Seven speeders already face extra $200 fine

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They might not know it yet, but seven drivers caught going too fast on Augusta-area roads will soon be receiving a $200 fine in the mail as part of Georgia's new "super speeder" law.

So far, authorities said, they have issued six citations in Richmond County and one in Columbia County that meet the criteria for the new law, which went into effect Jan. 1.

Anyone caught traveling 85 mph on four-lane roads and interstate highways or 75 mph on two-lane roads will face a $200 state fine on top of the local jurisdiction's speeding fine.

In Richmond County, sheriff's Maj. Richard Weaver said deputies handed out tickets for people doing 85 mph on Interstate 20, 87 mph on Bobby Jones Expressway and 80 mph on Deans Bridge Road. They also ticketed two people for doing 75 mph on Washington Road.

One person was also cited on Washington Road by the Georgia State Patrol for going 76 mph.

Columbia County sheriff's Capt. Steve Morris said his office had cited one person for going 102 mph on I-20 on Saturday.

The state Legislature approved the measure last year as a way to help fund the state's struggling trauma centers.

The fines are expected to bring in about $23 million a year, but the money will be funneled through the state's general fund, meaning lawmakers will decide how it is spent.

The death rate in Georgia from traumatic injuries is far greater than the national rate, according to a 2007 legislative committee study. The state's trauma centers are facing a deficit of more than $170 million caused by uncompensated care they provide each year -- largely to uninsured victims.

The law's opponents have labeled it a back-door tax increase on Georgians.

It was blasted by Emanuel County Sheriff Tyson Stephens as a tax targeting the poorest people in the state and has also been criticized by Libertarian talk-radio host Neil Boortz.

Maj. Weaver said that it's too early to gauge the effect of the law locally but that he expects it to have an impact.

"If it was me, and I knew that driving at those kinds of speeds were going to cost me an additional $200 on top of what the fine is, that would make me slow down," he said.

Associated Press reports were used in this article.

Reach Adam Folk at (706) 823-3339 or adam.folk@augustachronicle.com.

Comments (85) Add comment
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coolchic
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coolchic 01/05/10 - 10:27 am
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This new law is expected to

This new law is expected to bring in an additional $23 million that the government is to determine how it will be spent....but it's not a tax increase? The cops are all over the interstate and highways now looking for speeders and yet we have numerous armed robberies and home invasions that are being reported.

InChristLove
22473
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InChristLove 01/05/10 - 10:52 am
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How can they say it's a tax

How can they say it's a tax targeting the poorest people in the state. IF YOU DON'T SPEED IT WON'T COST YOU! What, only poor people drive? It says the fines are expected to bring in about $23 million a year. If people obey the speed limit laws like they are suppose to how can they predict how much money it will bring in. Word gets around that you have to pay $200 more than the original ticket and that's a great incentive to slow down on the highway.

KarmaRules
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KarmaRules 01/05/10 - 10:55 am
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I think Richmond County

I think Richmond County Sherriffs Dept. needs to start with their own I was traveling down hwy 25 sunday afternoon and a officer in his patrol car was whipping in and around other cars using no turn signals. Their were no blue lights or sirens but he was in a hurry. It was around 530 pm so I guess he was in a hurry to get off work. Oh by the way car # 102 was his car number. How many citations was that? Are they immune to citations, because they drive a sqad car?

LEO
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LEO 01/05/10 - 11:25 am
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Here we go again. Just

Here we go again. Just because a patrol doesn't have its lights and siren on doesn't mean it's not going to a call. Now as far as not using turn signals, now that's just stupid. As far as this being a tax on the poor, I'm not sure I understand that. Aren't the rich the ones with the really fast cars? If the increase in the fines targeted people who drive around impeding the flow of traffic or leaving a trail of smoke from their exhaust pipes, then I would understand where that sheriff was coming from.

