Emails tie DMV computer failures to $17 million in upgrades

DENVER — Two years ago, state lawmakers allocated $93,300,000 to the Governor’s Office of Information Technology to upgrade computer systems at the Division of Motor Vehicles.

They nicknamed the project D.R.I.V.E.S.  (Driver License, Record, Identification and Vehicle Enterprise Solution.)

OIT records, reviewed by the FOX31 Problem Solvers, show it has spent more than $17 million from the D.R.I.V.E.S. fund, however, repeated computer-system meltdowns at DMV offices this year continue to cause some long lines and delays for folks trying to get their driver`s licenses.

Viewers asked the FOX31 Problem Solvers to get to the bottom of what’s happening and we have, after some interference from state officials.

Between February 22 and June 7, the FOX31 Problem Solvers recorded at least 10 days where DMV could not, for a prolonged period of time, process in-person licensing applications, properly perform commercial driver’s tests, and/or take ID photos due to computer issues.

Customer warning notifications from the El Paso County Clerk and Recorder documented at least seven of those days, while others were either confirmed by our visits to local licensing offices or by DMV itself.

Department of Revenue/DMV spokesperson, Lynn Granger, repeatedly told FOX31 and other media outlets, the outages, delays, and computer slow-downs were not related to the D.R.I.V.E.S. project.

A trove of internal emails, acquired by FOX31 through the Colorado Open Records Act, indicate both OIT and DMV officials, behind the scenes, believed otherwise.

Targeting the days surrounding known outages, our investigative team obtained and reviewed correspondence between the State’s executive teams, independent IT contractors, and public relations personnel.

There is evidence the troubles were, at least in part, related to D.R.I.V.E.S and that officials did not want the public to know.

For example, documents…

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