When Gov. Tim Pawlenty created the “health impact fee” on a pack of cigarettes years ago, there was plenty of wailing that the “no new taxes” governor had raised taxes by couching it as a “fee.”
There’s been — at least so far — very little similar kvetching about the fees for renewing your license tabs in Minnesota. And, today, the Minnesota House of Representatives’ Finance Committee passed along a bill that raises one of the fees — the “administrative fee” from $4.50 to $6.
It’s either that or raise the actual registration tax, which is at least deductible on federal income taxes for filers who itemize their deductions. Fees are not deductible.
Rep. Rick Hansen said the bump is needed to keep locally based deputy registrars afloat, according to the Associated Press.
Where does the fee money go? Into the “vehicle services operating account,” which — according to the state statute is used for:
(1) designing, producing, issuing, and mailing vehicle registrations, plates, emblems, and
(2) collecting title and registration taxes and fees;
(3) transferring vehicle registration plates and titles;
(4) maintaining vehicle records;
(5) issuing disability certificates and plates;
(6) licensing vehicle dealers;
(7) appointing, monitoring, and auditing deputy registrars; and
(8) inspecting vehicles when required by law.