S05348 Summary:

BILL NOS05348
 
SAME ASSAME AS A07463
 
SPONSORKENNEDY
 
COSPNSRCARLUCCI, GIANARIS, KRUEGER, MONTGOMERY, PARKER, RAMOS, SEPULVEDA
 
MLTSPNSR
 
Rpld 510 sub 4-a, 1809 sub 5-a, amd V & T L, generally
 
Limits the grounds for the suspension of a driver's license and removes existing suspensions based upon such grounds; provides for additional notification when a person is required to make an appearance; requires income based payment plans to be available for fines, fees and mandatory surcharges incurred as a result of a violation of the vehicle and traffic law and makes conforming changes.
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S05348 Actions:

BILL NOS05348
 
04/26/2019REFERRED TO TRANSPORTATION
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S05348 Committee Votes:

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S05348 Floor Votes:

There are no votes for this bill in this legislative session.
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S05348 Text:



 
                STATE OF NEW YORK
        ________________________________________________________________________
 
                                          5348
 
                               2019-2020 Regular Sessions
 
                    IN SENATE
 
                                     April 26, 2019
                                       ___________
 
        Introduced  by  Sen. KENNEDY -- read twice and ordered printed, and when
          printed to be committed to the Committee on Transportation
 
        AN ACT to amend the vehicle and traffic law, in relation to the  suspen-
          sion  of  a  license  to  drive  a motor vehicle or motorcycle; and to
          repeal certain provisions of such law related thereto

          The People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and  Assem-
        bly, do enact as follows:
 
     1    Section  1.  Subdivision  3  of section 226 of the vehicle and traffic
     2  law, as amended by chapter 607 of the laws of  1993,  paragraph  (a)  as
     3  amended  by  section  6  of part J of chapter 62 of the laws of 2003 and
     4  paragraph (b) as amended by section 2 of part K of  chapter  59  of  the
     5  laws of 2010, is amended to read as follows:
     6    3.  Failure  to  answer or appear; entry of order.  [(a) If the person
     7  charged with the violation shall fail to answer the summons as  provided
     8  herein,  the  commissioner  may suspend such person's license or driving
     9  privilege or, if the  charge  involves  a  violation  of  section  three
    10  hundred  eighty-five,  section  four hundred one or section five hundred
    11  eleven-a of this chapter by a registrant who was not the operator of the
    12  vehicle, the registration of such vehicle or the privilege of  operation
    13  of  any  motor  vehicle owned by such registrant may be suspended, until
    14  such person shall answer as provided in subdivision two of this section.
    15  If a person shall fail to appear at a hearing, when such is provided for
    16  pursuant to this section, such  person's  license,  or  registration  or
    17  privilege of operating or of operation, as appropriate, may be suspended
    18  pending  appearance  at  a subsequent hearing, or the disposition of the
    19  charges involved. Any  suspension  permitted  by  this  subdivision,  if
    20  already  in  effect,  may  be terminated or if not yet in effect, may be
    21  withdrawn or withheld, prior to the disposition of the charges  involved
    22  if  such  person  shall  appear and post security in the amount of forty
    23  dollars to guarantee his or her appearance at any required hearing.  The
    24  security  posted  pursuant  to  this  subdivision shall be returned upon

         EXPLANATION--Matter in italics (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                              [ ] is old law to be omitted.
                                                                   LBD11167-01-9

