Another reason to NEVER plead "guilty" to a traffic ticket.
Overpaid and under-prosecuted politicans in Tennessee have "passed" yet another illegal "law" that is void from its inception, signed by our jew governor (owner of Vegas casinos and convicted of felony fraud and conspiracy for price gouging the highest gas prices in USA). Why should US citizens be allowed driver licenses, when TN fake I.D. "driver certificates" to 400,000 illegal aliens?
THP increased traffic tickets 11,400% for bikers on the Dragon at Deals Gap, causing a 400% increase in the death rate, because a Police State must exercise ethnic clensing on the governor's private airport and VIP resort, er, tax-exempt "nature conservancy".
And the US Dept of Fatherland Security just bought 500-MILLION 40-caliber handgun bullets, while sticking fingers in vaginas and crushing testicles in airports, giving 20,000 guns to the Mexican mafiya and leaving the borders wide open...
Never mind that the legislature has zero authority to require any person to buy a "driver license" when not a commercial driver for hire.
In Tennessee, poor folks can avoid payment of all traffic tickets by asserting their Homestead Exemption, filing an Affidavit of Indigency, claiming tenancy by the entirety, and filing an affidavit of indigency with the court.
Current Homestead Exemption in TN is $5,000 single and $7500 married, plus many other exemptions. Senate Bill 2747 pending in 2012 will raise that to $50,000, and possibly raise it to an UNLIMITED EXEMPTION. That's a lot of unpaid speeding tickets!
In Florida, a Homestead Exemption includes their $10-million home without a morgage.
This is called being collection-proof, and applies in all civil and criminal lawsuits, and prevents payment of all traffic tickets and court costs, even when found "guilty". That's THE LAW.
The following lies are from a "local" multinational "news" corporation with illegal Top Secret government contracts for propaganda services (that tried to send The Dragonater to jail for asking to read those public records), that backed Judge Swann who allegedly broke his wife's arm, while illegally banning campaign ads against Swann from the Dragonater's brother. The Dragonater's TV show was also illegally banned during that GOP primary fight, since Swann has his own TV show on the same channel, SPEAKING MEXICAN.
Note how KNS censors the actual name and # of the bill (HB 1877/SB 1798), so the average sheeple cannot check if KNS is lying.
Area court clerks see dark clouds with new license revocation law
By Bob Fowler
Knoxville News Sentinel
May 25, 2012
CLINTON — Thousands of defendants in Tennessee owing court costs totaling in the millions from criminal cases resolved last July are on the verge of losing their driver's licenses.
A state law calling for that mandatory license revocation was passed last year and went into effect in July.
The law states that defendants have a year to pay all of their court costs in misdemeanor and felony cases or the Department of Safety will automatically revoke their licenses.
Area court clerks have expressed varying opinions about the law but are gearing up to comply with it.
Most agree it will add another layer of record-keeping and likely clog already crowded court dockets.
"Imagine the court having to have a hearing on every unpaid court cost case," Anderson County Circuit Court Clerk Barry Pelizzari said. "It would be a burden that this system could not handle."
"It's going to be a huge mess," Anderson County Criminal Court Judge Don Elledge predicted. He said he expects to discuss the issue with fellow jurists during a judicial conference in June.
Roane County Circuit Court Clerk Kim Nelson offers another view. She said she's "thankful that the Legislature has provided court clerks with another enforcement tool in collecting court costs."
Blount County Circuit Court Clerk Tom Hatcher said while it may help motivate defendants to pay off their court costs, it may also result in many more defendants driving illegally on revoked licenses.
"I have mixed emotions about this," he said.Hatcher said for last July, there were a total of 264 criminal misdemeanor and felony cases as well as traffic division cases that were resolved in Blount County.
Those defendants, he said last week, still owed $281,288 in court costs.
In Knox County, there were 962 Criminal Court and General Sessions Court cases resolved in July 2011 through pleas or convictions, Chief Deputy Clerk Janice Norman said.
She said the office's information technology department will "set up some sort of program for us to flag those particular cases" where court costs are unpaid.
It will require additional record-keeping, she said, "but we do what we have to do."
Norman on Thursday said the total amount of unpaid court costs from cases last July was unavailable.
State Rep. Jim Gotto, R-Nashville, spearheaded passage of the law. His main reason: "There's almost $1 billion statewide in unpaid fines and court costs," he said.
Defendants facing the loss of their driver's license will now have "an incentive to pay their fines," he said.
Gotto said he was asked to introduce the legislation by representatives of the Davidson County Criminal Court Clerk's office. "They see what a huge problem this is."
Gotto said the law allows defendants unable to pay off their court costs in full within a year to either seek a six-month extension or set up an installment plan for paying.
