Thursday, March 17, 2011
The city of Oceanside has repealed a fee levied on people involved in traffic accidents. The so-called “crash tax” did not prove to be an effective way to raise extra revenue.
Oceanside had hoped to raise more than $200,000 from the crash tax by charging non-residents a fee if they got into an accident within city limits.
However, so far the city has raised less than $20,000.
Opponents of the fee said it unfairly penalized visitors to the city. Supporters said the city needs to cover the cost of emergency response from police, fire and ambulance if non resident drivers are in accidents. They said the fee could raise more money once the fire department gets used to filing the paperwork.
The insurance industry has balked at paying the fees and says premiums will go up if they are forced to cover these costs. Legislation is pending in Sacramento.
Nine other states have already outlawed the fee.
Meanwhile, the City of Vista plans to start charging a crash tax to help balance its budget next year.