Letter: Driver responsibility fees immoral
In support of your editorial, “State must dump onerous traffic fines,” Dec. 17, some additional facts to consider:
■The National Motorists Association (NMA) met with the Governor's Legislative Affairs office on 11/15 and found that only money counted. The human tragedies caused by this terrible law seemed to mean very little.
■The House bills forgive all debts and stop all new fines on 10/1/18. They are the only moral version. The NMA believes that ontinuing collection of some fees for six more years is absolutely immoral.
■Analysis by the Senate in 2008 proved that serious offenses were up after five years of the law. Claims the law would reduce serious offenses were patently false.
■The state bills over $100 million a year, but collects only about half of that. Poor people cannot pay the other half - and never will be able to do so.
■The House fiscal agency calculated the total loss of revenue from the House versions will be about $57 million dollars spread over the next three budget years. That amount is about one-tenth of one percent of one year's total budget.
■The state would almost certainly collect more than $57 million dollars in various taxes by letting all 300,000+ poor people put in debtors’ prisons by this terrible law get their licenses back and be able to work.
■The NMA believes that failing to enact the House versions immediately is a counter-productive money grab by the governor that actually hurts future state budgets.
James C. Walker
National Motorists Association