HOLMDEL, NJ - The relaunch of the New Jersey Department of Motor Vehicles has been referred to by Governor Murphy as 'disappointing.' Others are calling it a disaster. So much so, that the Monmouth County Sheriff mobilized emergency resources to deliver ice pops and water to relieve residents who waited on lines that lasted all day long.
According to the Monmouth County Sheriff's Office, "People are gathering by the hundreds at Freehold, Eatontown and Hazlet. The Monmouth County Sheriff's office members are assisting those waiting on long lines in heat, due to lack of planning by New Jersey."
During the press conference Wednesday, the Governor offered no apology but expressed displeasure. He added that the issue would take a while to fix and that people need to be ready for long lines. They also should go online, he said, to avoid delay for services that may not require an in person visit. He also suggested simply waiting awhile.
The photos and video of infuriated residents made its way across social media on Tuesday and Wednesday.
Said Golden, "Camp-outs overnight, long lines, heat and humidity, confusion, frustration! Though our county has no control over the very poorly executed opening of NJ Motor Vehicle Offices, I will not stand by and watch our residents in long lines at our three MVC stations go without water and opportunity to cool down. I dispatched my OEM staffers and officers with command vehicles, coolers to the locations to assist and supply ice and water, shade tents, if needed. This scenario was avoidable and state leadership should have rolled out a plan to deal with the onslaught of new licenses and expired transaction everyone knew was going to happen. Sad but we will be there so long as line are out to the streets."
Part of the issue was due to Murphy furloughing workers which reduced the number of employees available to help people. Additionally, the hours of operation were not extended to help with a rush of people who have been unable to visit the centers for months. This resulted in less staff and a building open for fewer hours per week during a massive and expected rush during reopening. Murphy did not suggest any lack of planning on the part of the DMV.In an effort to help reduce the chaos, the Governor announced that he was sending back the furloughed workers and extending the work week to include Saturdays. At least in Monmouth County, you can get ice-cold water for your troubles and possibly avoid heat stroke. Golden also offered the Governor a plan:
➡️ Delay opening to general public by 1-2 weeks
➡️ prioritize the older expired transactions, make notification of time slots.
➡️ break them down by segments alphabetically.
➡️ extend hours and add staff, add locations using other state offices.
➡️ more online options for renewals
➡️ waive road test if student had private driving school, allow school to road test.
"At least try some type of a plan." said Golden.