FAIRFIELD, Conn. — A bill proposed by state Reps. Brenda Kupchick and Laura Devlin could make it much easier to renew your driver's license and car registration in Connecticut.
The Republican lawmakers proposed to expand the use of contractors for the services provided by the state Department of Motor Vehicles.
The legislation, House Bill 6057: An Act Concerning the Department of Motor Vehicles and Service Agreements would push the DMV to enter into agreements with contractors to issue licenses and motor vehicle registrations and perform other services related to motor vehicles.
The proposal was prompted when the state DMV failed in its negotiations with AAA Northeast, which serves Fairfield and New Haven Counties, after the DMV elected to limit the license and ID card renewal services at branch locations to AAA members only.
Since January, those services are offered only at DMV branch locations.
This was due to the large increase of non-members using the service to avoid DMV lines at the AAA offices.
“It is no secret that DMV has struggled for years to provide good service for Connecticut drivers with wait times often lasting for hours. AAA service centers offered customers a much easier process, with shorter lines and wait times," said Kupchick, who represents Fairfield.
"The break between the state and AAA leaves Fairfield residents without the opportunity to use efficient service centers like AAA. The result is residents using DMV branch locations in Fairfield and New Haven counties will experience much longer wait times."
Devlin, a member of the Transportation committee, said, “Connecticut drivers should not pay the price because DMV and AAA could not come to an agreement."
"Our residents deserve better options; that's why this bill is important. It will alleviate additional pressure on OMV branch locations and ensure customers are provided with appropriate service," said Devlin, who represents Fairfield and Trumbull.
According to AAA Northeast, one of the challenges is that Connecticut licenses have is they must be REAL ID compliant, a federally secure standard that increases processing time by almost 50 percent.
The number of AAA office transactions has nearly doubled while the number of non-member transactions has increased from 17 percent five years ago to nearly 50 percent in 2016.