Hawaii lawmaker proposes change to law on abandoned vehicles

HONOLULU — A Hawaii state representative has proposed a law that he says would help reduce the islands’ overwhelming number of discarded vehicles.

Rep. Cedric Asuega Gates’ bill would change current language that says counties “may” dispose of abandoned vehicles. The bill would change that to say “shall,” which would increase counties’ responsibilities to dispose of abandoned vehicles, Hawaii News Now reported Tuesday.

Counties would have to remove unsightly vehicles within 10 business days of receiving a complaint.

Gates has also co-sponsored a bill that would create a fund encouraging the state and county to work together to solve the abandoned vehicles issue.

“I believe these measures are important as more funding and space is needed for storage, but a requirement of having to remove the vehicles must be included in any bill that is passed to see real change,” Gates said. “In the future I would also like to see a state sponsored junk yard where people can deliver their unwanted vehicles and receive money for the scrap value of any material exchanged.”

In May, Honolulu tow company officials said they’re running out of room to store discarded automobiles. The Army in August created a vehicle turn-in service as a way for soldiers to turn in their cars for a $25 fee and discourage them from abandoning them in lots.


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