Idaho DMV to update vehicle registration and titling system in October

OCTOBER 21 UPDATE
The Idaho DMV team is working all hours to refine the state’s new vehicle registration and titling computer system. Customers at county offices are currently experiencing extended wait times. Please remember, many DMV services are available ONLINE at dmv.idaho.gov. We encourage you to skip the line and renew online 24/7.

OCTOBER 1
Idaho’s vehicle registration and titling system will operate on a new computer system this month.

It’s the next phase of the Idaho Division of Motor Vehicles’ modernization project, moving from a 1980s mainframe to an updated GEM system. Statewide upgrades are planned over the Columbus Day weekend (Oct. 10-12) to minimize impacts to the public at county DMV offices.

“We anticipate a smooth transition,” DMV Administrator Alberto Gonzalez said. “State and county agents are testing and training now in preparation.”

During the three-day weekend, the Idaho DMV will integrate millions of DMV records into one system, resulting in a “one person, one record” system. Each Idahoan will now have one record with both their driver’s license and vehicle registration/title information on it.

“The one person, one record will reduce transaction times at DMV offices, and help county agents and law enforcement correctly identify Idahoans and vehicle ownership,” Gonzalez said. “It also paves the way to the future, giving us the ability to eventually offer more online services to Idaho drivers.”

The Idaho DMV has provided multiple training opportunities to county DMV offices, both virtually and in-person, and staff in all 44 Idaho counties have experience using the new system. County agents ask for patience and understanding from customers in October, as wait times could be longer while agents become more comfortable processing transactions. Title transactions on Oct. 8-9, prior to the transition, may be delayed several days.

The DMV modernization effort is an ongoing process. The disabled parking placards program was moved to the new system in 2017, and the driver’s license program in 2018. This latest phase transitioning vehicle registration and titling does not depend on a third party vendor.

Some of the DMV’s online services will be temporarily out of service Oct. 7-11 while the transition takes place. Aside from that time, drivers are still encouraged to skip the DMV line, and go online to renew their vehicle registration. For more information and resources visit dmv.idaho.gov or call the DMV Customer Contact Center at 208.334.8000.

DMV’s COVID-caused backlog reduced by increased use of online services

As COVID-19 continues to impact lives in Idaho, the DMV is one of many divisions at the Idaho Transportation Department (ITD) adjusting the way it operates. For several months now, the DMV has turned to its online services to help keep crowd sizes down at county offices.

In March, Governor Little’s stay-home order caused many county DMV offices to close their doors to in-person customers. By May, when DMV offices began to reopen around the state, there was an estimated backlog of 100,000 Idahoans needing a new driver’s license, vehicle registration, or title.

Through it all, ITD’s online DMV services have been available, helping chip away at the backlog and giving Idahoans a safer alternative to getting their DMV business done. Now, the backlog has decreased to an estimated 43,000 driver’s license or ID customers. Because of COVID-19, ITD has also allowed more drivers to benefit from the convenience of using these online services. Through the end of this year, drivers 17 to 75-years-old can renew their license online, and eight year licenses can be renewed online.

The DMV encourages drivers to “skip the DMV line, and go online,” in an effort to reduce wait times for customers in county offices, and slow the spread of COVID-19. With more accessibility, the number of online DMV transactions continues to climb month after month, and more Idahoans than ever are now renewing online.

“We’re excited to see our online transactions increase. Thousands of Idahoans are taking advantage of this fast, easy, and safe way to complete their DMV transactions, and we are thankful they’re helping reduce the backlog at the same time,” said DMV Administrator Alberto Gonzalez. “In February, about 900 people renewed their driver’s license or ID online. In June, that number jumped to more than 8,000.”

Online vehicle registration renewals this summer have also more than doubled since February. For the DMV’s online services and more click here.

ITD DMV and county officials urge online renewals in response to COVID-19 caused backlog

DMV offices across the state are beginning to reopen their doors. But because of the earlier COVID-19 closures and limited service, there’s a backlog of thousands of Idahoans who need DMV services.

Tuesday, May 19, the Idaho Transportation Department (ITD), county sheriffs, and county assessors came together to urge drivers to use online services to help ease the backlog.

“The DMVs across the state typically conduct about 250,000 transactions a month, but because of the limited office access during COVID, we have a significant backlog of approximately 100,000 customers. We’re encouraging the public to go online, at itd.idaho.gov, and only go into the DMV office if it is absolutely necessary,” said DMV Administrator Alberto Gonzalez.

“If you can renew online, we highly suggest it, and highly encourage it,” Canyon County Sheriff Kieran Donahue added. “It’s so much more efficient for the customer and really for the staff so they’re not overburdened with a higher backlog than we already have, and we’re going to have backlog for some time.”

At itd.idaho.gov you can easily renew your license or vehicle registration, and more. By renewing online, you’ll save yourself time, and other’s time, reducing the wait for those who have to visit the DMV in person.

“It allows room for the people who truly need to come to our DMV. If they need to have a VIN inspection done before they transfer a title, out of state folks who we need to see their vehicles and get them through the system, we can’t do online,” said Canyon County Assessor Brian Stender.

