1. #1
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    Default How Can A County Court Judge

    Make this kind of declaration, if this has become "Law"? I ask because it seems strange that a lower court can do this.

    Judge Strikes Down Va. Abusive Driver Fees
    Fees Declared Unconstitutional

    POSTED: 11:49 am EDT August 2, 2007
    UPDATED: 1:14 pm EDT August 2, 2007

    RICHMOND, Va. -- A Henrico County judge declared the state's new abusive driver fees unconstitutional on Thursday.

    General District Court Judge Archie Yeatts issued the ruling in the case of Anthony Price, who was facing his fifth charge of driving on a suspended license.

    Related: Politalk: Discuss This Latest Development | Take Survey

    With his order, Yeatts instructed Henrico General District Court clerks not to collect civil remedial fees that can reach $1,000 or more for certain driving offenses.

    The ruling is binding only in Henrico County but is being immediately appealed to Circuit Court and could eventually reach the Virginia Supreme Court.

    The fees have prompted protests from Virginians outraged that they apply only to state residents. Price's lawyers argued at a hearing last week that forcing him to pay $750 in fees that don't apply to people who live outside Virginia violates the 14th Amendment's guarantee of equal protection under the law.

    Since the fees took effect July 1, critics have called for their immediate repeal in a special legislative session. Gov. Timothy M. Kaine opposes a special session but has suggested legislators revisit the law in the regular session that begins in January.

    Kaine said in a statement released Thursday that whether the courts find the law constitutional, he is "committed to addressing the concerns Virginians have raised about this law."

    The General Assembly passed the fees this year to help endow the first major transportation funding law in a generation. They range from the fee Price initially faced -- three annual installments of $250 -- to $3,000 over three years for driving-related felonies.

    Because lawmakers wanted the revenue for highway maintenance, they enacted the surcharges as fees, which Virginia is powerless to collect outside its boundaries. The state can collect fines from out-of-state motorists, but the state Constitution requires those revenues to be used exclusively for education.

    Stay with News4 and nbc4.com for more information.

    Previous Stories:
    July 26, 2007: Judge Hears Arguments In Abusive Drivers Fees Case
    July 19, 2007: Va. Leaders Defend Abusive Driver Fees, Pledge Repairs
    July 17, 2007: Virginians Push For Bad Driver Fees Repeal
    July 5, 2007: 'Abusive Driver Fees' Likely To Face Court Challenge

    Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press.


    The sad thing is, intrinsically I agree with the additional charges, but I feel that they should apply to EVERYONE, not just state residents. You PAY before you leave the state.
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    WTF, over?
    General District Court Judge Archie Yeatts issued the ruling in the case of Anthony Price, who was facing his fifth charge of driving on a suspended license.
    Never mind a fine... his sorry backside should be tossed in the local hoosegow and the car confiscated!
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    So what is this about?Does this apply to people driving and repeatedly getting caught on suspended licenses,in which case they should be so far under the jail that the deputies need a slingshot to get daylight to them,or to those that cuss out the cops that are writing them a ticket?
    (If the second scenario is what the law is intended to cover,I am in trouble for venting my spleen two weeks ago when a Prius passed me on I-240 and I ran right into John Law's radar gun defending Chevrolet's honor.
    No[expletive deleted by WebTeam] Prius is gonna shut down MY Blazer.)
    In this case,it could be an example of legislating from the bench,where a judge makes a law because he thinks "There oughta be a law"(remember that comic?)and someone appears before him accused of something he thinks should be illegal.
    Last edited by doughesson; 08-02-2007 at 06:56 PM.

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    Posted by DougHesson
    If the second scenario is what the law is intended to cover,I am in trouble for venting my spleen two weeks ago when a Prius passed me on I-240 and I ran right into John Law's radar gun defending Chevrolet's honor.
    No[expletive deleted by WebTeam] Prius is gonna shut down MY Blazer.
    Was Al Gore III driving it?

    Sorry.. couldn't resist!
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    Quote Originally Posted by CaptainGonzo View Post
    Was Al Gore III driving it?

    Sorry.. couldn't resist!

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    I dunno,boss.The cop got a little put out with my response of"Uh,I was the only one slow enough for you to catch?" when she asked"Do you know why I pulled you over,Sir?".
    At least she wrote it down for "59 in a 55 zone".I could have been tagged for more.
    And,yes,her buddy down the road bagged the Prius.


    Quote Originally Posted by CaptainGonzo View Post
    Posted by DougHesson


    Was Al Gore III driving it?

    Sorry.. couldn't resist!

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    Quote Originally Posted by doughesson View Post
    I dunno,boss.The cop got a little put out with my response of"Uh,I was the only one slow enough for you to catch?" when she asked"Do you know why I pulled you over,Sir?".
    At least she wrote it down for "59 in a 55 zone".I could have been tagged for more.
    And,yes,her buddy down the road bagged the Prius.
    So, there was at least a shred of justice preserved that day.....

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    Make this kind of declaration, if this has become "Law"? I ask because it seems strange that a lower court can do this.

    Simple. Laws are formed by legislature and signed by the Governor . They only hit the courts on an appeal.

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    Just another example of the law being an ***....
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    Quote Originally Posted by quint1officer View Post
    Make this kind of declaration, if this has become "Law"? I ask because it seems strange that a lower court can do this.

    Simple. Laws are formed by legislature and signed by the Governor . They only hit the courts on an appeal.
    But then shouldn't the State Supreme Court step up and quash the appeal? Or is this also part of the appeal process?

    **I'm not "law/court savy" which is why I ask.**
    If you don't do it RIGHT today, when will you have time to do it over? (Hall of Fame basketball player/coach John Wooden)

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    Get it up. Get it on. Get it done!

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    Say I get arrested, I go to the court and say the law is unconstitutional, then it goes from there up through the courts. It doesn't get in court until someone challenges it.

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    NY also has these civil penalties.. You have to pay them no matter what hte dispostion. Seems to me like you are presumed guilty, which seems wrong to me.

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    Seems the unconcstitutionality of the law is that it is not evenly applied and is restricted to Virginia residents.

    I agree with the law - but throw it at everyone.
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