Lawmakers say MVC leaving NJ towns holding bill for reopening chaos
The chaos has eased somewhat at New Jersey Motor Vehicle Agency offices after they were overrun by huge mobs during a frantic reopening this month. But wait times are still long, crowds are large and congestion continues on roads near MVC offices.
Assemblyman Kevin Rooney, R-Bergen, believes the situation was mishandled from the start, so he’s sponsoring legislation that aims to make sure municipalities are not stuck paying for the additional law enforcement work.
“Now we have to have our local police departments offer security, crowd control, traffic control,” he said. “It’s time that the Murphy administration reimbursed these towns for that added expense.”
Rooney said several municipalities have stationed officers at MVC offices overnight to maintain order.
“It’s unfair to the residents, it’s unfair to the businesses,” he said. “And more importantly, it’s unfair to the municipalities that have to bear another cost for something that should have been corrected over two months ago.”
Assemblywoman Aura Dunn, R-Morris, a co-sponsor of the payback measure, said it’s outrageous that towns have been forced to deal with a wide range of problems including traffic management and portable toilets.
She said Gov. Phil Murphy should have made sure the MVC had a workable plan before the agency offices were opened.
Rooney, Dunn and Assemblywoman Serena DiMaso, R-Monmouth have also introduced other MVC bills recently.
A4326 calls for the MVC to designate and appoint examiners that are licensed to operate drivers’ schools to conduct the road test required to obtain a driver’s license.
A4327 requires the MVC to permit a licensed motor vehicle dealer to facilitate the issuance of a certificate of ownership and certificate of registration for a used motor vehicle that is purchased by private sale if the vehicle is to be registered in New Jersey.
A4306 requires the MVC to grant driving privileges to people who have the minimum hours of supervised driving during the public health emergency without the need to take a road test if MVC facilities close.
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You can contact reporter David Matthau at David.Matthau@townsquaremedia.com