Committee Created To Study The Driver’s License Program

Speaker Dennis Bonnen (R-Angleton) created a special committee in December 2019 to study the driver’s license program. Specifically, the committee is charged with the following duties:

  1. Examine opportunities to expedite the driver’s license renewal processes, with a focus on long wait times, physician waivers for eye exams, redundant fingerprinting and opportunities to complete the renewal process online. Review the feasibility of permanently transferring the licensing programs from the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) to the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV);
  2. Monitor the use of additional funds provided to DPS for improvements to driver’s license services and construction of new driver’s license service centers. Evaluate the progress being made to reduce wait times at service centers throughout the state;
  3. Monitor the implementation of HB 1078 by Rep. Tom Oliverson (R-Cypress), which waives the driver’s license and handgun license fees for individuals with certificates in cardiopulmonary resuscitation. Determine whether the legislation is being implemented as intended and whether it is achieving the desired outcome; and
  4. Monitor the implementation of SB 616 by Sen. Brian Birdwell (R-Granbury), the DPS Sunset bill, which provides for the conditional transfer of the licensing programs from DPS to the DMV. Review the new workgroup’s adoption of an implementation plan for the orderly transfer of the programs to the DMV, the workgroup’s required quarterly reports and the feasibility study regarding the transfer of the programs.

Members appointed to serve on the committee include:

  • Briscoe Cain (R-Houston), Chair
  • Terry Canales (D-Edinburg), Vice-Chair
  • Ben Leman (R-Iola)
  • Evelina “Lina” Ortega (D-El Paso)
  • Shawn Thierry (D-Houston)
  • Ed Thompson (R-Pearland)
  • James White (R-Hillister)

The committee is charged with submitting a final report to the 87th Legislature with their findings and suggestions regarding the driver’s license program by the end of the year. A link to the proclamation creating the committee can be found here.

Source: Texas Association of Counties

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