There is a motorcycle license tag shortage in Kansas, and Douglas County has been caught up in it.
The county has a backlog of 22 tags on order from the state, according to the Douglas County Treasurer's Office.
"Motorized bicycles and motorcycles have just exploded in popularity because gas prices are so high," said Rhonda Banks, director of vehicle records in the Douglas County office.
Other counties also have been hit by the shortage. In July, Douglas County gave a total of 15 motorcycle and motorized bicycle tags to Ellis and Riley counties because they were out or running low, Banks said.
When the motorcycle tags ran out about two weeks ago, the county went ahead and issued numbers to cycle owners. A new shipment of 50 tags was received on Thursday, but they do not match the numbers already issued. The new tags will go out, but motorcycle owners with the numbers already issued remain on a waiting list, Banks said. She said she is hoping for a new shipment next week.
The state has issued permission slips that allow owners to ride while waiting on tags.
The tag shortage developed when the state ordered its annual tag supply before gas prices reached their current levels. Officials didn't anticipate the increased demand.
Adding to the problem was a delay in the annual contract renewal with a Wichita company that makes the license tags. The contract had to undergo some changes, and it took longer than expected, said Bonnie Brown, administrative specialist with the office of the director of the Division of Motor Vehicles.