Division of Criminal Justice Services
Insurance Department
Division of State Police

Administration of the Motor Vehicle Law Enforcement Fee

The Insurance Department (Department) collects an annual Motor Vehicle Enforcement Fee (Fee) of one dollar per insured vehicle to help fund the costs of detecting, prosecuting and reducing auto theft. The Department collected $72.6 million in Fees from July 1, 1992 through August 31, 1999. Of this amount, $64.4 million was reserved for the State Police Account to support State Police operations, including auto theft and insurance fraud prevention; $8.2 million was reserved for the Division of Criminal Justice Services'(DCJS) Motor Vehicle Law Enforcement Fund (Fund) to support local government auto theft and fraud prevention efforts. In 1994, the Legislature created the New York Motor Vehicle Theft and Insurance Fraud Prevention Demonstration Program (Program), overseen by a Board chaired by the Commissioner of DCJS. The Program, which is due to sunset on July 1, 2003, uses Fund monies to develop local demonstration projects that help reduce auto theft.

We determined that the Board has not developed a statewide plan for the Program, has not properly documented the grant selection process and does not adequately monitor Program projects. Although DCJS has awarded $6 million for projects since the Program began in April 1997, none of the eight grantees we visited could show their projects had achieved their stated objectives. We also found that the Department does not verify the appropriateness of Fees insurance companies remit, and that the State Police do not account for their use of Fee revenue. We recommend that DCJS improve its Program planning, project selection and project monitoring activities, that the Department verify collections and that the State Police report how much Fee revenue they spend on detecting, prosecuting and reducing auto theft.

For a complete copy of Report 99-S-32 click here.
For a copy of the 90-day response click here.
For a copy of the associated follow-up report click here.