In a move that could possibly mean more traffic ticket reform in Lamont
and Shafter, Governor Brown recently signed a measure that makes more
people eligible for payment plans on parking ticket fines.
Prior law only permitted payment plans for violators who appealed their
Assembly Bill 1151 significantly expands that right. Los Angeles Miguel Santiago, who sponsored
the bill, said it would “help people in my [downtown] community
to be responsible and pay their tickets, while helping them to be able
to make their bills.” The new budget also includes an 18-month
ticket amnesty. People with unpaid tickets issued since January 1, 2013, may be eligible
to have their fines reduced and/or their drivers’ licenses reinstated.
Governor Brown also signed legislation that allows beer-tasting events
at certain farmers’ markets and designates Spanish moss as The Golden
State’s official lichen.
Parking ticket payouts and a partial amnesty are certainly welcome changes,
but they don’t amount to more than a few strips of duct tape on
the broken penalty assessment system.
One of the most notorious add-ons in the United States, penalty assessments
crossed over from rational supplements of traffic ticket fines to outright
revenue-generating devices many years ago. The current formula - $29 for
every $10 in fines, or portion thereof – is the main reason that
the actual cost of a traffic ticket in Bakersfield is about
20 times the fine, when considering direct and indirect add-ons.
But change will come about slowly, if at all: although Governor Brown
blasted penalty assessments earlier this year, he did nothing to change the system
in any meaningful way.
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
to receive the personal professional attention you deserve. En español,
llame al 661-376-0214.