SALEM, Ore. (Feb. 1, 2012) — Oregon drivers may soon find themselves paying extra for their studded tires, as state representatives look at measures to curb the cost of damage to the state's roads.
Two bills introduced in the state legislature this year would impose a fee on tire dealerships in the state that choose to sell studded tires or install studs in a tire.
House Bill 2278, introduced by Rep. Mitch Greenlick, D-Portland, would establish a $10 fee for each tire, imposed on the tire dealer at the time of sale or installation. House Bill 2397, sponsored by Rep. Brad Witt D-Clatskanie, would impose a similar fee, but did not include an amount.
Under either bill, dealers would be required to file returns with the state's department of revenue at the end of each quarter.
A separate bill, also introduced by Rep. Greenlick, would require drivers to obtain a permit in order to use studded tires on their vehicles or face fines up to $500.
Under House Bill 2277, the Oregon Department of Transportation would be left to determine the cost of the permit "by dividing the amount of damage to highways caused by studded tires and retractable studded tires by the estimated number of motor vehicles registered in this state that used studded tires or retractable studded tires in the previous calendar year," according to the bill summary.
Money collected by the department for studded tire permits would then be deposited into the State Highway Fund for use in highway repairs.
Dealers would be able to reduce the amount owed to the state by 5 percent to "compensate the dealer for expenses incurred in collecting and remitting the fee," the bills state.
The bills also state that the "fees, penalties and interest imposed...shall be a personal debt owed by the tire dealer to the State of Oregon."
To reach this reporter: [email protected]; 330-865-6148.