On Friday, Madison County Clerk Kenny Barger was faced with his worst fear since the pandemic began.

The day when one of his 27 employees tested positive for the coronavirus. Because of this, his office will be closed until Jan. 29.

"It has been a long time coming," Barger said Friday about the positive result.

Now, the office is closed for a week, and all employees are being tested.

The confirmation of a case is something Barger has dreaded for a long time.

After getting through two elections during a pandemic and just re-opening their office to in-person services last week, the clerk said this positive test was likely inevitable. 

But, he has no idea how his office will recover after business resumes.

"This is going to be really difficult to overcome," he told The Register. "We will have thousands of renewals, alone. ...This will be like nothing we have ever seen before."

Despite that, Barger and his office will resume in-person services for licenses, renewals, and passports by appointment beginning on Jan. 29. They will have a limited staff addressing services virtually.

He asks for everyone's patience and understanding in the meantime.

Reach Taylor Six at 624-6695 or follow her on Twitter at @TaylorSixRR.

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