Category: Fix California Challenge

Tie traffic ticket / citation fines to income!

Fines for tickets / citations should be linked to your income as they are NOW in Europe. As the gap between rich and poor continues to grow, fines continue to grow. In the past 15 years fines have increased by 500%!

 

In light of the current unprecedented inequality, it is a gross injustice to ruin someone's life, livelihood and ability to earn a living by imposing flat fines without regard to income or ability to pay.

 

Flat fines are little deterrent to the wealthy. When you earn $20 million a year you really don't care if you get a speeding ticket. In fact the 20 minutes it takes to write it is your biggest chagrin. On the other hand when you're barely making it a $500-$2000 fine can easily make you lose your car, your job, your ability to earn a living and survive.

 

Fine laws in CA are such that you can get a $70 ticket you can't pay (since you're already living on the edge), and 21 days later it doubles to $140 which you are even less able to pay, then you can't argue your case in court because the court requires a $300 bond you also don't have before they will allow you to show up, then they add another $300 "civil assessment" fee which you also can't pay, then the court refers the debt to the state's Franchise Tax Board which garnishes your wages, seizes all you have in your bank account, and takes away your drivers license-- ensuring that you'll never be able to earn the fine money.

 

One in 6 Californians have lost their drivers licenses due to fines they could not pay. This has to end! It's common sense.

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Idea No. 459