Politics

Zev: State's rule on tickets amnesty is crazy

chp-stop.jpgOn January 1, a new amnesty program allows drivers who ignored their traffic tickets before 2009 to pay half of what they owe and clear their record. The Legislature saw it as a way to bring in some money for the state budget. But when the rule makers got hold of the program, they decided to only allow scofflaws who paid nothing on their ticket. If you didn't flip off the law and tried to pay something, you don't get the break. About 75,000 people in Los Angeles County fall into that get-screwed group, Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky blogs.

If you’re like me, you’re probably thinking: What? Why would we essentially penalize people who’ve made some good-faith efforts to pay their tickets while offering bargain rates to those who haven’t?

Actually, there’s no good reason.

The [state] is simply—and cynically—playing the odds. It apparently figures that anyone who’s made good on even a sliver of their debt is likely to keep paying. Conversely, those who’ve paid nothing will probably continue along that same course. This latter group, the thinking goes, needs special inducements.

But here’s the problem: it’s blatantly unfair.

He has proposed a motion to alter the arrangement.


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