Pricey Harrison

Friday, August 19, 2005

Car Registrations And Fees

The General Assembly has given final approval to a bill that would allow automobile owners to pay their property taxes and the license tax renewal fee at the same time. The legislation, House Bill 1779, now goes to the Governor for his signature. The measure will help cities, counties, and fire districts collect approximately $80 million a year in taxes that usually go unpaid. The bill instructs the Division of Motor Vehicles and the Department of Revenue to upgrade computer programs so that the work can be completed jointly. The change will not take effect until 2009. Currently there is a months-long lag between the tag renewal and the property tax bill.

The bill sponsor, Rep. Dale Folwell (R-Forsyth), said that the bill should save cities and counties $8 million a year in postage by reducing the number of past-due notices that are mailed. Gloria Whisenhunt, the chairwoman of the Forsyth County Board of Commissioners, told the House Finance Committee that one-third of auto owners across the state do not pay their vehicle property taxes on time. Another person stated that tax collectors statewide collect 86 percent of the property taxes due on cars.

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