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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Huckleberries Online

Wayne’s Invalid Speeding Ticket

I got a speeding ticket the other day. I was driving between meetings in Kootenai County when a state police officer pulled me over. But the ticket made me wonder. I wondered why the state of Idaho has a law that fines people $155 for speeding. It turns out, it doesn't; I broke a law that doesn't exist. More on that in a moment. I think a lot about the impact of Idaho law on the working poor. My job isn't just to promote low taxes, less government and less regulation; these are items typically found in the vernacular of the people from "our" side. No, we must think more about whether a law serves to unfairly inhibit or punish people in the pursuit of happiness and the enjoyment of the fruits of their labor. For me, a $155 speeding ticket, while annoying, isn't devastating. Sure, I will cut something out of my budget to pay the fine, but that item won't be food for my kids or electricity to heat my home. For others, sadly, that would be the case. The gas station attendant earning minimum wage will lose more than two days of income before taxes/Wayne Hoffman, Idaho Freedom Foundation. More here.

Question: Do you think the fines on traffic violations are too steep?

D.F. Oliveria
D.F. (Dave) Oliveria joined The Spokesman-Review in 1984. He currently is a columnist and compiles the Huckleberries Online blog and writes about North Idaho in his Huckleberries column.

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