Ada County residents to face potential increase in vehicle registration fees

Posted at 4:46 PM, Jun 08, 2018
and last updated 2018-06-08 20:48:29-04

Ada County residents are likely to get the chance to vote this November on whether or not they support a vehicle registration fee increase from $40 to $70.

This all comes in response to a recent poll conducted by the Ada County Highway District, which they say showed local support for raising the fee in order to fund road projects. 

ACHD says the majority of commissioners like the idea as well.

“To go towards projects that would involve congestion relief, safe routes to school, and those other community programs that put things like sidewalks in neighborhoods."

The survey reached more than 2200 Ada County residents through a combination of telephone and online questions. 

Originally they found 49% of residents supported the increase in fees to a maximum of $70 without further information on delegation of fees. Once the residents found out what the funds would go towards, the approval rating rose to 53%.

“The commission is leaning toward a $70 vehicle fee increase, and it's different depending on how old your vehicle is."

Most registration fees for the county would be around $70, added on to state DMV costs which are different based on the age and type of vehicle you drive

Although a comfortable majority are supportive of the increase, some residents, like Mike Mill for instance, will be a little harder to sway.

“I'm usually not a big fan of increased fees, of course, no one is, but if they want to use it for improving the roads and things, fine. Sometimes I'm a little skeptical."

Exactly what projects the funds will go towards is still being decided, but commissioners hope to develop a plan early enough to be on the ballot in November.

Commissioner Paul Woods is one supporting the move to raise revenues, but maybe only for now. Woods says he is in favor of a sunset clause, raising registration fees for a certain amount of time, and then bringing them back down to a lower rate after that set amount of time. 

ACHD says current vehicle registration fees bring in just under $10 million to the county. With the vehicle registration price increase, however, that would bring in just under $17 million. All going towards funding road improvements.

The commission will continue the discussion later this summer.