BLOG: The cost of driving in Minnesota will go up under plan passed by Senate


The Minnesota Senate voted yesterday to pass their transportation bill which mirrors Governor Dayton’s plan to spend $11 Billion on roads, bridges, and public transportation.

The 6.5% wholesale gas tax has been receiving the bulk of attention as it would put Minnesota in the top five in the nation for fuel taxes.  The Senate Democrats’ bill also includes the following tax hikes:

  • a 1.5% tax for vehicle registration fees–a 17% increase from the current 1.25%
  • a new late fee for vehicle registration renewal, capped at $100
  • a new $10 surcharge on license tab renewal
  • a one cent metro-wide sales tax to pay for public transit– a 75% increase from the current .25 cents, with most of the revenues going to the Met Council

Another Democrat idea for funding transportation spending is still floating around committee waiting for money to be appropriated.  Senate file 735 would fund a working group to establish a mileage-based road-user fee and is authored by Transportation and Public Safety Chair Sen Scott Dibble, D-Minneapolis.  Sen Melissa Franzen, D-Edina is the chief author.  The group would be in place by this August and be required to make recommendations to the legislature at the beginning of the 2017 session.

Mayors, city council members, and staff from the League of Minnesota cities showed up at the Capitol yesterday to lobby for the license tab surcharge and more spending on transportation.  Move MN, a coalition of liberal advocacy organizations as well as government and private unions, is currently running a media campaign promoting the bill.

All Republican members, and one Democrat, Sen Dan Sparks, D-Austin, voted against the bill.  Voting in favor of the bill are:

Senator District Area
Sen Tom Bakk 3 Two Harbors, Grand Marais, Ely, Hermantown
Sen Terri Bonoff 44 Minnetonka, Plymouth
Sen Jim Carlson 51 Eagan, Burnsville
Sen Bobby Joe Champion 59 Minneapolis
Sen Greg Clausen 57 Apple Valley, Rosemount
Sen Richard Cohen 64 St. Paul
Sen Kevin Dahle 20 Northfield
Sen Scott Dibble 61 Minneapolis
Sen Kari Dziedzic 60 Minneapolis
Sen Chris Eaton 40 Brooklyn Center, Brooklyn Park
Sen Kent Eken 4 Moorhead, Detroit Lakes
Sen Melissa Franzen 49 Edina
Sen Foung Hawj 67 St. Paul
Sen Jeff Hayden 62 Minneapolis
Sen Vicki Jensen 24 Owatonna, Fairbault
Sen Alice Johnson 37 Blaine, Coon Rapids, Spring Lake Park
Sen Susan Kent 53 Woodbury
Sen Lyle Koenen 17 Marshall, Glencoe, Litchfield
Sen Ron Latz 46 St. Louis Park, Hopkins
Sen Tony Lourey 11 Hinkley, Cloquet
Sen John Marty 66 Roseville, Falcon Heights
Sen James Metzen 52 South St. Paul, Inver Grove Heights, Mendota Heights
Sen Sandra Pappas 65 St. Paul
Sen Roger Reinert 7 Duluth
Sen Ann Rest 45 New Hope, Robbinsdale
Sen Tom Saxhaug 5 Grand Rapids, Bemidji
Sen Bev Scalze 42 Little Canada, Vadnais Heights, Shoreview, Moundsview
Sen Matt Schmit 21 Red Wing, Zumbrota, Wabasha
Sen Kathy Sheran 19 Mankato
Sen Katie Sieben 54 Cottage Grove, Hastings
Sen Rod Skoe 2 Park Rapids, Baudette
Sen LeRoy Stumpf 1 Warroad, Roseau, Thief River Falls, East Grand Forks
Sen David Tomassoni 6 Chisholm, Eveleth, Virginia, Hibbing
Sen Patricia Torres Ray 63 Minneapolis
Sen Charles Wiger 43 Maplewood, North St. Paul
Sen Melissa Wiklund 50 Bloomington
Contributor Alpha News