SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — Thousands of Californians may be due a refund after a state board says the California Department of Motor Vehicles overcharged residents for a license plate.

The California Board of Equalization accuses the DMV of using drivers’ ZIP codes instead of their actual address to come up with the fees.

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Board member George Runner believes thousands of Californians have been overcharged by the DMV during vehicle registration.

CONTACT: George Runner

“You’re talking about hundreds of thousand of dollars, maybe even millions, that taxpayers are overpaying the state of California and that’s just wrong,” he said.

The confusion involves taxpayers who live in what’s called a split ZIP code.

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“You have some areas that have an 8 percent sales tax in the county and you have people in the city who have an 8.5 percent but they’re in the same ZIP code,” he said.

The Board of Equalization’s solution is a look-up tool where it will identify the rates by address, but Runner says the DMV is making up excuses and won’t use the tool.

The DMV says that’s just not true. It issued a statement saying, “The Board of Equalization uses tax rates based on ZIPcode and directs DMV to do the same. As a member of the Board of Equalization,  Mr. Runner has the power to modify how tax rates are determined but has not done so.”

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