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California DMV says wait times have dropped 30 minutes

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — The California Department of Motor Vehicles says wait times improved by an average of 30 minutes statewide between July and August.

The agency reported to lawmakers Wednesday that customers without an appointment spent an average of 100 minutes waiting in line during the week ending Aug. 25.

The agency is contending with a public outcry over hours-long waits that DMV Director Jean Shiomoto has called unacceptable.

Wait times vary significantly across the state from a low of three minutes for customers with an appointment in Napa or Fall River Mills to a high of 158 minutes for walk-ins in West Covina.

DMV officials say they’ve hired extra staff and brought back retired workers. They’ve blamed the longer waits on new technology and new federal security standards for state licenses.