DMV keeps 40 percent of organ donation fees

March 27, 2010

California residents have become used to seeing the question asked on state driver’s license applications at the DMV: Are you willing to give $2 for the promotion of organ donations? Are you willing to proudly display that pink “I am a donor” dot on your driver’s license?

But how much of that $2 actually goes to organ donation and how much is kept by the DMV? That seems to be the larger question being asked lately. [Contra Costa Times]

It turns out, based on data from the DMV and the state Department of Finance, that Sacramento keeps 80 cents from every $2 donation made–that’s 40 percent, or nearly $300,000 a year that the DMV gets for what they call “an administrative fee.” In return, the DMV processes the contributions, collects donor information, and prints the pink donor dots.

The DMV gets another $803,000 annually from the state budget to run the donor program.

Do the math. For the last four years, the DMV has spent $3.19 for every California driver who donated $2.

The remaining $1.20 goes to a nonprofit consortium that actually operates the Donate Life California Organ and Tissue Donor Registry.

Legislators created the administrative fee back in 2005 when the partnership between the DMV and the consortium was first created.

A spokesperson for Governor Schwarzenegger’s office said they are investigating.



  1. Paperboys says:

    Could someone please explain to me what exactly it is the Department of Money Vipers actually does for all we pay — registration, licenses, title transfers, organ donations, etc…etc…?
    The DMV is nothing but a huge cash cow for the state and gives little or no benefit for what it does and now they’re ripping off the public through the organ donation program?
    There has to be a better way to handle car licenses and registrations than this bloated and worthless bureaucracy.

    (1) 1 Total Votes - 1 up - 0 down
  2. Booty JuJu says:

    While cheerfully sending them the shirts off our backs, we complain about an 80 cent fee to broker our internal organs.

    They have officially won.

    (4) 4 Total Votes - 4 up - 0 down
  3. BeenThereDoneThat says:

    Bet I could process the info., make the dots, and do it for a hell of a lot less a year!!

    Wow Gov. doing something ineffecently?? Go figure. (Sarcasm intended)

    (4) 4 Total Votes - 4 up - 0 down

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