Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Skateboarding Ticket Cost

What will a ticket for skateboarding on a sidewalk in the vicinity of the Square cost? Or for riding a bicycle on a sidewalk in the area of the Square?

The fine for a ticket for either of these can range from $5.00 to $500.00. It's up to the judge. If the kid shows up in a clean shirt and no holes in his jeans, the fine might be $5.00. If he shows up with an attitude, the fine might be $500.00.

And then you have to add the court costs. A clerk at the traffic court told me today that the minimum court costs would be $85.00-$100.00. And she couldn't tell me exactly how much the court costs will be (I've run into that answer before). When I asked if the court costs for a $5.00 fine and the court costs for a $500.00 fine are different, she said they are different. What? It costs more money to accept more cash or a check in a larger amount???

The police department has informed me that a judge sets the fine. This means that a court appearance will be required. And that means court costs.

Is this what our City Council figured out in advance?

You can get a speeding ticket (or a headlight ticket) and mail in the fine. No court appearance is necessary. And no court costs have to be paid.

Is riding a bike on a sidewalk on the Square more serious than a speeding ticket?

And will the police be less likely to ticket bicyclists and skateboarders on sidewalks on and around the Square, knowing that it's going to cost the kid and his parents over $100 to settle it?

Only time (and a FOIA Request) will tell.

8 comments:

Kyle S. said...

What does this ordinance do in regards to the City insurance costs? The square is presumably a high pedestrian area. And a collision between a pedestrian and a skateboarder/bicycle will undoubtedly lead to injuries and a lawsuit by the pedestrian. A lawsuit that you know the City will be named in. With this ordinance, does it limit any liability? And was that the main goal?

Richard W Gorski, M.D. said...

Gus,
I have been told that the court does not accept personal checks. Only cash, money orders, travelers checks or bank certified checks and certainly no plastic. So if you don't know what the fine and or costs are going to total up to you had better brings plenty of CASH.

Gus said...

Doc, I was interested in your comment, so I called the courthouse today. They will happily accept your personal check (or anyone else's), VISA, MasterCard, Discover Card, travelers cheques, bank checks. There is a $5.00 service charge for using plastic, whether credit or debit cards.

They also accept cash, if you have two forms of ID. (just kidding)

what the woodstock nuisance meant to say said...

Did the City remove the DANGEROUS INTERSECTION sign at the tracks westbound on Calhoun St. to add or limit liability?

Richard W Gorski, M.D. said...

Thanks Gus, I was ingnorant of those important changes. Happy to hear they are in the 21st Century.
Bravo.

Kyle S. said...

"what the woodstock nuisance meant to say said...
Did the City remove the DANGEROUS INTERSECTION sign at the tracks westbound on Calhoun St. to add or limit liability?"

Limit - If there's a sign there that says it's a dangerous intersection; Then the City is acknowledging that they know it's a dangerous intersection. Then they (City) are at fault for any accident that may occur there. If there is NO sign, then the City can play dumb and say "We didn't know it was a dangerous intersection" - LOL

Richard W Gorski, M.D. said...

Isn't it reassuring that the city and its very well paid legal beagles (lawyers)allegedly think more about their liability than the safety and wellfare of the people in town. Does this give you a little insight on the way your city's leaders and or advisors allegdly think? Ponder that thought and ask yourself this question; are they really working for ME the next time an election comes up or the contract for legal advice to the city comes up for renewal. Then, based on the facts and their behavior make your choice after some thought regarding these type issues. They are there to serve you and your welfare, not the politicians'. You, its people ARE THE CITY.

what the woodstock nuisance meant to say said...

Absolutely. Now that an ordinance is on the books the City assumes more liabilityfor the skaters.