DETROIT — State Rep. Bettie Cook Scott (D-Detroit) joined Detroit city officials, employers, training partners and members of the faith-based community this week to help unveil the city’s driver responsibility fee forgiveness program for city drivers. The program will allow Detroit drivers to have their license restored by completing workforce development training activities.

“The people of Detroit cannot get ahead if they continue to be held back by a discriminatory system, which is why I was pleased to help unveil this program to allow working people in our city get a fresh start,” Scott said. “These workforce training programs will help Detroiters learn the skills they need to compete in today’s workforce, in addition to being freed from burdensome driver responsibility fees.”

In February, the state Legislature passed bills to repeal driver responsibility fees for hundreds of thousands of Michigan drivers by Oct. 1. These fees were created in 2003 in response to a state budget shortage. Since then, they have served as a punitive measure used against Michigan residents, ultimately resulting in drivers having their licenses revoked and being unable to afford to pay the fees. Scott has worked for years to end driver responsibility fees, beginning when she was first elected to the House of Representatives in 2007.

“I am proud to have played an integral role in beginning conversations about the disciplinary nature of these fees years ago, and was pleased to vote in favor of repealing them this year,” Scott said. “Though all Michiganders will be freed of those onerous fees by year’s end, I was grateful to join in announcing a program that will offer Detroit drivers immediate relief so they can get back on the road and back on the job so they can help provide for themselves and their families. I will continue working to ensure all Detroiters have the tools and support they need to be successful.” 

Scott was joined by Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan; Nicole Sherard-Freeman, president and CEO of Detroit Employment Solutions Corporation; Nathan Johnson, pastor at Tabernacle Missionary Baptist Church; and John Perkins, project engineer at Barton Malow.