DMV: Residents fed up with long lines, travel |

DMV: Residents fed up with long lines, travel

J.K. Perry

EAGLE COUNTY – Alan Holub waited 45 minutes to renew his driver’s license in Frisco before being turned away.Five minutes before the drivers license facility closed, Holub was told he’d have to come back because employees are not allowed to work overtime, he said.”As I got ready to leave, I said, ‘I wish I could do that to my customers,'” said Holub, who owns Shade Tree Auto Body in Minturn. “Certainly it’s a frustrating situation to have to drive that far and do that.”Holub, like other Eagle County residents, is fed up waiting in line and traveling over Vail Pass to the Frisco office. The other option is to go west through the canyon to Glenwood Springs. Residents want a local office to get a drivers license.”For heaven’s sake, at least there could be one in Avon,” Holub said. There was a driver’s license office in Avon until a few years ago, when it was closed during a round of budget cuts. “Our population here in the valley is just booming like nobody’s business,” Eagle-Vail resident Barbara Richardson said.A recent amendment to the Colorado budget proposed in the Senate symbolized the frustration of people all over the state. Sen. Andy McElhany, a Republican from Colorado Springs, supported an amendment to allocate $844,000 to the Department of Revenue, under which the Division of Motor Vehicles operates.If incorporated into the budget, the money would be earmarked to reopen closed drivers license facilities. As of Wednesday, the bill was in conference committee and hanging in limbo, McElhany said.”I don’t know where it stands,” he said. “I think it’s holding on by a thread.”The four Democrats on the committee – comprised of three Senators and three Representatives – are likely to reject the amendment, McElhany said.”It doesn’t make any sense to me politically,” he said.But if passed, the amendment is moot, said Roni White, program director for the Drivers License Section. The $844,000 would have come from the vehicle department’s existing budget. If two facilities were reopened, two existing ones would have to be closed, she said.”It didn’t allocate more money, it just spent money out of the current appropriation to open more offices,” she said.White pegged Eagle County as an area in need of reopening its drivers license facility. The old office, which closed in 2002, was in the Avon Center next door to Bob’s Place.In the time since the facility closed, the population has grown, resulting in the need for reopening, White said.”It’s not a little quiet rural area anymore,” White said.Staff Writer J.K. Perry can be reached at 949-0555, ext. 14622, or linesTips to avoid long waits at the drivers license facility:• Don’t go on Mondays. The facilities average two-and-a-half times as much business on Mondays. • Friday is the second busiest day. • Wednesdays are best, before lunch. • Customers renewing licenses can avoid the wait altogether by renewing online at Division of Motor Vehicles

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