Department of Motor Vehicles
ROBERT M. WARD, Commissioner
William Ramirez, Deputy Commissioner
Established - 1917
Statutory authority - Title 14: CGS
Central office – 60 State Street,
Wethersfield, CT 06161
Number of employees – 690 (Full-Time)
Recurring operating expenses, 2008-2009 - $ 58.8 million
Organizational structure – The Office of the Commissioner, Bureau of Administration, Bureau of Customer Operations, Bureau of Driver Regulation, Bureau of Legal Services and Bureau of Vehicle and Business Regulation.
The mission of the Connecticut Department of Motor Vehicles is to promote and advance public Safety, Security and Service through the regulation of drivers, their motor vehicles and certain motor vehicle-related businesses. A natural extension of this mission, is the agency’s vision to continuously evolve as an organization; employing new and innovative measures and strategies to improve services to the public; enhance the security of credentials; encourage staff development and satisfaction; streamline agency procedures; and, foster clear and timely communication. In order to assimilate this vision the agency has identified and is working to actively promote an environment that embraces the following Core Values: Ethics and Integrity; Respect; Honesty and Trust; Dedication and Commitment; Innovation; Communications; Accountability; Diversity; Professionalism; Leadership; Teamwork; and, Best Practices.
§ Ensuring highway safety through enforcement of the statutes regarding motor vehicles and their operation.
§ Issuing identity-related credentials according to stringent guidelines to assure the integrity of such for individuals, motor vehicle operators and their vehicles, and for companies involved in vehicle-related businesses.
§ Collecting revenue, most of which goes to the Special Transportation Fund for the construction and maintenance of highways.
§ Maintaining records on operators, vehicles and revenues and making such available to authorized persons and agencies.
§ Imposing sanctions on those who violate motor vehicle laws and regulations.
§ Tougher teen driving laws recommended by the Governor’s Task Force on Teen Safe Driving took effect on August 1, 2008. An initial review of crash data shows a drop in fatalities caused by teen drivers during the first five months following the enactment of these more restrictive teen driving laws. A significant drop in convictions for teen driving-related offenses have also followed, but need more study. The success of this campaign to raise awareness and enact laws that address this critical issue is the culmination of DMV’s efforts to educate the teens, parents, law enforcement, driving schools and the general public through its Center for Teen Safe Driving established under the auspices of DMV’s Corporate and Public Relations Division.
§ DMV continued to make improvements through its Strategic Vision and Plan that is a blueprint for goals, objectives, and major initiatives to improve DMV services. The top priority is the Connecticut Integrated Vehicle and Licensing System (CIVLS) Modernization Program. This multi-million dollar, multi-year initiative proposes sweeping changes and improvements to DMV’s registration and licensing administrative processes so that there’s more timely information easily available, more reliable and accurate information and greater efficiency in service.
§ The DMV is also preparing to enter the Federal Department of Justice’s (DOJ) National Motor Vehicle Title Information System (NMVTIS). When the initial steps are completed by late 2009, DMV will have a greater ability to make checks before titling on whether the vehicle is stolen or fraudulently misrepresents its condition. This will bolster DMV’s already strong reputation in the area of integrity in the titling process. DMV has recently received a federal grant to fund costs to participate in this program.
§ In the last year, DMV has undertaking a number of customer service-related initiatives, such as the acceptance of credit and debit card payments for certain services as well as online internet renewal of registrations for customers without unpaid parking tickets, unpaid taxes, or registration suspensions.
§ DMV introduced a newly designed driver’s license with state-of-the-art security features to minimize the risk of counterfeiting and to deter identity theft. It came in part because of technology upgrades for in the license-issuing systems. It further enhances the security and integrity of the credential.
§ DMV continues to seek and implement initiatives that will provide it with more direct electronic and automated access to other governmental and stakeholder entities’ information systems. This includes:
§ The daily exchange of information from the Criminal Justice Information System’s (CJIS) Offender Based Tracking System to screen unsuitable applicants from receiving a public passenger endorsement and monitoring those who have one..
§ Electronic receipt of judicial information on court re-opener data for people whose driving records have a charge of failure to appear.
§ Staff development is of paramount importance in order to assist each employee in reaching his/her potential. In addition, the agency sees a need to increase training opportunities to prepare its staff to meet the major challenges presented by new technology and increasing federal and state requirements to compiling or recording information. Like many other state agencies, a significant number of experienced managers and staff have retired from DMV. DMV’s Organizational and Staff Development Division continues to address:
· Training on entry and experienced levels
· Leadership Development
· Succession Planning
§ Registered motor vehicles in Connecticut – 3.03 million
§ Licensed operators in Connecticut - 2.57 million
§ Revenue collected - $390.2 million during Fiscal Year 2008/2009
§ The DMV Internet website, http://www.ct.gov/dmv, logged over 2.5 million visits this year and was visited by as many as 70,000 customers weekly.
