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BMV closing angers Hubbard residents



Published: Fri, June 25, 2010 @ 12:03 a.m.

By LINDA M. LINONIS

linonis@vindy.com

hubbard

Customers coming and going at the Bureau of Motor Vehicles license center in Truck World, 6965 Truck World Boulevard, expressed feelings of unhappiness, irritation and dissatisfaction about its closing. Thursday was its last day.

“This is totally unacceptable, said Bill Flowers Jr. of Hubbard. “Going elsewhere will be less convenient.”

Flowers said the Hubbard location had “easy access,” and customers got “in and out” quickly.

Flowers, who did transactions at the Hubbard BMV Thursday for the final time, said he has been a customer since he was 16 years old. He just turned 39.

“Today [Thursday] I was here for personal and business reasons,” Flowers said. He was there for license plates for commercial vehicles in his general- contracting business.

But Flowers said he would follow the Hubbard workers to the new site, 3057 Center Road, Route 224, Poland, which will be operated by Roberta “Robin” Gibson. She operated the Hubbard site. “The workers are efficient and friendly,” he said, though he noted it was out of his way.

Lindsey Bohrer, spokeswoman for the BMV, which is part of the Ohio Department of Public Safety, said private contractors “do business for the state” in operating the bureaus. She said the BMV likes to see 40,000 transactions or more annually, and Hubbard had performed under, though close to, that number.

Other customers also expressed dismay at the closing.

Michelle and Ted Tatomirovich of Masury weren’t happy about having to go elsewhere. The Hubbard BMV services included titles, watercraft, driver’s licenses, vehicle registration, notary and Webcheck for fingerprinting.

“I’ve been coming here 25 years,” Michelle Tatomirovich said and her husband for 16 years. “I’m not going to Poland ... too inconvenient and too much traffic.” She said she would use the mail-in method.

Her husband agreed about traveling to Poland. “Route 224 is a disaster. It’s too congested. Here, you’re in and out, and there’s parking.”

Tom Davis of Hubbard has patronized the Hubbard BMV for 20 years. “It’s local and convenient. I don’t understand why they’re closing it,” he said. “This was easy access and good service.”

Michael and Amy Ferrett, also of Hubbard, echoed the sentiments. Both said the Hubbard site had good parking, manageable traffic and easy access.

The Struthers BMV in the Struthers Plaza, Fifth Street, Struthers, also operated by Gibson, will close Saturday.

Ed Yasechko, owner of Truck World, which was started by his father, Ed Yasechko Sr. in 1974, said there has been a BMV at the site for some 32 years. He said he wrote letters to the state and local representatives but got nowhere. Yasechko pointed out the Truck World site is especially convenient when the weight of RV, boat or trailer is in question. “We have a certified scale for weighing vehicles,” he said.

Tim Schubert, general manager at Truck Word for 13 years, said, “Fifty percent of people who do business at the BMV also spend money at a restaurant or store here. Those businesses will be affected.” Among businesses are a restaurant, hot-dog shop, travel and tool stores.

Schubert said generations of families have used the BMV there. “For people in Hubbard, the township and northern Trumbull County, the convenience is gone,” he said, noting the Truck World BMV was the closest for them. He also added that Truck World has 250 parking spaces for tractor trailers, a plus for truckers not available elsewhere.

“If they were on the road and had to renew their CDL [commercial driver’s license], this was easy,” he said.


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