Raia: Gov Hits Reverse On $25 License Plate Plan

Lawmaker who criticized cash-grab from beginning credits grassroots outrage with scheme’s demise
November 16, 2009

Assemblyman Andrew Raia (R,I,C-East Northport) today called the abandonment of a proposed $25 license plate fee by Governor David Paterson a welcome event for Long Island’s overburdened commuters. The scheme was passed in the 2009-10 state budget – a tax-and-spend bill Raia voted against – and required all drivers renewing their registrations after April 1, 2010, to pay 40 percent above the current charge for new license plates, in addition to a $20 charge for those motorists wishing to keep their existing license plate numbers. The license plate fee was part of a litany of nuisance taxes and new and increased user fees totaling $8 billion in the state budget. It is estimated that New York families are paying an additional $2,400 this year as a result of Albany’s fiscal recklessness. Assemblyman Raia was among the first voices calling on the governor to reconvene the legislature in order to address the license plate fee and other punitive charges contained within the state budget.

“Albany spells taxes F-E-E,” said Raia. “The annual spend-a-thon in the Capitol is usually paid for by imposing arbitrary and sky-high taxes and fees on everything from utility bills to saltwater fishing licenses. Meanwhile, a greater share of Long Island’s money is transferred to New York City special interests and politically favored individuals. Earlier this fall, I helped to sound the alarm over the massive new taxes and fees being directed at Long Island commuters and commercial drivers. Now, the people have spoken; and while I applaud the removal of the license plate fee from the list of new mandates, I cannot overemphasize the importance of abolishing other nuisance taxes and arbitrary fees on hard-working Long Island families and small businesses during the Empire State’s road to economic recovery.”