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Savings on license plates should be passed on to taxpayers

Alone among states in the region, Ohio requires car and truck owners to purchase and display license plates on both the rear and front of their vehicles — but not for long.

A bill signed into law last week by Gov. Mike DeWine increases vehicle fuel taxes in Ohio. State taxes will go up to 38.5 cents per gallon of gasoline and 47 cents on diesel fuel.

Included in the measure is a section rescinding the longstanding front license plate requirement. That change had been opposed by some law enforcement officials.

But DeWine’s signature makes the change official.

Eliminating the front plate rule will save the state about $1.4 million a year, it has been estimated.

That brings up the question of whether the state will charge motorists less for their license plates. Providing one plate instead of two is cheaper, obviously. Should the state just keep the $1.4 million or pass savings on to vehicle owners?

It should pass the savings on, of course. It will be interesting to see whether the powers-that-be in Columbus see it that way. It is not normally their tendency, but they should.

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