Fewer Illinoisans renewing vehicle registration in absence of mailed reminder notices
Budget gridlock in Springfield caused the Illinois secretary of state’s office to suspend mailing vehicle-registration renewal reminders.
Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White’s office announced in September 2015 that it would stop mailing vehicle-registration renewal reminders to vehicle owners in an effort to save $450,000 per month amid the state’s budget crisis. As a result, the secretary of state’s office has reported that 19 percent fewer Illinois vehicle owners renewed their registration in November 2015 compared with November 2014, and renewals through Dec. 28, 2015, stood at approximately 302,000 compared with December 2014’s 475,000 renewals, according to the Chicago Tribune.
Drivers who do not sign up for email notification will need to renew their registrations in person, as they will not have the necessary personal identification numbers for online renewal. (Illinois vehicle owners can sign up online for email reminders of registration-renewal deadlines.)
Illinois is in its seventh month without a budget, and its unpaid bills total nearly $6.8 billion.
Although switching to electronic reminders to save money is not a bad idea, the abrupt cessation of mailed vehicle-registration renewal notices necessitated by the budget stalemate has subjected thousands of Illinoisans to unnecessary fines and fees. Politicians in Springfield are harming their constituents through their refusal to pass a budget the state can afford.