Ayetidiosi
2
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Ayetidiosi 01/05/10 - 12:01 pm
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The people of GA really

The people of GA really missed out: if they had set this "super speeder" rate at any speeding over 17 in excess of the posted speed, they'd have much much more opportunity to generate income and slow traffic. Think of it, a person could drive 69 mph down your little 25mph street and NOT face "super speeder" charges. Does ANYONE in this stupid state have a working brain cell?

justthefacts
22006
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justthefacts 01/05/10 - 12:25 pm
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Aye, the fine for speeds

Aye, the fine for speeds exceeding 33 mph is $1000 max. I would hope the judge ruling in your example would impose the max.

rbk
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rbk 01/05/10 - 12:36 pm
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Ayetidiosi, you are right,

Ayetidiosi, you are right, this new law only targets speeders on the open road, and the speeders that are a danger to playing children on the city streets are exempt. I hope they aggressively enforce this new law. I am tired of people zooming around me on a two lane highway crossing yellow lines on a curve or hill and putting me in danger when on coming traffic and I have to slow down to allow them time to get back in their lane, all of this when I am observing the posted speed limit. I also get irritated with people in front of me who drive ten or more miles per hour slower than the posted limit and won't pull over periodically to allow traffic behind them to pass. If a limit is posted, drive the limit, don't go faster or slower!

rbk
0
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rbk 01/05/10 - 12:45 pm
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If you are speeding because

If you are speeding because you are going to be late for work, try getting out of bed a little earlier!

raskalero
0
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raskalero 01/05/10 - 12:57 pm
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Ga Super Speeder Law = Taxing

Ga Super Speeder Law = Taxing the Stupid.

johnsdad
1
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johnsdad 01/05/10 - 01:58 pm
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OH, so it's not going to be

OH, so it's not going to be used solely for the trauma units as it was presented to the public before passage!!!! Imagine that, yes a backdoor tax increase!

Ayetidiosi
2
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Ayetidiosi 01/05/10 - 02:32 pm
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Thanks JTF, I was not aware

Thanks JTF, I was not aware of any such law imposed upon 33 and over violations.

justthefacts
22006
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justthefacts 01/05/10 - 03:43 pm
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Aye, nor was I until you

Aye, nor was I until you questioned it. We both learned something.

butler123
1
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butler123 01/05/10 - 04:45 pm
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The one they caught going

The one they caught going 102mph should have gone to jail.

crackerjack
150
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crackerjack 01/05/10 - 05:33 pm
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butler, I think they should

butler, I think they should give them 30 days in the electric chair. lol

DonnieJoe
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DonnieJoe 01/05/10 - 07:32 pm
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unless its changed here in

unless its changed here in Ky. 30 over and you lost your licence for a year plus a hefty fine

helpicantfindthespacebar
1
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helpicantfindthespacebar 01/05/10 - 08:13 pm
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This should be called the

This should be called the 'Moron Tax'. Anyone driving like the offenders listed above is a moron, and deserves to be treated as such. Back door increase/targeting the poor my arse... don't drive like an idiot and you won't have to pay.

corgimom
32615
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corgimom 01/05/10 - 08:57 pm
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You don't have to pay the tax

You don't have to pay the tax if you don't speed. Seems pretty simple to me. And "the speeders that are a danger to playing children on the city streets are exempt"- we knew as kids that if we didn't get out of the street when a car was coming, no matter what the speed of the car was, if my parents found out, it would be BAD. As soon as somebody spotted one, a scream of "CAR!" would go up and we'd all scatter. We never had a problem.

