California DMV Cuts Begin Friday

February 5, 2009 6:24:02 PM PST
Starting Friday, state-run offices that are normally open will be closed, including the DMV. There was a steady flow of people at the DMV in North Fresno Thursday.Keith Quint, a state worker himself, wanted to renew his license before the office closed. "Luckily I was able to get on the internet and get my appointment, that's why I'm here early, but I think it's going to be a big inconvenience for people out there."

Despite what the sign on the door says, starting Friday, all DMV offices across the state will be closed the first and third Friday of the month.

Employees here will now deal with more work and 10-percent less pay. Kelly Perkins says, "They've advertised it in the paper. I just think people don't realize it's actually happening. So, I'm sure it will be really busy and tomorrow we'll get past it and Monday it will be like our Friday. It will be hugely busy on Monday."

Maria Patino says, "At the beginning, it's gonna sound good..have a three day weekend, but once you get your check, that's gonna feel it I guess."

The DMV is just one of several state offices that will be affected by employee furloughs. In Fresno, the downtown state building will be closed every other Friday. So will the four Fresno area Cal Trans offices.

Eric Alvarez, with Cal Trans says, "Processing may get backlogged a little bit. But, we're not talking about any other type of onslaught of problems. It's just there will be a hiccup in the ability to service the public when it comes to getting normal Cal Trans work accomplished."

Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger says employee furloughs will save the state about 1.4 billion dollars over the next 16 months.

Areas not affected by the plan include public safety, schools, state constitutional offices and the state unemployment office.

DMV employees say they expect people to line up tomorrow, even though the office will not be open. Although most offices affected by state furloughs will be closed the first and third Friday of the month, some have the option of staggering the required two days off.

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