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Governor Polis signs bill to study impound fees for crime victims' cars

Law is watered-down version of bill that would have waived impound fees for crime victims
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Posted at 1:39 PM, May 17, 2023
and last updated 2023-05-17 15:39:19-04

DENVER — This week, a legislative push to help crime victims pay towing and impound fees was signed into law, but not before most of its provisions were gutted. Now, lawmakers will further study the issue

House Bill 23-1217 would have required tow companies to release crime victims' cars at no charge.

Rep. Meg Froelich, D-Arapahoe County, co-sponsored the measure, which would have set up a fee for every tow and created a fund to pay for crime victim impound fees. Ultimately, the new law only requires the Transportation Legislation Review Committee to study the issue this summer and make legislative recommendations for the next session, which is a signal that the idea will take priority then.

"I think the pushback was from the administration in general," said Froelich, who added there were concerns about implementation and potential costs. "It's semi-back-to-the-drawing board. I mean, we have the initial concept. We have all the parties who have been informed that this is what we want to do. So, we will look at the issue from soup to nuts, go back to the table."

Governor Polis signs bill to study impound fees for crime victims' cars

Similar legislation has failed in previous sessions, but Froelich said she is confident the committee will move forward with workable legislation next session.

"It's a standing committee with drafting privileges," she said. "So that means bills come out of that committee, which is what we're hoping for."

Meanwhile, the city of Aurora is studying creating a city-owned impound lot that waives crime fees. Denver already has a city-owned impound lot.