Apply for your DMV smog impact fee refund |

Apply for your DMV smog impact fee refund

A California court of appeals made the right decision when it chose to strike down the Department of Motor Vehicles “Smog Impact Fee,” a cash cow that has tapped the pockets of numerous Truckee residents since its passage in 1990.

Moving to California is an expensive proposition in and of itself, and an additional $300 on top of all the other state vehicle fees is too much to bear – especially since it now mostly impacts older cars, owned by the less-affluent.

From 1990 to the present, people bringing cars into the state without a sticker denoting “California-certified” emissions had to pay the impact fee, regardless of whether their vehicles passed the state’s smog test.

In its ruling, the court ordered the DMV to issue refunds to all vehicle owners who have paid the fee since 1992, but only by request. A subsequent court ruling last week limited the refunds to owners who paid in the last three years.

That decision may be appealed.

The state also has a few weeks left to appeal the refund ruling, and the DMV has said it will continue collecting “smog impact fees” during that time.

So nothing’s final yet.

Just remember, if you want your money back, you have to ask for it.

Go down to the Truckee DMV office and request a refund form. The DMV is not taking requests over the phone.

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