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Long lines expected at DMV as Sec of State eliminates driver responsibility fees

man driving a car
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The Office of the Secretary of State says it expects long lines today as it eliminates driver responsibility fees.

The fees were a penalty in addition to tickets from driving infractions. Those fees could cost drivers upwards of $ 1,000 every year. Drivers who couldn’t pay had their licenses suspended.

Fred Woodhams is with the Secretary of State. He says more than 300,000 drivers accrued $570 million in debt.

“You know a lot of the debt that was owed to the state was simply uncollectable,” Woodhams says. “The state was never going to be collecting on that money. It was just something that was keeping Michigan residents from leading productive lives and contributing to society.”

Woodhams said until the end of the year a $125 reinstatement fee will be waived.

“So this is a great opportunity for people who lost their license, due to the Driver Responsibility Fees, to come in, get their license back, and get on with their lives,” he said.

Woodhams said a large number of affected drivers won’t be able to renew their license because of tickets that still haven’t been paid.

He said the Secretary of State hired 40 new staff members statewide to help deal with an expected rush at their offices as people try to renew their licenses.

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