Mar 16, 2010 12:53 PM by Letitia Walker

License Increase Questioned

 BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - Lawmakers questioned the legality of a

$15 hike in the cost of a Louisiana driver's license and criticized

the jump in price as inappropriate during the tough economic


      A new or renewed basic license now costs $36.50 for four years,

up from $21.50, under the price hike enacted by the Louisiana State

Police last week. The charge to drivers is nearly the highest in

the South, second only to Florida.

      At least two lawmakers have proposed bills to strip the boost in


      Col. Mike Edmonson, the head of the Department of Public Safety

that oversees the state motor vehicles office, says the cost

increase covers a federal mandate that requires a more extensive

state identification program to protect against identity theft and



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