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Guest Opinion

The speed-trapped in Tinicum keep Pa. coffers full


We have many residential areas on River Road where we slow down to 25 or 30 mph. This makes sense because of the multiple driveways, pedestrians, and cyclists. There is also a long, lightly inhabited section of River Road in Tinicum Township where the speed limit has been set at 25 mph.

Accustomed to the 40 or 45 mph limits of similar stretches in Solebury, I was caught speeding at 30 mph last Friday and given a citation. The police officer was stationed in a pull-over driveway tailored for observation. When explaining the offense, he suggested that it is too narrow a road to allow the 40 or 45 mph speeds.

I looked at the citation when I got home. The fine was $35, but the total due was $181.76. The itemized list of extractions included: $20 for E.M.S., a $45 surcharge, $48.50 in costs and $33.25 for J.C.P/A.T.J.

I called Tinicum Township and they said I had to speak to my Pa. representative to get an explanation. I called the office of Pa. Rep. Tim Brennan but got no response.

With no other recourse, I used Google. There I found a colorful pie chart that explained everything.

J.C.P./A.T.J. is Judicial Computer Program/ Access to Justice Account, imposed by Act 122 of 2002 to pay for the statewide integrated case management systems and provide legal representation to the poor in civil cases.

Emergency Medical Service (EMS) fees support equipment and training in rural areas throughout Pennsylvania.

Surcharges are deposited into the state General Fund, Public Transportation Trust Fund, and/or towing agents in Philadelphia and Pittsburgh.

And the court costs are used to support county courts and the State Judicial Computer System Augmentation Account.

So, as I approach retirement and the thought of noPa. state taxation of retirement income, I may just have to buy a nice sports car and speed along River Road to help keep the Pa. coffers full.

Curt Biehn lives in the village of Lumberville in Solebury.

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