TakeAstand
13
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TakeAstand 01/05/10 - 10:16 pm
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lol corgi, that brings back

lol corgi, that brings back memories. It was funny, CAR and we all scattered like you said. These days its, CAR, lets all see if we can make this guy have to stop and wait before we move, let him go around, if he can , if not we will move when we are ready. sometimes I want to teach them a lesson!! lol

tired of the crap
0
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tired of the crap 01/06/10 - 01:43 am
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take your foot off of the

take your foot off of the pedal you wont half to pay the metal.

albertoli
179
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albertoli 01/06/10 - 03:22 am
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there is so much outrage over

there is so much outrage over our brave soldiers dying to protect us but no outrage over 60,000 U.S. citizens dying in outo wrecks, do not call them accidents. we should be outraged over the loss of life due to ill bred lawbreakers who think speeding is a game they are playing against the police who are protecting us. $200 is nothing. there should be serious jail time for someone going 75 mph on Washington road and a loss of driving privileges.

JoeWillie
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JoeWillie 01/06/10 - 03:44 am
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REPEAL THE SUPER SPEEDER

REPEAL THE SUPER SPEEDER LAW.... The Cops will use it to discriminate against low income and middle class motorists. The Cops aren't going to pull over rich people driving expensive luxury vehicles. Sonny "sonny do" Perdue and the right wing, Neo-Con Republican controlled state Legislature are fisically irresponsible, tax and grab deficit chicken hawks. Sonny Do has entered into a conspiracy with the rich and elite to transfer wealth from the pockets of the working class and the middle class into the pockets of the wealthy. tax the rich.

ICSunshine
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ICSunshine 01/06/10 - 03:49 am
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Yo Willie, "low income and

Yo Willie, "low income and midle class motorists" should be driving at speeds close to what are posted to help save some $'s, not only lives. You have the complete choice on this matter. If you choose to be an idiot, have your wallet ready.

JohnQPublic
5
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JohnQPublic 01/06/10 - 07:18 am
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The power to get a ticket, or

The power to get a ticket, or not, is all in your right foot! Think about it before you step on the gas. That's a lot of wasted clams for a ticket!

CobaltGeorge
159354
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CobaltGeorge 01/06/10 - 09:18 am
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If you are on I-20 going east

If you are on I-20 going east between Harlem and Appling exit to the state line, at 07:30 to 8 AM, count the number of ragged out cars (1997 to 2005) with McDuffie tags that blow you off the road while you are doing 76 miles an hour (average flow of traffic). I have made this run for over 30 years and have yet seen a patrol car checking speeders or one writting a ticket. They appear after 8:00.

Runner46
0
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Runner46 01/06/10 - 09:25 am
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Having watched more than

Having watched more than enough speeders racing through traffic and running the red lights, I am delighted to see this new law enforced. Racing around at high speed in stop and go traffic uses up more gasoline per mile. Now it will cost the speeders even more until they learn to obey the laws.

CobaltGeorge
159354
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CobaltGeorge 01/06/10 - 09:34 am
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JoeWillie on Wed Jan 6, 2010

JoeWillie on Wed Jan 6, 2010 2:44 AM, Your post isn't nothing more than a crock of BULL PELOSI. Most rich people who own nice big cars respect the law.

oldaugustan
0
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oldaugustan 01/06/10 - 09:46 am
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without doing the math think

without doing the math think about how much time you save going across bobby jones (app 10 miles ] at 60mph and90mph plus cost of insurance going up for 3 years plus cost of ticket to save approximatly less than 10 minutes my first post

humbleopinion
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humbleopinion 01/06/10 - 10:35 am
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"joewillie" is just trying to

"joewillie" is just trying to beat Justus4 to the punch. However he said it, he failed miserably though. Don't speed, don't pay the fine. It's simple. Too bad liberals can't understand that concept. It's NOT that liberals are stupid, it's that they KNOW so much that isn't true.

happychimer
17718
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happychimer 01/06/10 - 11:36 am
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humbleopinion speeding has

humbleopinion speeding has nothing to do with liberals. People speed.

ICSunshine
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ICSunshine 01/06/10 - 11:41 am
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plumb, he didn't say they

plumb, he didn't say they were the only speeders. He pointed out liberals are too stupid to understand that if you obey the law you won't get in trouble.

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