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Tattletales or Good Citizens? 'CHEATERS' Reporting of License Scofflaws Gaining Momentum

CHEATERS logo courtesy of California Highway Patrol.
CHEATERS logo courtesy of California Highway Patrol.

According to recent figures from the California Highway Patrol, more Californians are reporting newcomers for failing to register their vehicles.  

California law states people have to register their vehicles within 20 days of establishing residency.

So far this year, the CHP has recovered more than $1 million in fees and is on track to surpassing all previous years, thanks to a program called CHEATERS -- Californians Help Eliminate All The Evasive Registration Scofflaws. 

The CHEATERS online form on the CHP's website allows people to anonymously report drivers who they think are evading the law by filling out information that includes a license plate number and the make and model of the vehicle.  

The CHP then sends letters to vehicle owners who have been flagged, demanding that they pay the registration fees.  Those who don't are referred to the local CHP and subsequently required to go to court.

The CHP recovered $1.7 million in 2013 and $1.4 million in 2012, but estimates it may be losing as much as $10 million a year in unpaid registration fees. 

The CHP said the most common reasons for failing to register include people being unaware of the laws, evading fees and taxes, and being unable to comply with air pollution control laws. 

This info was distributed in a news release from the city of Mill Valley. 

Tamra J Amato July 13, 2014 at 09:30 PM
Fines go up if late... if it bothers you that much try some random act of kindness and go pay for the person.... happy driver, less road rage... must we always have tattle tales? Ahhhhhh they make my blood boil.
Mark July 13, 2014 at 10:57 PM
Maybe if CA DMV was easier to work with like other states such as weekend hours, privatized offices with late hours, 2 years instead of one year for renewal, online registration, etc we wouldn't have such an issue. It's simple - make it easier for people to do the right thing then make the consequence more painful if you don't.
Doug Strickland July 14, 2014 at 02:16 PM
We moved back from Texas and promptly went in to the DMV and registered in CA. It has been 3 months, no plates, no registration, and no clue. So ya, please write down my info and turn me in. And then immediately go write about how inefficient our government spending is....
Daniel July 14, 2014 at 02:37 PM
It's between the DMV and the vehicle owner and the business of nobody else. What if the tags were lifted off the vehicle? So the disgruntled neighbor cost the govt. $$ for the investigation. Is the Govt. so inept that they can't keep track of the vehicle owners with expired tags?
Roberto July 15, 2014 at 01:19 AM
I live in Lake Havasu, AZ. most of the year. When it gets too stinking hot in the summer, I move to a small condo I keep in Davis. Both states insist I register my vehicle in their state. I chose Az. because it's half the cost of Ca, and because registering a vehicle there is about one tenth the hassle. The CA. DMV basically sucks! Thanks to the freakin 'Do Gooders' and Tattle Tales, I've been pulled over more times than I want to think about because I run Az. plates on my car. These idiots need to mind their own business!

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