in Houston, Texas
Sen. Tommy Williams proposes increase to Texas driver’s license fees, says customer service would improve
Tuesday, Apr 26, 2011, 12:53PM CST
By Mark Lisheron

While waiting in line to renew your driver’s license, having tossed off the last chapters of War and Peace after crocheting matching outfits for the upcoming royal wedding, don’t you often think how much better it would be to pay more for your day-long outing?

Sen. Tommy Williams, R-The Woodlands, is proposing to fix what might be the most annoying intercourse between citizens and their hypercompetitive state government by asking every one of us to pay $8 more for a driver’s license, according to a story in today’s San Antonio Express-News.

The chairman of the Senate Transportation and Homeland Security Committee says the estimated $68 million a year raised by the added fees, or taxes if Rep. Richard Peña Raymond, D-Laredo, had his way, would pay for more employees, technology and places to wait in line at the Texas Department of Public Safety.

Williams says raising the cost of a license to $32 from the current $24 would allow the department to set a performance standard of 45 minutes for a new license or ID card and 30 minutes for a renewal.

He says the revenue will add 326 people to the department’s peculiarly named customer service section in the hopes of getting to the more than 17,000 driver’s license calls every day they currently do not answer.

The legislation should cheer those of you waiting, after roughly two dozen fee increases over the years, near the back of the line at your U.S. Postal Service office.
Contact Mark Lisheron at 512-299-2318 or

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Photo of hands crocheting by flickr user qusic, used via a Creative Commons license.
Mrs. Do Gooder
Tuesday, 04/26/2011 - 01:15PM

Would the increase keep illegal immigrants from getting drivers licenses? If so, I'm all for it!

Wednesday, 04/27/2011 - 08:07AM

Oh yes, the ultimate governmental oxymoron; "customer service"...If I can finish War and Peace and a major crocheting project while waiting to renew my driver's license, imagine what I can accomplish while waiting for a check up with Obamacare.

Message to local, state, and federal governments: Quit taxing me, stop spending my money, and stay out of my business!

Tuesday, 05/03/2011 - 12:20PM

I call BS. the only way "customer service" will improve is if they had some kind of competition, but since they don't, they'll continue to do the same piss-poor job they've always done.

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