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“It ain’t a tax if we don’t call it a tax, you see?”

nolimit.jpgVirginia’s General Assembly (that is, their state legislature) has instituted a new system of “hidden fees” to avoid the need for an actual tax hike to cover transportation costs. The law has been coined the “Dangerous Driver Law,” but it really penalizes more than dangerous drivers. For example, if you get busted going 20 miles over the speed limit, in addition to the normal court fees and traffic fines, you’ll be on the hook for an extra grand. One thousand bucks for a speeding ticket! The “hidden fees” also hit “a variety of misdemeanor traffic violations including being a passenger in a hit and run or the failure to give a proper signal” and can be anywhere from $250 to $3,000. So if you’re the passenger in a hit a run accident, you may get the privilege of helping Virginia construct its roads! Lucky you.

Many of the civil fees do address alcohol as was the intent of the “Dangerous Driver Law” when it originated, but the fees also may be accessed for such daily traffic violations as rolling through a stop sign (a fee of $300), or impeding traffic—a charge that’s possible when stopping in front of your mailbox to get the mail. The civil fee alone for a conviction on the latter is $300.

And if you can’t afford to pay the fees? Tough - kiss your license goodbye. And judges don’t even have the leniency to to suspend the fees, as the law rigidly mandates the fees.

The only good news is that these fees only apply to Virginia drivers, since the state can’t tax collect fees from residents of other states. So suck it Virginians - I can race through your state at 88 miles per hours and just get the usual $300+ ticket, without that extra grand!

| Comments (4)


Are you suggesting that a passenger in a hit-and-run accident has no duty to notify authorities afterwards (i.e., that there is somehow a "right to be an accessory after the fact")?

It did not say that the fine was for not reporting a hit-and-run, it said the fine was for being passenger in a hit-and-run. If you report that you were a passenger in the car, you will be admiting a crime.

Whew, at least its only for virginians.

Actually, Michigan has a similar program.