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Fri, 7/25/2014 - 1:01 pm - Jeremy Pool

Indiana lawmakers have been working on a new system for issuing special license plates, in an effort to reduce the number of such plates on roads across the state. In 2013, the Indiana Bureau of Motor Vehicles put a cap of 125 special group license plates, and decided to stop issuing new plates for a year, while trying to eliminate the flaws of the old system.

Now, in accordance with the new system, the BMV will issue two new specialty plates, celebrating the Indy 500 and Abraham Lincoln. Lawmakers have approved the request from the Indy 500 Festival to allow license plates that will recognize the popular race that is held each year in Indianapolis, along with the request from the Abraham Lincoln’s Boyhood Home - an organization that promotes the state's ties to Lincoln.

With the new system, Indiana lawmakers have a key role in deciding which group's request for a special plate will be approved, and will require all groups applying for a plate to show financial more »

Thu, 7/24/2014 - 12:32 pm - Paul Westbrook

Many U.S. states have agreements with various countries that allow citizens of those countries to exchange their foreign driver's licenses with a license from the state they have moved to. South Carolina has had such an agreement with France and Germany for a while now, and recently added another country on that list – South Korea.

The South Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles announced that it has agreed with South Korean authorities to a license reciprocity deal, allowing South Carolina residents to obtain a South Korean license without having to pass written and road skills tests, as well as South Korea citizens to exchange their licenses with ones issued by South Carolina. The DMV said that everyone who wants to exchange their license will have to meet the identification requirements that apply to all South Carolina residents when applying for a new driver's license. However, commercial drivers and motorcycle drivers are not included in the agreement.

“Our more »

Fri, 7/25/2014 - 1:03 pm - Jeremy Pool

The Indiana Bureau of Motor Vehicles has announced that it will launch a new program for restoration of driving privileges that is supposed to help driver's get their licenses reinstated much more easily.

Last week, commissioner Don Snemis said in a statement that the Indiana BMW has decided to reduce the fees drivers are required to pay to get their driving privileges restored. However, this so-called relief program will only apply to drivers who had their license suspended for driving without valid auto insurance, who will now be able to get their driving privileges back for half the reinstatement fee that used to be required so far.

According to Snemis, there are over 250,000 drivers in Indiana that owe about $118 million in reinstatement fees that are at least one year old, so this new program is part of the BMW's efforts for encouraging drivers to pay their fees, albeit reduced by 50 percent.

Drivers will have the chance to see if they qualify for the more »

Tue, 7/22/2014 - 1:25 pm - Paul Westbrook

In 2011, the Texas DMV rejected an application for a specialty license plate featuring the Confederate Flag submitted by the Texas Division of the Sons of Confederate Veterans. The group then filed a lawsuit against the Department of Motor Vehicles Board, which was dismissed last year.

But recently, the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans, ruled that Texas can not ban the sale of Confederate Flag, and that it has violated the applicants' First Amendment rights by rejecting the application. Even though the Texas board will appeal this decision, this means that car owners will likely get a chance to obtain one of these plates in the near future.

The plates feature the logo of the Sons of Confederate Veterans, which is essentially a Confederate Flag surrounded by the words “Sons of Confederate Veterans 1896”. Many people find these types of plates to be offensive, but Sons of Confederate Veterans themselves, consider them to be a symbol of commemoration to more »

Mon, 7/21/2014 - 11:37 am - Jeremy Pool

Recently, the Texas DMV started eliminating specialty license plates, that don't meet the criteria requiring a given license plate to have at least 200 buyers per year. Since the beginning of the elimination process, the DMV found that there are 87 plates that don't meet this requirement, and one of them was the Dallas Stars license plate.

These plates feature the logo of the popular NHL franchise, and can be acquired by anyone who is willing to pay the extra fee required for specialty plates. But, there is still hope for Dallas Stars fans who had intended to obtain one of these plates, since the DMV said that plates will have 12 months to meet the criteria of 200 buyers, starting December 1, which means that fans will have enough time to encourage drivers to apply for one of these plates and prevent them from being eliminated. However, the DMV also said that it plans to change the current requirements, and raise the number of buyers to 240.

