NJ drivers persist at MVC offices as wait times improve only slightly

David Madden
July 09, 2020 - 1:49 pm

WEST DEPTFORD, N.J. (KYW Newsradio) — Three days into the reopening of Motor Vehicle Commission offices in New Jersey, it seems wait times to get in are getting shorter — but not by much.

At the West Deptford location, just off I-295, lines were half-way around the block-long building. On Tuesday, they wrapped around the building and then some.

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Many people have tried every day to get in, only to be turned away. Among them is Nicholas Lex, an 18-year-old from Washington Township in need of a state ID so he can head off to boot camp to begin an eight-year-stint in the Marines.

“It just holds us back with what we’re trying to do,” Lex said, as he waited with his father.

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Lucky McDonald, an Uber driver from Cherry Hill, is in need of a license renewal and more. It that “more” that stops him from taking the online option Gov. Phil Murphy has suggested to help ease the crush of customers at MVC offices across the state.

“I’m hoping that we all can get everything handled today. And if not, I just have to be out here tomorrow,” he said. “I’m just gonna keep trying until I get a yes.”

The state has taken action to alleviate some of the consumer crunch by canceling pandemic-related furloughs of agency staff. In addition, they will go to a Monday-through-Saturday schedule for the rest of July starting next week.

But there are still issues, including limits on what services are available at each office. That action was taken before the pandemic to reduce crowds expected with an October deadline for REAL ID drivers’ licenses — a deadline since postponed for a year because of the pandemic.

Debbie Mulholland traveled from Galloway Township to return her son’s license plates, which he couldn’t do because of the pandemic, which led to his license being suspended.

She has tried four times to take care of all that. And she’s laid off from her job. She has a message for the governor:

“Instead of just worrying about cases every day and how many people died and how many more there are, he needs to worry about fixing some things in this state,” she said, “because he’ll be up for election, and I think people are going to remember about all this.”