Y2k glitch delays New Mexico's teens' licenses

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Y2K glitch delays New Mexico teens' licenses

Copyright ) 2000 Nando Media Copyright ) 2000 Associated Press

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SANTA FE, N.M. (January 3, 2000 6:42 p.m. EST http://www.nandotimes.com) - A Y2K-related problem in New Mexico Monday forced many Motor Vehicle Division offices to turn away teens eagerly awaiting their first driver's licenses, officials said.

Late last week, Taxation and Revenue Department officials fixed a problem in the state's new graduated driver's-license system, which took effect Jan. 1. But in fixing that problem they inadvertently removed some Y2K protection in the division's computers.

The error was discovered during testing Sunday.

The largest of the MVD offices were able to issue driver's licenses by 9 a.m. Monday, and by noon, the problem had been fixed in about 30 of the more than 70 field offices.

The experience proved "absolutely" that "the Y2K fixes were necessary," said Jim Hall, the state computer czar who prepared state agency computers for the 1999-2000 rollover.

-- Homer Beanfang (Bats@inbellfry.com), January 04, 2000


http://www.msnbc.com/l ocal/KOB/37649.asp

Y2K glitch causes problems for NM drivers New MexicoA Y2K computer glitch is infuriating many drivers in New Mexico. Numerous Motor Vehicle Division computers are down because of a large Y2K problem.

The problem is affecting thousands of people around the state. Many businesses in the state spent millions of dollars installing new Y2K software but the MVD accidentally took out its Y2K safety measures. Patricia Padilla took precious time out of her day to take care of her car. Now she and many others are running into problems. In Los Lunas, a home-made MVD sign says the computers are down and the office cant do anything. The computers are down so if you have a problem youre stuck with the problem. I guess it could be worse. We could be without water I guess, said Padilla. Last week Eyewitness News 4 reported about the rush of 15 year-olds to get their drivers licenses before a graduated license program went into effect January 1. Some teenagers are being given a one month grace period to come pick up their licenses and thats where the problem began. The graduated license software did not have the grace period written into it and would not have allowed those teens to get a license, so MVD officials say the software was taken out. It included some Y2K fixes that were also taken out. Now the problem is causing headaches for other motorists. My first year to renew here in Los Lunas and this is what happens, said Padilla. By noon, motorists could get a license at approximately 30 of the 76 offices around the state. Winrock, Cottonwood and the Rio Bravo offices are all operational. Winrock and Cottonwood were affected and Rio Bravo was only down for approximately two hours Monday. Officials say they hoped to have all the offices back up and running soon. MVD officials say teens who fall under that grace period can still pick up their unrestricted licenses if they come in by the end of this month.

-- Homer Beanfang (Bats@inbellfry.com), January 04, 2000.

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