A bill is making its way through the state legislature that would give some drivers a break on their traffic tickets.
The ‘Traffic Ticket Relief Act” is designed to help low-income individuals pay their fines.
In Rochester, around 34,000 tickets are handed out annually, according to the RTVA. The average speeding ticket in New York State costs between $45 and $600. That plus the average 22% increase in insurance premium can lead to a heavy financial burden.
The bill, introduced by Assemblyman Pat Burke, would create an installment payment option and allow hearing officers to lower fines. Hearing officers would be able to request documentation to assess eligibility
“If you have to make a decision as to whether you’re going to pay a traffic ticket, or put food on your table, that’s a pretty big decision and there should be some understanding of that through the legislation,” said Carvin Eison, Rochester citizen.
Some against the bill say it would undermine the punishment of a traffic violation
“If you start judging people on how much they make, that’s gonna open up a lot more doors…Everybody breaks the law so everyone should be punished the exact same way for it,” said Cody Kilbourne.
The “Traffic Ticket Relief Act” is currently being reviewed by the transportation committee.