If you’re caught driving on a suspended license or found in possession of marijuana while traveling Buffalo Grove streets, it’s going to come at a higher cost.
Village officials approved Monday an ordinance that will allow the village to seize vehicles and charge $500 fees to people charged with those offenses and others when vehicles are involved.
The ordinance broadens the scope of an existing one that has allowed Buffalo Grove to seize vehicles involved in DUI-related incidents and charge offenders $500 since 2004.
A state law adopted last year allows for such fees to be charged when a vehicle is used in violation of the Cannabis Control Act, Controlled Substances Act or in cases related to unlawful use of a weapon, retail theft, driving on suspended or revoked licenses, driving without a valid license. It also allows municipalities to adopt ordinances letting them seize vehicles that are involved in other offenses.
Based on 2012 arrest data, the Buffalo Grove Police Department would likely seize 230 additional vehicles each year and generate $115,000 in fees by aligning the village’s ordinance with the state statue, according to a July memo from police department staff members to Chief Steven Casstevens. The department seized 114 vehicles last year.
“Expanding the Buffalo Grove Administrative Tow Ordinance would discourage unlawful activity when using a motor vehicle, would remove additional dangerous drivers from the roadway, and would provide additional revenue for the Village,” Sgt. Scott Eisenmenger and Deputy Chief Steve Husak wrote in their recommendation to the chief.
The $500 fee is in addition to the towing and storage costs that owners are charged to retrieve their vehicles.
Buffalo Grove trustees unanimously approved the amended ordinance. It goes into effect Dec. 1.