Monday, February 16, 2015

Gotta love those hidden fees

Screwed and pissed off
I realize that this is a blog about all things law and research but every now and again I read something that sticks in my craw and I have to tell somebody.  For instance, this article in the Press Enterprise: Moving (violation) Targets really got me going.  A tale of graft, corruption, and greed (never met a politician who wasn't greedy) at the highest levels of government, it is a discussion about the increase in "assessments" for tickets written for traffic violations in California.

For instance, did you know that the fine for failing to stop at a stop sign went from $134 in 2005 to $238 in 2015; from $525 in 2005 to $695 in 2015 for passing a school bus with flashing signals and that driving 1-15 mph over 65 mph went from $99 in 2005 to $238 in 2015?  Broken down, that's:
  • $35 for the base fine
  • $8 Criminal justice construction fee
  • $9.60 Courthouse construction fee
  • $.40 Forensic laboratory fee
  • $2 Automated fingerprint fee
  • $8 Emergency medical fund fee
  • $8 Emergency medical services fee
  • $4 Emergency medical air transport
  • $20 DNA program fees
  • $10.40 State courthouse construction fees
  • $9.60 Immediate needs construction
  • $7 State surcharge/criminal fee
  • $40 Court operations fee
  • $40 State penalty assessment fee
  • $35 Immediate needs/infraction fee
  • $1 Night court fee (San Bernardino County excludes this because it does not have a night court)
Looking at all these extra "fees" tells me one thing: that the government of the people and by the people and for the people is screwing we the people big time.  I mean, look at this: there are three (3) separate "medical" fees, four (4) construction fees and then the other stuff is just padding. Talk about a bloated system!

People are screaming that taxes are rising, that the Feds and states are looking at a mileage tax (on top of all the other taxes/assessments/fees) because gas prices have dropped. The problem is that politicians hide these fees and assessments in the tickets police write every day; millions of tickets to fund a bloated political system.  If you thought the IRS was out of control, take a look at the criminal "justice" system.  While the Press Enterprise article deals with the state of affairs in California - imagine what is going on all around the country?  With the top news story in being what Michelle Obama was wearing in India, it is easy to see why we the people are so not pleased with "them" the politicians.

Anyway, I just had to vent.  I now return you to your normal programming and you all have a great rest of the week.