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Canberra gets new fine payment system

By Barcham - 24 May 2013 77

From tomorrow Canberrans struggling to pay their traffic fines should find repayments a little easier to make, and their license easier to hold onto thanks to a new scheme from the ACT Greens.

“The new scheme is designed to be fairer, take account of the circumstances of Canberrans who are struggling, and improve social justice outcomes in Canberra,” said Greens Member for Molonglo, Shane Rattenbury.

“The old traffic fine system provided very limited payment options and was too inflexible, resulting in some harsh and unjust outcomes for Canberra’s most vulnerable individuals and families.

“Failure to pay a traffic fine in time meant a person’s licence was automatically suspended, even if the original offence was minor, such as a parking fine.

“For people who are on a low income or suffering from other disadvantage, the spiraling impacts of that suspension could be devastating. Disadvantaged and vulnerable people often rely on their drivers licence to access employment, income, support, and housing.

“The new system, set up through the Greens’ legislation, ensures the traffic fine system is fair and flexible by establishing:
— Options to pay fines through instalments;
— A system of community work and social development programs, which people on low income or with special circumstances can undertake in lieu of payments;
— Options to waive fines in special circumstances, and;
— Opportunities to provisionally reinstate a person’s licence when they are participating in a payment plan (only for licenses suspended for late fines).

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Canberra gets new fine payment system
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IrishPete 8:00 pm 29 May 13

“Paying a fine more slowly. Don’t you think the admin costs of processing many small payments – and chasing them when they don’t arrive – is many many times higher than paying it all at once? Surely less fines will be paid in full when collected like this? This scheme costs the taxpayer money.”

No, this scheme makes less money for the government, which is different from “costs the taxpayer money”. The purpose of fines is not to profit from crime. In fact the criminal justice system makes an enormous “loss”, so the cost of this would be unnoticeable.

“I still reject the concept that fines hurt poor people more than they do rich people. If you believe this then logically you must also agree poor people should be punished less for a whole range of minor offences.”

No, only when the punishment is money. If you mean “fined less for a whole range of minor offences” then the answer is yes. Not necessarily less than now, but less than rich people. Or put another way, rich people should be fined more.

IP

Rollersk8r 2:59 pm 29 May 13

We’re still going with this? Alright, I’ll have another go! Way off topic now, but anyway:

1. Paying a fine more slowly. Don’t you think the admin costs of processing many small payments – and chasing them when they don’t arrive – is many many times higher than paying it all at once? Surely less fines will be paid in full when collected like this? This scheme costs the taxpayer money.

2. I still reject the concept that fines hurt poor people more than they do rich people. If you believe this then logically you must also agree poor people should be punished less for a whole range of minor offences. The system does not and cannot work like this. I am not poor and I’m not rich but my budget for paying fines remains at zero.

Ben_Dover 2:11 pm 29 May 13

IrishPete said :

Someone other than you (i.e. who can be objective – its hard to be objective about oneself) would probably disagree.

If we agree that; “playing the man, not the ball,” refers to attacking someone posting in a debate, rather than debating their views, then you will see I am morally consistent. I may disparage “the Greens” and take the Mick (no offense*,) out of them, but “they” are not actively participating here, and it is their proposals which are being discussed..

IrishPete said :

And now I’m bored, so that will do.

IP

Shame, I was enjoying our banter.

*yes, I know, Bliss.

Comic_and_Gamer_Nerd 1:56 pm 29 May 13

Personally, I think the fines should be increased. Especially if you qualify as human trash.

IrishPete 1:40 pm 29 May 13

Ben_Dover said :

Nice try, but fail.

Someone other than you (i.e. who can be objective – its hard to be objective about oneself) would probably disagree.

However, here are a few more:

post 23: “Doesn’t that just say it all? Wishy-washy, feel-good, luvvy-duvvy, trite, meanigless pablum for the middle class guilt riddled lefty.”
Some more gross generalisations, this time not even mentioning a political party?

post 36: “No it’s anti-class warfare, as it give preferential treatment to people with no class.”
Just offensive trolling really.

part of post 34: “What we have here is a blatant use of weasel words, and an attempt at emotive reasoning.”
Seems like playing the person and not the ball…

post 51 introduces a reference to Dickens and also maligns Greens voters (not just politicians).

And now I’m bored, so that will do.

IP

Ben_Dover 1:36 pm 29 May 13

“So why not debate the topic rather than a”play the man, not the ball,” hmmm?”

“Did you have a point there? Or were you just making things up that other people haven’t said, in order to win a little debate with yourself?”

……. And then the pot called the kettle black and nobody cared.

I love irony, especially unintentional irony. 🙂

astrojax 1:11 pm 29 May 13

Thumper said :

Don’t park illegally.

Really, it’s not that hard.

it’s not that hard to slip up, too – an appointment running over time when you’re parked in a time-restricted space, for instance, perhaps through mis-communication on how long to expect to allot for it..? hardly a ‘throw him to the dungeon’ event but becomes serious in this context when financially compromised…

Thumper 12:08 pm 29 May 13

Jim Jones said :

Ben_Dover said :

So why not debate the topic rather than a”play the man, not the ball,” hmmm?

Did you have a point there? Or were you just making things up that other people haven’t said, in order to win a little debate with yourself?

And then the pot called the kettle black and nobody cared.

And meanwhile the dish ran away with the spoon.

As I said previously, there is a simple solution to all of this.

Don’t park illegally.

Maybe I’m just lucky but it appears to work for me….

Jim Jones 11:40 am 29 May 13

Ben_Dover said :

So why not debate the topic rather than a”play the man, not the ball,” hmmm?

Did you have a point there? Or were you just making things up that other people haven’t said, in order to win a little debate with yourself?

And then the pot called the kettle black and nobody cared.

