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For Immediate Release
December 16, 2003
Contact: Dan A. Gwadosky

Topsham Launches Rapid Renewal Service
Secretary of State Encourages More Municipalities to Get Online

The Town of Topsham has launched Rapid Renewal, the Department of the Secretary of State's online service for the renewal of motor vehicle registrations.   Residents of Topsham now join the hundreds of thousands of Maine citizens who can renew their vehicles registrations online, at anytime of the day, from the comfort and convenience of their homes or offices.   Rapid Renewal is a groundbreaking e-commerce service that allows citizens to conduct business with municipal government and state government in one seamless online transaction.   The service has gained national acclaim and has been enthusiastically embraced by Mainers.   While municipal participation in Rapid Renewal is optional, the service has quickly grown to include 54 municipalities, and more than 50,000 transactions have been processed.   The Secretary of State, encouraged by this success has set a new goal for the program.

“This past year the success of the Rapid Renewal program has exceeded expectations, marking the launching of its 50 th municipality and it's 50,000 th transaction,” stated Secretary of State Dan A. Gwadosky.   “By the end of next year, I would like to see Rapid Renewal Service made available to at least 50% of all Maine citizens.   That will require more municipalities to follow the leadership of towns like Topsham.”

The 54 municipalities currently offering Rapid Renewal comprise 38% of the Maine 's population.   The service is being offered by municipalities from York County to Aroostook County , with populations ranging from Caswell's 326 citizens to Portland 's 64,249 citizens.   Through Rapid Renewal citizens are able to renew their vehicle registrations and pay their municipal excise taxes online, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.   It's quick, and it's easy.

“Offering Rapid Renewal makes sense for large and small municipalities alike.   While we have set a target of reaching 50% of Mainers by the end of next year, we ultimately hope every municipality will decide to offer Rapid Renewal and every citizen will be able to enjoy the benefits of this convenient service,” stated Gwadosky.   “I am confident that as more and more towns and cities see the positive experiences their neighboring municipalities and residents are having with Rapid Renewal, they too will opt to offer this service.”

Rapid Renewal may be accessed through or www.soson l ine.or g , the Department of the Secretary of State's site for online services.   Rapid Renewal is currently available in A rundel, Bangor, Bowdoinham, Brewer, Brunswick, Buxton, Cape Elizabeth, Casco, Caswell, Chelsea, China, Corinna, Dover-Foxcroft, Fairfield, Falmouth, Farmington, Fort Fairfield, Fort Kent, Gorham, Gray, Hermon, Holden, Jay, Jefferson, Kennebunk, Lewiston, Limestone, Madison, North Yarmouth, Norway, Old Orchard Beach, Palermo, Patten, Phippsburg, Portland, Raymond, Richmond, Saco, Sangerville, Scarborough, South Portland, Standish, Topsham, Vassalboro , Waterville, Wells, Westbrook, Westport, Windham, Winterport, Winthrop, Wiscasset, Yarmouth, and York.

Municipal officials who would like more information about participating in Rapid Renewal and offering this service to residents in their community may contact John Smith in the Department of the Secretary of State at 626-8400 or by email at