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      RS 32:57     

  

NOTE: This provision of law was included in the Unconstitutional Statutes Biennial Report to the Legislature, dated March 14, 2016.

§57. Penalties; alternatives to citation

            A. The first violation of the provisions of this Chapter or any regulation of the department, secretary, and commissioner made pursuant thereto shall be punished by a fine of not more than one hundred seventy-five dollars or by imprisonment for not more than thirty days, or both, unless otherwise specifically provided. A subsequent violation shall be punished by a fine of not more than five hundred dollars or by imprisonment for not more than ninety days, or both.

            B. If the violator is other than an individual, there shall be no imprisonment but a double fine imposed.

            C.(1) Each governing authority on whose behalf citations are issued for alleged violations of the provisions of this Chapter shall establish a procedure by which alleged offenders may promise, in writing, to appear in court to answer the charge or charges. The written promise to appear shall be accepted in lieu of posting bond or depositing a driver's license.

            (2) Each city, parish, and district court for traffic offenses within their respective jurisdictions may also establish a procedure by court rule by which certain traffic offenses, as determined by the court, constitute one-time-appearance violations. Alleged offenders who are charged with a one-time-appearance violation and who have not paid the fine prior to the date and time for appearance as indicated on the citation shall be presumed to plead not guilty. The alleged offender shall then, at the date and time indicated on the citation, appear in court, be arraigned and proceed to trial. If the trial is not held on the date indicated on the citation and no continuance has been granted, then the charges against the alleged offender may be dismissed.

            D. Each governing authority on whose behalf citations are issued for alleged violations of the provisions of this Chapter shall establish a procedure by which alleged offenders may plead guilty or nolo contendere to the alleged offense and pay the fine by mail. However, if the offender fails to pay the fine by mail in advance of adjudication and fails to appear at the time and date indicated on the citation, the court may impose an additional penalty in an amount not to exceed the amount of the fine for the original violation unless the fine was paid by certified mail and the postmark indicates that the payment was mailed on or before the date indicated on the citation. In addition, each governing authority shall establish a procedure allowing for payment of the fine by credit card as it may designate. However, the procedure shall not limit such payments to payment by credit card.

            E. The provisions of Subsections C and D of this Section shall not apply to citations alleging that the operator of the motor vehicle was:

            (1) Operating the motor vehicle under the influence of alcohol or controlled substances.

            (2) Exceeding the speed limit by fifteen miles per hour or more.

            (3) Exceeding the speed limit in a school zone.

            (4) Driving with a suspended license.

            (5) Drag racing.

            (6) Cited for failure to maintain compulsory security.

            F. The provisions of Subsections C and D of this Section shall not apply when the operator was involved in an accident in which a person was injured, nor shall those provisions apply when an operator is alleged to have committed the same offense twice within a period of one hour.

            G.(1) Notwithstanding any provision of law to the contrary, any person who is found guilty, pleads guilty, or pleads nolo contendere to any motor vehicle offense when the citation was issued for a violation on the Huey P. Long Bridge or the Lake Pontchartrain Causeway Bridge or approaches to and from such bridges by police employed by the Greater New Orleans Expressway Commission shall pay an additional cost of five dollars.

            (2) All proceeds generated by this additional cost shall be deposited into the state treasury.

            H. If a person operating a motor vehicle exceeds the speed limit on the portion of a highway which is under active construction and construction workers are on site, or which is in the process of being repaired and construction workers are on site, the fine shall be twice the standard fine imposed.

            Acts 1962, No. 310, §1. Amended by Acts 1977, No. 113, §1, eff. June 22, 1977; Acts 1983, No. 583, §1; Acts 1995, No. 1036, §1; Acts 1997, No. 775, §1; Acts 1997, No. 1011, §2; Acts 1997, No. 1145, §1; Acts 2003, No. 1032, §1; Acts 2008, No. 168, §1; Acts 2012, No. 834, §5, eff. July 1, 2012.



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