Arrow-right Camera
The Spokesman-Review Newspaper

The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
Partly Cloudy Night 28° Partly Cloudy

Huckleberries Online

Sheriff explains wait at drivers license office

Eden Irgens daughter, Riley, holds up her driver's license certificate, after receiving it this morning from the driver's license department. Riley waited 4 1/2 hours at the courthouse office to take her written and driving test -- and then returned this morning to get her license. Sheriff Ben Wolfinger weighed in on the problem of incredibly long lines and waits at the office that his department oversees. I don't know what needs to be done to fix this, but the sheriff, commissioners and Idaho Transportation Department needs to fix this unacceptable waste of county taxpayers' time.
Eden Irgens daughter, Riley, holds up her driver's license certificate, after receiving it this morning from the driver's license department. Riley waited 4 1/2 hours at the courthouse office to take her written and driving test -- and then returned this morning to get her license. Sheriff Ben Wolfinger weighed in on the problem of incredibly long lines and waits at the office that his department oversees. I don't know what needs to be done to fix this, but the sheriff, commissioners and Idaho Transportation Department needs to fix this unacceptable waste of county taxpayers' time.

Sheriff Ben Wolfinger responds to criticism re: long lines at driver's license department:

"Yes, I know that the lines are long I waited as well for my driver's license renewal. We have the same number of staff in Driver's License that we did 15 years ago. Turnover, sick days, vacations all add to lack of staff in the office. Additions to the staff have previously fallen off of the budget table over the past several years. This upcoming fiscal year, there is a tentative (budget not yet approved) remodel of the current Post Falls Motor Vehicle office and addition of two personnel for Driver's License. If approved, this will most likely allow us to open both offices four days a week - 10 hours a day sometime next spring. We had asked for four additional staff in order to open both offices five days a week, but will work with what we get. We have looked at other options like open Saturdays or one evening a week, but the Department of Transportation nixed those ideas. Unfortunately, we are only the vendor for the Transportation Department, we don't get to make the rules."

DFO: So, Ben, does this mean that Hucks Nation needs to turn up heat on commissioners to properly staff driver's license department?



D.F. Oliveria
D.F. (Dave) Oliveria joined The Spokesman-Review in 1984. He currently is a columnist and compiles the Huckleberries Online blog and writes about North Idaho in his Huckleberries column.

Follow Dave online: