Virginia Governor Vetoes Bill to Benefit Vehicle Restoration Projects

Legislation that originally threatened to provide localities with the authority to raise from $100 to $500 the amount charged for an annual license tax for vehicles that do not display current license plates was vetoed by Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell. The Governor cited a conflict with current law as the reason for not approving the bill. Amendments to the bill drafted by SEMA in consultation with state hobbyist groups totally exempted from the license tax all vehicles and parts cars that are stored on private property for the purpose of restoration or repair. Vehicles stored within a structure remained exempted from the tax.

Under current law, all vehicles, even those 25 years old and older, are subject to the license tax. Under the amended H.B. 878, the exemption for all cars, regardless of age that are undergoing restoration (for as long a time period as the restoration work requires) represented a new benefit to car owners and demonstrated a real effort by legislators and hobbyists to enact reasonable and fair compromise legislation. 

For details, contact Steve McDonald at