Officials hope new OMV in Kenner will lessen lines across area


Posted on July 24, 2013 at 6:37 PM

Updated Wednesday, Jul 24 at 6:41 PM

Jaclyn Kelley / Eyewitness News
Email: | Twitter: @jkelleyWWL

KENNER, La. -- Kenner's Rivertown is now home to a new motor vehicle office. Officials hope it will finally cut down on some of those grueling waits, but local officials say that is not the only good thing about this new addition.

Long lines and long waits. It is what comes to mind when you think of a trip to the OMV.

"The long wait is difficult," said John Testa. "The people seem to be trying their hardest to help us, but the lines are long and the wait is extensive in my opinion."

"Very frustrating. From 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., that is a very long time," said Latasha Banks. "Just sitting here waiting and waiting."

Like many others at the Veterans Boulevard location Wednesday, Banks continued to wait for an unusually long amount of time in the over crowd room.

It is a problem officials with the OMV are hoping to fix with the addition of a new location in Kenner's Rivertown.

"We are very optimistic that this will help relieve some of the long waits to get essential motor vehicle services," said Stephen Campbell, the commissioner of motor vehicles for the state of Louisiana.

Officials say this new express office will not only cut down wait times, but will also give a much needed economic boost to the Rivertown area.

"This is an economic engine. Since it has opened in June, we have already had 4,000 people come through this office," said Kenner Mayor Michael Yenni. "That's 4,000 people that would never have been in this portion of town."

Still, empty cubicles at larger locations have those who are forced to wait very skeptical a new office will help.

"Probably not. They have others open and they all the same," said Banks. "So I don't know what the problem is."

Campbell says the OMV has lost nearly 500 employees to staffing cuts over the last six years, But says it is a concern they are addressing.

"We move around staff to address those needs as best we can but it is a challenge," said Campbell.

OMV officials say with the addition of the Rivertown location, there are now 82 offices statewide. Already, Campbell says additional locations are in the works, including one in New Orleans East.