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By Chuck Wells

If you take a look at your car insurance policy (most people only look at the bottom where the premium is), you will see that your car insurance company is charging you a $1 fee (tax) per vehicle that says: "Motor Vehicle Enforcement Fee."

Now this is not some zinger from your insurance company to get in your pocket. It is a fee mandated by our consumer-friendly State back in 1992 to collect money to fight car thefts and insurance fraud. They promised that the money would be used to help get our car insurance premiums down by cutting car thefts (mostly in N.Y. City) and insurance fraud. Our State legislators are always looking out for our welfare.

The $1 collected amounts to about $13 million for New York State and was supposed to go for more District Attorneys and police so we could put more of the bad guys away. Well, you know the story. $9 million went to the State Police so the State did not have to dip into its own budget for salaries. Only $4 million went to grants for insurance crime. According to the New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services, only about $1 million of that piddly $4 million was spent in upstate New York in 2001-2002. The other 75% went downstate. None of the money came to Wayne County and the pittance that went to Monroe County went for a program called “Watch Your Car” that gives out stickers so police can tell that your car should not be out between 1am to 5am. That’s right. Stickers.

The bottom line here folks? You are paying $1 for every car you own, every year, for squat.

Now comes the best part. That fee has been raised to $5 ! That’s right, a 5 times increase in the fee! And you know what you will now get for your $5? Right. Squat. Everything over the $13 million now being collected (about an additional $52 million) goes to the State, not for helping us get our car insurance premiums down by fighting insurance crime. And I would be willing to bet most of that money will again go downstate to support welfare, subways, and buses.

The next time you whine about your car insurance bill, look at that $5 fee (tax), remember where it came from and where it is going.

P.S. I know your blood pressure is through the roof already but one more thing. Per this same legislation, some counties can add another $5 per car for their own use so we may see this fee go to $10!


Edwin Lockhart thought his disguise was unique, inconspicuous, and no one would identify him as he robbed a bank in Palatka, Florida. He stuck sanitary napkins on his face before entering the bank. They did and he is now serving 120 months. No word on product endorsements yet.


Matthew Turner of York, Pa., is facing trial for chasing a man and trying to cut out his adrenal gland. Seems Turner thought that if the adrenal gland was licked or eaten, it would give him a week-long high. Turner was arrested after he stabbed the man in the side while trying to cut out the gland.

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