Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Outrage over "civil remedial fees" - too little too late?

With only days left before new Va. Code Ann. § 46.2-206.1 (you have to scroll down to read the text of this section) takes effect, we are finally paying attention. The stated purpose in the new statute is "to generate revenue from drivers whose proven dangerous driving behavior places significant financial burdens upon the Commonwealth" (somebody will have to explain that one to me). The Virginia Supreme Court has published an explanation of the so-called "civil remedial fees." The court has no discretion over assessing the fees. The fees are only assessable against Virginia residents. The Washington Post has an article detailing the chilly reception received by Governor Kaine at his regular WTOP call-in show. The Fredericksburg Free-Lance Star called for voters to demand "the repeal of a schedule of afflictions that reflects the spirit of the Sheriff of Nottingham a lot more than that of any of our Founders." Is it too late to do that, or will a combination of apathy and inertia prove too daunting?