Aug. 28, 2008
 
DMV Approved Mini-Truck(s) After Capt. Wilson’s Request
Past Director Placed Tag on Vehicle and Sent it Out on Road
 
By Tony Rutherford
Huntingtonnews.net Reporter
 
Huntington, WV (HNN) – Have you noticed the vehicles used by parking attendants? The mini-trucks previously forbidden have now been granted approval for meter enforcement, according to Capt. Mike Wilson, d irector of the Huntington Municipal Parking Board.
 
With the electric vehicles “having problems running eight hours per day, I needed to make a decision as to what type of vehicles to purchase,” Wilson said.
 
Having a mini-truck sitting idle and not street legal, Wilson met with DMV officials in Charleston.
 
“I politely explained my situation of having a vehicle that apparently wasn’t street legal. I asked whether I simply needed to sell the remaining mini-truck or if there was something I could change on the vehicle to make it legal,” Wilson said, adding that he explained to the DMV that the mini-truck would be used in the downtown area for meter attendants at speeds under 35 miles per hour.
 
After providing paperwork requested by the Charleston office, they called and instructed him to take the same documents to the Huntington office on Madison Avenue. “The local office made a few calls to confirm [with Charleston supervisors] and issued a valid title to the vehicle, registration card, and license plate. I added the vehic le to the city insurance policy and had it inspected,” Wilson said.
 
As to the problem with the previous director not receiving permission, Wilson indicated, “I have no idea what the past director did to attempt making the vehicles legal. It seems she simply placed a motorcycle tag from another vehicle on the truck and sent employees out on the road with it.”
 
Since the initial mini-truck functioned well for meter enforcement, Wilson requested the purchase of a second mini-truck. He received unanimous approval from the Huntington Municipal Park Board members. Since the cost was less than $5,000 it did not need council approval, Wilson said.
 
“I purchased the second mini-truck and sent Greg Brown to the Madison Avenue DMV to obtain proper title, registration and paperwork. Once again it was approved and issued by the local office.”
 
“The City of Davis, West Virginia also uses properly registered mini-trucks for purposes similar to ours,” the retired Captain said.
 
Don’t go out and buy one to ride to work as a gas saver.
 
“I do not believe the DMV would approve the general public’s use of these vehicles. They don’t feel they are safe at high speeds or on interstate highways… my own personal vehicle would be illegal if I failed to follow proper DMV procedures and did not obtain title, registration and licensing.”
 
In addition, Wilson reported that the HMPB had made about two-and-a-half times the profit for the previous quarter as of June 30. “The prior director reported $64,927 profit at the end of March 2008. We just finished preparing the reports for auditors on the past fiscal year and it shows $179, 358 profit as of June 30. Not bad for three months and our emphasis had been on repair and improvement, not profit.”
 
Incidentally, the original titles (issued by DMV) are on file at Huntington’s purchasing office (Darrell Miller) as are all paperwork for city vehicles. The data /documents are regarded as public information. Anyone can go down to City Hall and ask to see the paperwork.
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