While much was made last session of Minnesota’s failed vehicle licensing system MNLARS – and rightfully so because this state wasted millions of dollars on this incompetent and inefficient program – another under-the-radar change was also made that will address registration costs for drivers.

The Vehicle Registration Task Force was established to study various methods of vehicle registration and the corresponding fee structures. The committee is comprised of myself and other lawmakers, deputy registrars, the transportation commissioner and other interested stakeholders, and we held our first meeting on Tuesday.

Basically the task force will review various styles of registration fees and processes for obtaining license tabs and registrations in Minnesota.

Specifically we must study how each of the following methods could be implemented in Minnesota in a revenue neutral manner: flat rate, weight-based, value-based, and age-based; a two-year vehicle registration period and any other changes related to timing of vehicle registration periods; the financial effects of these changes must consider and include, at a minimum, costs for vehicle owners and deputy registrars; and whether the changes will require customization to the vehicle title and registration system and the potential cost of that customization.

Once the task force has finished its work, it must submit a report to the Legislature by mid-January.

Considering my continued interest in improving transportation in our state and that I had carried the bill in the past, I was pleased to have been named to this task force. I look forward to reviewing our current laws and figuring out the best way to move forward, and that includes streamlining the process for registered vehicles and making any changes to vehicle registration fee structures. I’ll be sure to report back when our work is complete.

As always, I welcome your feedback. Please contact me anytime by phone at 651-296-5368 or by email at rep.john.petersburg@house.mn.

Jeffrey Jackson is the managing editor of the Owatonna People's Press. He can be reached at 507-444-2371 or via email at jjackson@owatonna.com

Load comments