Ben_Dover 11:24 am 29 May 13

IrishPete said :

Well done for playing the ball there, and not the person. Nor making stereotypes about large sectors of society.

I played the ball there unfortunate. The expression refers to making accusations against a poster, rather than addressing their points. Making comments about the people involved in the OP, esp politicians, does not count, if it is topic.

Nice try, but fail.

IrishPete said :

To return to the original point, paying off fines by way of work, or in installments, is an arrangement that has been in place in jurisdictions in Australia and throughout the world for years, right-wing and left-wing jurisdictions. It was in place in WA when I lived there in the 1990s. It is probably as fair and equitable as you can make a fine system without introducing Unit Fines (which would make fines really fair and equitable, c.f. Finland I think).

That the ACT is only now following only shows how antediluvian its criminal justice system and sentencing laws are. It’s great that there’s a review of sentencing happening. It’s typical ACT that it’s going to take 18 months to do what RiotACTers could probably do in a week (albeit there’d be disagreement on about 10% of the detail).

IP

Ok,and I do not agree with that, which I have stated, and has been my point all along.

IrishPete 11:09 am 29 May 13

Ben_Dover said :

So why not debate the topic rather than a”play the man, not the ball,” hmmm?

I refer to you this post, Number 60 which mine was a direct response to:

“I’m enjoying all this outrage and imagining DrKoresh, red-faced, crying his eyes out, and shaking his fist at the Heavens at the plight of these poor, poor, people having to sell a kidney, or one of their children into slavery, in order to pay the parking fine, while rich people taunt them by lighting cigars with $100 bills.”

Admittedly you were provoked, but then I have to refer you back to post Number 3

“Soon the greens will be letting ” Canberrans who are struggling” pay fines with leaves or good thoughts about unicorns and rainbows.

Seriously, can we vote these nicompoops out. Oh, hang about, we did…

I scored 23 “buzzword bingo” points from that release BTW.”

Well done for playing the ball there, and not the person. Nor making stereotypes about large sectors of society.

To return to the original point, paying off fines by way of work, or in installments, is an arrangement that has been in place in jurisdictions in Australia and throughout the world for years, right-wing and left-wing jurisdictions. It was in place in WA when I lived there in the 1990s. It is probably as fair and equitable as you can make a fine system without introducing Unit Fines (which would make fines really fair and equitable, c.f. Finland I think).

That the ACT is only now following only shows how antediluvian its criminal justice system and sentencing laws are. It’s great that there’s a review of sentencing happening. It’s typical ACT that it’s going to take 18 months to do what RiotACTers could probably do in a week (albeit there’d be disagreement on about 10% of the detail).

IP

IrishPete 10:57 am 29 May 13

Jim Jones said :

Ben_Dover said :

secretly you wish you were out doing rufty-tufty meaningful work with a gang of blokes..

I can only assume that you work in some sort of homoerotic construction crew.

yes, images of the band YMCA came to my mind too…

IP

Ben_Dover 10:01 am 29 May 13

IrishPete said :

Can’t speak for anyone else, but the rest of the stereotype you present doesn’t apply to me.

No more than any of the “probably upset because Margaret Thatcher’s dead, because you can’t save money any more by paying the kids’ HECS fees up front, by having to pay increased taxes for DisabilityCare, and by the Baby Bonus being means tested. stereotypical, unwarranted and unwanted slurs you started dishing out apply to me.

So why not debate the topic rather than a”play the man, not the ball,” hmmm?

IrishPete said :

Also I’m glad you didn’t try to deny that Australian society is inherently Socialist and has been for decades. (

I’m glad you didn’t deny that the ocean is rather salty, that politicians lie, that blue cheese smells of old socks, and a thousand other rather obvious things.

Did you have a point there? Or were you just making things up that other people haven’t said, in order to win a little debate with yourself?

Jim Jones 9:53 am 29 May 13

Ben_Dover said :

secretly you wish you were out doing rufty-tufty meaningful work with a gang of blokes..

I can only assume that you work in some sort of homoerotic construction crew.

IrishPete 9:28 am 29 May 13

Ben_Dover said :

Ok, my go.

“Get over it, you’re only upset because labour is falling apart a the seams, and you’re feeling guilty as you have a nice white collar job in an unproductive government department, and secretly you wish you were out doing rufty-tufty meaningful work with a gang of blokes..

Sorry, the only thing Left and Labor have in common is the letter L. These days Left starts with a G.

Can’t speak for anyone else, but the rest of the stereotype you present doesn’t apply to me.Also I’m glad you didn’t try to deny that Australian society is inherently Socialist and has been for decades. (Trolling? Moi? No, just running out a line with a baited hook on it… there’s a difference)

IP

Ben_Dover 9:02 am 29 May 13

IrishPete said :

Get over it folks. You’re probably upset because Margaret Thatcher’s dead, because you can’t save money any more by paying the kids’ HECS fees up front, by having to pay increased taxes for DisabilityCare, and by the Baby Bonus being means tested.

Amazing how those on the left seem to think it fine to cast aspersions as to what they believe others are thinking.

Ok, my go.

“Get over it, you’re only upset because labour is falling apart a the seams, and you’re feeling guilty as you have a nice white collar job in an unproductive government department, and secretly you wish you were out doing rufty-tufty meaningful work with a gang of blokes..

IrishPete 8:19 pm 28 May 13

Who wooda thunk the RiotACT would be a forum for an existential debate on jurisprudence?

Get over it folks. You’re probably upset because Margaret Thatcher’s dead, because you can’t save money any more by paying the kids’ HECS fees up front, by having to pay increased taxes for DisabilityCare, and by the Baby Bonus being means tested.

It’s called Socialism. It’s been in place for decades. And it’s what differentiates us from certain wild and individualistic animals.

IP

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