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It’s unclear when the DMV will again accept appointments

Q. Hello Honk: I bought a new car from out of state and need to go to a local Department of Motor Vehicles office to complete the registration, but the DMV website is not allowing anybody to make an appointment. I tried to reach out to the DMV, but never got a reply. Would you kindly please contact the Costa Mesa DMV and find out when making online appointments will be available again?

– Sam Malapas, Irvine

A. Sam, Honk tried. He asked DMV officials a couple of times and didn’t have any success even getting an estimate.

But Ivette Burch, a spokeswoman up in the DMV’s Sacramento headquarters, did say that registering a car from out of state doesn’t take a visit to the local DMV.

Honk sent you an email with specific instructions on what to do. If he laid it all out here, most Honkland residents would nod off.

In short, you should be able to get the application from and mail it in with the payment. You could also walk in the goods to a DMV office or a “business partner” of the DMV; you can find a list of them at the website. One is the Automobile Club of Southern California, and Honk highly recommends that route if you don’t want to mail the stuff in.

If you do choose to wade into a DMV office, Burch told Honk that a face covering and a temperature check are required. So is social distancing, and Plexiglas has been installed.

The DMV is limiting how many people are allowed inside its buildings as well.

Q. Hi Honk: I was rummaging around in my garage the other day and found a license plate that belonged to a car I sold. What can I do with the plate? I just don’t want to throw it in the trash. Does the DMV take it back?

– Cindy Edes, Tustin

A. Although Honk doubts anyone would show up on your stoop looking for it, the DMV will take it if a standard-issue plate.

“If the license plate is a regular license plate and not a personalize plate it can be mailed to the DMV with a statement surrendering the plates,” Burch, the DMV spokeswoman, told Honk in an email.

Honk will pass along the address to you, Cindy.

If a personalize plate, there are various, wide-ranging options. Go to the DMV’s website and in the search bar type in “How to: Obtain personalized and special interest license plates” and scroll down for the various avenues.

Honkin’ fact: “Traffic citations,” Menifee police Capt. Dave Gutierrez said in a press release, “are written to change driver behavior and reduce traffic collisions, not to generate revenue.”

He offered proof. If you get caught going more than 25 mph over the speed limit in Menifee, it could cost you $490, with the city getting only 65% percent of the $100 base fine, and Riverside County grabbing the other 35 bucks.

The remaining $390 goes to 18 county and state funds, such as courthouse construction and California’s general fund ($100).

Menifee’s 65 bucks, the captain said, “in no way covers the actual cost of writing the citation,” when the officer’s salary and possible court appearance, the vehicle and administration costs and other stuff are all mixed together.

To ask Honk questions, reach him at He only answers those that are published. To see Honk online: Twitter: @OCRegisterHonk

Source: Orange County Register

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