DMV solvency questioned

Rebecca Neipp

News Review Staff Writer

DMV solvency questionedProblems continue to plague California’s Department of Motor Vehicles, with the latest reports citing possible insolvency issues at the state agency.

According to the Legislative Analyst’s Office, a $3.9-billion account used to fund 95 percent of DMV expenses is headed for collapse by the 2021-22 budget cycle.

Deputy Legislative Analyst Anthony Simbol said that, without a course correction, California will be unable to pay down DMV debts by the 2021-22 budget cycle.

“We’ve just been dipping into our reserves, but at some point the fund will go insolvent,” said Simbol.

“The legislature has to raise fees, provide general fund support or cut down on expenses.”

The troubled DMV has dealt with numerous scandals relating to management and implementation of services — most notably ending with a high-profile resignation of the department head in December.

Assemblyman Vince Fong balked at continued requests for more money during a time when he noted that DMV had failed to serve the public or account for its fiscal management and performance. (See related story,

“The DMV train wreck continues. The DMV’s insolvency issues, which is a major concern I have continued to raise, may mean longer wait times and potentially even higher DMV fees,” said Fong.

“This is unacceptable and another example of failed leadership and management. My position on funding the DMV has been clear: we should not approve another dollar more for the DMV until we see an audit and a detailed plan for fixing this struggling state bureaucracy.”

Fong also addressed the issue in a Jan. 29 Assembly Budget Hearing (, when he questioned the Department of Finance staff on the potential insolvency.

Story First Published: 2019-03-01