Governor Announces Elimination and Reduction of More Than 100 Fees Across State Government

Governor Hogan announced yesterday that he plans to eliminate or reduce more than 100 fees saving Marylanders $51 million over the next 5 years. Fees being reduced include professional licensing fees, boat launching fees for seniors, business fees, among others.

From the Governor’s press release,

As part of a process that will begin immediately, eight agencies will reduce or completely eliminate hundreds of individual fees currently levied by Maryland’s government. In total, the Hogan administration announced plans to reduce or eliminate 100 fees across state government, as well as 115 separate fees related to animal health diagnostics at the Department of Agriculture.

The fees, which can be cut through administrative action, total approximately $10 million a year. Other fees the Governor would like to reduce will require legislative action.

As reported by the Baltimore Sun,

The cuts Hogan is proposing include cutting to $1 the cost of Motor Vehicle Administration-issued identification cards for homeless Marylanders. The state has been charging homeless adults $24 and homeless children $15 for such cards, he said.

Other fees Hogan plans to cut include the charges for a broad range of professional licenses, including a $65 reduction for veterinarians. Also receiving cuts will be real estate brokers, home appraisers, pharmacists and asbestos removal contractors.

Hogan plans to eliminate some fees entirely. One is the $725 the Department of Human Resources charges adopted people who want to search records to find their birth parents. Also dumped are fees of up to $700 charged by the State Highway Administration for outdoor advertising permits. Businesses with underground storage tanks will see the $100 to $300 fees they pay for permit applications and retesting go away.

The Governor’s press release further describes the fee eliminations and reductions.  It also includes a chart showing current fees and proposed new levels.