The Tao of Texas Taxes: Tax and DON’T Spend

From an email I just got from the American Motorcyclist Association, of which I am a paying member.  Like most “lifestyle” associations (e.g. the NRA), the AMA is now almost entirely in the business of lobbying.  Although I do also get really good roadside assistance coverage.

Currently, $5 of every motorcycle license fee is funneled to a separate account designed to help the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) offset some of the costs of running the motorcycle safety program in the state.

In order to certify the budget, the legislature has declined to appropriate money from the fund since 2005, and as a result, DPS has spent less and less on the program. As a result, the general revenue dedicated account for motorcycle education has accumulated a balance of more than $17.7 million in unspent funds (see acct 0501).

As a result of S.B. 754 an additional $3 would be collected with motorcycle registrations and sent to a subaccount within the existing account to help fund motorcycle education programs. Furthermore, the Texas Department of Transportation would be able to access the funds to help pay for motorcycle awareness campaigns.

In case you can’t tell, the AMA is pro this bill, meaning the state would then collect $8/year/motorcycle that it would never be allowed to spend because the overall budget threatens not to balance.

This is both insane and completely par for the course.

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