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Tires

Tire Fees and Licenses

Tire Retailer Fee

Washington State regulations currently require all tire dealers to collect tire fees of $1 for each new tire sold. This tire fee funds the Waste Tire Removal Account used to clean up tire piles in the state. Starting in 2011 a portion of the fee revenue will be transferred to the Department of Transportation for road wear related maintenance on state and local public highways (RCW 70.95.532).

Examples of tires that are subject to the fee include automobiles, trucks, recreational vehicles, trailers, all-terrain vehicles (ATVs), agricultural vehicles (such as tractors and combines), industrial vehicles (such as forklifts), construction vehicles (such as loaders and graders), and golf carts. The tire fee does not apply to bicycles, wheelbarrows, and hand trucks. (WAC 458-20-272)

Effective July 1, 2005, retailers of new replacement vehicle tires must collect a $1 fee per tire. The tire fee does not apply to:
  • Sales of tires to the federal government that are exempt from sales tax.
  • Sales of tires to tribal members delivered to the enrolled member's reservation.
  • Sales of re-treaded vehicle tires.
  • Tires provided free of charge under the terms of a recall or a warranty service.
If a customer returns a tire and is refunded the entire selling price, the $1 tire fee is refundable as well. (WAC 458.20.272).

Tire businesses submit this fee to the Department of Revenue. The Department of Revenue deposits the fees into the Waste Tire Removal Account.

Waste Tire Carrier License

State law requires businesses that haul waste tires to obtain licenses. Licensed tire carrier businesses (updated quarterly)
  • Businesses that haul 5 or more tires must obtain a Waste Tire Carrier license from the Washington Business License Service (BLS).
  • Businesses can get the specifics on a waste tire carrier license at the BLS website
  • The license costs $250 for the business and $50 for each vehicle. The license is renewed annually. The business must also post a $10,000 bond in favor of the State of Washington.
  • Licensed waste tire carriers must deliver waste tires to licensed storage, disposal, or processing facilities.
  • A license is not required for the following:
    • tire retailers using company-owned vehicles to transport waste tires for recycling or retreading
    • transport of used tires to a retail outlet for repair or exchange
    • solid waste collection companies (RCW 81.77) go to the Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission website to see a list of licensed solid waste collection companies

Waste Tire Storage License

State law requires businesses that store waste tires to obtain licenses. Licensed tire storage businesses (updated quarterly).
  • Waste tire storage requires a solid waste handling permit from the local health department.
  • Storage of more than 800 waste automobile tires (or the combined weight equivalent of 16,000 pounds of all types of waste tires) requires a Waste Tire Storage license from the BLS.
  • Businesses can get the specifics on a waste tire storage license at the BLS website
  • The license costs $250 for the business. The license is valid for one year.
  • Licensees must provide financial assurance in an amount sufficient to cover the cost of cleanup of all stored waste tires. The amount must cover the cost of hiring a third party to remove the maximum number of tires permitted to be stored at the site, and it must cover delivery of the tires to a facility permitted to accept tires.
  • Licensees must report annually to the local health department and Ecology the amount of tires accepted, the amount removed (and their end use), and the amount stored. This report is due each year on April 1. The report format is at http://www.ecy.wa.gov/pubs/ecy040168.pdf
  • A waste tire storage license is not required for:
    • Waste tires stored inside a building or in mobile containers. National Fire Protection Association standards regulate indoor tire storage. Contact your local fire department or the state fire marshal for details.
    • Storage of fewer than 801 waste automobile tires (or less than the combined weight equivalent of 16,000 pounds of all types of waste tires).

Penalties for Unlicensed Transporting, Storing, or Disposing of Waste Tires

  • Disposing of waste vehicle tires on public or private property can result in a $200 to $2,000 civil penalty for each offense (RCW 70.95.500).
  • Transporting or storing waste tires without a valid Waste Tire Carrier License or Waste Tire Storage License is a gross misdemeanor (RCW 70.95.560). The penalty for a gross misdemeanor could include up to one year in jail, a fine of up to $5,000, or both (RCW 9A.20.021 (2)).
  • The person transporting waste tires without a license is liable for the costs of cleanup of any and all transported waste tires (RCW 70.95.555 (2)).