"There are all kinds of safeguards to keep from disenfranchising any group," he said, "but it brings some real consequences to folks who just won't pay."
Several clerks said they have either already sent out notices to defendants owing court costs in cases resolved last July, alerting them about the new law, or plan to do so soon.
Sevier County Circuit Court Clerk Rita Ellison in a recent email said she planned to meet with several of her counterparts "to discuss the new law and brainstorm about the proper procedure for my office."
Along with sending notices to defendants with unpaid court costs, Roane County court officials are considering a "payment day" in July and publishing notices about the new law, collections clerk Jennifer Melton said in an email.
Defendants, she said, "can come and get set up on a payment plan or catch up on their payments if they are already on a payment plan."
She said in Roane County, there are 437 defendants from July 2011 affected by the law, and they have $124,573 in unpaid court costs.
Pelizzari said in Anderson County about 80 percent of defendants in criminal cases are declared indigent and are unable to afford an attorney to represent them.
He said court costs include a variety of litigation taxes that have been tacked on over the years to the point where those assessments "are beyond reasonable expectations."
He said that a defendant convicted of first-offense driving on a revoked license is assessed $279.50 in fines, court fees and litigation taxes.
Hatcher said court costs and fines in certain criminal cases in Blount County can total several thousand dollars. He recited a long list of assessments tacked onto court costs, including funding for courthouse security, drug court, a victims' fund and a special assessment for the county's justice center.
Pelizzari said his office collects about 60 percent of court costs, but it often takes years to do so.
"I've come to the conclusion that no matter how much you spend on collection efforts, the best you're going to collect is 60 to 70 percent," Pelizzari said. "We're beyond the point of diminishing returns."
The state Department of Safety, meanwhile, is preparing procedures for issuing thousands of driver's license revocation notices each year.
The department is notifying court clerks, informing them "how to file the information electronically to initiate the revocation action," said Kenneth Birdwell, the department's director of financial responsibility.
Note the illiterate morons who commented at KNS on this "story". The only ones not yet banned are employees of the Police State.
Hammond questions waived fees, fines and other court costs
Knox County Commissioner Mike Hammond wants to know why County Criminal and Sessions Court judges waived almost $150,000 in fees, fines and other court costs to defendants during a recent two-month period - especially during a tight budget year.
Hammond plans to bring the issue up for discussion at Monday's 2 p.m. Knox County Commission meeting.
"I think we need to look at them and have a better understanding of why they're (fees) being waived," Hammond said. "We're looking at a very, very tight budget this year and next year. Any revenue we can get without taxing our citizens, we need to collect. You're talking a pretty significant amount of money. Before we go to the citizens and try to collect more money from them, let's collect what's owed us."
The fees waived were compiled by Dick Moran, senior director of the county's Information Technology.
The documents show Knox County Criminal Court Judges Richard Baumgartner, Kenneth Irvine, Mary Beth Leibowitz, Bob McGee (newly elected to the post) and former Anderson County Judge James "Buddy" Scott, sitting in for another judge, waived fees of $19,609.75 from Aug. 16 to Sept. 15, and Baumgartner, Leibowitz and McGee waived fees of $45,723.15 from Sept. 16 to Oct. 15.
Knox County General Sessions Court Judges Chuck Cerny, Geoffrey Emery, Andy Jackson, McGee (before he began serving in Criminal Court) and Tony Stansberry waived fees of $62,039.44 from Aug. 16 to Sept. 15, and Emery, McGee and Stansberry waived fees of $17,894.30 from Sept. 16 to Oct. 15.
Most of the judges were at a conference or out of the office Friday. Emery, reached by phone, declined to comment.
The fees waived include court costs, jail fees, fines, restitution and probation fees.
Joy McCroskey, interim clerk of Criminal Court, the Criminal Division of General Sessions and Fourth Circuit Court, explained that court costs include all state and county taxes, clerk's fees, lower court costs, diagnostic fees for tests, breathalyzer fees, travel expenses for witnesses and Sheriff's Office fees for subpoenas.
Jail fees are the $46.20 per day it costs to house an inmate. Fines are assessed based on the offense or by agreement between the state and defense. Restitution is paid to the victim. And people on probation pay $45 a month to the county Probation and Parole Department.
McCroskey said her office operates on money taken from court costs.
Only one judge, McGee, waived a restitution payment of $598.50 during the two periods reviewed.
Very few probation fees were waived.
Most of the fees waived were court costs or jail fees.
"When they (the Legislature) enact these laws, they tell us what to charge and where the money goes," McCroskey said. For example, she said the jail fees go to the County Finance Department.
"They're (judges) not a collection agency, so we are stepping up our collections," McCroskey said.
