[StBernard] Reed Henderson again looking out for someone else - not us!

Westley Annis Westley at da-parish.com
Wed May 4 21:12:56 EDT 2011

Reed Henderson passes bill to increase traffic fines!

Published: Thursday, April 28, 2011, 8:15 PM

By Ed Anderson, The Times-Picayune
<http://connect.nola.com/user/eanderso/index.html> The Times-Picayune

Tickets handled in New Orleans Traffic Court, except those for parking
violations, could become more expensive by the summer if a bill that won
unanimous approval from a House committee
<http://topics.nola.com/tag/2011-legislature/index.html> becomes law.

Without objection, the Judiciary Committee passed House Bill 52
<http://www.legis.state.la.us/billdata/streamdocument.asp?did=743650> by
Rep. Reed Henderson, D-Violet, to add as much as $30 to the costs of traffic
violations. Henderson, who represents a portion of Orleans Parish as well as
St. Bernard Parish, said the net increase would be $20 because the court
already assesses a $10 fee.

The increase would be assessed on those who plead guilty, are convicted,
enter a no-contest plea or forfeit bonds.

Traffic Court Judge Mark Shea said the additional money would be funneled to
the court's judicial expense fund to help pay for its operations. Shea said
the additional fees would generate about $600,000 a year.

The city of New Orleans pays about $1 million toward the court's annual $5
million operations, Shea said. Other revenue sources and the court's surplus
are now helping finance the court's operations, he said.

The total amount of fees assessed by the court was not available late

Henderson's bill says the new fee is to "be in addition to all other fines,
costs or forfeitures lawfully imposed."

"If the governor signs it, we are ready to do it immediately," Shea said of
the judges' implementation of the new fee. Henderson said the bill will
probably be amended in the Senate to allow the new fees to go into effect as
soon as Gov. Bobby Jindal signs the bill.

As it stands now, the bill would not go into effect until Aug. 15 when most
new state laws become effective. The measure was placed on the list of
non-controversial bills to be debated on the House floor, a generally faster
track for passage.

The New Orleans Traffic Court fee increase was one of several court fee
increases the committee approved Thursday.

Great to see our State Representative is thinking about the people he
represents in these hard economic times by wanting to hit people with more
fees. I guess he thinks we forgot how he fought hard to nearly triple his
own legislative salary a couple of years ago before Jindal vetoed it. Way
to go Reed!!!

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