Modern revenuers

A look at crime reports shows that a third to a half of police activity in some areas deals with traffic matters. This often entails traffic citations and is why some are thinking “To ‘serve and protect’ has become ‘serve and collect.'” Stimulus? Michigan speed limits set illegally low to generate speeding ticket revenue is about how some municipalities ignore the process defined in state law for setting speed limits.

Turning public safety on its head and converting that directive into a money maker for local communities isn’t anything new.

There are side effects. When police turn into revenue instruments, trust is tarnished. When local politicians make excuses for bad laws, they reinforce the image of corrupt politician. When insurance companies use traffic citations as reasons to increase rates, the image of ‘greedy corporation’ is reinforced. These perceptions make it a game and not a matter of civil society and that does not forward public safety and community.

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