I PAID THAT TICKET/RENEWED THAT TAG: A few readers have emailed in issues in which they have been having trouble getting an update from MVD, one for a citation that had already been paid, another for an MIA license plate sticker.
First, the citation. John Williams recently emailed his concerns with an Aug. 12 speeding citation (allegedly 50 mph in a 40-mph zone), taking issue with the radar accuracy and the language on the ticket. Those concerns were soon compounded by “a nasty letter from MVD postmarked Sept. 24” demanding payment for the ticket “plus an additional $27 as a ‘reinstatement fee’ as MVD had suspended my driver’s license on Sept. 12.”
Trouble is, John, who describes himself as “a 76-year old disabled veteran, diabetic with heart condition,” decided to forgo a fight and “to spare myself from the stress, I paid the ticket of $82” on Aug. 17, and the certified mail shows MVD got it Aug. 19.
Charlie Moore, who handles information for MVD’s parent agency, Taxation and Revenue, says, “It looks like what happened is that his payment may have gotten to us before the citation. That can create a mismatch, because we’re required to deposit payments within 48 hours, and then the payment has to be matched to the citation when that comes in.
“Now that they have been paired, the suspension and reinstatement fee will be removed from the record. We certainly apologize for the heartburn it caused.”
Second, the missing license plate tag. PHB emails she renewed her vehicle registration in July and has been waiting for the tag ever since. ” I have tried several times to contact MVD via their electronic email site to inquire about receiving this sticker tag and registration card without success.”
After a reader in a recent column opined that vehicles without current tags likely don’t have current insurance, PHB wanted to emphasize in this case both the registration and insurance have been up to date, the tag just never showed up to advertise it to the rest of us.
And so PHB asks “how can I prod MVD along to get my registration card and license plate tag? Do I need to make a special appointment and bring my proof that I registered and paid?”
Sean Bulian with Tax and Rev found the sticker “was printed on July 25” and mailed to PHB’s address, and so chalked it up to “a USPS issue” and mailed out a replacement. PHB says, “I can confirm there were mail-theft issues about the same time; I still wonder how many of us with the outdated stickers are in the same position. It might be nice to get a contact email from MVD to address not receiving one’s updated sticker in the mail.”
EMAIL MVD FOR ANSWERS: Drumroll, please.
Bulian says consumers can always submit questions at www.mvd.newmexico.gov/contact-us/. The form “asks for some info related to the concern and then can be submitted. Turnaround time varies depending which unit the email is worked by and what the issue is – i.e. vehicles, driver license, DWI, etc.”
WHERE IS THAT MILE MARKER? MG asks via email. “Why, when describing an accident and/or lane closures on the interstates, they are described as ‘at mile marker ##’ or ‘between mile markers ## and ##’? I believe only NMDOT, NMSP, BCSO and maybe some big-rig drivers know where that is. The public, who may want to avoid that area, has no idea. Certainly saying ‘one mile north of Bernalillo’ or ‘one mile west of Route 66 Casino’ would be much more helpful.”
Kimberly Gallegos of the New Mexico Department of Transportation’s Albuquerque office agrees. Problem is, in such a large and rural state, there’s not always an easy descriptor.
“The NMDOT uses mile markers for internal use, but for programs such as NMroads.com, news releases and other public use, we try hard to associate mile markers with landmarks. For example, during snow season when I enter information into NMroads.com, I have to add mile markers so it will reflect on the statewide map; however, I also use landmarks in the comments, like ‘Interstate 40 from Tijeras to Sedillo Hill’ for example.
“This is a common comment that we have received over the years and tried to make strides to help associate areas to landmarks. Unfortunately, there isn’t always a landmark close by, especially in our rural areas. Each district is working hard to associate the mile markers to local areas or landmarks, and we appreciate the writer’s concern.”
Editorial page editor D’Val Westphal tackles commuter issues for the metro area on Mondays. Reach her at 823-3858; email@example.com; or 7777 Jefferson NE, Albuquerque, NM, 87109.