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Thursday, March 23, 2023

Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles highlights accomplishments of 2022

As the new year quickly approaches, the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FLHSMV) is looking back at 2022 to highlight some of the department’s accomplishments.

FLHSMV has over 4,000 members who serve in all of Florida’s 67 counties. These individuals are committed to issuing driver’s licenses, vehicle tags, and titles to residents throughout the state, along with the operation of the Florida Highway Patrol.

“Whether innovating ways to deliver critical services to those in need, interdicting illicit activity on Florida’s highways, increasing protections for Floridians’ personal information, or responding to communities impacted by natural disasters, the dedicated men and women of FLHSMV humbly and dutifully serve Florida’s residents and communities,” said FLHSMV Executive Director Terry L. Rhodes in a statement.

Rhodes added, “Every accomplishment achieved, and milestone reached is a testament to the immensely talented and selfless members of FLHSMV, whom I am honored to have served alongside.”

According to FLHSMV, the department’s accomplishments over the course of the past year include:

  • Pay increases for the state’s law enforcement positions:
    • Florida Highway Patrol troopers received a base pay increase to $50,000, and all other sworn law enforcement received a pay increase of over 10%.
  • Pay increases for critical non-law enforcement positions:
    • Market pay additives of up to $5,000 were secured for various non-sworn positions, such as law enforcement dispatchers and driver’s license examiners.
  • Expanded protections for personal information:
    • Through the passage of Senate Bill 1614, Florida expanded the public records exemption of certain information contained within Florida crash reports and uniform traffic citations in an effort to better protect sensitive and personal information that is entrusted to the department.
  • Emergency Contact Information program surpasses 19 million participants:
    • By the end of 2022, the department projects that over 19 million Floridians will be signed up for the department’s Emergency Contact Information program. This program is a secure system that is only accessible by first responders across the nation, and it enables them to contact an individual’s designated family or friends in response to an emergency situation.
  • Narcotics and illegal weapons seized from Florida’s highways:
    • Within the first six months of 2022, the Florida Highway Patrol seized over 2,000 pounds of narcotics, including marijuana, cocaine, heroin, and methamphetamine, as well as over 100 illegal weapons from Florida’s roadways.
  • Pilot program launches to bring driver’s license services to home-bound residents:
    • In collaboration with several Florida tax collectors, FLHSMV launched a pilot project for a mobile credentialing solution, known as “ID Go,” that brings driver’s license and identification card services to customers who are physically unable to travel to an office.
  • First phase of multi-year Motorist Modernization Program completed:
    • FLHSMV completed the first phase of its Motorist Modernization Program, which is a multi-year phased plan for re-engineering the department’s driver’s license and motor vehicle systems to create efficiencies, enhance safety features for law enforcement agencies, and improve customer experience.
    • This initial phase included the launch of MyDMV Portal, which is a one-stop shop for online services, as well as the creation and testing of Florida’s first mobile driver’s license – Florida Smart ID.
  • Funding secured to improve security for the issuance of driver’s licenses:
    • FLHSMV secured funding to join the State-to-State Verification Service, which allows the department to conduct online verification of out-of-state driver history information for customers who are in the process of becoming Florida drivers.
  • Driver’s license and motor vehicle services provided at over 1,100 Florida Licensing on Wheels events:
    • Florida Licensing on Wheels (FLOW) mobiles partnered with various agencies and community organizations to bring driver’s license and motor vehicle services to communities and customers who may otherwise have difficulty accessing such services.
    • In 2022, the FLOW mobiles participated in over 1,100 events at locations that included correctional facilities, military installations, homeless shelters, and disaster recovery centers, to name a few.
  • Florida’s REAL ID compliance rate surpasses 97%:
    • In 2022, the number of Florida REAL ID compliant credentials climbed to more than 19.4 million, which is over 97% of all driver’s licenses and ID cards issued in the state. Florida is a REAL ID compliant state, and all Florida licenses should be accepted nationwide, according to FLHSMV.
  • Nearly $40 million given to charitable causes through specialty license plates:
    • FLHSMV offers a variety of Florida specialty license plates for various organizations in support of the important causes they represent, and the money raised from the sale of these plates goes directly to the organization. In 2022, the department sent a total of nearly $40 million to the individual organizations.

For more information, visit the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles website.