A public hearing is being held today on the New York City Fire Department’s proposal to charge drivers when the city responds to auto accidents.
City Council Speak Christine Quinn says she will oppose the rule, which would require at-fault-drivers to pay if emergency-response services are needed at the crash site.
Fees would range anywhere from $365 to $490 – depending on how bad the crash is, and if there are any injuries.
In a statement obtained by the Wall Street Journal, the council speaker calls the mayor’s proposal “unworkable,” “unfair” and “unsafe.”
She goes on to say that emergency response is a basic government function and that “Charging for responding to the scene of an accident is a slippery slope, and I don’t want to see us begin to go down that road out of a desperate desire to find sources of revenue.”
Mayor Michael Bloomberg and the FDNY have defended the proposal, saying it’s a way to cut costs at a time when the city faces a multi-billion-dollar budget deficit.
Today’s public hearing in Brooklyn is being held at MetroTech in Brooklyn, and starts at 10:30 am.
The move to charge drivers does not require voter approval.