The cost of licensing horse-drawn vehicles in Allen County is going up for the first time since 1997.

The cost of a license will go from $30 per vehicle to $55 as a result of action taken today by the Board of Commissioners.  The increase would bring Allen County’s fee in line with the amount charged in neighboring counties such as Adams, Elkhart, LaGrange and Noble.

Examples of horse-drawn vehicles include buggies and trailers towed behind a horse-drawn or non-motorized vehicles, with the exception of wagons used principally for work in fields.

Highways in the county are maintained and repaired using revenue from the state gasoline tax.  But since horse-drawn vehicles don’t use gasoline, the fees collected from the sale of license plates are also used to fund the upkeep of roads.

Anyone operating a horse-drawn vehicle without the proper license in Allen County can be fined between $100 and $500 for each violation.

Enforcement of the ordinance was also changed to give deputies of the Allen County Sheriff’s Department and managerial employees of the Highway Department the right to stop any horse-drawn vehicle operating without a license and obtain the name of the operator and owner.  The names will be turned over to the County Attorney, who will enforce the penalties.