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Utah to end postcard reminders to renew vehicle registration

(Trent Nelson | Tribune file photo) A long line of cars at the South Valley DMV in Draper, April 10, 2020.

As more Utahns renew their vehicle and watercraft registration online, the Utah State Tax Commission is moving away from sending postcard reminders, a process it described as “costly and ineffective.”

Utahns will now need to sign up for an email notification to get the reminder.

“In efforts to utilize taxpayer money more effectively and continue moving to online services,” Monte Roberts, director of the Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV) said in a news release, “the mailing of renewal reminder postcards will be discontinued as of September 2020.”

Currently, hundreds of thousands of postcards are sent to Utahns each month reminding them to renew vehicle and watercraft registrations. Boxes of postcards are often returned as undeliverable and are destroyed.

Roberts said the state will save just under $500,000 by moving to email reminders.

“Email reminders are efficient, cost effective and avoid the waste of mailed postcards,” he said.

Another benefit of sending email notifications is that it avoids the hassle of postcards being sent to outdated addresses.

Roberts also noted that the State Tax Commission is not required to send the reminders, saying the emails and postcards are a courtesy.

“We still want to have the means to notify people and an email reminder has been in place for a long long time,” he told The Tribune. “We’re just moving this direction because we felt it’s a better usage of taxpayer dollars.”

Email renewal reminders will still include Utahns personal identification numbers “PIN” to register their vehicles online. However, Roberts said you don’t need a PIN to renew your vehicle registration. You can also find your information with the last seven to eight digits of your vehicle identification number.

Roberts said he expects some frustration from the public but “this is going to be a better move in the long run.”

Utahns can sign up for an email reminder to renew their vehicle and watercraft registration at https://dmv.utah.gov/. You can renew your registration online at https://dmv.utah.gov/register/renewal.

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