MVD’s 3% Administrative Fee:
Changes to Budget Beginning in 2018

How Contributions, Funding, and Budget Affect MVD & Montana

The Motor Vehicle Division is funded two ways: through the “General Fund” and a special revenue fund (there are thousands of different special revenue accounts in Montana). The General Fund is the largest funding source for the state. MVD contributes over $116 million each year and receives approximately $10 million from the General Fund for operations. The special revenue fund associated with MVD primarily covers costs for road construction projects. MVD contributes approximately $25 million each year and receives around $9 million from this special revenue fund for operations.

The 2017 legislature voted to remove MVD’s operating budget from this special revenue fund effective January 2018. The legislature instead agreed that a 3% administrative fee will be charged on all services provided through MVD to offset the removal of almost half of the overall operating budget. However, MVD will still contribute to this special revenue fund to help the state compensate for predicted shortfalls.

The 3% administrative fee moves MVD toward a partially “self-funded” budget, which adjusts based on the population growth of the state through motor vehicle and licensing transactions. We are committed to operating within our budgeted means while looking towards innovative solutions that bring the best services possible to the citizens of Montana.

Note: The 3% administrative fee does not apply to county-specific taxes (i.e. county retained fees). The fee will be assessed on all 2017 expirations that are paid late in 2018.


  • General Fund Contributions

  • $116.84 million

  • Funds 55% of budget ($10 million)

    Supports 152 Full-Time Employees

    Supports 50 locations around the state

New Funding
  • Admin Fee Funding

  • 3% on all services

    Starts 2018
  • Replaces operating budget from the Special Revenue Fund

    Matches population growth with self-funded approach

    Applies to any late payments from 2017 made in 2018

    Does not apply to county option tax

Funding Ending
  • Special Revenue Contributions

  • $25.59 million

  • Funded 45% of MVD budget ($9 million)

    Legislatures removed funding source

    MVD will continue to contribute to fund

For more information or to schedule interviews with Attorney General Tim Fox or other Department of Justice staff members, reporters should contact one of the department’s communications officers at (406) 444-2026. Available information may be limited by the Montana Criminal Justice Information Act of 1979 or by the status of an ongoing criminal investigation.

Direct media inquiries to:

Eric Sell ([email protected]) or

Anastasia Burton ([email protected])

or by phone: 406-444-2026