Minnesotans in the process of renewing their vehicle tabs can expect to wait longer for them to arrive, with current supplies of the distinctive stickers delayed.
The Minnesota Department of Vehicle Services announced at the weekend that there will be a delay in the sending out of tabs and cab cards, which is due to a dearth of supplies from sticker-maker 3M.
This, it says, is a result of not only supply chain issues, but also the knock-on impact from an explosion and a fire at one of its supplier's plants.
It notes that the delay will only effect customers who renew by mail or online, and not those who renew in person, who will get their tabs immediately.
The DVS says it's been working with 3M and its printing vendor, MINNCOR Industries, which is an agency within the Minnesota Department of Corrections that uses inmate labor to print the stickers.
3M has told the department that its next shipment of stock will arrive Christmas Eve, with more deliveries to follow in early and mid-January, while MINNCORR will operate "24 hours a day" to print the tabs and cab cards once supplies arrive.
The department says that there have already been 52,000 online and mailed-in tab renewals submitted for January, with a further 320,000 expected by the end of January.
The DVS says it's reaching out to state police departments about the problems, and while police will have a record if someone has renewed their tabs but haven't received them yet, it is advising people who renew online should keep a receipt of it in their vehicle.
Those whose tabs expire in January have till Jan. 31 to renew and till Feb. 10 to display their new tabs. The DVS says it doesn't expect the supply issue to be a problem for February renewals.