“Use our renewal by mail or online so we can divert that population away from our office and leave that really for the people who are first time licenses or out of state,” added Ada County Sheriff Steve Bartlett, pictured right.

And not only are you practicing safe social distancing, renewing online is convenient too.

“You can do it from the comfort of your couch at home, you can do it on your lunch hour at work, it’s very simple, easy, and quick,” Stender said.

If you do need to make a visit to the DMV, be sure to call ahead before you go. Office hours and availability vary by county, and you may need to make an appointment. Licenses and registrations expiring between March 1st and May 31st now have until June 30th to renew. The federal deadline for the Star Card-Idaho’s REAL ID has also been extended a full year to October 2021.

“The higher number of people who go online, the better the service will be in the county offices, and the better we’ll be able to manage that backlog,” Gonzalez said.

Click here for the DMV’s online services and more.

 

 

ITD DMV employees work from home to continue helping Idaho drivers

Beth Thompson

Idaho Transportation Department Division of Motor Vehicles employees continue to work hard from home to help Idaho drivers.

During this COVID-19 emergency, DMV Customer Contact Center employees are dedicated to keep assisting Idahoans with their DMV concerns while maintaining safe social distancing protocols. More than 160 people are working from home, answering phone calls related to all aspects of DMV operations. That includes driver’s licenses, vehicle registration and titles, motor carrier registration and permits, and vehicle dealer support. These DMV employees are taking more than 1,000 calls a day from the public, and more than 800 a day from county DMV offices across the state.

“We are living in a time of unprecedented uncertainty. It’s crucial that when the public, counties, or law enforcement of Idaho needs us with questions or assistance we are there on the other end of the call,” said Beth Thompson, Driver Records Program Supervisor. “Behind the scenes, ITD DMV is doing almost the entirety of the work from home. Whether it be a simple change of address or a complex issue regarding a driver’s license and suspension.”

They’re also helping process license and registration renewals by mail, over the phone, and online. As Idaho prepares to reopen for business, county DMV offices are adjusting hours of operation and services. ITD encourages drivers to use the online customer portal at itd.idaho.gov/driveidaho to reduce crowds and keep wait times down.

More Idahoans than ever are now using the DMV’s expanded online services. Online vehicle registrations grew from 16,000 in February to 31,000 in March, and are expected to reach over 40,000 in April. Online driver’s license and ID renewals increased from 900 in February to 2,400 in March, with 7,000 estimated in April.

Online DMV services at itd.idaho.gov/driveidaho include:

  • Driver’s license renewal (not for first-time Star Card)
  • Acquiring a replacement driver’s license or identification card
  • Paying driver’s license reinstatement fees
  • Purchasing a driving record
  • Vehicle registration renewal
  • Ordering personalized license plates
  • Checking status of vehicle plates and titles
  • Commercial vehicle oversize/overweight permits
  • Commercial vehicle registrations

The DMV has issued a 90-day extension on some credentials expiring between March 1 and May 31, 2020. This includes driver’s licenses and vehicle registrations that can be renewed online. Those expiring between March 1 and May 31 now have until June 30, 2020 to renew.

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security has also extended the REAL ID enforcement deadline one year, to October 1, 2021. This gives Idahoans an additional year to get the Star Card, Idaho’s REAL ID.

DMV office hours and services are determined by county sheriffs and assessors and vary statewide. Please contact your county office before you make the trip, and remember you can always call ITD’s DMV Customer Contact Center at 208.334.8000. Employees will be happy to help you even as they work from home.

“I couldn’t be more proud of my Driver Records team for weathering this storm like champions. They have handled it with integrity and grace and continue to give the very best customer service,” Thompson said.

For more information and resources visit itd.idaho.gov/driveidaho.

Idaho DMV encourages use of expanded online services

The Idaho Transportation Department’s Division of Motor Vehicles encourages residents to complete DMV services online, as COVID-19 leads to limited in-person service at most county driver’s license and registration offices across the state. The customer service portal at itd.idaho.gov/driveidaho now offers expanded online services including driver’s license and registration renewals, and motor carrier services like commercial vehicle permits and registrations; traditionally services that would require a visit to a DMV office.

“In an effort to assist citizens who need to take care of their immediate DMV needs, such as commercial driver’s license renewals, the itd.idaho.gov/driveidaho website is a great resource to complete many transactions,” said DMV Administrator Alberto Gonzalez.

The DMV has instituted a 90-day extension on some credentials expiring between March 1 and May 31, 2020, in order to help drivers through this COVID-19 pandemic. This includes driver’s licenses and vehicle registrations that can be renewed online. Those expiring between March 1 and May 31, 2020 now have until June 30, 2020 to renew. The DMV urges Idahoans to utilize the online customer service portal now, in order to prevent long wait times when DMV offices eventually reopen.

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security has also extended the REAL ID enforcement deadline one year, to October 1, 2021. This gives Idahoans an additional year to get the Star Card, Idaho’s REAL ID.

DMV office hours and services are determined by county sheriffs and assessors, and vary statewide. For more information, please contact your county office, log onto itd.idaho.gov/driveidaho, or call the Idaho DMV at 208.334.8000.