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Lawmakers ask what’s in a name? A tax

“The way these levies are presented to the public are often not as transparent or truthful as they could be.”

Legislators might relabel fees, surcharges and levies on items from cigarettes and driver’s licenses to rental cars and business certifications as “taxes,” under a proposal by House Ways & Means Chairman Bryan Avila, a Miami Springs Republican.

Avila said Tuesday the intent of the proposal is for governments to be more transparent with the currently “mislabeled” charges.

“The way these levies are presented to the public are often not as transparent or truthful as they could be as to the true nature of the charge,” Avila said.

Among the targets of Avila: a $1-a-pack surcharge on cigarettes; business filing fees; a $2-per-day rental car surcharge; a $1 fee on the disposal of waste tires; a $1.50 fee for vehicle and vessel batteries; a $225 fee to register cars and trucks; driver’s license fees; and numerous motor vehicle surcharges.

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Republished with permission of the News Service of Florida.

The News Service of Florida provides journalists, lobbyists, government officials and other civic leaders with comprehensive, objective information about the activities of state government year-round.

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