Assemblyman Simcha Eichenstein has joined as a co-sponsor of a bill to prevent the Department of Motor Vehicles from suspending a person’s driver’s license for unpaid fines.
The bill, sponsored by Assemblywoman Pamela Hunter, seeks to amend the vehicle and traffic law so that drivers who owe unpaid fines will not face arbitrary license suspension.
“License suspension has significant adverse consequences,” said Assemblyman Simcha Eichenstein. “Without a driver’s license a person cannot drive to work or to school or even to court to pay their fine. It’s an unfair and unjust practice that’s been going on for too long and I’m proud to be co-sponsoring Assemblywoman Hunter’s legislation.”
The proposed legislation would end traffic debt suspensions and make affordable payment plans available to help pay fees that are owed. As a result, prosecution and arrests would be reduced considerably, and would enable law enforcement and the courts to focus on drivers who pose an actual danger on the roads and on more serious crimes.
In the past 28 months, New York issued nearly 1.7 million driver’s license suspensions for not paying traffic tickets, which is nearly two thirds of all license suspensions in New York.
Currently, those who continue to drive with suspended licenses, even unknowingly, risk criminal charges and more unaffordable fines and fees. Assemblyman Eichenstein pointed out that this is totally unnecessary and unproductive.
“Let’s keep our safe and responsible drivers on the roads instead of being embroiled in needless and wasteful court appearances,” said Assemblyman Eichenstein. “This new legislation would represent a victory for all New York drivers.”