This report profiles the collection of unpaid court-ordered fines and fees during the 2017-18 fiscal year in California.
Graciela is a 76-year-old caregiver who takes three different buses for five hours to get to work each day. She receives Supplemental Security Income. Her license was suspended because of unpaid Driver’s Responsibility Program (DRP) surcharges.
This report examines the current status of mandatory surcharges in New York, describes the impact of the surcharges on indigent defendants, and proposes legislative changes, including the elimination of the surcharges.
This report examines in detail the collateral consequences of Alabama’s court debt system and explores the ways in which it undermines public safety and drives the state’s racial wealth divide.
Before this resolution was passed by the Ottawa County Board of Commissioners, the county was charging $25 per day to people detained in the Ottawa County jail. Under the new billing system, detainees will be charged a flat fee of $60 for their incarceration, regardless of how long they stay.
The authors’ completed model predicts that when a local government is experiencing a fiscal crisis, local police departments will increase arrests for “offenses that carry fines or the opportunity to forfeit assets.”
FFJC Co-Director Joanna Weiss participated in a Smart on Crime Innovations Conference panel about eliminating “user fees” in the justice system.
In this op-ed for The Hill, FFJC Co-Directors Lisa Foster and Joanna Weiss explain how fines and fees damage public safety & harm low-income communities of color: “Using fines and fees …
Doraville, Georgia, a 10,000-person suburb of Atlanta, has become notorious for its revenue-generating speed traps and housing code enforcement cases.
This study assesses the use of fines and fees for misdemeanor crimes in Nevada and Iowa to highlight the perverse incentives embedded in the practice of using courts as revenue centers. The article proposes the concept of “monetary myopia,” or a short-sighted focus on revenue at the expense of other concerns, to explain the states’ behavior.