Letter: State rep. did not vote for higher vehicle fee

I am writing today to set the record straight on a topic that has taken on a life of its own. In short, I did not support nor did I vote for the vehicle fee registration increase dubbed FASTER by its proponents.
I knew at the time, as I do now, that raising the cost of registering a vehicle for Coloradans across the state was the wrong thing to do. Colorado families already struggling from the effects of the recession are in no shape to bear this additional burden. As are Colorado’s farmers, ranchers, and businesses, both large and small, unable to shoulder these additional costs.
There is no question that as a state, we need to fund road and bridge improvements for the safety and future vitality of Colorado’s infrastructure. If the backers of the car tax had been willing to negotiate more transportation dollars through government cost savings rather than increased fees, I would have been willing to support that goal. However, their unwillingness to budge on what I know to be a budget-busting tax for those of us out here in the trenches left me with the only option I saw fit. I voted no.
So as I appreciate all of your calls and e-mails I have recently received on the topic, rest assured that I did not and do not support raising the fee for registering your vehicles.
State Rep. Randy Baumgardner
Hot Sulphur Springs