Program brings in child-support payments
YOUNGSTOWN -- The director of the Mahoning County Department of Job and Family Services said the response to the department's Deals for Your Wheels program exceeded his expectations.
John Zachariah reported his department received 156 inquiries and sent 87 people to the Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles' Regional Reinstatement Center last week to have their driver's license reinstated.
The program featured a one-week grace period, during which people whose driver's licenses were suspended because they owed child support could get their driver's licenses back by paying one month's support plus $1, together with a $25 reinstatement fee.
Zachariah reported the program yielded more than $14,000 in child support payments and called it a win-win situation for the debtors and their children. He attributed the substantial response to the program to its affordability. "Because this was a success story, we probably will do this again," Zachariah said.
To get their driver's license back, debtors normally must pay three months' worth of child support or have a job to enable support to be withheld from wages.
The program was administered by the county's Child Support Enforcement Agency, which is part of JFS.