Easy fixes for the NJ MVC’s problems (Opinion)
This morning, Assemblyman Jon Bramnick sent us a video that included a stark portrayal of the situation at the Springfield MVC. He stood in front of huge lines and called out the Murphy administration to fix it, saying that in person voting was far less dangerous than the situation at MVC offices throughout the state.
I’m not sure what allowed me to believe that the whole MVC post-COVID-19-shutdown mess had been fixed. I suppose it was the fact that people stopped calling our New Jersey 101.5 Dennis & Judi show to complain about it. That’s what happens in New Jersey. We get used to messed up things and then they all of a sudden become just part of life here. So the Springfield situation surprised us.
As soon as we mentioned this, the phones lit up with stories of long lines, testy employees, and just general chaos surrounding the MVC. It occurred to us there had to be a better way. And what would be so difficult about implementing a couple of new ideas that aren’t even so revolutionary?
Note: MVC Chief Administrator Sue Fulton, in a guest column published after this piece by Judi Franco, says many of the solutions Judi advocates are already in place — including online vehicle registrations and renewals for most drivers, newly approved longer times before a license photo must be retaken, and advance by-appointment scheduling for road tests.
For instance, it’s 2020. Why isn’t every single thing, every form and every questionnaire, processed online? Unless you have to physically drop something off or pick something up from the MVC (and even then, we have the US Postal Service!) or someone needs a road test, why should you have to wait in line at all?
Going online would definitely streamline the process of so many of the MVC’s requirements. All licenses and registrations should be able to be renewed online. And don’t forget we always have the aforementioned U.S. Postal Service in a pinch. Worried about new photos for licenses? Extend the amount of time between photo updates. How much do our faces change after we hit adulthood anyway? And if you do need a new photo, why can’t you run to CVS like you do for passports and scan in the photo and then send it online? The same for the 47 forms of ID you need to send in.
Come on, New Jersey. We can do better. Is it because the MVC is a government agency that they simply just can’t get their crap together?
The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Judi Franco. Any opinions expressed are Judi's own.