Tourists or those passing through Bologna are avoiding road penalties. However, evidence from investigators in law enforcement agencies also point to ‘furbi Italiani’ (sly Italians) who are circumventing Highway Code sanctions and therefore make it impossible to notify drivers of pending sanctions. Retracing ownership of cars of course is very often a complicated and long procedure. Furthermore, International borders prevent the sharing of data banks, and some nations are even way behind in terms of gathering data on a digital scale.
Two firms who will be hunting for those who fall foul of these laws include Multiservizi and Nivi Crediti. Once they have identified car owners the first step is to send a money-transfer request in the local language with directions also to pay online. If this step passes without success, the next more complex phase to recuperate the funds is put into action. The agency will employ a specialized firm on their behalf to sue for the money, and the final sum cannot be more than double the original fine.
Forza Italia have been leading the charge in this fight and have for months taken this issue up with the Mayor Merola. Marco Lisei and Galeazzo Bignami claimed that, “The millions of euro in unpaid penalties by foreigners are a total disgrace and have left a huge hole in the comune’s finances.” They added in response to recuperating these funds that, “The forecasts of the municipality seem to us too optimistic. However, we can only hope that they are achieved for the good of the city and the Bolognese.”
According to the Comune from 2010-2017 they were only able to collect 28.87% of road violations committed by foreign registered vehicles. Vehicles registered abroad also become a conundrum in the event of accidents as data cannot be officially verified. However, all that will soon change as the Comune is seeking to implement a new system. Residents will be able to apply for specific access and a valid one year stay.
To date, the municipality estimates that there are approximately 500 permit. In short, “the rules will change,” the administration announced, explaining that “a measure of the Sustainable Mobility and Infrastructure sector transposes a Prefecture Circular inviting municipal administrations to limit the validity of access assigned to those vehicles after one year underlining that traffic offenses by said vehicles represent a major source of tax evasion and social danger.” Furthermore, drivers “will not be able to ask for a renewal.”
Old permission certificates have already ceased to be valid since Jan 1st and anyone caught in circulation will be sanctioned. The President of Emilia-Romagna Region’s Road Safety Education Observatory, Mauro Sorbi, also emphasized late last year that “a growing phenomenon is the problem of cars circulating with a foreign license plate are actually immune to law enforcement checks.”