        S. 5348                             2

     1  appearance at the  scheduled  hearing  or  an  adjourned  hearing  which
     2  results  in  a  final  disposition of the charge, and otherwise shall be
     3  forfeited. If a suspension has been imposed pursuant to this subdivision
     4  and  the case is subsequently transferred pursuant to subdivision two of
     5  section two hundred twenty-five of this article, such  suspension  shall
     6  remain  in  effect  until the person answers the charges in the court to
     7  which the case was transferred. Any suspension issued pursuant  to  this
     8  paragraph  shall  be  subject  to  the  provisions of paragraph (j-1) of
     9  subdivision two of section five hundred three of this chapter.
    10    (b)] Failure to answer or appear in accordance with  the  requirements
    11  of  this  section  and  any  regulations  promulgated hereunder shall be
    12  deemed an admission to the violation  as  charged,  and  an  appropriate
    13  order  may be entered in the department's records, and a fine consistent
    14  with the provisions of this chapter and regulations of the  commissioner
    15  may  be  imposed by the commissioner or person designated by the commis-
    16  sioner.   Prior to entry of an order  and  imposition  of  a  fine,  the
    17  commissioner  shall  notify  such  person by mail at the address of such
    18  person on file with the department or at the current address provided by
    19  the United States postal service in accordance with section two  hundred
    20  fourteen  of  this  chapter:  (i)  of the violation charged; (ii) of the
    21  impending entry of such order and fine; (iii) that such order  and  fine
    22  may  be filed as a judgment with the county clerk of the county in which
    23  the operator or registrant is located; and (iv) that entry of such order
    24  and imposition of such fine may be avoided by entering a plea or  making
    25  an  appearance  within  thirty days of the sending of such notice. In no
    26  case shall such an order and fine be entered and imposed more  than  two
    27  years  after the date of the alleged violation. Upon application in such
    28  manner and form as the commissioner shall prescribe an  order  and  fine
    29  shall be vacated upon the ground of excusable default.
    30    §  2.  The  vehicle and traffic law is amended by adding a new section
    31  226-a to read as follows:
    32    § 226-a. Return date notifications. The commissioner shall notify  any
    33  person  who  receives  a  summons  or  appearance ticket for a violation
    34  described in subdivision one of section two hundred twenty-five of  this
    35  chapter  of  the  time  and place of the return date for such summons no
    36  later than one week prior to the return date. The commissioner shall (a)
    37  send the notification by first class mail at the address of such  person
    38  on  file  with  the department or at the current address provided by the
    39  United States Postal Service in  accordance  with  section  two  hundred
    40  fourteen  of this chapter; and (b) in collaboration with state and local
    41  law enforcement agencies, make best efforts  to  provide  an  additional
    42  notification  by  text  message, electronic mail or phone call using the
    43  best available phone number or electronic mail address for the  intended
    44  person.
    45    §  3.  The  vehicle and traffic law is amended by adding a new section
    46  229 to read as follows:
    47    § 229. Reasonable payment plans. 1. The court or hearing officer shall
    48  offer the opportunity for a reasonable payment plan at no charge to  the
    49  person.   A reasonable payment plan shall comprehend all fines, fees and
    50  mandatory surcharges and shall consist of monthly payments that  do  not
    51  exceed two percent of the person's monthly net income or ten dollars per
    52  month,  whichever  is  greater.  Monthly net income means total monetary
    53  payments from any source, minus deductions required  by  law,  including
    54  but  not  limited  to  administrative  or court-ordered garnishments and
    55  support payments. The court or  traffic  violations  agency  may  accept
    56  payments  higher  than  the set amount, but may not undertake additional

