Wednesday, February 14, 2007

It's Always About The Money

All of us have, at one time or another heard a cop, or one of their innumerable supporters say writing tickets for speeding was being done for safety. Of course, those of us who know better have known for ages that tickets are not given out to promote safety in any way, shape or form. They are always about the money and as if we didn't know it as a matter of fact, we have just been presented with all the evidence we require.

“The town of Moffett recently filed Chapter 9 bankruptcy in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in the Eastern District of Oklahoma in Okmulgee, according to a legal notice that appeared in the Eastern-Times Register Wednesday.”

The audit of the town's 2003 and 2004 budgets revealed that 78 percent of the operating budget was from traffic tickets in 2003, and 84 percent of its operating budget came from traffic tickets in 2004, OHP officials said.

It seems that the small town of Moffett, Oklahoma has had to declare bankruptcy, since their key method of gathering revenue was declared illegal back in December of 2006. More than 50% of their budget was derived from revenue generated by harassing drivers on US 64 as it passed through their little fiefdom and according to their Highway patrol that was a no no, (apparently you can derive 49% of your budget through speed traps and that's OK in OK). In 2004 Moffett collected a whopping 84% of their towns budget via armed robbery speeding tickets.

Imagine the sighs of relief that are going through peoples minds now as they find out that this speed trap of a town is now permanently out of business, as both a speed trap and a town. It seems that their former mayor left them saddled with a nice debt that can no longer be met so they are likely going to close up shop, unincorporate and become just another speck on the map as people zoom on by.

Traffic tickets are always about the money, not safety. That's why speed limits are set to arbitrary standards, even within the same locale. They want your money and they are more than willing to use armed force to take it from you. At least there's one place where the frequency of this will be lessened in the future. Hopefully something similar will be coming to a town near you soon.

I can't wait till the day comes when the same thing happens to federal, state and local governments across the country.

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Mike Kole said...

Michael- I always cruise the highways at 12-13 mph over the spped limit. I've come to learn that you won't be pulled over- because it doesn't pay for government- unless you exceed 15 mph over the posted limit. The fines have to exceed the cost of having the cop show up in court, paperwork, etc.

I haven't gotten a ticket in over 10 years.

Michael said...

That only holds true where there is no speed trap, tho. In areas where there is a speed trap court costs are often well over $100 bucks, as my wife can attest to. A ticket which is only $35 or so for the infractions but that has court costs in excess of $100 allows for rigid enforcement for speeds well below the commonly accepted "10 mile per hour" hedge. Court costs are where the money's at.

Like yourself, I have been ticket free for 24 years. I still have a radar detector, tho. If you're in another state you can rapidly become the victim of a speed trap. It happened to my wife last year in Kentucky.