In addition to Dallas more »

Fri, 7/18/2014 - 2:35 pm - Paul Westbrook

A few weeks ago, a bill that required mopeds to be registered was passed by North Carolina Senate. Now, the Senate approved another bill, that is supposed to require mopeds to carry insurance, in addition to registration. This proposed measure is part of the state's efforts to improve motorcycle safety, following a series of fatal accidents involving mopeds.

There are many opponents of this idea, who claim that the insurance requirement will only put an additional financial burden on working people, who use mopeds as their primary mode of transportation. Several senators said that the annual insurance costs for mopeds could be as high as $400.

If the bill is passed, the minimum insurance requirements will be: $30,000 for bodily injuries or death to one person in a single accident; $60,000 for bodily injuries or deaths to more than one person in a single accident; $25,000 for property damage occurring in a single accident.

Those who support the bill say that more »

Fri, 7/18/2014 - 7:53 am - Jeremy Pool

Last Friday, the DMV office in Pittsburgh in the Highlands Square Shopping Center closed early for renovation, and it won't be opened until late September. The DMV said that the office that is located on Buchanan Road will reopen on September 29, at 8 a.m.

Jessica Gonzalez, the DMV spokeswoman, said that the office needed renovation desperately, as it has never been renovated since it was first opened 30 years ago. She said that furniture needs to be replaced, new flooring must be put in place, and handicapped accessibility must be enhanced.

As far as the employees at the Pittsburgh office are concerned, all 34 of them will be sent to other DMV offices across the county, and will come back to Pittsburgh once the renovation is complete. The DMV advised customers to any of the following field offices: El Cerrito, Oakland, Tracy or Vallejo. Those who can not visit these offices, are advised to go online for certain DMV services, such as driver's license renewal, more »

Fri, 7/18/2014 - 7:53 am - Paul Westbrook

The Nebraska DMV has announced that it has decided to issue driver's licenses and ID cards that will have a Veteran's Designation displayed on them. This means that veterans will be able to obtain licenses or identification cards that display their status, which will be of great use to them. Nebraska started issuing licenses and ID cards with veteran designation on July 1.

The veteran designation on these documents will make it easier for veterans to prove their status at restaurants, stores, and other business, and get discounts and other benefits that many companies and government agencies provide for them. In addition to this, businesses will now be able to identify veterans who qualify for certain discounts more easily. States that don't issue veteran designations, require veterans to carry a separate document that proves their status.

In order to obtain this designation, veterans will have to register with the Nebraska Department of Veterans' Affairs, and more »

Fri, 7/18/2014 - 7:53 am - Jeremy Pool

In May 2014, the state Supreme Court in New Hampshire ruled that the ban on vanity plates the state's DMV had enacted was not specific enough, so the DMV has decided to impose a new rule that can be more easily enforced.

Over the past couple of months, the state hasn't been issuing new vanity plates, but the New Hampshire DMV is now lifting the ban, which means that car owners can start applying for vanity plates. In addition to that, the DMV will process the applications that were accumulated while the ban was in effect. The DMV said there were over 2,000 backlogged applications, and that it hopes to process all of them within 60 days.

The new rule that became effective a couple of days ago will make it easier for the DMV to determine which applications should be rejected, as it provides a specific list of subjects that vanity plates can not be associated with. The list of subjects that are prohibited include: intimate body parts or genitals; sexual or excretory more »

Fri, 7/18/2014 - 7:53 am - Paul Westbrook

In the past couple of weeks, as many as seven fatal accidents involving motorcyclists have occurred in Virginia, prompting the state DMV to alert those who own a motorcycle, a moped, or an all-terrain vehicle to remind them of the importance of safe driving practices and wearing protective gear.

State law enforcement authorities announced that during the Fourth of July weekend, four motorcyclist died in crashes, with an additional three riders losing their lives in accidents over the past weekend. DMV officials said that riders have to be more cautious and must make sure to wear protective clothing at all times - including helmets, gloves, and protective jackets. Additionally, the DMV urges motorcyclists to practice defensive driving, avoid speeding, pay extra attention to their surroundings and to the traffic signs and signals in order to avoid a collision.

Riders need to be aware they are a more vulnerable category of road users, and their risk of getting injured more »

 

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