DMV Commissioner Says AAA Violating Contract


Connecticut DMV commissioner said AAA Northeast -who announced that it will no longer offer driver licensing services for non-members- is violating its contract with the state.

According to a release from the governor’s office, AAA Northeast has offered licensing services to all Connecticut residents since 2001, regardless of membership. 

Commissioner Michael Bzdyra said the contract, which was executed in 2011, states that AAA Northeast "may terminate this agreement upon 60 days written notice to the DMV contract representative."

In a letter written to AAA Northeast, Bzdyra said the company failed to provide 60 days' notice prior to terminating these services.

"This will serve as formal notification that you are in default of the contract and must take corrective action immediately," Bzdyra wrote in the letter. 

The DMV is requiring AAA Northeast to offer services to members and non-members before submitting a written termination notification 60 days before the effective date. 

Failure to take actions by Oct. 14 will result in legal action as a result of AAA Northeast's breach of contract, the commissioner said. 

AAA Allied, which services Hartford, Middlesex, New London, Tolland and Windham counties, will continue to service all residents.

Residents in the counties where AAA is ending divers licenses services would still be able to go to AAA Allied offices and get the services.

In a letter to AAA Southern New England President Mark Shaw, Malloy called the decision “unacceptable.”

“AAA Northeast’s decision to stop servicing non-members is rather shocking since Connecticut has always valued our working relationship with AAA,” the letter stated.

Malloy said if AAA Northeast does not reconsider continuing services to non-members, he would tell the DMV to take legal steps to resolve the matter.

The DMV released the following statement on the matter:

"We are disappointed in the actions of AAA Northeast and hope it reverses the decision, preserving AAA Northeast’s reputation and commitment to the citizens of Connecticut. We remain fully confident in our partnership with the state’s other AAA organization known as AAA Allied. It has been a strong partner since 1992 and has provided high-quality license services to all citizens, whether AAA members or not, when they have visited AAA Allied offices. We know this same level of service will continue as they open their doors to the customers of AAA Northeast."

In response to the governor's letter, AAA Northeast said it can "no longer effectively serve the volume of DMV customers visiting our offices without negatively impacting services to our members."

AAA Northeast said the requirement for renewed licenses to be REAL ID compliant has added as much as 50 percent to the time needed to complete transaction, plus the number of non-member transactions has increased 33 percent over the last five years. 

"The combination of these factors has created a situation that adversely affects the ability of AAA to deliver the high levels of service that our members have come to expect," a spokeswoman for AAA Northeast said.

AAA Allied also released a statement, which read in part, "The AAA Allied offices in Connecticut will NOT be affected by this and will continue to welcome and serve the public – both members and non-members alike. This means all AAA offices in Hartford, Middlesex, New London, Tolland and Windham Counties will continue to provide licensing services without interruption or change."

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