By jeanne starmack
City council and administrators want to do what they can to stop the state from closing the Bureau of Motor Vehicles License Services at Struthers Plaza on Fifth Street.
The license center is closing June 26, and a new one will open on U.S. Route 224 in Poland near the Giant Eagle, said center workers and city officials.
The closing would mean a loss of nine jobs and taxes for the city, said Bob Carcelli, 4th Ward councilman.
Carcelli and Mayor Terry Stocker said they have received numerous calls from residents upset about the closing.
In a letter to city council, Terry Farmer, deputy registrar at the center, said he was notified Monday that his contract with the Bureau of Motor Vehicles will not be renewed.
“The state has awarded the contract to another person who will be moving the agency to Poland and hiring her own employees,” the letter reads.
The letter does not say why the contract was awarded to someone else. It notes that the center’s staff has scored high on periodical evaluations and is in good standing with the BMV.
Stocker said the state did not notify the city about the closing.
Farmer said in his letter that the center is more centrally located for serving Struthers, Campbell, Coitsville, Lowellville, Youngstown and Boardman.
The municipal court also serves neighboring jurisdictions, and license violations are handled at the center.
Carcelli said council will have a resolution ready at its next meeting asking the state to reconsider the closing and will present it to State Sen. Joe Schiavoni of Canfield, D-33rd.
There also is a petition against the closing at the center, which residents can sign.