        S. 5348                             3
 
     1  collection activity so long as the person meets his or  her  obligations
     2  under  the payment plan. The court or hearing officer may require people
     3  with payment plans to appear periodically, but no more often than  annu-
     4  ally,  to assess their financial circumstances and may set a new payment
     5  amount if the person's financial circumstances have  changed.  A  person
     6  who enters into a payment plan and experiences a reduction in income may
     7  petition the court or hearing officer at any time to seek a reduction in
     8  the monthly payment.
     9    2.  The  court  or  hearing  officer  shall have the discretion in the
    10  interests of justice to reduce or waive the amount of any fine,  fee  or
    11  mandatory surcharge assessed for a violation of any of the provisions of
    12  this chapter.
    13    3.  A  person  assessed  a  fine, fee and/or mandatory surcharge for a
    14  violation of any of the provisions of this chapter shall be notified  of
    15  their right to a reasonable payment plan (a) at the time the citation or
    16  ticket is issued; (b) at the time of sentencing; and (c) in any communi-
    17  cation concerning imposition or collection of the fine, fee or mandatory
    18  surcharge.  Information about the availability of payment plans shall be
    19  prominently posted at each court and traffic violations agency,  on  its
    20  website, if any, and on the commissioner's website.
    21    §  4.  Paragraph  a of subdivision 4 of section 227 of the vehicle and
    22  traffic law, as amended by section 7 of part J of chapter 62 of the laws
    23  of 2003, is amended to read as follows:
    24    a. An order entered upon the failure to answer or appear or after  the
    25  receipt  of  an  answer admitting the charge or where a determination is
    26  made that the charge has been established shall be civil in nature,  but
    27  shall  be  treated as a conviction for the purposes of this chapter. The
    28  commissioner or his designee may include in such order an imposition  of
    29  any penalty authorized by any provision of this chapter for a conviction
    30  of such violation, except that no penalty therefore shall include impri-
    31  sonment,  nor,  if  monetary,  exceed the amount of the fine which could
    32  have been imposed had the charge been heard by a  court.  [The  driver's
    33  license or privileges, or, if the charge involves a violation of section
    34  three hundred eighty-five or section four hundred one of this chapter by
    35  a  registrant  who was not the operator of the vehicle, the registration
    36  of such vehicle or privilege of operation of any motor vehicle owned  by
    37  such  registrant  may be suspended pending the payment of any penalty so
    38  imposed. Any suspension issued  pursuant  to  this  paragraph  shall  be
    39  subject  to  the  provisions  of  paragraph  (j-1) of subdivision two of
    40  section five hundred three of this chapter.]
    41    § 5. Paragraph (j-1) of subdivision 2 of section 503  of  the  vehicle
    42  and  traffic  law,  as added by section 8 of part J of chapter 62 of the
    43  laws of 2003, subparagraph (i) as amended by section 3  of  part  PP  of
    44  chapter 59 of the laws of 2009 and subparagraph (iv) as added by section
    45  4  of  part  PP of chapter 59 of the laws of 2009, is amended to read as
    46  follows:
    47    (j-1) (i) [When a license issued pursuant to this article, or a privi-
    48  lege of operating a motor vehicle or of obtaining such  a  license,  has
    49  been  suspended based upon a failure to answer an appearance ticket or a
    50  summons or failure to pay a fine, penalty or mandatory surcharge, pursu-
    51  ant to subdivision three of section two hundred twenty-six,  subdivision
    52  four  of section two hundred twenty-seven, subdivision four-a of section
    53  five hundred ten or subdivision five-a of section eighteen hundred  nine
    54  of  this  chapter, such suspension shall remain in effect until a termi-
    55  nation of a suspension fee of seventy dollars is paid to  the  court  or
    56  tribunal  that initiated the suspension of such license or privilege. In

        S. 5348                             4

     1  no event may the aggregate of the fees imposed by  an  individual  court
     2  pursuant  to  this paragraph for the termination of all suspensions that
     3  may be terminated as a result of  a  person's  answers,  appearances  or
     4  payments  made in such cases pending before such individual court exceed
     5  four hundred dollars. For the purposes of this  paragraph,  the  various
     6  locations of the administrative tribunal established under article two-A
     7  of this chapter shall be considered an individual court.
     8    (ii)]  Any such fee collected by any court, judge, magistrate or other
     9  officer specified in subdivision one of section thirty-nine of the judi-
    10  ciary law, establishing a unified court budget, shall  be  paid  to  the
    11  state  commissioner  of taxation and finance on a monthly basis no later
    12  than ten days after  the  last  day  of  each  month.  All  such  monies
    13  collected  under  this  subdivision  shall  be deposited to the indigent
    14  legal services fund established by section ninety-eight-b of  the  state
    15  finance law.
    16    [(iii)]  (ii) Any such fee collected by any other court, judge, magis-
    17  trate or other officer shall, except as provided  in  paragraph  (k)  of
    18  this  subdivision, be paid to the state comptroller within the first ten
    19  days of the month following collection. Every such payment to the  comp-
    20  troller  shall  be accompanied by a statement in such form and detail as
    21  the comptroller shall provide. All  such  monies  collected  under  this
    22  subdivision  shall  be  deposited  to  the  indigent legal services fund
    23  established by section ninety-eight-b of the state finance law.
    24    [(iv)] (iii) Notwithstanding any other provision  of  this  paragraph,
    25  fifty  percent of all fees collected pursuant to this paragraph shall be
    26  deposited to the credit of the general fund.
    27    § 6. Subdivision 4-a of section 510 of the vehicle and traffic law  is
    28  REPEALED.
    29    §  7. Paragraph (a) of subdivision 2 of section 511 of the vehicle and
    30  traffic law, as amended by chapter 607 of the laws of 1993 and  subpara-
    31  graph  (ii) as amended by chapter 196 of the laws of 1996, is amended to
    32  read as follows:
    33    (a) A person is guilty of the offense of aggravated unlicensed  opera-
    34  tion  of  a  motor vehicle in the second degree when such person commits
    35  the offense of aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle in the
    36  third degree as defined in subdivision one of this section; and
    37    (i) has previously been convicted of an offense that  consists  of  or
    38  includes  the elements comprising the offense committed within the imme-
    39  diately preceding eighteen months; or
    40    (ii) the suspension or revocation is based upon a refusal to submit to
    41  a chemical test pursuant to section eleven hundred ninety-four  of  this
    42  chapter, a finding of driving after having consumed alcohol in violation
    43  of  section  eleven  hundred  ninety-two-a  of  this  chapter  or upon a
    44  conviction for a violation of any of the provisions  of  section  eleven
    45  hundred ninety-two of this chapter; or
    46    (iii) the suspension was a mandatory suspension pending prosecution of
    47  a  charge  of  a  violation of section eleven hundred ninety-two of this
    48  chapter ordered pursuant to paragraph (e) of subdivision two of  section
    49  eleven  hundred  ninety-three of this chapter or other similar statute[;
    50  or
    51    (iv) such person has in effect three or more suspensions,  imposed  on
    52  at  least  three  separate dates, for failure to answer, appear or pay a
    53  fine, pursuant to subdivision three of section two hundred twenty-six or
    54  subdivision four-a of section five hundred ten of this chapter].
    55    § 8. Paragraph (a) of subdivision 3 of section 511 of the vehicle  and
    56  traffic  law, as amended by chapter 732 of the laws of 2006 and subpara-

