Georgia Registration and Title Information System (GRATIS) online

Georgia on Tuesday began deploying a new system that will enable participating counties to provide the state with vehicle registration and title processing information in real time, providing the state with more accurate information and even helping the state police fight crime.

The Georgia Registration and Title Information System (GRATIS) will a replace an outdated and error-prone system that required counties to individually process documents, decals and other information, said Milton Dufford, deputy commissioner of the motor vehicle division of the state revenue department.

The GRATIS centralized database allows information to be shared statewide, aiding the fight against registering stolen vehicles. The system also will provide consistent name information, making sure registrations and titles match owners' names on their driver licenses.

Law enforcement officials also will benefit from the new system through real-time, after-hours access to vehicle ownership and registration information, said Gordy Wright, director of public information for the Georgia Department of Public Safety.

The lag time previously associated with stolen or nonregistered vehicles while the information was manually routed to headquarters in Atlanta allowed criminals to use vehicle titles and registration that had no incriminating information while it was being processed, Wright said.

"The inquiries would come up 'not on file,' but now all of that information can be keyed in at the local offices, and access to it is almost immediate," he said. "Especially on the weekends, there would be no leads because there was no after-hours look up, but now that loophole is closed for criminals. There will be no more crimes in the lag time."

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