Words of Advice:

"Never Feel Sorry For Anyone Who Owns an Airplane."-- Tina Marie

"
If Something Seems To Be Too Good To Be True, It's Best To Shoot It, Just In Case." -- Fiona Glenanne

"
Flying the Airplane is More Important than Radioing Your Plight to a Person on the Ground
Who is Incapable of Understanding or Doing Anything About It.
" -- Unknown

"There seems to be almost no problem that Congress cannot, by diligent efforts and careful legislative drafting, make ten times worse." -- Me

"What the hell is an `Aluminum Falcon'?" -- Emperor Palpatine

"Eck!" -- George the Cat

Sunday, April 22, 2018

Most People Already Knew that "We're Handing Out Traffic Tickets to Enforce the Law" was Bullshit

It seems to have been pretty well proven in Missouri, where, once the state capped the amount of revenue that municipalities could keep, the number of tickets issued fell off.

One example:
Consider Bellefontaine Neighbors, which deployed a two-officer unit in 2013 to write traffic tickets on Interstate 270. Mayor Robert Doerr said the city ended the unit in 2014 to cover staffing shortages and respond to unrest across the region, and the city never re-established it.

The city’s police wrote 27 tickets a day in the year ending June 2014, and the court brought in $1.28 million that year. In the year ending June 2017, the city wrote just five tickets a day, and the court had $280,000 in revenue.
There's more in the article. One village ended up going out of existence and merging with its neighbor because they couldn't use the highways as their municipal ATM. Another disbanded its police department and joined a policing co-op.

Let's be clear on one point: I have no issue with the police enforcing the traffic laws. But when they are doing it solely because if the revenue that it generates, well, that's fucking evil. It's not then a fine, it's a tax.

The cities and towns in Missouri are pushing back. They want things to go back to the way they were. The legislature should resist that.

13 comments:

JustMusing said...

At least stop the stealth; no more unmarked patrol cars or hiding in the bushes. WAZE has them all spotted anyway. If you want speed compliance, just put the police vehicles out on the road where everyone can see them. Seemed to be working in SLC during my wisit this last week. Significant presence and the speed limits are more than adequate. No pedestrian 55MPH for those folks who live in Utah. The only drawback seemed to be inadequate driver training (lots of tailgating and cell phone use). And what's with driving with one-handed placement 12 O'clock on the steering wheel at 80? Nuts is what it is.

B said...

OR make the speed laws be something that makes sense, rather than the incredibly low limits set today....Those limits were set using statistics from when cars had bias ply tires and drum brakes, no crush zones, no airbags, etc. Today's cheapest car handles better (and stops better) than most 1960's "sporty" cars.....

Deadstick said...

I can remember Ludowici, Georgia, where the one traffic light was connected to a switch in the barber shop...

Old NFO said...

Yep, Ludowici was notorious, as was Darien, GA and Yulee, FL... Sigh...

dinthebeast said...

B: Trucks don't stop any faster, though, and in my experience, faster traffic flowing around them is where a lot of accidents happen.

-Doug in Oakland

Dark Avenger said...

B, slower speeds are in place for conserving gas, station and, despite the new technologies, reduce accidents as well. I thought everyone knows that.

Gerald Parks said...

WHAT?
No local Black community to set up speed traps?
OMG ...What's a municipality to do?
THIS is 'merica ... ain't it???
Humpt ...

doubledee said...

NFO: Old HWY 17 was good trip if you weren't in a hurry. Plenty o'shrimp baskets

OS2 DD

Stephanie Belser said...

If you're talking about US 17 down the eastern shore, there were a number of pissant towns that were 500' long and which dropped the speed limit from 55MPH to 30-35MPH with no warning.

CenterPuke88 said...

Bunkie, LA...on Highway 71 (replaced by I-49, which bypassed Bunkie and its ilk)...speed limit dropped from 55 to 45 entering town, and then down to 35 via a sign located behind a telephone pole (literally, its face was a foot from the pole). It was almost a famous as Golden Meadow, on Louisiana 1, down toward Grand Isle. Golden Meadow was the genesis of the Louisiana legislation similar to Missouri’s, running a radar trap for years.

AC2 usn said...

Grew up in Vinita Park, MO. Local patrolmen routinely raced from the side streets in hot pursuit of drivers theoretically speeding to then claim with a straight face that the policeman had 'paced' the driver at the maximum speed the police car had achieved. All this in front of the catholic church the mayor, chief of police and other city officials attended regularly.

AC2 usn

Anonymous said...

Come on. It is all about the money and it has been for a VERY long time. Red light cameras. Asset forfeiture. That doesn't even cover the stuff like "Fees" to do things.

You have to wonder what a rookie cop thinks, when after joining a force he finds out he is a glorified (and reviled) tax collector. Probably not what they had in mind going in.

Burr Deming said...

We are next door to Bellefontaine Neighbors. I'm sorry to report that the situation extends way beyond that little municipality and involves more than traffic tickets. A Department of Justice investigation provides documentation. We did a brief podcast three years ago. In ancient times a similar system was called tax farming. It also targeted the vulnerable.