By Sally Mahan
As of July 1, a new South Carolina gas tax took effect, and you’re going to notice at the pump, DMV and when buying a new car, boat or semi-trailer.
Gas jumped about 2 cents a gallon under the new law, commonly referred to as the Roads Bill. That is in addition to the biannual vehicle registration fee, which will change from $24 to $40 for in-state residents on Jan. 1.
Additionally, if you live out of state and are registering a new vehicle in South Carolina, you will pay a new $250 fee.
For example, if you move to SC from Georgia with a vehicle that was previously registered in Georgia, when you register that vehicle with the SCDMV, you will owe the $250 fee and applicable title and registration fees to the SCDMV. Vehicle owners must bring their original paid property tax receipt when registering the item.
“If you fall into the above category, it’s best to prepare early for your visit to the SCDMV,” said Director of Vehicle Services Larry Murray. “Remember, everyone has 45 days to transfer their title and registration to South Carolina.”
If you purchase a vehicle, trailer, semi-trailer, or other item in South Carolina that will be registered in another state, you will not owe the $250 fee. You will, however, pay a sales tax when purchasing the item.
Under the changes in legislation, the sales tax on new vehicles will remain at 5 percent of the purchase price of the item.
However, the maximum tax due will increase from $300 to $500. For instance, if you purchase an item that is $9,999 or less, your sales tax will be 5 percent of the sales price. If it is $10,000 or more, you will owe $500.
The goal is to raise money to fix roads throughout the state. According to the DOT, around $800 million in additional revenue will be raised by the increase in the state’s gas tax by 2024.
“Customers can rest assured that the SCDMV will guide them through this transition,” said Executive Director Kevin Shwedo. “We’ve been working with South Carolina dealers, their association and the Department of Revenue to facilitate a smooth shift with minimal to no impact for businesses and customers.”
For more information, visit www.scdmvonline.com.