DOJ: News Release

McGrath: Ads Insult Motor Vehicle Division Employees

HELENA – Montana Attorney General Mike McGrath today challenged a series of advertisements running in the state, saying the ads insult state employees and paint an inaccurate, demeaning picture of the work they do.

Print and television ads running across the state include a surly-looking woman leaning on a counter and glaring at the camera. “DMV” is on a sign on the wall. The ads imply that taxpayers’ dollars are funding poor service, and go on to say that “public servants make more than the taxpayers.” Radio ads have a similar theme.

“For anyone to suggest that Montana Motor Vehicle Division field bureau employees are overpaid is laughable,” McGrath said. “They license more than 162,000 drivers – of all ages and abilities – each year, and they do an exemplary job at a wage that is barely livable.”

According to MVD records:

  • Entry salary for a field bureau examiner is $11.83 per hour, and the average of all examiners working for the MVD right now is $13.31.
  • For a license permit clerk in a field bureau, the starting wage is $8.37 per hour, and the average wage is $9.39 per hour.

At the Title and Registration Bureau in Deer Lodge, records clerks start at $7.69 per hour and certifiers – they verify the documentation needed to issue certificates of ownership – average $11.77.

“These employees have done a great job improving service to Montana consumers in recent years,” McGrath said. “The turnaround time to process a title has dropped from four or five weeks to about a week.”

The TRB, with the assistance of county treasurers, registers more than 980,000 passenger cars, light trucks, trailers and commercial vehicles each year.

The Motor Vehicle Division is one of eight divisions in the Department of Justice.

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