Thursday, December 27, 2007

Del. Albo Wants to BOOST Abusive Driver Fees-- When The Rest of Virginia Wants Them Abolished!

From TheNewspaper.com:
Despite the public outrage at the imposition of the civil remedial fee speeding ticket tax, Virginia Delegate David B Albo (R-Springfield) is proposing to boost penalties further on those already subjected to the tax.

Earlier this month Albo filed House Bill 91, a measure designed to "crack down" on unlicensed drivers. It will be considered in the new legislative session which begins in January.

"No person... shall drive any motor vehicle on any highway in the Commonwealth until such person has applied for a driver's license... satisfactorily passed the examination, and obtained a driver's license, nor unless the license is valid," the proposal states.


"Notwithstanding any other provision of law, any person charged with a violation of this section shall be placed under arrest and shall have his fingerprints and photograph taken."

The proposal sets the punishment for a first offense as a class 2 misdemeanor and a class 1 for the second, the punishment for which is up to a year in prison and a fine of $2500. But the law's primary target is not illegal drivers who have never held a valid license as the language seems to imply.

A 2004 state appeals court case, Shreve v. Virginia, concluded that a suspended license was not "valid" for the purpose of imposing punishment. That means Albo's measure would force police to arrest anyone whose license has been suspended, even if only over a
technicality or database error.

The majority of those subjected to the new punishment would come from Albo's own civil remedial fee legislation.

Since July, a Virginia motorist ticketed, for example, for driving more than 10 MPH over the limit on portions of Interstate 95 automatically is charged with "reckless driving." Upon conviction, a judge has no choice but to impose the $1,050 "abuser fee" in addition to a discretionary fine of up to $2,500. A motorist who cannot afford such stiff penalties will have his license suspended. This places many in the position of choosing between driving illegally to keep their job and following the new law.

In the next two years, nearly half a million Virginia motorists will fall into this trap, according to a
report by the Joint Commission on Transportation Accountability. The numbers track with the experience of other states like Michigan and Texas which have similar ticket taxes. Texas, for example, has suspended 1.5 million licenses as a direct result of its so-called driver responsibility law.

"When you turn law-abiding people into criminals, they lose all respect for the law," Michigan Judge Michael Jarreau testified before a state legislative committee. "I will almost never take a guilty plea for driving with a suspended license."

Albo heads the traffic law section for the Albo and Oblon, LLP law firm. State House Majority Leader H Morgan Griffith (R-Salem), who helped push the original fee legislation into law, is also a traffic lawyer.



Article Excerpt:
HOUSE BILL NO. 91
Offered January 9, 2008
Prefiled December 14, 2007

A BILL to amend and reenact § 46.2-300 of the Code of Virginia, relating to driving without a driver's license; penalties.

Patrons-- Albo and Rust
Committee Referral Pending

Be it enacted by the General Assembly of Virginia:
1. That § 46.2-300 of the Code of Virginia is amended and reenacted as follows:§ 46.2-300. Driving without license prohibited; penalties.

No person, except those expressly exempted in §§ 46.2-303 through 46.2-308, shall drive any motor vehicle on any highway in the Commonwealth until such person has applied for a driver's license, as provided in this article, satisfactorily passed the examination required by § 46.2-325, and obtained a driver's license, nor unless the license is valid.

A violation of this section is a Class 2 misdemeanor. A second or subsequent violation of this section is a Class 1 misdemeanor.

Notwithstanding any other provision of law, any person charged with a violation of this section shall be placed under arrest and shall have his fingerprints and photograph taken.



Comment:
With this obvious scheme to continue to abuse Virginia's drivers and fill his law firm's pockets with cash from you and I when we are forced to hire lawyers or face jail and thousands of dollars in fines even in the case of computer/clerk errors or even your insurance company forgetting to update their records quickly (causing the DMV computer to think you are uninsured, therefore your license suspended)..... Albo needs to make his money more honestly rather than trying to change the laws to suit his business' unique form of 'service'.

One could easily argue that this is 'protection money' when you hire him to defend you against laws HE CREATED!

If this guy were a baker, I would merely think he's a crusader for safe roads or some cause with a fire in his belly, but he is a traffic lawyer who- like loan sharks and predatory mortgage companies- is preying on us citizens at the highest levels.

There's even a website dedicated solely to his removal from office: "Albo Must Go.com". Check it out for the latest figures on how some in our party are steering us right into bankruptcy in some cases, and definitely away from support and unity at the very least. Keep in mind, it's sponsored by the Democratic Party of Fairfax of course, but some of its links are to neutral sources, newspaper quotes, and voting records, as well as, your daily dose of liberal drivel to be sure.

What part of "less government" does Dave Albo not understand as part of the Republican mantra?
Ronald Reagan is spinning in his grave right now.

Maybe they do things differently in Fairfax than the rest of the world to raise money and deal with their craving for cash and more lawyers, but Richmond has more than its share of greed and misuse of public trust.

Hopefully in 2009, Fairfax Republicans will see fit to put up a candidate that is less like to be a tax and spender, is not a business-as-usual lawyer, and who can separate himself/herself from a situation that is so blatently self-serving? I would hate to see it turn totally Blue up there (it practically is now), but you reap what you sow... it may have to get worse before it gets better.

1 Comments:

At January 2, 2008 at 11:54 AM , Blogger D.J. McGuire said...

Ya know, I used to live in his district. For the first time since I moved down here, I'm regretting it. I would have LOVED to primary this cipher.

 

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