DMV searching for new vendor to process licenses

(WTNH / Tina Detelj)

(WTNH) — Last year, long lines and waits at most Department of Motor Vehicle branches across the state were the norm. People were frustrated with what seemed like a broken system. On Thursday in Wethersfield, it was a very different story.

“I came here last year. It was a nightmare and even when you called you couldn’t get through to anybody. This year it was definitely a lot faster. I was really quite impressed,” said Michelle Sleeper of Glastonbury.

DMV Commissioner Mike Bzdrya said software and computer glitches were to blame for most of the issues. They’ve been working hard to improve their reputation.

“We still do have some wait times, however down in the Fairfield and New Haven counties for our customers and we’re now looking to make improvements down there,” said Bzdyra.

Back in January, AAA Northeast stopped providing license renewal and other identification services for the DMV. The overflow of customers who would typically have gone to AAA are now adding to the lines at DMV branches like Hamden and Norwalk.

“It’s definitely been a factor. We’ve made adjustments with staffing and resources and equipment in the branches that were affected down there,” said Bzdyra.

But the DMV says they need to do more to alleviate the added inconvenience and are actively searching for a new partnership.

“It’s gonna be a situation where they’re going to providing the building space, their own employees and we would provide the equipment and the telecom lines, the training, background checks, those kinds of things,” said Bzdyra.

Bzdyra says the ideal match would be a vendor that has experience dealing with secure documents. They are accepting applications through the DMV website. Inquiries must be in by October 16, 2017 and they hope to have a contract in place by January of next year.

“I hear our customer frustrations, particularly in the New Haven and Fairfield counties and that’s why now we’re really moving aggressively as we can to try to find other partners to help us really help our customers and provide better customer service for them,” said Bzdyra.

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