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9/9/2005
Schwarzenegger Vetoes Double Fines Bill
California governor opposes piecemeal approach to highway safety, vetoes doubled speeding fine legislation.

Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger
California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger (R) vetoed a bill on Tuesday that would have doubled speeding fines on a portion of the Pacific Coast Highway that runs through San Francisco. The bill, AB 452, passed the Assembly by a 55-21 vote in May and the Senate with a 24-13 vote in August.

"This bill would perpetuate the piecemeal process of using a legislative measure to establish each separate double fine zone," Schwarzenegger said in his veto message. He also questioned the benefit of raising fines on motorists without attempting alternatives such as engineering improvements. He cited a 2002 Caltrans study which concluded that, "Safety-Enhancement Double Fine Zones, by themselves, do not have any statistically significant effect on traffic safety."

Article Excerpt:
Governor's Veto Message for AB 452
To the members of the California State Assembly:
I am returning Assembly Bill 452 (Yee) without my signature.

In December 2002, the Department of Transportation (Caltrans) submitted to the Legislature a report showing that Safety-Enhancement Double Fine Zones, by themselves, do not have any statistically significant effect on traffic safety. Caltrans suggested that if any future double fine zones are to be effective, they must be established concurrently with enhanced enforcement, public awareness campaigns, and other traffic safety measures. Unfortunately, this bill merely establishes a stretch of 19th Avenue in downtown San Francisco as a double fine zone without any additional measures.

Furthermore, this bill would perpetuate the piecemeal process of using a legislative measure to establish each separate double fine zone. I encourage the Legislature to consider providing authority to Caltrans to develop a comprehensive program establishing these zones along the highest risk roadways and in areas with local governments that wish to devote extra resources to accomplish the goal of reducing traffic accident rates on a specific roadway.

For these reasons I cannot support this bill.

Sincerely,
Arnold Schwarzenegger


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