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To obtain a valid Texas driver’s license, which is legally required after 30 days of residence, an out-of-state newcomer must (1) apply for a license at one of the many Department of Public Safety testing stations: (2) produce a certified copy of his or her birth certificate or a valid out-of-state driver’s license; (3) pass a written examination; (4) pass a driving skill test if the out of-state license has expired; (5) undergo an eye test to determine if corrective lenses are needed; (6) be 18 or older. Persons 16 or 17 years of age may be licensed only if they have completed a certified driver-education program.


Out-of-state vehicles may be registered for Texas license plates at substations of the county tax assessor’s office, which are located throughout Dallas and Tarrant counties.

To establish Texas residency, you must (1) have your vehicle’s serial number verified through an inspection at a service station or car dealership; (2) surrender your out-of-state title; (3) apply for registration within 30 days of moving here; (4) pay a J15 new residents’ fee, plus a $10 title fee and the cost of your license plates (based on the model year for cars and gross weight for trucks), which are required on the front and rear of your car. Subsequent re-registration may be handled by mail. For more information, call 749-8621 (Dallas); (817) 334-1526 (Fort Worth); (817) 277-2268 (Arlington); (817) 281-6912 (Mid-Cities).


All vehicles registered in Texas must be inspected for safety every 12 months. The fee for an inspection sticker, which is applied to the lower left-hand corner of the windshield and shows the number of the month in which the inspection was performed, is S7.75 for car models up to 1979, $10.50 for 1980 and newer models, plus the cost of any repairs necessary to bring the vehicle up to established safety standards. Inspection stations are located throughout the Dallas/Fort Worth area at various service stations, dealerships, garages, and most major department store auto-service areas.


You must be (1) an American citizen; and (2) 18 years of age. You must have a permanent residential address within Dallas or Tarrant counties. It takes 30 days from the date of application to become a registered voter. Voter registration can usually be handled by filling out a form and returning it at least 30 days before an election to Election Department, Records Building, Dallas 75202; or Voter Registration, Tarrant County Assessor, 100 Weatherford St., Fort Worth 76196-0136. For more information, call 749-8871 (Dallas); 334-1115 (Tarrant).


Every homeowner living within an independent school district in Texas has the right to claim an exemption of 15,000 per year of the total assessed value of his house. Optional homestead exemptions may be offered by individual city or county governments.

To qualify, you must have title to the property on January 1 of the tax year. An affidavit claiming the homestead exemption must be filed between January 1 and April 30 with the Dallas County Appraisal District or the Tarrant County Appraisal District. For more information, call 631-0910 (Dallas) or (817) 332-3151 (Tarrant).


For zip code information, call 647-2996 between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. weekdays. For general information, call 741-5508 (Dallas) between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. weekdays.


For information on city bus routes or Hop-A-Bus, which services downtown Dallas, call DART (Dallas Area Rapid Transit) at 979-1111. In Fort Worth, call CITRAN (City Transit Service) at (817) 870-6200.

Amtrak offers a different way to get to Fort Worth: board the train at Union Station, 400 S. Houston, on Monday, Wednesday, or Saturday at 2:08 p.m. and ride to Fort Worth for $4.75 (half-price for children). Return Tuesday, Friday, or Sunday at 3:40 p.m. Call 653-1101 for reservations or (800) 872-7245 for information on Amtrak’s countrywide routes and schedules.

The Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport, 574-6720, provides service for most major airlines. Love Field Airport, 670-7275; Addison Airport, 239-3761; and Red Bird Airport, 337-1581, also service the area.


Call 844-(any four numbers) to obtain the correct lime and temperature.


Call National Weather Service at 654-0116 for weather information.

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