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NJ Imposes Fees For Emergency Services/Traffic Accidents

Posted in Cars, General, Maintenance, Newsworthy, Politics, Roads, Safety, Traffic, Travel by Suzanne Denbow | December 7th, 2008 | 1 Response |

Local municipalities in New Jersey have made headlines recently after several media outlets (read: media outlets not under the heavy thumb of Nunzio – newspaperman, restaurateur, used car dealer, and waste disposal extraordinaire) discovered that certain governments have begun following the Tony Soprano model of public service. Apparently, many resort communities located along the Jersey Shore are now charging motorists a fee for any public services rendered in relation to a traffic accident. In Cape Many County, NJ, the local government of Wildwood began charging for nearly every accident-related service from fluid clean-up to emergency medical care, with fees ranging from $750 to $2,500. So how successful has the seemingly ludicrous campaign been? Although the policy has only been effective for the lesser part of a year, as of August 2008, the city of Wildwood has banked roughly 10 grand. Defending what citizens outside of NJ state lines would call an almost criminal practice, Wildwood Commissioner William Davenport explained that the new program was actually aimed at helping locals. “We are a tourist town,” reasoned Davenport, “Rightfully so, if a tourist has the accident, why should the local taxpayers foot the entire bill?”

Apparently unconcerned with battling the negative image most U.S. citizens already have of New Jersey (state motto: “We don’t like you either”), many other resort towns along the Jersey Shore have enacted similar laws. In Atlantic City (which, some may reasonably argue, is not a “city” at all but rather the lesser-known 10th circle of Dante’s hell), the local government charges $70 for the clean-up of oil, anti-freeze, or fuel spilled during an auto accident. Linwood and Northfield, smaller cities which border Atlantic City, charge $250 and $75 (respectively) for comparable services rendered. Speaking to the press in a dimly-lit room while casting frequent, apprehensive glances out the window to the street below, Northfield Assistant Fire Chief Lauren Crooks explained, “We’re trying to cover our costs a little bit…It’s a small effort to take the burden off the shoulders of taxpayers.”

Source: Associated Press
Photo by Harpo42

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  1. Great article , thanks for sharing . hate to be a taxpayer