Sticker sales go online in Ridge

By Kelly White

Chicago Ridge residents will this year for the first time be able to purchase their village vehicle stickers online.

The village will partner with Third Millennium Associates for the online purchase of the stickers. Trustees voted 5-1 Feb. 19 in favor of the contract with Third Millenium, with Trustee Jim Saunoris casting the lone dissenting vote.

Chicago Ridge will pay Third Millenium a one-time cost of $8,490 for software. The village will also pay $6,000 for the decals themselves. Chicago Ridge paid an estimated $9,200 last year toward decals, overtime payroll expenses including the addition of part-time employees during sticker sales, and other fees affiliated with vehicle stickers, according to Chicago Ridge village Clerk Chuck Tokar.

Third Millenium will install a database at Village Hall that will manage online sticker purchasing. Stickers will be available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and online transactions will not require a convenience fee.

Third Millennium serves as a vehicle-revenue sticker management solution program that issues vehicle-licensing software. This software is designed manage municipal vehicle sticker programs.

"This is not a profit or a loss type of situation," Tokar said, "It is going to be a lot more convenient for our residents."

Since the price of vehicle stickers increased from ten to twenty dollars, the village has been profiting an estimated $200,000 from annual vehicle sticker sales, but village officials are hoping to profit more with the help of TMA in the 2013 vehicle sticker sales.

Third Millenium will send a mailing to each Chicago Ridge household as a reminder to update the sticker for each vehicle owned. The company gathers a list of registered vehicle owners based on the village's records of previous vehicle sticker sales.

The company also works with the Illinois secretary of state's database to access all vehicles registered in Chicago Ridge, so households will receive notices to buy stickers for vehicles not registered with the village. The company has vowed to "dig deeper to gain more revenue for the village."

"I feel like there's a lot of people living in town that avoid buying a vehicle sticker at all costs, and this is a way where they will - I don't want to necessarily say get caught - but yes, they will get caught," said Trustee Bruce Quintos. "With TMA, and the wider use of the Internet for vehicle sticker sales, we will be able to make sure all cars within the village are registered."

Non-drivable and garage-kept cars must have vehicle stickers; however, in the situation where a non-drivable, garage kept car has not been driven for several years and will not be drivable any time soon, the owner may file for an exemption that would have to be approved by the Village Board, Tokar explained.

Vehicle stickers go on sale June 1, and will still be available at Village Hall.