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Illinois Pockets an Extra $5 Million in Plate Renewal Late Fees

Vanity License Plate - Illinois
UIG, Getty Images

Remember when Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White said that his office would stop sending out license plate renewal notices because the postage was too pricey? Sure, it’s a big inconvenience to you, but for the state of Illinois, it’s been a big windfall.

The Secretary of State’s office stopped mailing out those license renewal notices in October of last year, saying that it could no longer afford the mailing costs, estimated to be around $450,000 per month. The fact that no budget agreement in place was blamed for the shift in policy.

The Illinois House passed a bill that would’ve given drivers a 30-day “grace period” in which drivers couldn’t be fined for having expired stickers, but the Illinois Senate failed to act on the bill.

Dave Druker, a spokesman for the Secretary of State’s office, says that due to the lack of notices, Illinois has collected nearly $10 million on 476,550 late fees so far in 2016. That’s a pretty good chunk of dough when you with compare it with the $4.3 million on approximately 214,500 late fees over the same time period last year.

Oh, and just so you know: Illinois drivers who exceed a 30 day period without renewing their license-plate stickers (that’ll be $101, please), get hit with an extra $20 late charge.

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