        S. 5348                             5
 
     1  graph (iii) as amended and subparagraph (iv) as added by chapter 169  of
     2  the laws of 2013, is amended to read as follows:
     3    (a)  A person is guilty of the offense of aggravated unlicensed opera-
     4  tion of a motor vehicle in  the  first  degree  when  such  person:  (i)
     5  commits  the offense of aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehi-
     6  cle in the second degree as provided in subparagraph (ii), (iii) or (iv)
     7  of paragraph (a) of subdivision two of this section and is  operating  a
     8  motor  vehicle  while  under  the  influence  of  alcohol  or  a drug in
     9  violation of subdivision one, two, two-a, three, four, four-a or five of
    10  section eleven hundred ninety-two of this chapter; or
    11    (ii) [commits the offense of  aggravated  unlicensed  operation  of  a
    12  motor  vehicle in the third degree as defined in subdivision one of this
    13  section; and is operating a motor  vehicle  while  such  person  has  in
    14  effect  ten  or more suspensions, imposed on at least ten separate dates
    15  for failure to answer, appear or pay a  fine,  pursuant  to  subdivision
    16  three  of  section two hundred twenty-six of this chapter or subdivision
    17  four-a of section five hundred ten of this article; or
    18    (iii)] commits the offense of aggravated  unlicensed  operation  of  a
    19  motor  vehicle in the third degree as defined in subdivision one of this
    20  section; and is operating a motor vehicle while under permanent  revoca-
    21  tion as set forth in subparagraph twelve of paragraph (b) of subdivision
    22  two of section eleven hundred ninety-three of this chapter; or
    23    [(iv)]  (iii)  operates  a  motor  vehicle upon a public highway while
    24  holding a conditional license issued pursuant to paragraph (a) of subdi-
    25  vision seven of section eleven hundred ninety-six of this chapter  while
    26  under  the  influence  of  alcohol or a drug in violation of subdivision
    27  one, two, two-a, three, four, four-a or five of section  eleven  hundred
    28  ninety-two of this chapter.
    29    §  9.  Subdivision 3 of section 514 of the vehicle and traffic law, as
    30  amended by section 11 of part J of chapter 62 of the laws  of  2003  and
    31  paragraph  (b) as amended by chapter 157 of the laws of 2017, is amended
    32  to read as follows:
    33    3. (a) Upon the failure of a person to appear or answer, within  sixty
    34  days of the return date or any subsequent adjourned date, or the failure
    35  to  pay a fine imposed by a court, pursuant to a summons charging him or
    36  her with a violation of any of the provisions of  this  chapter  (except
    37  one for parking, stopping or standing), section five hundred two or five
    38  hundred twelve of the tax law, section fourteen-f, two hundred eleven or
    39  two  hundred  twelve of the transportation law or of any law, ordinance,
    40  rule or regulation made  by  a  local  authority,  relating  to  traffic
    41  (except for parking, stopping or standing), the trial court or the clerk
    42  thereof  shall within ten days certify that fact to the commissioner, in
    43  the manner and form prescribed by the commissioner, who shall record the
    44  same in his or her office. Thereafter and upon  the  appearance  of  any
    45  such  person  in  response to such summons or the receipt of the fine by
    46  the court, the trial court or the clerk thereof shall forthwith  certify
    47  that  fact to the commissioner, in the manner and form prescribed by the
    48  commissioner[; provided, however, no such certification  shall  be  made
    49  unless  the  court  has  collected  the  termination  of  suspension fee
    50  required to be paid pursuant to paragraph (j-1) of  subdivision  two  of
    51  section five hundred three of this chapter].
    52    (b)  Upon  the  failure  of a person to appear or answer, within sixty
    53  days of the return date or any subsequent adjourned date, or the failure
    54  to pay a fine imposed by a traffic and parking violations  agency  or  a
    55  traffic violations agency pursuant to a summons charging him or her with
    56  a violation of:

