Brad Messer Commentary • KTSA • Tuesday, Feb. 24, 2004


Drunk Tax

What if they could tax drunk driving?

They can. They do. New Jersey has had a drunk-driving tax for twenty years. Florida's legislature is thinking about getting one. The Hanging Chad State has the highest traffic death rate of the ten most populous states.

If the law passes in Florida, a convicted drunk driver would have to pay a tax of $1,000 per year, for three years. That, of course, on top of the traffic fines.

A two-time loser would be taxed $1,500 a year. Blow a blood alcohol reading of 0.2 or higher, the annual tax would be $2,000.

Florida would tax speeders, too. And drivers without seat belts. And red-light runners. Florida thinks it could bring in around $100-million the first year, even knowing that collecting would be a problem.

We'll see if they actually pass those laws in Florida.

If they do, maybe Texas ought to slap a big, fat tax on drivers who go too slow in the high-speed lane and won't courteously move out of the way.

Brad Messer— commentary, KTSA.


Florida's tax code may take to road

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