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Commissioners make plans to comply with one-stop vehicle titling, registration

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Red Willow County has until Oct. 23 to create one-stop vehicle titling and registration in the county treasurer's office.

At their weekly meeting Monday morning, county commissioners discussed LB 49 with county treasurer Marleen Garcia. The bill, signed into law by Gov. Dave Heineman Feb. 12 will require the county to move vehicle titling out of county clerk Pauletta Gerver's office and into Garcia's office, where personnel already handles vehicle registrations.

Commission chairman Earl McNutt said one-stop creates more convenience for the public, but it also means the county will comply with the National Motor Vehicle Titling Information System, which is required by Jan. 1 2010.

About half of Nebraska's counties already offer one-stop titling and registration. The others have until Oct. 23, 2009, to do so.

Red Willow has considered this for at least the past year, McNutt said. Originally, counties had until 2011 to comply. "It'll be quicker now," he said, although the transition would be much easier if driver's license photography equipment were moved from the treasurer's office to the driver's license examiner's offices first.

The driver's license photography equipment will be out of the treasurer's office by June; training of Garcia's staff by Nebraska Department of Motor Vehicle personnel is scheduled May 20-22, and remodeling of counter space and filing in the treasurer's office and repurposing of computer room space shared with the clerk's office need to be done before the titling/registration transition.

Garcia is concerned about having adequate space within her existing office, and about timing the costs of remodeling and staff changes from part-time to full-time with the budget year. Commissioner Leigh Hoyt commented, not entirely jokingly, about all the space in the next-door former beauty shop purchased last year by the county.

Titling equipment in the clerk's office will be transferred to the county treasurer's office, and other new equipment will be provided by the state. The treasurer's office will be responsible for postage costs associated with mailing titles, a figure that Gerver estimated at $1,500 a year.

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