To the masses who have been crying out asking when the newly renovated drive-thru payment window at Harker Heights City Hall is going to open, city officials said Wednesday that the renovated drive-thru is now open and has been since Monday.

“Those who are beginning to discover that the new window is open and that the temporary drive-thru at the library has been closed are expressing that they are happy with the results of the expanded pay-as-you-go features,” Alberta Barrett, finance director, said.

In the next few days, a kiosk will also be operational that will provide even more payment services.

The kiosk, which is similar to an ATM, will feature a place where customers can drive-thru 24/7 and make payments to the city such as utilities and court fines. “Residents who want to come take care of business after 5 p.m. can now do so at the kiosk,” Barrett, said.

“Customers can also use different methods of payment,” said City Manager David Mitchell. Cash and credit cards will be accepted and the kiosk will give change as well.

“It’s a very robust system compared to a kiosk of the past,” Mitchell said.

There is still a drop box available at the drive-thru in addition to other payment features, including payment online by phone, automated response system or using the website to make payments which carries a fee.

Barrett and Mitchell said that the actual drive-thru went through some widening and shape changes, making the entrance much easier to maneuver in.

Mitchell said, “We still have a lot of customers who like to come inside to make their payments at the counter because they like that one-on-one approach that gives them a chance to talk with our people while they’re doing business. We welcome that, too.”

Annette Hamman, a customer service clerk who works the drive-thru window, said, “People are extremely happy that the window is now open. Our hours are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday. The added space at this end of the building has made my job easier as well.”

Residents can continue to drop off payments at Extraco Bank, the Harker Heights H-E-B and Harker Heights Wal-Mart store.

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