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Suffolk County Drivers Voice Frustration With Ticket Fees At Hearing

Legislator Calarco Has Admitted The County Made A Mistake

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – A hearing was held Wednesday regarding a Suffolk County law that charges drivers a fee even if their ticket has been dismissed.

As CBS 2’s Jennifer McLogan reported, Suffolk drivers are furious at the Traffic and Parking Violations Bureau that although their tickets were dismissed, their fines were not.

Under state law, motorists who are ticketed for broken tail lights, lack of insurance and other minor infractions are given 24 hours to have the infraction taken care of and tickets can be expunged, McLogan reported.

However, regardless of the outcome of the tickets, Suffolk County adds an administrative fee of $30 or $50 on nearly all of the tickets it processes, McLogan said.

Suffolk County Legislator Rob Calarco (D-Patchogue) has admitted the county made a mistake, McLogan reported.

“I would say this is us recognizing that we had an administrative error in the way we implemented the law,” Calarco said.

Calarco is now sponsoring a new law to scrap the controversial charge.

Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone said the county is considering refunds.

“We are looking at the mechanism of how to do that. The bottom line is we want to make sure people are being treated fairly,” Bellone said.

The vote to overturn the law will be held on Dec. 17 and if passed would go into effect Jan. 1.

Suffolk County officials said the $30 administrative fee on red-light camera tickets will not be impacted by the bill.

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