Surcharge Waivers on Traffic Violations
Recently, I introduced legislation that would permit courts to reduce or waive a fine, fee, or the surcharge imposed on criminal and traffic offenders based on a defendant’s ability to pay.
Currently, a court must impose a surcharge on every conviction in Minnesota. The surcharge applies to criminal convictions and petty misdemeanors including all traffic violations and parking offenses. The surcharge for parking violations is $12. The surcharge for all other offenses is $75. A court cannot waive the surcharge.
This bill aims to build equity and account for financial hardship. The measure also includes requirements to communicate waiver resources through informational language printed on traffic tickets.
House File 306 has successfully passed through both the Public Safety and Judiciary Finance Committee; now on its way to the Ways and Means Committee for further consideration. You can track the bill here.