It’s a dirty secret on the part of law enforcement and the state itself. It’s a means of holding back certain segments of the population — do we dare say “immigrants” — by relegating them to effectively what was once called “Debtor’s Prison.”
Long seen as a rite of passage for teenagers, a driver’s license represents far more than that to most Californians.
“A valid driver’s license is a vital link to employment, independence and long-term individual and family stability,” according to Yolo County Public Information Spokeswoman Beth Gabor. “For those with unpaid traffic and non-traffic infraction tickets, however, insurmountable court fines have led to the loss of the privilege to drive, leaving little realistic hope of ever climbing out of the abyss.”
With its pointless punitive cycle of fines and late fees, California's traffic ticket system long has been a source of oppression for millions of motorists, burdening them with mounting debt they can't pay and depriving them of the driving privileges they need to remain employed.
It's a double-whammy that someone had to put the brakes on. Gov. Jerry Brown and Sen. Bob Hertzberg, D-Los Angeles, did just that with an amnesty program that launched last week.
Among the criminal justice bills Gov. Jerry Brown signed into law over the weekend are a data collection bill intended to combat racial profiling and another that aims to reduce recidivism among people with mental illness.
If ever there was a time to think big about water that time is now.
Remember the energy crisis of the early 2000s? That’s when dwindling energy supplies caused skyrocketing prices and Californians suffered, both in their wallets and quality of life. We got through that crisis with conservation and building a sustainable, renewable, energy system.
Whether El Niño deposits its gift this winter, we have now seen scarcity’s path. Relying on captured water won’t produce nearly as much as we’ve saved this summer through vigilance alone.
SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) -- California is instituting an amnesty program for residents who can't afford to pay off spiraling traffic fines and court fees that have led to millions of driver's licenses being suspended.