Change in state law affects boat registration procedure.

Beginning in January, the process will change for registering boats in South Carolina.

A new law requires boats to be registered annually, similar to the annual registration required for motor vehicles. Currently, boats are registered every three years, according to a news release from the S.C. Department of Natural Resources. SCDNR will phase in the new registration process over the next three years as current registrations expire.

The fee for the annual registration will be $10. The previous three-year fee was $30. Counties will begin billing boat owners on their property tax forms in January 2021.

Once the boat registration program is implemented, the annual registration fee will be included on the boat owner's county property tax bill, similar to the way SCDMV vehicle registration fees are paid.

The new law also requires property taxes for boats be collected by counties in advance of the coming year. Previously, property taxes for boats were paid in arrears. Once the property taxes and...

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