OUTRAGE: Towns Turn to ‘Crash Tax’ for Funding
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A little free advice: Do not be the victim of a car accident in Missouri City, Texas. Or one of the 50 other cities in 26 states that have begun to levy a tax on those who require city assistance following a fender bender.
It's known as a "crash tax." It’s a fee to cover the cost of first responders who come to help you out, and that fee could add up to a couple thousand bucks. And more and more cash-strapped municipalities are considering it a new source of revenue.
Starting March 1, Missouri City's Fire Department will charge a fee for responding to traffic accidents. The charges range from $500 all the way up to $2,000. The amount depends on the severity of the accident. City officials say they need the money and estimate that the tax will pull in an extra $50,000 for the city a year.
Ten states so far have outlawed such fees, saying they deter people from calling for help when they need it.