§ Last year DMV issued more than 120,000 notices of pending license and/or registration suspension to almost 57,000 to motorists who had failed to appear in court because of a traffic violation.
§ More than 25,000 operators with multiple traffic violations were required to enroll in an Operator Retraining Program (ORP) to re-educate them about safe driving practices and attitudes. Three approved vendors present ORP sessions at more than 65 training locations throughout the state.
§ During the fiscal year just ended, Commercial Vehicle Safety Division staff conducted 16,000 roadside commercial vehicle inspections, another 20,000 were scheduled and completed at DMV Inspection Lanes and slightly more than 10,000 Student Transportation Vehicles were inspected.
§ Approximately 6,000 credentials (licenses and identity cards) were revoked because increased use of facial-recognition technology found people illegally having more than one.
§ DMV’s Legal Services Bureau oversaw in excess of 4,500 Administrative Per Se hearings conducted last year resulting in license suspensions for operators arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol. In an effort to deter DUI offenders, the Ignition Interlock Device (IID) Program, under the purview of the Driver Regulation Bureau, was instituted for persons convicted of a second DUI offense who have completed a one-year license suspension. 350 operators have installed this device in their vehicles and are prevented from driving it unless they pass a breathalyzer test.
§ The Medical Review Unit received approximately 2,500 referrals from law enforcement agencies, physicians and others about motorists exhibiting medical, mental and/or physical impairments.
§ DMV has also marshaled various internal resources to explore compliance with the Federal Real ID in an effort to combat fraud and reinforce the integrity of the driver licenses and non-driver identification cards issued. Using upgraded license production equipment and processes, a digital image of every license applicant is carefully examined for minute differences that would prompt further review to ensure the exact identity of the person who name and address is listed on the credential.
§ DMV offers 10 full-service branch offices, four satellite offices (full-service with limited hours), and three photo-license centers. In addition, DMV teams up with 16 AAA offices for customer convenience in license renewals. DMV began offering customers the opportunity to walk in and take the knowledge test to earn learners’ permits and drivers’ licenses, thus eliminating the need to make an appointment.
§ As the lead state agency for commercial vehicle safety, DMV’s Commercial Vehicle Safety Division (CVSD) works diligently to reduce the number and severity of accidents involving commercial motor vehicles and hazardous materials carriers through consistent, uniform and effective programs. To augment the daily safety inspections conducted along state highways, CVSD sought and obtained a federal grant to fund additional enforcement activities in high crash areas focusing on commercial vehicle driver behavior and safety belt violations. In addition, other measures such as Motor Coach destination inspections performed to ensure the safety of passengers as well as a cooperative tri-state enforcement operation, have contributed to Connecticut having the fifth lowest commercial motor vehicle fatality rate per 100 million miles traveled. CVSD also applied for and was awarded a “High Priority” grant from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) to purchase laptop computers and associated equipment, enabling the electronic upload of driver/vehicular inspection reports. This initiative when completed next year, will significantly improve data quality, timeliness and efficiency.
§ DMV is firmly committed to abiding by its Affirmative Action Plan which has been approved by the Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities and states in part that our agency goal is: ‘the complete and equitable participation of all protected class members in the work force.’ As a matter of policy, the DMV does not knowingly conduct business with any contractor, subcontractor or material supplier that discriminates against anyone.
§ Technological improvement efforts continue to focus on DMV’s infrastructure including the replacement of out-dated personal computers and related software as well as undertaking a major network upgrade in conjunction with the Department of Information Technology (DOIT) for significantly increasing network and telecommunications capacity for each of the Branches and the AAA offices.
§ The upkeep and maintenance of DMV facilities continue to merit top priority. As part of the ongoing plans to improve working conditions and customer convenience, office renovations which combined licensing and registration services at our main office in Wethersfield were completed. Repairs and improvements were also made at other branch office locations to enhance both working conditions for staff and accessibility and convenience for the public.
§ The Public Endorsement Review Unit (PERU) exercises strict oversight of the application process for individuals seeking employment as drivers of school children on school buses and smaller student transportation vehicles. This involves conducting extensive background checks on these individuals.
§ The Vehicle Emissions Inspection Program continues its substantial efforts for the improvement of Connecticut’s air quality with over 2 million vehicles tested during the past two years.
§ The Dealer and Leasing On-Line registration programs have proven very successful. Annually, about 210,000 on-line registrations transactions are performed, substantially reducing the number of in-person customer visits to branch offices.
§ The DMV recognizes affirmative action and equal employment opportunity as priority objectives. To foster a better understanding of these principles and instill them agency-wide, DMV established a Diversity Management Council, to support and promote these goals through educational and cultural activities.