03/19/04 — Communication breakdown reason for duplicate tags

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Communication breakdown reason for duplicate tags

By Barbara Arntsen
Published in News on March 19, 2004 2:04 PM

See the first story here

A communication breakdown, rather than a computer malfunction, was the reason Goldsboro City Councilman Charles Williams received the same license tag twice from the Department of Motor Vehicles.

In late December, Williams traded in a 1998 Camaro for a 2003 Mercury Marauder. Though the car is in the councilman's name, he planned to let his son, who is a college student at Elizabeth City State University, drive it.

When his son, Charles Williams Jr., brought the car to school in January, his dad told him he would need to get another license tag soon.

"He said he didn't see how he could get one because he didn't have all the paperwork," Councilman Williams said. "But I told him that shouldn't be a problem."

After a few days, when his son hadn't yet gotten a license tag, Williams Sr. decided to go ahead and get one.

He purchased a tag from the DMV in Goldsboro.

Later, that same day or the next day, his son went in to purchase the tag his father had told him needed to be bought.

Charles Jr. didn't know that his father had already bought a tag.

Knowing that he didn't have all the paperwork, Charles Jr. signed a piece of paper, which he thought just allowed him to purchase the tag.

But what he signed was an affidavit saying the tag purchased by his father had been lost. That allowed the DMV clerk to issue another tag with the same number.

"So, I took both tags in yesterday to the DMV, and they were able to research it and find out what happened," Councilman Williams said. "It's cleared up now, and it was our communication mistake, not theirs."

So, did they get reimbursed for the extra tag?

"No," said Councilman Williams. "We had reported it lost, so we just had to tear up the extra one."