in Houston, Texas
DPS promises efficiency in Texas driver’s license megacenters
Thursday, Jun 14, 2012, 12:14PM CST
By Mark Lisheron
hands on wheel

Who knew the solution to the Soviet method of securing a driver’s license in Texas was so devilishly simple?

The Department of Public Safety, flush with $63 million of your tax money, has begun construction in Fort Worth on its first licensing “megacenter,” the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reports today.

The agency also has plans to open megacenters for Dallas, Houston, San Antonio and Austin.

Texas Watchdog contacted the DPS to inquire about the construction schedule for the other megacenters and is currently waiting in line for an answer.

The idea is to move the day-long waits into these new, larger buildings, while still offering the public the opportunity to stand for hours in the closer quarters of existing offices all around the state.

The difference - pay very close attention here - is the megacenters will have new employees, new equipment and new technology. What’s more, DPS says, these new employees will be trained to handle requests for driver’s licenses quickly.

Yes, we know what you people standing right now at the end of licensing lines in every corner of the Lone Star State are thinking. What’s wrong with putting some of those new employees, new equipment and that amazing technology in this office? And, were DPS employees previously trained to handle license requests slowly?

It only seems that way. The point is, everything about these “megacenters” is new. And it will only cost you $63 million.

State Sen. Tommy Williams, R-The Woodlands, had tried to raise the money in the last session of the Legislature by proposing that license fees for adults be raised from the current $24 to $32.

The Senate passed the measure, but the House courageously allowed it to wither away in the special session, secure in the knowledge they could spread out the expense among all taxpayers.

Should the “megacenters” perform as hoped, the state is eagerly prepared to tackle the lines waiting for toilet paper. On second thought, we suggest you not step out of your place in line just yet.

Contact Mark Lisheron at 512-299-2318 or or on Twitter at @marktxwatchdog.

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Photo of driver's hands by flickr user Strupey, used via a Creative Commons license.

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