It was touch-and-go for a while, but Louisiana is set to continue referring delinquent traffic tickets issued for red light violations to collection agencies.
Louisiana Senator Jean-Paul Morrell, a Democrat from New Orleans, introduced SB102, which would have ended the potentially state-wide program.
Morrell’s claim: placing the accounts with a collection agency is unconstitutional: “one of the requirements is that the person owing money and the collector must have a contractual agreement to pay.”
[Editor’s note: I enjoy how that sidesteps the original agreement between the traffic offender and the municipality, wherein if you coast through a red light and get caught, you should pay the traffic fine in the first place and don’t try to weasel out with that story about how your cousin borrowed your car that day. Pay the fine and stop treating red lights like driving suggestions.]
Louisiana’s Senate Transportation Committee didn’t agree, though, and opposed Morrell’s bill 4-2.
Lafayette is believed to be the only city in Louisiana that currently utilizes a collection agency; however, New Orleans is also considering it.