Monday, September 19, 2011

Branstad may move some DOT duties to state patrol

In Iowa, the Branstad administration wants to combine the Iowa Department of Transportation’s motor-vehicle enforcement duties with the Department of Public Safety so it will become more efficient and cost effective. This would cause and increase in DOT law officers. Spokesman for Gov. Terry Branstad, Tim Albrecht said that Public Safety Commissioner Larry Noble and DOT Director Paul Trombino III have talked about combining the so-called DOT “blue coat” motor vehicle enforcement responsibilities within the DPS. He also said by doing this it will be saving both general funds and road use tax fund dollars, thus making it cheaper for auto carriers to move cars. Even though the governor knows about these discussions there is no plan to move forward yet. The governor has encouraged all of the state department directors to look for other opportunities that would more closely integrate the service delivery. Sen. Eugene Fraise does not agree with the merger because he believes that it would distract the DOT officers from their core enforcement duties. He is also wondering if it will be able to move forward without having the “go ahead” form the legislature. Fraise said that instead of spending a whole day in court testifying they could be on the road working.

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