Arizona governor OKs auto fee boost to end raid on road cash

Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey has signed legislation that boosts vehicle registration fees in an effort to end raids on dedicated local highway funding.

The bill signed Wednesday raises annual registration fees by about $18 and also eliminates the current super-low fee for alternative fuel vehicles. Fees for electric cars could soar from an average of $41 to $410.

The bill by Republican Rep. Noel Campbell of Prescott and Sen. Bob Worsley of Mesa would raise about $148 million a year to fund the state Highway Patrol. That would free up nearly $100 million currently taken from a highway repair fund that has left counties and rural cities without sufficient money to repair their roads.

The extra cash could help balance other parts of the budget, including education funding.