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Don’t darken the window too much

Published (2/18/2010)
By Sue Hegarty
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Anyone who tries to sell or apply window glazes to motor vehicles that do not comply with Minnesota law could face misdemeanor charges, according to a bill approved Feb. 17 by the House Transportation and Transit Policy and Oversight Division.

Sponsored by Rep. Carlos Mariani (DFL-St. Paul), HF2914 was referred to the House Commerce and Labor Committee. Sen. Sandy Pappas (DFL-St. Paul) sponsors a companion, SF2370, which awaits action by the Senate Transportation Committee.

Mariani said the issue arose from a constituent who said her son paid a company to apply the darkest tint available even though state law prohibits darker tints. Subsequently, he was stopped and ticketed by St. Paul police. Upon further study, the parent discovered that it is not illegal for tint companies to “install” the darker glazes.

States differ in the degree of tinting allowed on vehicle windows. The proposed legislation would prohibit applying darker tints regardless of where the vehicle is licensed or primarily driven. Current law prohibits tinting which results in a light transmittance of less than 50 percent or a reflectance of more than 20 percent.

Car dealers are already prohibited from selling vehicles with non-conforming window tints.

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