SUPER SPEEDER / by kevin murray

While I suppose that each state has its own idiosyncratic traffic laws that are meant to confuse, irritate, and essentially tax uninformed or ill-informed drivers, I must say one of the most annoying is Georgia's 'super speeder' law which was enacted on January 10, 2010.  Upon hearing of the name, one would assume that this referred to someone hitting triple digits on the highway.  Right?  Wrong.  No, the GA super speeder is defined as going 85 MPH or more on a freeway, or 75 MPH or more on a 2-lane highway.  That's it.

To get a proper impression of how unjust this law is, the maximum speed permitted on some GA freeways (typically away from the city center) is 70 MPH.  So 85 MPH is a mere 15 miles above that limit.  According to GA law driving 15 MPH above the speed limit is a 2 point penalty.  But driving 19 MPH above the speed limit is 3 points, 24 MPH above the speed limit is 4 points, and 34 MPH or above the speed limit is 6 points.  So why wouldn't a super speeder ticket be 34MPH above the posted speed limit since this has the highest point penalty and would more properly be related to the term 'super'?  Why indeed.

The answer is straightforward and simple.  GA wants the additional revenue.  Their attitude is as plain as, "well, we've gone through the trouble of pulling the vehicle over, let's see if we can stick them with asuper premium fine!"  How much is the fine?  $200.  For going 85 MPH in a 70 MPH speed limit zone?  Yep.   And that's in addition to the regular speeding ticket fine.  Yes, this is an extra penalty accessed to the driver. 

Additionally, now check this out, there is no additional points charged against the driver for being a 'super speeder'!    Doesn't that really say, it's all a sham?  I mean, shouldn't there be a category on the points chart for being a 'super speeder'?  For a $200 compulsory fine there really should but, but there isn't.  This smells like a sneaky add-on and a sick workaround to stick it to the driver. 

So what is this really all about?  It's about the money.  It sure the heck isn't about anything else.  Why bother putting to the vote the potential raising of city, county, or state taxes when you can just nab ignorant drivers that are simply trying to get from point A to point B in an expeditious manner.

And the fines are arbitrary, are they not?  Speeding ticket fines vary widely from state to state and the fines can increase dramatically for almost any reason.  Does that make sense?   For instance, if a speeding ticket was $100 ten years ago, shouldn't it be $100 today or perhaps $100 + inflation.  Wouldn't that be fairer?  It certainly seems fairer, but the dramatic increase price of traffic ticket fines and the angles that the government uses are just getting worst and worst. 

Quite simply, it's a money grab, soak the little man, shake him down.