Bicol representative proposes to exempt motorcyclists from paying higher MVUC

Just recently, Albay 2nd District Representative, Joey Salceda, has proposed to spare motorcycle owners from paying an increased Road User's Tax. That is, if the proposed increase by the Department of Finance (DOF) to as much as 300% comes into fruition.

Salceda argues that vehicle owners other than motorcycles “have more money.” Although the congressman did not say it, a huge population of motorcycle owners are just regular Juan Dela Cruzes. A higher Road User's Tax for motorcyclists come registration day can mean no food on the table for a day.

The Road User's Tax or the Motor Vehicle User's Charge (MVUC) is a fee that motor vehicle owners — including us motorcycle owners — pay to the Land Transportation Office (LTO) upon new registration or renewal of our vehicles. Since 2000, Republic Act 8794 has defined the fees associated with the Road User's charges and where it should be allocated.

Should motorcycles be spared from Road User

Under the law, “All monies collected under this Act shall be earmarked solely and used exclusively (1) for road maintenance and the improved of the road drainage, (2) for the installation of adequate and efficient traffic lights and road safety devices, and (3) for the air pollution control.”

Recently, President Duterte abolished the Road Board which collects this fee and implements these improvements and has allocated the amount to the DOTr and DPWH.

In a nutshell, the funds that are used for road improvement / maintenance or roadside drainage repair comes from the MVUC that you paid to the LTO.

Currently, motorcycle owners enjoy a flat rate of PhP 240 MVUC per year. Vehicle owners' MVUC depend on the year and age of their vehicles, with additional levies charged depending on their vehicle's gross vehicle weight and type. If the DOF's proposed increase is approved, it will increase MVUC for motorcycles from PhP 240 up to PhP 720. If motorcycles are spared this increase, that may amount to PhP 3.3 billion that will have to be collected from larger vehicles.

As of now, there is a debate going on whether this is fair or not. Some vehicle owners argue that it is unfair if they are the only ones who will carry the added burden. Some even suggested to impose the higher levies on motorcycle owners so that eventually, there would be fewer motorcycles on the road. For motorcycle owners, these additional levies may be high for some, particularly those who live day by day on low wages. Some are also arguing that since motorcycles in general only take a small space on the road and are not heavy enough to cause any road damage, the current fees are just enough.

Do you think Congressman Salceda's proposal is fair or should we as motorcycle owners also share the added burden of this proposed Road User's Tax increase?