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Cuts in vehicle fees pass Florida Senate

Florida nearly doubled the cost of motor vehicle fees in 2009 during the recession. Today, the Florida Senate unanimously voted to cut back some fees, though some say they haven't gone far enough.

Drivers we spoke with at the tax collector's office in Crestview say they are tired of shelling out big bucks for motor vehicle fees.

"It hurts. Times is hard right now," said Everett Booth, who was registering a pick-up truck.

The prospect of those fees being cut of course comes as welcome news.

"I think it's good," said Kenny Lee, a driver, "It'll help out a lot of people."

"That'd help me out a lot," said Richard Drane, another motorist.

The bill approved by the State Senate would save most drivers about $25 on tag renewals, but fees for first time vehicle registrations, which also skyrocketed in 2009 under then Governor Charlie Crist, would remain the same.

"The last time I did it I think it cost me 200 bucks just to register one motorcycle," said Drane.

"I'm getting new plates," said Lee,  "So it may be like 200 something dollars. I never had to pay that much where I used to live."

Lee says he recently moved here from Missouri. He hopes the first time registration fees can also be reduced.

"The government has to get their money somehow," Lee said, "So they're taking it out on the DMVs."
The bill would cost the state about $400 million a year. It now has to get through the House of Representatives, where it's expected to pass.

Governor Rick Scott has made the rollback a big part of his campaign for re-election. His opponent, Charlie Crist, supports it, but has questioned the timing of the proposal.

If the cuts become a reality, the lower fees will kick in September 1.