Improper car tags steal money from state

Published 7:00 am Friday, July 21, 2017

On Pearl River County roadways we see a variety of tags on the backs of vehicles.

Within Mississippi our tags relay the county in which the vehicle was registered. Typically it represents the county in which the owner of the vehicle lives. The tags seen here can range from the counties of Pearl River, Hancock, Harrison, Lamar, and sometimes those a little further out.

Most of the tags we see with a different Mississippi county on the bottom are those of people either just passing through, or stopping in for a short visit.

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At times, we may also see tags from other states, especially those right next door such as Alabama, Texas and of course Louisiana. These too are mostly due to people either on their way back home, or coming to visit a relative or friend.

But there’s another type of out of town tag that local law enforcement officials and tax office representatives see that causes some strife, those of improperly registered vehicles.

These are vehicles that are owned by county residents, but display a tag not from Pearl River County. A majority of the time these tags have the word “Louisiana” on the bottom.

As rumor has it, car tags in Louisiana are just a bit cheaper than those purchased here in Mississippi. While we can’t provide proof that this is true, there must be something to it because the Pearl River County Sheriff’s Department has determined a number of cars parked in front of Pearl River County homes on a regular basis display Louisiana tags.

This is a problem, because it means another state is receiving taxes for a vehicle owned by a resident of this county. That means the tax dollars used to keep our roads and bridges maintained locally, are now being collected by another state. In response, the local Sheriff’s Department is asking all Pearl River County residents to report improperly registered vehicles in their area so they too can pay their fair share in keeping our bridges safe and roads pothole free.