Kicking off January 1st, 2019, Montgomery County residents will have to pay an additional $5 fee a year for vehicle registration fees.
It’s a new fee that will bring more revenue for city improvements according to local commissioners.
Prior to the approval of the new law, nobody has spoken against it during the last two public hearings.
However, there are some facts about this law that are resonating in Alabama and are worth sharing. These Alabama vehicle registration fees have already been set in some municipalities within Montgomery County.
Comments about this new law
According to Paul Gruner, Montgomery County engineer, the county plans to gather $2 million a year out of that increase to upgrade their bridges and generate road improvements.
Gruner also mentioned that the increased revenue will amount to 15% of the engineer’s office budget and provide support in the repair of some pending bridges.
In fact, Grunner commented about this new law during the last hearing:
We have a number of structurally deficient bridges — 23 of those — another 25 are functionally obsolete.
Niraj Antani, state representative, wrote a letter to the county commission to express his views against this new law. On his letter, he expressed the following:
It should not become more expensive for working families to get their license plates renewed. I urge you to reject the proposed $5 fee increase, as it is unfair to our community.
However, Chris Kershner, executive vice president of the Dayton Area Chamber of Commerce, recently conveyed his support to the new fee on behalf of the chamber and the Dayton Area Logistics Association:
Maintaining a safe, efficient, free-flowing, accessible and business friendly infrastructure is a strategic role of government that is focused on positive business growth and workforce development. As the Dayton region continues to be recognized nationally as a hub for the logistics and distribution industry, maintaining and upgrading our aging roadways is vital.
This new law is a legit consequence of a previous law that took effect on March 2017. This law gives local counties the discretion to raise their transportation budget through additional taxes.
This law, however, states that any additional revenue could only be gathered and spent on planning, investing, and implementing actions that best improve local roads, bridges, and streets.
The normal cost for passenger vehicle registrations is $34.50 per year before the addition of the permissive taxes.
These taxes vary from county to county, and even municipalities within the same county, whether a local government has imposed the tax.
Many residents have already paid permissive motor vehicle license taxes of $20, which is the highest until the new law went into effect in June.
With this addition, the new tax now increases and amounts to $25 for many in the county.
In Montgomery County, those living in Jefferson Twp, Moraine, New Lebanon, Phillipsburg, Vandalia, and Verona are already paying only three of the $5 incremental impositions.
According to the Bureau of Motor vehicles (BMV), there are more than 518,000 vehicles registered in the county.
Note that the engineer’s office obtain their funds through the basic motor vehicle licensing tax to carry out their normal operations, which will add another $5.2 million of the $14 million 2018 budget.
According to the county records, the current permissive license taxes will account for $4.2 million, and fuel taxes will amount to $2.3 million.
Lastly, Gruner added:
Our goal here is to keep the roads safe, keep the roads open – which is related a lot to the bridges – and provide an acceptable road surface.