- Associated Press - Wednesday, January 11, 2017

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) - House members are approving a bill that would require county tax collectors to check whether Mississippians have auto insurance before renewing their license tags.

Representatives voted 82-33 Wednesday to approve House Bill 319 , sending it to the Senate for more work.

House Insurance Committee Chairman Gary Chism, R-Columbus, says a new computer system will allow county officials to check for insurance. County tax collectors had previously opposed such duties.

The Insurance Research Council estimated in 2012 that 23 percent of Mississippi motorists had no coverage, the third-highest share in the nation. All drivers are legally required to have liability coverage or post a bond.

Leaders have said that a 2012 plan to have a statewide computer system allowing checks of insurance status should finally take effect in July.

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