Fine For Failure To Wear Seat-belt Could Increase

Wisconsin motorists could finally start feeling a tug in their wallets if they don't buckle up. The Legislature's Joint Finance Committee is scheduled to vote today on Governor Scott Walker's budget proposal to increase the fine for not wearing seat-belts. It's among the first of many votes to be taken over the next two months on the Republican Walker's massive two-year budget package. The seat belt fine has been a flat 10-dollars ever since Wisconsin started requiring seat-belt usage in the late 1980's. Walker wants to raise that to 56-dollars and 50-cents, which includes the normal surcharges for traffic fines that have not applied to seat-belt tickets. Three years ago, Gannett Wisconsin Media found that other states had raised their seat-belt fines to well above 100-dollars in some cases. A federal study from a few years ago showed that raising the seat-belt fine to 100-dollars increases the numbers of motorists buckling up by about seven-percent. Also today, lawmakers on the finance panel will vote on Walker's budget proposals to eliminate the independence of the State Judicial Commission, which investigates ethics violations by judges.

Read more: WACD

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