September 24, 2020

DMV Announces Reorganiza​tion of Services – Closure of Old Saybrook Branch

DMV is preparing an extensive reorganization, including the shuttering of some offices, to both meet imposed budget constraints and provide core public services amid these financially difficult times.

Department officials Wednesday notified employees in four full-service branch offices that state services will end by August 11 in those locations.  In addition, the agency is planning sweeping changes to regionalize various services so that fewer employees can help larger numbers of customers.

The agency also will be broadening services provided at the 15 AAA locations around the state. At present AAA does photo license renewals and under the reorganization plan they will do other license services.

“This is the direction we must move because of the very severe fiscal constraints the state faces,” said DMV Commissioner Melody A. Currey. “Most definitely there will be affects on customers, but our goal is also to maintain the core services we provide to the millions of people statewide,” she added.

The department’s reductions amount to 123 layoffs, 28 eliminated vacant positions, 10 retirements, 28 positions now paid through emissions funds and 2 positions paid general funds for the boating services.

Under DMV’s reorganization plan, the following changes will occur:

  • By August 11, branch offices in Old Saybrook, Danbury, Enfield and New Britain will close
  • By August 11, the Putnam Satellite office as well as the photo license centers in Derby, Middletown and Milford will close.
  • DMV is planning to regionalize driver license testing that will require people statewide to go to offices.
  • DMV is planning to have large-scale license-permit testing processes where 30 or more people would be tested at once and overseen by agency official.
  • AAA offices, which now do photo-license renewals, are expected to add renewals of DMV-issued identification cards as well as issue duplicate licenses. Time schedules for these additions are under discussion.
  • As part of the nearly 123-person reduction, DMV will streamline its management structure and this will include top-level managers overseeing major customer service and policy areas.
  • DMV is also consolidating services to provide access to online registration services to automobile dealers without it.  Many now bring registration paperwork to branch offices. By September 1 those without online access will be able to take the paperwork to one of 25 “hubs” around the state where online access is available. This will help to redirect resources in branch offices to core customer services.
  • DMV has beginning July 1 started enforcing an existing policy requiring all – both late and current — renewals to be mailed. Although some exceptions were made in the past, the change is related to streamlining service. Customers bringing a registration renewal to an office will be given a pre-addressed envelope for mailing the registration to DMV’s processing uni
  • Beginning July 5 DMV eliminated the second knowledge test required of 16- and 17-year-old drivers after they completed their training.  The first 25-question knowledge test is given at the beginning of the licensing process and the second 25-question test at the end, with more than 90 percent passing it. Eliminating it allows for a reduced work staff to focus on other customers.
  • The Department will be eliminating its mediation services for customers who file a dealer or repairer complaint that does not allege a specific violation of state law or regulations.  These customers will be advised to file their complaint in small-claims court. Layoffs will reduce the complaint staff from 5 people to 1 person.

Commissioner Currey said that department staff is reviewing further ways to streamline and make any quick technological changes to aid efficiency.