Bill would raise registration, inspection fees to fund state roads

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Updated: 4/22/2013 11:20 pm

Generating more money for Texas highways could mean paying more to register and inspect your vehicle.

Lawmakers who say the highway system needs work know it will take an influx of cash. One bill would raise your registration fee $30 to fund new highways and help pay off bonds that financed other projects.

A second bill would add $15 to your inspection fee.

That money would go to the Department of Public Safety to free up funds to transfer into the highway fund.

Lubbock County's tax assessor collector Ronnie Keister said he's more in favor of raising local fees.

"With a local fee, that's at the option of the elected officials out here, I think it'd be better because then we can raise the fee as we need it, if we decide we need an outer loop or another east or west freeway, something similar to that," Keister said. "And then when it's paid for we can lower it back off if we want to."

Annual inspections cost about $15 in Lubbock. The legislation could double that.

Darrin Campbell at Bolton's Oil Change said better roads come at a cost.

"Any kind of increase, or anytime you want to do something that's going to be better for the community or for the state you have to have extra money to do it," Campbell said.

Charles Planks agreed with Campbell, as long as the money is truly spent on roads.

"If it's important that we can do that, then I don't mind doing that. but if they're gonna send it somewhere else and not use it to help other people or our roads, then I would say no to it," Planks said.

If the bill passes,  increases in fees would likely take effect in September.

House Bill 3664 relates to the allocation of the state highway fund, restricting the use of the state highway fund and increasing the fee for motor vehicle and trailer registration.

House Bill 3666 relates to authorizing a public safety fee on complusory inspection of a motor vehicle.

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