Beginning this month, county residents will get a different type of notification for renewing vehicle tags.

The Tennessee Department of Revenue will now send postcards to motor vehicle registrants, which should reduce state mailing expenses by about $500,000.

“They’re changing it from like a full-page letter that folds in three to a simple postcard to make it easier, and it’s definitely more cost-effective,” Carrie McKelvey, Loudon County clerk, said. “It will save the state as far as providing envelopes, stamps and just much more cost-effective for them on their end.”

Tennessee joins other states who send postcards, including Kentucky, Maine, Montana, Mississippi, North Carolina, Virginia and Wyoming.

“This is a more efficient, effective way to remind citizens about their upcoming registration renewals,” David Gerregano, Department of Revenue commissioner, said in a press release. “It’s also a good way for the state to save money without sacrificing any services.”

Although it doesn’t affect her office, McKelvey said she wanted to get out information about the change so residents didn’t mistake the postcard for “junk mail.”

“The good thing about it is they have put different ways on there that you can renew your tags, so it’ll make people more aware that you can do it online, you can mail it in, you can do it on the app,” McKelvey said. “It gives all the different alternatives as opposed to coming in face-to-face.

“... It makes the lines quicker so we don’t have as many people coming in,” she added. “It’s easier for the customer, especially with COVID. You can do it from home and not have to be exposed. It is a time-saver online. You submit it and it’s processed the next day. I mean it’s a very quick turnaround time.”

McKelvey hopes to install a kiosk later this year.

“We were working on that before COVID hit and things kind of got pushed to the back burner, but yeah, we’re definitely working on that,” she said.

“... We’re still working on a location that would be easy and accessible for everyone. There again it would be accessible after hours, so when we’re closed you can still get your tags. I hope to put it in a central location — a Walmart or a grocery store, something like that. Still trying to fine tune those plans.”