Ontario Raises Commercial Vehicle Licence Fees
TORONTO – The Government of Ontario announced today they are raising fees on provincial driver and licences so that Ontario can meet its commitment to eliminating the deficit, and it may only be the first of a series of soon-to-come hikes for the province, said the Ontario Trucking Association (OTA).
The Ministry of Transportation released information today showing that minimum heavy duty commercial vehicle validation fees (GVW of 3,001 to 3,500) will jump from $109 to $142 on September 1, 2012. Another increase is slated for 2013, for a total increase of 70 percent over two years. The maximum fees (weight class 63,001 kg to 63,500 kg) will rise from $2,722 to $3,539 on December 1, 2012 to $4,601 in 2013 — also an increase of 70 percent over two years.
Oversize/over-weight permit fees will also be increasing. A single trip (dimension only) permit will increase from $50 to $65 in 2013 and a super load permit (greater than 120,000 kg) will increase from $500 to $700 (a 40 percent increase) over the same time period.
Commercial 10-day trip permits, last changed in 1993, will be increased gradually starting in 2013 from $15 to $23 in 2015 for unladen commercial vehicles (the minimum). The maximum fees for combinations of commercial motor vehicles and trailers will increase from $132 to $201 over the same period.
David Bradley, president of the OTA, said “while it may have been inevitable that we would see higher commercial licence fees given the provincial government’s current fiscal challenges, it’s still a bitter pill to swallow — no one likes tax/fee increases.”
In an effort to make that bill a little less bitter, Ontario transportation minister Bob Chiarelli said they hope "the extra money raised actually goes into the road/highway network and the bridges since revenues received by governments are not dedicated to any specific person and instead are deposited in general reserves,” he said.
Bradley noted that the blow might have been softened if some of the more significant increases were spread out over a somewhat longer time horizon instead of having to be absorbed in their entirety in 2012 and 2013. “At least carriers have some time to adjust their rates to include these fee increases,” he said.