Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Colorado License Plate Fee Increase

I knew it was coming in July. I knew it was regressive and would hurt the working class the most. I didn't get the full impact of it until I got my motorcycle renewal in the mail yesterday.

Last year's total renewal costs (fees + ownership taxes) came to $26. This year it will be $51--double.

I can afford this increase and certainly have bigger things to complain about when it comes to taxes and big gov, but let's take a moment and think this one through...

My motorcycle is the third vehicle in my household. I ride it to save gas and started riding last year after the summer gas price spike. I ride nearly everyday unless it's raining hailstones. And yes, I also enjoy it!

I didn't consider riding for the environment but rather I saw the impact of high gas prices on our economy and knew several folks who were struggling (one that owns a business). I also agree that we need to decrease our dependence on foreign oil, the proceeds for which ends up supporting governments at odd with certain western values like NOT executing people who are gay, NOT imprisoning girls for going to school, and NOT stoning women who are the victim of sexual assault. I can afford gas for my car but recognize that I can make an impact by riding and have a little fun while doing it.

But it just so happens that two-wheeled transport, being the most efficient method of transporting a human being, is also better for the environment than a car/truck/SUV. Most bikes get better mileage than hybrids and that should make any environmentalist happy. In addition, bikes put less wear and tear on our roads and help ease traffic congestion--something local government should support.

So what Governor Ritter is doing, in my case, is punishing me for doing exactly what he and his party have asked me to do; cut back, conserve, make a positive impact. I wrote the Gov to tell him just that in the most polite way possible without getting political--we'll see if I get a response.

In the meantime, I'm confident the Governor is getting pounded by people asking why this increase applies to their old Honda Civic to the same degree it applies to a new $80k Land Rover.

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