While Governor Brown pushes for another ticket amnesty plan, other voices
are calling for much more radical reform.
Van Nuys Sen. Bob Hertzberg wants to set aside most drivers’ license
suspensions, to help people get back on the road and get back to work.
Another proposal is to raise the basic fines, eliminate penalty assessments,
and use general revenue funds to make up the difference. Still others
favor abandoning the current system in favor of a sliding scale. They
cite the $290,000 speeding ticket that a wealthy driver received for speeding
through a village in Switzerland. However, the fact that you work hard
and made more money doesn’t necessarily mean you should have to
pay more than your neighbor did for the same offense.
These advocates stress that unless there is
radical reform, the same problems will continue to occur.
Anatomy of a Ticket
Amnesty bills would treat the
symptoms, but do nothing about the cause. It’s always easier to rub some
cream on a wound than it is to amputate an arm.
As it stands now, most all tickets in Tulare County have four components:
Base Fine: This is the figure that’s on the citation; many base fines haven’t
been changed in decades and still average about $50 for a non-moving and
$100 for a moving violation.
Penalty Assessments: This is
the big one. Since the current formula is $29 for every $10 in fines, the penalty
assessments are always much larger than the base fine.
Add-Ons: These are miscellaneous fees for things like courthouse construction,
night court, state surcharges, and court costs; each one ranges from one
or two dollars to $40 or $50.
Points: Most moving violations in Lamont and Shafter are either a one or two-point
violation; as few as six points means drivers’ license suspension.
These costs do not include higher insurance rates, typically in the form
of a lost good-driver discount. Some violations have extra penalties;
for example, driving with a suspended license typically means vehicle
Getting Legal Help
The aggressive lawyers at Bigger & Harman, APC, are committed to giving
individuals a voice when dealing with speeding and traffic tickets. Call
today at 661-859-1177 or email
firstname.lastname@example.org to receive the personal professional attention you deserve. En español,
llame al 661-376-0214.