A Republican lawmaker in California wants to shut down a secret Department of Motor Vehicles office in Sacramento that only serves lawmakers and their staff, the Ventura County Star reported.
"There's a secret DMV across from the state Capitol with streamlined service that's only available to members of the Legislature and a select group of political insiders," said Republican Assemblyman Kevin Kiley told the VC Star. "This is supposed to be a government of the people, by the people and for the people, not an oligarchy where a gilded political class enjoys privileges that aren't available to the people that we represent."
Kiley hopes to stop lawmakers from taking advantage of the special perks with Assembly Bill 862.
The exclusive office is tucked behind a nondescript door at the end of a remote hallway in a building across the street from the Capitol building. The door features a peephole, but there's no signage at all. Three employees work inside room No. 121, which remains locked at all times, according to VC Star.
Lawmakers can utilize the DMV office for transactions, such as vehicle registrations and license renewals, without the hassle of waiting in long lines.
"When you look at all the problems that the DMV has, the lack of oversight, the lack of accountability. Maybe if the legislators had to go through the same experience as their constituents, then there would be more political will to get things fixed," Kiley told KSEE-TV.
What did the DMV say?
The DMV declined the VC Star's request to comment directly on Kiley's bill.
But it told the newspaper in a statement that the office "serves as a primary point of contact for more than 10,000 constituent services questions and concerns sent to legislative offices each year."
It went on to add that the bulk of the staff's work in that office "is related to assisting customers who have contacted their state representatives to resolve DMV issues."
The employees also reportedly review records, assist with license suspension issues and make customer appointments.
Kiley, along with a number of other lawmakers, has refused to use the secret office, choosing instead to handle their transactions at regular DMV offices where they wait in line like everyone else, according to VC Star.
The office has operated since the 1970s.