Revenue Department could open second Columbia license office

Monday, May 5, 2014 | 7:37 p.m. CDT
Residents wait in line Monday at the Columbia license office. The Missouri Office of Administration is accepting contract bids for a second Columbia license office to accommodate a growing community.

COLUMBIA — Columbia's motor vehicle and driver's license office, the busiest in the state, could soon expand to a second location, said Michelle Gleba, the director of communication for the Missouri Department of Revenue.

The department is asking for bids to operate a second license office at least a mile from the existing one at 403 Vandiver Drive.

License offices handle driver's licenses and vehicle tags. During the past fiscal year, the Columbia office conducted more than 209,000 transactions and generated about $707,000 in fees, according to a Department of Revenue media release. 

Gebre Aradon, an 18-year resident of Columbia, said he usually waits 45 minutes to an hour at the office. Another licensing office would help, he said. "Sometimes I would use my lunch hour, but I can't anymore — it's too busy."

Nataliya Latushkina, a 22-year resident of Columbia, agreed that opening another office, or even adding a few more desks to the Vandiver office, would help speed things up.

Latushkina has been to the licensing office twice, she said. "The first time was very painful and took a long time, but the second one was very expedient."

People interested in operating a new office have until 2 p.m. on May 16 to submit bids to the Missouri Office of Administration. Bids can be submitted online or by mail.

Columbia Licensing Services, headed by Bruce Wilson, won the bid to operate the Vandiver license office in 2009.

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