Pearland to join ‘Scofflaw program’

In News by Reporter News

Pearland residents who owe fines and fees may soon find their vehicle registration rejected.

City Council on Monday approved an interlocal agreement with the Brazoria County Tax Assessor-Collector to implement a “Scofflaw program.”

The Texas Scofflaw Program is a section of the Texas transportation code designed to help county and municipal governments hold law breakers accountable by allowing a Tax Assessor-Collector of a county to reject vehicle registrations for customers with outstanding fines, fees, taxes, or who have failed to appear in a municipal or county court. Though the law has been in place for years, some counties are only recently implementing interlocal agreements to enforce it.

“Working with Brazoria County records, if anybody comes in for a registration with the county clerk’s office, they will have a database that will check if there are any outstanding fees set up against that individual,” City Manager Clay Pearson said. “They would have to get those resolved before they can move forward with the registration of a vehicle.”

The county contracts with an outside firm for collections.

“The idea is to get monies that are owed the city as expeditiously as possible,” Pearson said.

Council also on Monday approved the first reading of an ordinance laying out the collection of Scofflaw fees for the program, with Councilman Scott Sherman casting the lone no vote.

Through the program, a $20 “fee” is collected from every customer who processes a “release form.”

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