On Tuesday, July 1, new laws regarding vehicles and their operation went into effect in Maryland and Virginia. These statutes range from financial and tax considerations to stiffer penalties for toll booth dodgers and those driving under the influence.
Although not all of these laws apply to all drivers, you should understand your new rights and responsibilities under these laws to avoid inadvertent violations and citations.
New laws in Maryland include:
• Gas tax increase. The existing gas tax has risen by less than one cent per gallon, which will go towards upgrading Maryland transportation systems.
• Electric vehicle tax credit. Individuals who purchase plug-in electric vehicles or recharging stations will receive a tax credit based on the size of the vehicle’s battery.
• Toll booth enforcement. Drivers who proceed through toll booths without paying or attending a court date within 30 days of a notice will be designated as a “toll scofflaw,” subject to vehicle registration suspension.
In Virginia, drivers should become aware of several new statutes, such as:
• Hybrid license tax repeal. Hybrid vehicle owners will no longer have to pay a $64 fee to register their vehicles and will receive refunds for taxes they’ve paid in the past.
• Military reprieve. Returning active military members now have 9 more days to acquire current vehicle safety inspection stickers than before.
• New DUI restriction. All convicted DUI drivers must now install interlock systems in their vehicles while under driving privilege restrictions.
• Disability designations. Individuals on the autism spectrum or with intellectual disabilities may add this to their license with a signed statement from their physician.
Obeying laws governing the safe and responsible operation of motor vehicles is the responsibility of every motorist. Familiarize yourself with these new statutes to remain safe and compliant.
Has another driver’s disregard for the law resulted in injury to you or a loved one? Contact a Washington D.C. automobile accident attorney to explore your legal recourse.