There’s no such thing as a U.S. Dept. of Transportation plate
FAKE PLATE AND LICENSE SCAM: Patrick Dhooge emails he spotted an SUV “traveling at a high rate of speed, estimated 70 mph or so, southbound on Coors between Paseo del Norte and Montaño. The license plate on the vehicle was dark blue with white letters that read USADOT. I understand that certain government vehicles are allowed to exceed the speed limit for emergency situations, but this vehicle had no lights or siren on. And I thought that U.S. government vehicles all had the standard government plate. Is this license plate for real?”
Unlikely. But wait, there’s more. Dino called to say he had recently seen a car with a placard on it citing U.S. Code that the driver was a traveler and so did not need a driver’s license, specifically UCC-1308, 207.4, 2-601.3. That’s also apparently fake.
Regarding the plate, Ben Cloutier, Director of Communications for the New Mexico Taxation & Revenue Department, says, “The New Mexico Motor Vehicle Division does not issue such a plate.” Back in the spring of 2013, the U.S. Department of Transportation “posted a warning regarding fraudulent DOT Driver’s Licenses and License Plates” that included, “The United States Department of Transportation DOES NOT issue Motor Vehicle License Plates or Drivers Licenses . ... DISPLAY of a USDOT license plate on a motor vehicle is fraudulent. State laws relevant to driver’s license requirements and/or vehicle registration are broken when: ... a fraudulent License Plate is displayed in lieu of a valid state issued license plate.”
Regarding the license, Cloutier says, “State law requires all drivers to be licensed. The Uniform Commercial Code does not apply.”
CITY SCOOP ON TRAIL POOP: Stephen O. Frazier emails, “There’s a doggy doo problem on the bike/walking trail on the bosque.”
On a recent bike ride, he says, “From Alameda to Paseo del Norte I counted 22 piles of dog feces right on the pavement of the trail. Their dogs may be their best friend, but there are obviously some owners who are not their dog’s or the public’s friend. Would it be unreasonable to expect ... maybe every ½ mile along that trail ... a little doggy-bag dispenser and waste basket?”
Barbara L. Taylor, director of Albuquerque’s Parks and Recreation Department, says the “Open Space Division did get their maintenance crews out to clean up the messes, and we regret allowing the trail to get as bad as your reader reported. We do have Mutt Mitt stations at every public trail head for the Paseo del Bosque Trail. And Open Space has also installed them along the new crusher fine pathways.
“The Parks and Recreation Department certainly wants people to enjoy all the trails, river and habitat experiences that the bosque has to offer, but we would like to remind everyone that, apart from the birds over which we have no control, the biggest source of fecal contamination in the Rio Grande is from dogs . ... We welcome volunteers who might be willing to help keep Mutt Mitt stations stocked at any additional location that might be convenient for them along the trail. This volunteer program is very successful in our parks and could be equally successful in the bosque.”
Assistant editorial page editor D’Val Westphal tackles commuter issues for the Metro area on Mondays. Reach her at 823-3858; firstname.lastname@example.org; or P.O. Drawer J, Albuquerque, N.M. 87103.