The Public Services Regulatory Authority (ARESEP) announced Tuesday that RITEVE SyC, the private company responsible for certifying mandatory technical vehicle inspections, submitted rate hike requests of up to 202 percent depending on the type of vehicle.
If approved, the new costs of vehicle inspections in 2015 would increase from ₡9,930 to ₡30,030 ($18.32 to $55.40) for vehicle owners and ₡6,541 to ₡19,780 ($12 to $36.50) for motorcycle owners.
In seeking the increases, RITEVE argued that the same rates have been in place for 10 years. The company also said a contract signed with the government in 2000 states that the Public Works and Transport Ministry (MOPT) is responsible for defining the rate-setting model. MOPT has yet to follow through, RITEVE argued.
“For the past 10 years we have been submitting rate-adjustment requests, which according to our contract must be submitted by Nov. 15 each year, so that if approved the new rate would take effect in January,” RITEVE spokeswoman Jennifer Hidalgo said. “Currently there is no approved methodology for calculating rates. Each year we comply with the requirement of filing an increase request, but ARESEP has not approved any increases in the past 10 years. And now motorists are surprised that this year’s request is greater than 200 percent,” she said.
ARESEP spokeswoman Carolina Mora confirmed that the agency has rejected RITEVE’s requests because no calculation methodology exists. Last year, the regulatory agency rejected a 174 percent increase request for the same reason, according to ARESEP records.
Mora said ARESEP repeatedly has asked MOPT for a calculation model in order to proceed with revised rates, but the agency has received no response. RITEVE’s recent request is being evaluated by technical staff at ARESEP, and a ruling will be reported in coming days, she said.
MOPT spokesman Juan Carlos González on Thursday said that Public Works and Transport Minister Carlos Segnini is the only MOPT official authorized to discuss the rate methodology issue. However, Segnini is out of the country and won’t be back until next week.