On December 12, the Assembly Committee on Local Government held a public hearing at Assembly Bill 612 relating to county registration of animal-drawn vehicles. Current law allows a county, town, village or city to enact an ordinance to collect an annual registration fee for motor vehicles that weigh less than 8,000 pounds, and this bill allows a county to enact an ordinance requiring registration of, and imposing an annual flat registration fee of no more than $100, on animal-drawn vehicles. Executive Director of the Wisconsin Towns Association, Mike Koles, testified in favor of the bill saying that it would create equity and a revenue source to address the challenges with animal-drawn vehicles damaging the roads. "Our road engineers and superintendents will say that a pavement maintenance cycle is enhanced a road will last about two-thirds of what it should if you have a significant amount of horse-drawn vehicle traffic on it, and yet the horse-drawn vehicles don't pay any kind of user fee." Jolene Plautz of the Wisconsin Horse Council testified against the bill saying that, "the damage to the roads will not be fixed by this fee." Plautz argued that it wouldn't pay for much due to the small community it targets, and that it could be better addressed by a community conversation. "It's about the towns, the counties, and the Amish communities getting together and working together."

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