John's Florida Real Estate Blog

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Increased Traffic Patrol Activity in Zephyrhills and Pasco County, Florida

A few weeks ago I got ticketed for not having changed the address on my Florida drivers license within 10 days as the law demands. Oh well, guilty as charged and the State Trooper was very nice.

However, lately I have noticed that when I go to work (about a 10 minute drive) without fail I pass at least 3 police vehicles! Some are state troopers, some are county deputies, and others are officers from the City of Zephyrhills, Florida. They are either sitting along the road looking for speeders or other traffic law violators, or they already have someone stopped along the road waiting to receive a citation.

This presence appears, to me at least, to be much greater than in years past. Now, keep in mind that last year there was a big push to cut county and city property taxes. Add to this the fact that the assessed values of homes have fallen, as reflected on our tax bills. This has resulted in a loss of revenue for our local governments. So it may be that the officers no longer have the flexibility to let us off with a warning since the fines they collect could go to help keep them or their colleagues in their jobs. Something to consider. Also keep in mind that the state has increased the fine amounts. I was fined $111 just because I had not changed my address! That's a lot to me.

That said, if we are breaking the laws we cannot complain if we get caught and are fined. Ok, we can complain, but it will do no good. If we speed and a law enforcement officer gets us, we have to pay the price. It is just that nowadays, they have less leeway to give us a break. If they do, it could mean that someone in their unit could lose a job. In the end, they are just doing the job that we are paying them to do and are trying to keep our highways safer.

So, while you are out and about in Zephyrhills and Pasco County, Florida keep an eye on that speedometer. Especially in school zones or where there is a transition from one speed limit to another one. That does not mean to creep along. Sometimes that can be as bad as going too fast. However, be aware of the speed limits on the road where you are and stay within them. Otherwise you might just get a nasty surprise! Ouch!!

One more thing to keep in mind is that our winter residents are arriving and that means a lot more traffic, and hence, a lot more accidents. So be alert out there and have a safe ticket-free and accident-free winter!

I cannot help you with traffic tickets (wish I could), but if you need assistance with buying and/or selling a home, you can contact me at: 813-783-4444 or e-mail me at: jelwell1@tampabay.rr.com  You can also visit my webpage at: www.jelwell.century21bnr.com anytime!

John Elwell - REALTOR

CENTURY 21

Bill Nye Realty, Inc.

813-783-4444

Licensed in Florida

 

Comment balloon 5 commentsJohn Elwell • December 04 2009 07:18PM

Comments

John,

There is a scary thought though. When we put the job of Police officers in direct realtion to the money collected, it is a very dangerous thing. Extremely dangerous

Posted by Jon Zolsky, Daytona Beach, FL, Buy Daytona condos for heavenly good prices (Daytona Condo Realty, 386-405-4408) almost 10 years ago

I guess as long as they are correct about our violations I am not too worried, but when the state decided to cut the property taxes something had to give. I know that now when I go to the county zoning offices to get information or assistance, there are several persons who are no longer there to help me. They were let go due to budget cuts. Yet the property taxes of many here have fallen to just a couple of hundred dollars a year. To live in a county and use its facilities for such a small sum is not reasonable either. Luckily, we are a small town here so it is unlikely that our officers will do anything out of line.

One can only imagine what is happening up north of here along US 301, forget the name of the town. But AAA called it the speed trap capital of the US. I always crawl when I go through there. Supposedly they funded much of their town's budget based on the fines they got from tourists passing through.

Posted by John Elwell, You Deserve a Full-Time Agent, Not Reduced Results (CENTURY 21 Bill Nye Realty, Inc.) almost 10 years ago

John,

I understand what you say. I simply know that when the law or law enforcement becomes fiscal, it erodes the law... and law enforcement.

Posted by Jon Zolsky, Daytona Beach, FL, Buy Daytona condos for heavenly good prices (Daytona Condo Realty, 386-405-4408) almost 10 years ago

I am definitely seeing a huge increase with police presence along the major corridors here in Northwest Indiana. I don't believe that it is merely coincidence that state, county and local police are issuing more citations and tickets during this time of when the majority of municipalities have a shortfall of revenue.

Posted by James K Barath, CMPS, FICO Pro, Certified Military Housing Specialist (Canopy Mortgage, LLC) almost 10 years ago

I agree Jon. We should pay them a fair salary, so that in no way does money come into the mix when handing out fines. Though, I guess we should be happy that often they do let us off and should not cry too much when they now cannot do it. We just need to make sure we obey the traffic laws.

In the end, tax breaks are good if there is a lot of fat and the breaks cut the fat. Unfortunately, the fat usually stays and the breaks take money from the bone and flesh of our services. Wouldn't it be nice if Congress and the Senate said that during this economic crisis they would work for half pay? That would still be a lot more than you and I make. Not to mention the health benefits.

One of my colleagues whose son does work in law enforcement did say clearly that his department was told to get tough and bring in the fines when they were warranted. So you are likely right too James.

Posted by John Elwell, You Deserve a Full-Time Agent, Not Reduced Results (CENTURY 21 Bill Nye Realty, Inc.) almost 10 years ago

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