County wheelage tax needed [UPDATED]Published 9:29am Wednesday, July 3, 2013 Updated 11:39am Wednesday, July 3, 2013
The Otter Tail County Board will soon consider increasing the annual cost of license plate tabs in the form of a $10 wheelage tax to help cover the rising construction costs of county bridges and highways. While a $10 increase may seem like a big jump, we are in favor of the proposal and think it is a necessary move to help maintain and improve our county’s assets.
The cost of asphalt has more than doubled in the past several years, and the only way to keep county roads in good shape is to spend a bit more. We have all driven on eroding roads, and nothing can be improved without funding.
The proposed wheelage tax will only affect those who own vehicles, and residents who don’t drive or use county roads will not be affected. This seems to be the most practical and ethical way for the county to bring in an extra $568,000 every year for roadwork.
We don’t think it’s too much to ask vehicle owners to pay an additional 2.7 cents a day to cover the rising cost needed to maintain quality highways and bridges.
While no one wants to pay more taxes, it is likely the county will use the tax for something we all want and need — well-maintained roads and bridges.