When Indira Mulligan discovered recently that another motorist had scraped and dented her car’s side door, she figured she’d get a police report for insurance purposes.
Printed on two sheets of plain paper, it cost her $4 — Upper Arlington’s price for a traffic-crash report.
“Four dollars. I almost died. For two pages? I could get a whole ream of paper for $2.99,” she said.
Mulligan would have been spared the aggravation had the fender-bender occurred in many other central Ohio communities.
Upper Arlington’s records commission set its fee at $4 because that’s what state law says it can charge, said City Attorney Jeanine Hummer. A potential side benefit to the fee: It might cut down on those annoying calls from attorneys, chiropractors, repair shops and other businesses that scour the reports to drum up business.
The fees were approved a few years ago, said Hummer, who also is a city records commissioner. “I looked at this as one of the opportunities for the city to legally charge this, and we did.”
Thwarting those who profit from accidents was not the commission’s objective, however.
“I do think that’s a positive tangent that may have come from this, but I don’t think that’s what we thought about at the time,” she said.