She said her office does everything it can to collect costs.
"I am here to collect court costs, so I want all the fees collected," she said. "I am very interested in cost collections. We're paid by the people that use the courts - not the taxpayers. These fees pay our salary and benefits and other costs. Any excess fees are turned over to Knox County."
In some cases, jail fees are waived because the person is indigent and has been in jail or is in jail and has no way of paying the fees, she said.
McCroskey said her office still goes after fees "that are relieved. We've done garnishments. We've written them letters so we're still going after that money the judges have relieved. Just because the judge says you're relieved, that doesn't mean we can't try to collect it, and we do. I don't want anything waived from the clerk's standpoint, but a judge can do what he pleases."
Rebecca Ferrar may be reached at 865-342-6357.
Knox County Courts Report
SENATE BILL 1798
HOUSE BILL 1877
AN ACT to amend Tennessee Code Annotated, Title 16; Title 40, Chapter 24, Part 1; Title 50 and Title 55, relative to litigation taxes, court costs, and fines.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF TENNESSEE:
SECTION 1. Tennessee Code Annotated, Section 40-24-105, is amended by adding the following new subsection as subsection (b), and by redesignating the remaining subsections accordingly:
(1) A license issued under title 55 for any operator or chauffeur shall be
revoked by the commissioner of safety if the licensee has not paid all litigation taxes, court costs, and fines assessed as a result of disposition of any offense under the criminal laws of this state within one (1) year of the date of disposition of the offense. The license shall remain revoked until such time as the person whose license has been revoked provides proof to the commissioner of safety that all litigation taxes, court costs, and fines have been paid.
(2) The clerk of the court ordering disposition of an offense shall notify
the commissioner of safety when an offender has litigation taxes, court costs, and fines, that remain unpaid after one (1) year from the disposition of the offense. Such notification shall take place within thirty (30) days of the expiration of the one-year period or as soon as practicable. The commissioner of safety shall not refuse to revoke a license issued under title 55 on grounds that
notification was not received within the thirty-day period specified in this subdivision (b)(2).
(A) A person who is unable to pay any portion of assessed
litigation taxes, court costs, and fines may apply one (1) time to the court having original jurisdiction over the offense for an order staying the
revocation of the license issued under title 55. An order to stay the
revocation of the license shall be granted if the court finds that the person would experience extreme hardship from the revocation of the license
and that no other means of transportation are reasonably available to the
person. Grounds for finding of extreme hardship are limited to travel
(i) Employment; or
(ii) Serious illness of the person or an immediate family member.
(B) The offender seeking a hardship exception shall make
application to the court in the form of a sworn affidavit stating with
particularity the grounds and circumstances of hardship. The court may
enter a one-time stay for a period of not longer than one hundred and
eighty (180) days. The court clerk shall promptly notify the commissioner
of safety of the issuance or termination of any stay of revocation. The
commissioner of safety shall not revoke any license issued under title 55
while the stay is in effect.
SECTION 2. The revocation provided in this act is cumulative and does not limit or otherwise affect any license revocation pursuant to title 39, title 55, or any other provision of law.
SECTION 3. This act shall take effect July 1, 2011, the public welfare requiring it, and shall apply to offenses committed on or after July 2, 2011.
TN Rules of Civil Procedure - Court costs are always a civil collection even in criminal cases, thus Homestead Exemption applies
Tennessee's Court System: Is Reform Needed? - The report 'To Serve ALL People' states that 'the judicial system is too independent, for there is so little accountability.' The report To Serve ALL People states that 'the judicial system has been a vast set of islands, laid out in a pattern that is bewildering to the public' and that 'on administrative matters local sovereigns often reign in isolation.' Statutes and private acts allow some general sessions judges to receive additional salary supplements for assuming jurisdiction for cases usually heard in other courts, such as child support, divorce, chancery, and juvenile cases. Judges get this supplement regardless of how many cases they hear a year, which may be very few. Some of these judges also continue to practice law full-time. Many interviewees expressed concern that general sessions courts are used to increase county general fund balances and pay for government operating expenses unrelated to the administration of justice. According to a 1996 NCSC report, 'the concept of the self-supporting court has ethical implications if the court in any way uses money it generates from judgments to pay its operational expenses. It is beyond dispute that this practice is not consistent with judicial ethics or the demands of due process and there are relatively few remaining situations of this type.' The local courts estimate that a small percentage of court costs are collected. In Shelby County, for example, for FY 2001, only 33 percent ($7,580,080) of assessed criminal court costs ($23,269,527) were collected within the first year after disposition of the case [but courts always censor the fact that no defendant has to pay fines or court costs in any case, when proceeding in forma pauperis by Affidavit of Indigency and claiming homestead Exemption, and claiming tenancy in the entirety (community property protects spouses from paying debts of spouse)]. Many judges and court administrators believe 'that fines and fees are so high that they are, in a sense, responsible for the collection problem.' The 1989 Comptroller's special report on the collection of court costs concluded that the suspension and revocation of an individual's driver's license is not an effective means to coerce payment of delinquent court costs.101 One judge believes the law prohibiting people from getting their driver�s license until they pay all their court fees is cost prohibitive, because so many cannot afford to pay the cost and get rearrested for driving without a license. More than one judge said they had a high volume of such cases and that they contribute to jail overcrowding, and waste police, court, judge, and clerk time with no financial benefit. The seizure of property by investigative agencies contributes to unpaid court costs."
