DOD personnel can now pay Japanese road tax on base
March 10, 2009
YOKOSUKA NAVAL BASE, Japan — It’s almost that time of year when drivers at bases in Japan spend a few minutes chipping away at the gooey sticker on the windshield.
Beginning later this month and in April, Defense Department personnel and their families can pay their annual Japanese road tax on base, which then allows them to receive base decals valid for 2009.
Drivers in Japan can also opt to pay their taxes now at a local Japanese tax office, post office or select convenience stores. However, the new base decals are not yet being distributed at most bases.
"The decal keeps track of the cars and makes sure everyone is actually legally registered," said Lt. j.g. Sam Almabrouk, assistant security officer at Naval Air Facility Atsugi. "It also prevents any unauthorized personnel from (having vehicles)."
The last day servicemembers can have the old base decal on their windshields is May 31, according to Yokosuka’s vehicle registration office. Other bases have similar grace periods.
To obtain a decal, a driver must present the following items to their local vehicle registration office:
• 2009 road tax receipt;
• Base driver’s license;
• Liability insurance;
• Japanese Compulsory Insur-ance;
• Current base vehicle inspection sheet;
• Japanese vehicle title;
• Military vehicle registration;
• Certificate of title of motor vehicle (DD Form 430);
• SOFA ID card;
• Parking certificate, if app-licable.
Road tax is mandated by Japanese law and rises based on a vehicle’s engine size.
Road tax prices are the same as last year, though the exchange rate may change the ultimate cost slightly for base personnel being paid in dollars. Last April 1, the commercial dollar rate stood at about 101 yen. On Friday, the dollar was worth about 98 yen.
While anyone can pay road tax for deployed or absent vehicle owners, a power of attorney may be required to obtain a base decal for anyone other than a spouse. For information, contact the local vehicle registration office.
How much do you owe? Check your platesRoad taxes can be determined by the number shown on the top of each vehicle’s license plate.
Here are the various plates and taxes:
44Y, 400Y; 56Y, 57Y, 58Y, 500Y, 529Y plates — 7,500 yen.
33Y, 300Y, 329Y plates; 4.5 liter and lower — 19,000 yen.
4.6 liter and above — 22,000 yen.
11Y, 100Y plates — 32,000 yen.
Road tax for mini-cars and motorcycles must be paid off base beginning in April, or at participating bases:
Mini-cars — 3,000 yen.
Motorcycles up to 125cc— 500 yen.
126cc and above — 1,000 yen.
Base-by-base list of where and when to pay road taxes