FILE - NJ Motor Vehicle Commission 7-7-2020

People wait in line July 7, 2020, outside a Motor Vehicle Agency in Newark, New Jersey.

(The Center Square) – Legislation to end the continual Motor Vehicle Commission agency closures that have inconvenienced New Jersey drivers has been introduced by state Sen. Anthony Bucco.

On Monday, seven of the 39 licensing and vehicle centers were listed as “closed due to COVID-19” on the commission’s website. When one employee has COVID-19, an agency closes for up to 14 days. As of Thursday, five were listed as closed.

“Nobody else operates like that," Bucco said in a news release. "Your grocery store doesn’t close for days or weeks every time a cashier tests positive. They sanitize, test, and get back to work safely without missing a beat. There simply is no good excuse for the repeated disruption of service at our MVC agencies."

Bucco’s bill would require the head of the Motor Vehicle Commission to take all necessary measures to prevent agency closures due to COVID-19. Reasonable alternatives, such as mobile units, would be required to replace an agency location that is forced to shut down.

“With testing, masks, vaccines, and all of the other measures that are now out there, we believe lengthy MVC agency closures are excessive and unnecessary,” Bucco said. “If private sector businesses can remain open despite the challenges of COVID-19, we should expect nothing less of critical government services like the MVC.”