FDNY: You Caused The Accident? You’re Paying A Fine

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FDNY crash tax

If the FDNY gets its way it will start charging New Yorkers for emergency responses starting in the summer of 2011. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

NEW YORK (CBS 2) – Lawmakers are pumping the brakes on the Fire Department of New York’s plan to charge drivers who cause accidents.

The FDNY said it wants drivers to pay a so-called crash tax as high as $490.

Fire Commissioner Sal Cassano said the department cannot sustain itself in this economy without new ways of bringing in revenue.

“Well we have problems in the city. This is the worst budget we’ve seen probably in my 40 years with the department,” Cassano said. “I have 20 company closings at night on the table right now so every fee that I don’t get to collect for. That’s just another operational resource that we’re gonna lose.”

A group of local and state lawmakers is introducing legislation requiring any service fees charged by city agencies to be approved by City Council first.

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