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Gov't banks on traffic tickets

Published: Friday May 11, 2012 | 8:46 am Comments 0
A police officer writes a traffic ticket for a coaster bus driver in Kingston.
A police officer writes a traffic ticket for a coaster bus driver in Kingston.

The head of the police traffic division is insisting members of the force are not instructed to issue a set number of traffic tickets, despite indications the government is seeking to collect more revenue through that mechanism.

Figures contained in the 2012-2013 Estimates of Expenditure, tabled in the House of Representatives yesterday, indicate the Government is seeking to collect $1.32 billion from traffic tickets this fiscal year.

This would represent a $710 million increase its collection over last year.

The Government last year collected $620 million from traffic tickets, which was slightly less than the $620.1 million collected the previous year.

However, senior superintendent of police, Radcliffe Lewis, is seeking to dispel the popular myth that traffic police are given ticketing quotas they are expected to meet each month.

He said the budgeted figures do not represent or dictate to the police.

Meanwhile, attempts to have national security minister, Peter Bunting explain the basis on which estimates for the collection of sums from traffic tickets are derived, proved unsuccessful.

The Government has estimated that more than $2 billion in traffic tickets remain uncollected.

Parliament recently passed traffic ticket amnesty legislation, which is aimed at allowing persons to pay outstanding traffic tickets, accumulated before September 20, 2010.

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