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Brownback announces task force to improve DMV offices

  • The Kansas City Star
  • Published Friday, Oct. 5, 2012, at 7:29 p.m.
  • Updated Saturday, Oct. 6, 2012, at 12:44 a.m.

Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback on Friday announced the formation of a task force that will examine better ways to operate the state’s motor vehicle offices.

The installation earlier this year of a new computer system has caused significant problems at some motor vehicle offices, including those in Johnson County.

As a result, offices fell far behind their usual pace and faced a huge backlog in processing driver’s licenses and motor vehicle licenses and other registrations.

Brownback announced that the task force will examine both private and public models that could point the way to better operations in the offices.

“The aim of the task force will be improving customer service and efficiency while recognizing the significant differences around the state,” Brownback said in a statement. “They will not only look at how our state Division of Vehicles operates, with county treasurers as agents of the state, but also examine best practices from around the country.”

Lee Harris, CEO of Cohen Esrey Real Estate Services, will be the chairman of the task force. The group is scheduled to meet Friday.

Brownback said the task force will study any ways to create a more efficient system.

“DMV challenges are nothing new, but as it examines these old challenges with fresh eyes, my task force is going to look for new solutions and new approaches,” Brownback said. “There is no predetermined outcome other than developing thoughtful recommendations that will make it easier for citizens and businesses to get their vehicle titles, license plates and driver’s licenses.”

In a legislative hearing last month, Revenue Secretary Nick Jordan said the system is improving, which can be seen in Johnson County offices.

But representatives in Wyandotte and Johnson counties said taxpayers were enduring long waits and costs were mounting for county governments, which need to pay for extra hours that employees must work.

To reach Glenn E. Rice, call 816-234-4341 or send email to grice@kcstar.com.

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