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      Mt. Morris Township police collecting service fees from negligent drivers

      Margaret Lazell could have to pay more than $300 for police services after her daughter crashed her car.

      A Mt. Morris Township ordinance is raising eyebrows, after a woman got billed for police services.

      Margaret Lazell of Genesee Township could have to pay $300, after her daughter totaled her car in December.

      ??I don't think that I should pay extra because I don't live in Mt. Morris Township."

      Lazell is talking about the township??s Ordinance No. 11-03, Section 13-30, ??which provides for the collection of service fees from non-residents of Mt. Morris Township who negligently cause motor vehicle accidents which require township police, fire, and/or rescue emergency response.??

      The ordinance cites findings that show a significant number of traffic accidents are caused by drivers who don't own property or pay property taxes in Mt. Morris Township.

      Lazell plans to contest the bill. In the meantime, she says she'll sit tight and avoid driving into the township.

      "I'm not gonna go to a hairdresser or a barber out there, when there are plenty some place else and I don't have that increased liability,?? she said.

      That's exactly what some business owners are worried will happen with the new ordinance in place.

      Diane Schlager, who works at Jaquelyn Renae Coiffures salon, said, ??People aren't gonna come to this area. Why would they? They'll go to another area that they figure they got police protection, where they already pay for it."

      While Lazell says she understands the law is intended to help a cash-strapped police department, she says it's unfair for her to shoulder the cost.

      "If I have an accident, an accident is an accident, it's not a planned thing, it's not anything I have control over."

      Both the township supervisor and police department declined to be interviewed for comment.