The Michigan Department of Natural Resources will take its licensing system offline for three days as part of an ongoing upgrade.
The DNR’s Retail Sales System (RSS), the system it uses to sell hunting, fishing, snowmobile, off-road vehicle and other licenses, will be offline from Monday, Feb. 18, at 11: 30 p.m. through Thursday, Feb. 21, at 1 p.m.
This will affect license sales at retail stores, as well as online license sales through the DNR’s e-license website.
“While there is never an ideal time to take the system offline, we have planned this upgrade to take place during a time when it would have the least impact,” said Denise Gruben, manager of the DNR’s Licensing and Reservations. “We are at the end of the 2012 license year, and most people have already purchased their 2012 licenses, most of which are valid through March 31, 2013.”
The system upgrades include a complete change of the behind-the-scenes operating system and servers.
“Changes in technology and suggestions from license agents – the businesses that sell licenses at the counter – prompted these much-needed upgrades,” she said.
Those who have not yet purchased for the 2012 license year and wish to participate in hunting and fishing during the specific offline time period are encouraged to plan ahead and buy beforehand.
Customers who wish to buy snowmobile permits during the 2.5-day offline period can buy preprinted permits at many snowmobile dealerships. The Michigan Snowmobile Association website includes a list of license agents who carry the preprinted snowmobile permits. Many of the dealerships also carry the preprinted ORV permits. Customers may also call a DNR operation service center, field office or customer service at 517-373-1204 for help finding a nearby dealer.
Sales of 2012 items will resume at 1 p.m. on Feb. 21, 2013.
The scheduled down time is part of a multi-year, multi-phase system upgrade that included modernization of the retail sales equipment last year. Gruben said these system upgrades will pave the way for system enhancements that will determine how quickly and efficiently license agents sell to the sporting public. Some improvements will take place on March 1, while others are planned for the summer and for the 2014 license year.
The DNR is sending materials to the license agents to prepare for the down time and system upgrades.