There are many things I love about living here in Minnesota. Except for one 'fee' we just had to pay that seems ridiculously high. So just which one is it?

Minnesota Dept of Public Safety
Minnesota Dept of Public Safety

I'm talking about the tab fees you pay when you renew your license plates each year. And while they didn't seem all that high before, they really jumped up for us this year. The Minnesota Driver and Vehicle Services website explains how they compute these fees:

"Minnesota registration renewal fees are made up of a registration tax, which is determined by the year and type of your vehicle, and a number of different flat fees that the DVS charges for each renewal."

There's the rub-- your fee is based on the year and type of vehicle you're registering. So, for me, driving my finally-paid-off 8 year old SUV, that fee wasn't very high at all (I think it was about $58 last year.)

But now that we bought a new SUV last month, viola, those tabs just cost us $320. Are you kidding me?!? $320 just to renew your tabs?!? Come on, man!

The reason this seems a bit outrageous to me is that over in Wisconsin, my home state, you pay one flat fee-- $75-- to renew your license plates, no matter which kind of car you're driving. Old, new, expensive, beater, doesn't matter-- it's still going to cost you just $75.

So while there are many things I like better about living here in Minnesota, I've gotta hand it to Wisconsin on this one. (Well, that and the whole being able to buy booze on Sundays too, but that's a whole other story...)


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