        S. 5348                             6
 
     1    (1)  any  of  the  provisions  of this chapter except one for parking,
     2  stopping or standing and except those violations described in paragraphs
     3  (a), (b), (d), (e) and (f) of subdivision two  and  in  paragraphs  (a),
     4  (b),  (d),  (e), (f) and (g) of subdivision two-a and in paragraphs (a),
     5  (b), (d), (e), (f) and (g) of subdivision two-b of section three hundred
     6  seventy-one of the general municipal law;
     7    (2)  section  five  hundred two or subdivision (a) of section eighteen
     8  hundred fifteen of the tax law;
     9    (3) section fourteen-f (except paragraph (b) of  subdivision  four  of
    10  section  fourteen-f),  two  hundred  eleven or two hundred twelve of the
    11  transportation law; or
    12    (4) any lawful ordinance or regulation  made  by  a  local  or  public
    13  authority  relating  to  traffic  (except  one  for parking, stopping or
    14  standing);
    15  the clerk thereof shall within ten days certify that fact to the commis-
    16  sioner, in the manner and form prescribed by the commissioner, who shall
    17  record the same in his or her office. Thereafter and upon the appearance
    18  of any such person in response to such summons or  the  receipt  of  the
    19  fine by the agency, the traffic and parking violations agency, the traf-
    20  fic  violations agency or the clerk thereof shall forthwith certify that
    21  fact to the commissioner, in the  manner  and  form  prescribed  by  the
    22  commissioner[;  provided,  however,  no such certification shall be made
    23  unless  the  traffic  and  parking  violations  agency  or  the  traffic
    24  violations  agency  has  collected  the  termination  of  suspension fee
    25  required to be paid pursuant to paragraph (j-1) of  subdivision  two  of
    26  section five hundred three of this chapter].
    27    §  10.  The vehicle and traffic law is amended by adding a new section
    28  519 to read as follows:
    29    § 519. Termination of suspensions for failure to answer or failure  to
    30  pay.  Within  three  months  of  the effective date of this section, the
    31  commissioner shall terminate all suspensions of licenses, privileges  to
    32  operate a motor vehicle and registrations based upon a failure to answer
    33  an  appearance  ticket  or  summons or failure to pay a fine, penalty or
    34  mandatory surcharge pursuant to subdivision three of section two hundred
    35  twenty-six, subdivision four of section  two  hundred  twenty-seven,  or
    36  subdivision  four-a of section five hundred ten of this chapter, then in
    37  effect. The commissioner shall waive all fees and  penalties  associated
    38  with the termination of a suspension, including but not limited to those
    39  described  in  subparagraph (i) of paragraph (j-1) of subdivision two of
    40  section five hundred three, subdivision three of  section  five  hundred
    41  fourteen  and  paragraph  a  of  subdivision four of section two hundred
    42  twenty-seven of this chapter, as in existence  prior  to  the  effective
    43  date of this section.
    44    §  11.  Subdivision 5-a of section 1809 of the vehicle and traffic law
    45  is REPEALED.
    46    § 12. This act shall take effect on the ninetieth day after  it  shall
    47  have become a law.
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