‘Crash Tax’ Regs Still OK in California

By | May 16, 2011

A bill that would have prevented state and local governments from imposing accident response fees for emergency response in vehicle accidents has died in the Senate Public Safety Committee.

Senate Bill 49 would have prohibited a city from charging a fee, or “crash tax,” to any person regardless of residency for the expense of an emergency response, except where a fee is otherwise authorized. This bill would not have applied to a special district unless the district receives revenue from transaction and use taxes.

Senator Strickland argued that Californians visit other cities in the State they are already paying sales tax on souvenirs for their kids, food at restaurants, and on gas when they fill up at the pump and hotel taxes if they choose to stay overnight. It is unconscionable to make people pay twice for public services that should be provided for out of the taxes they already pay.

Despite Strickland’s arguments, SB 49 died with a vote of 1-5.

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