My virtual tour of American bicycle legislation led me to discover Hawaii Revised Statute 249-14, which imposes a $15 registration fee for all bicycles with wheels greater than 20 inches in diameter.
This fee goes into the county bikeways fund and is used to build and maintain bike facilities and for cycling promotion and cycling safety programs.
The $15 registration fee is payable on bicycle purchase, whether it’s bought new or used. Bicycle registrations do not need an annual renewal.
Does any state or local government charge more than $15? California cities that require registration generally charge a nominal fee of $1 to $3 annually, though some cities charge nothing.
The Platinum level Bicycle Friendly Community of Davis, CA charges $10 for a three year license, with $5 to renew every three years thereafter. If you keep a bike more than nine years in Davis, you’ve exceeded Hawaii’s $15 fee. After a dozen years, you’ll have met the $25 excise proposed by Washington State Democrats. You arguably get something in return for licensing in Davis, because the police actually check stopped bikes against their stolen bike database.
Does anybody in the United States charge more than $15 for a bike license, registration or tax?
Hawaii’s bicycle registration law is a wonderful example of legislative writing, incidentally. HRS 249-14, with 2200 words describing the collection of this $15 tax, occupies over two full printed pages of small print text.