Report from The Commission on the Future of the Tennessee Judicial System - "Strictly local municipal courts offer a separate, substandard justice and warrant a thorough review of their own. At their best, the present-day system of city courts is a convenient means for disposing of relatively minor matters, close at hand, with less formality than state courts. They become, in essence, an administrative forum of alternative dispute resolution, with the right to appeal to the state judicial system. At their worst, they are merely revenue agencies masquerading as courts. Their sole reason for being is the funds that their municipality draws from them. If the funds disappeared, few of the cities would consider the court an important civic service. Their limits and oversight are ill-defined, and their flexibility can sometimes disguise mere arbitrariness. Municipal courts are a substantial topic unto themselves. There are some 200 to 300 such courts across the state, operating so independently that even obtaining an exact count is difficult. We believe they fall much closer to the worst model than to the best one. A majority of complaints about judges that come to the Administrative Office of the Courts originate with municipal courts."
State Bill Could Revoke Teaching Licenses for non-apyment of private debts
TN Attorney General Opinion No. 12-22 claims TN can steal licenses to work in state for non-payment of private debt
"Mr. Speaker, my subject today is whether America is a police state. Terror and fear are used to achieve complacency and obedience, especially when citizens are deluded into believing they are still a free people. Most police states, surprisingly, come about through the democratic process with majority support. The masses are easily led to believe that security and liberty are mutually exclusive, and demand for security far exceeds that for liberty. Our government already keeps close tabs on just about everything we do and requires official permission for nearly all of our activities. One might take a look at our Capitol for any evidence of a police state. We see: barricades, metal detectors, police, military soldiers at times, dogs, ID badges required for every move, vehicles checked at airports and throughout the Capitol. The people are totally disarmed, except for the police and the criminals. But worse yet, surveillance cameras in Washington are everywhere to ensure our safety. The personal information of law-abiding citizens can be used for reasons other than safety- including political reasons. Like gun control, people control hurts law-abiding citizens much more than the law-breakers. Social Security numbers are used to monitor our daily activities. The numbers are given at birth, and then are needed when we die and for everything in between. Centralized control and regulations are required in a police state. Almost all of our economic activities depend upon receiving the proper permits from the federal government. Transactions involving guns, food, medicine, smoking, drinking, hiring, firing, wages, politically correct speech, land use, fishing, hunting, buying a house, business mergers and acquisitions, selling stocks and bonds, and farming all require approval and strict regulation from our federal government. If this is not done properly and in a timely fashion, economic penalties and even imprisonment are likely consequences. Because government pays for much of our health care, it's conveniently argued that any habits or risk-taking that could harm one's health are the prerogative of the federal government, and are to be regulated by explicit rules to keep medical-care costs down. This same argument is used to require helmets for riding motorcycles and bikes. Not only do we need a license to drive, but we also need special belts, bags, buzzers, seats and environmentally dictated speed limits- or a policemen will be pulling us over to levy a fine, and he will be toting a gun for sure. Over 80,000 federal bureaucrats now carry guns to make us toe the line and to enforce the thousands of laws and tens of thousands of regulations that no one can possibly understand. All 18-year-old males must register to be ready for the next undeclared war. If they don't, men with guns will appear and enforce this congressional mandate. "Involuntary servitude" was banned by the 13th Amendment, but courts don't apply this prohibition to the servitude of draftees or those citizens required to follow the dictates of the IRS- especially the employers of the country, who serve as the federal government's chief tax collectors and information gatherers. Fear is the tool used to intimidate most Americans to comply to the tax code by making examples of celebrities. When the government keeps detailed records on every move we make and we either need advance permission for everything we do or are penalized for not knowing what the rules are, America will be declared a police state. In a free society, the government's job is simply to protect liberty- the people do the rest. Let's not give up on a grand experiment that has provided so much for so many. Let's reject the police state."
-Congressman Ron Paul, candidate for president in 2008, U.S. House of Representatives, Is America a Police State? June 27, 2002