolled in the state’s unemployment system.

The layoffs will not impact MDOS services available to the public. Many driver and vehicle transactions can be carried out online, and automobile, motorcycle and watercraft renewals can be completed at self-service stations located in grocery stores across the state. A list of online services and stations is at Additionally, the Bureau of Elections remains open, as elections are considered a critical infrastructure sector in the Stay Home, Stay Safe order per the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

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