Michigan Driver Responsibility Fees will be eliminated sooner, and a new program will assist individuals who have entered into payment plans as well as provide for possible license reinstatement under legislation signed on Thursday March 1 by Gov. Rick Snyder.
The Driver Responsibility Fee Program was instituted in 2003 by the Michigan Legislature and former Governor Jennifer Granholm to assess fees for driving offenses of varying levels of severity. The new legislation will eliminate the fees on Oct. 1, 2018 instead of Oct. 1, 2019, when they were originally slated to end.
“I have long opposed these fees and worked with the Legislature since taking office to phase them out,” Gov. Snyder said. “I’m pleased we found a solution that eliminates them without creating new state debt and helps remove barriers to work for more Michiganders.”
HBs 5040, 5043, 5044 and 5079, sponsored by state Reps. Lee Chatfield, Roger Hauck, Joseph Bellino, and Daire Rendon, respectively, will amend the same section of the Vehicle Code to make the following changes:
“Driver responsibility fees placed an unfair burden on Michigan families that made it difficult for many to reach their full potential,” Lt. Gov. Brian Calley said. “I’m pleased that we are able to finally get these fees off the books and keep working toward helping all Michiganders get back to work and experience our comeback.”
Snyder and Calley both said they appreciated the partnership of legislative leaders in reaching a compromise with this legislation.
“This legislation was intended to make all drivers more accountable, but all it really did was punish our citizens and make it harder for men and women to find work and keep their jobs,” Senate Majority Leader Arlan Meekhof said. “I am happy to see us do away with this burdensome law.”
The 8-bill package also includes:
The bills are now Public Acts 43-50 of 2018.
“As a prosecutor in Genesee County, I saw the burden these fees put on families, and I saw how hard it was for far too many people to live under their weight,” House Speaker Tom Leonard said. “This repeal is the right thing to do for the people of Michigan. These bills will put three hundred thousand hard-working people back into the workforce, and they give hundreds of thousands of families a new opportunity to make a living. Smart, conservative budgeting in recent years have given the state the ability to repeal these fees, and I am glad we have done so and made Michigan families our top priority once again.”
For more information on this and other legislation, please visit www.legislature.mi.gov.