DMV ready to take on voter registration despite lingering computer glitches

A line at the Wethersfield DMV on Tuesday, August 18, 2015. (WTNH/Mark Davis)

WETHERSFIELD, Conn. (WTNH) — After the new computer system went online in August of last year, wait times were averaging close to three hours at the Department Motor Vehicles.

As of Thursday, that “average” wait time is down to one hour, but because it’s an “average” some people still wait a lot longer.

Like Craig Pitts of Hartford, “Started about 9 o’clock this morning and I’m just now over and it’s what? 12:00-12:30” But Keith Garlik of Stratford had a completely different experience saying, “It was only, basically, about a half hour. It was a change of address and it was pretty quick.”

Dorie Gregory of Bristol has to come back again because she didn’t have all the necessary documents, “We gotta go through the process again. “About 45 minutes, plus another day, plus a 35-minute drive here.”

The new Commissioner, Michael Bzdyra, who has been on the job almost five months, says he knows it’s not good enough and that there are still glitches.

Related Content: Connecticut DMV announces major reorganization

“There are some bugs in the system that we’re working with 3M on and still holding their feet to the fire, so it’s definitely some of those issues,” said Bzdyra.

DMV has found that about one-third of the people in line don’t need to be because they can do what they need to do online. The agency is still planning a media campaign to explain that, which could cut wait times another 15 minutes.

Next week DMV will take on another computerized task; voter registration. Adds Bzdyra, “That information will automatically prepopulate from the driver licensing system to the voter registration system.

The commissioner says they’ve tested that function and are ready to go and that ‘drive only’ licenses, the ones for undocumented residents, are definitely not included in this function. Despite a budget cut like every other state agency, the DMV did not layoff any employees for obvious reasons.

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