When you see a sign at a school saying slow for children, you best heed the warning. The state Legislature is moving to dramatically increase the fine on those who don’t. Here’s an Associated Press story on the legislation:

SACRAMENTO (AP) — Speeding when schoolchildren are present would become more expensive under a bill passed Monday by the state Assembly.

The legislation, by Democratic Assemblyman Das Williams of Santa Barbara, lets local governments double the base fine for those caught speeding in school zones when students are present.

The zones typically have a 25 mph speed limit, and exceeding that carries a fine of $35 to $100. Other fees, not affected by the bill, make the final cost as much as $400.

The Assembly’s approval sends the bill to the Senate.

Williams said it is normal for people to drive 10 to 20 mph over the speed limit. If local governments decide to double the fines, the bill requires them to notify drivers with new street signs.

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  1. sheryl

    Enforcement of this special law will go just like all other traffic laws. A big fat nothing. Everyday I see violations, with officers sitting right there. They do nothing. Whoopie!!! Another unenforced law!

    May 9th, 2011 4:18 pm

  2. Dave madigan

    I have no problem with raising the fines to seriously punish the speeders.

    I wonder if the “doubled” amount means that the State gets to collect double their share of the fine amount as well?

    If so, this is just another money grab by politicians that can not control their drug habit….oops I mean spending habit!

    May 9th, 2011 4:35 pm

  3. Tom

    Maybe the Road Warrior can answer this:

    Are children ‘present’ when they are in the school yard, or are they ‘present’ when they are inside the school buildings? If they are in the buildings, how can motorists know without knowing the hours of the school’s operation?

    There is a private school on 8th St E. in Sonoma with a ‘reduce speed sign.’ there are almost always has cars in the lot, but never has children in the yard when I pass. Should the signs read ’25 miles per hour when cars are present’?

    May 9th, 2011 4:42 pm

  4. R. HONSA

    Funny you should mention that Sheryl , just today I saw a GROUP of kids trying to cross Snyder ln. from Rancho Cotati High .I counted 15 cars drive past before anyone stopped . Of those 15 cars , 2 were R.P. Police .

    May 9th, 2011 5:07 pm

  5. Road.Warrior

    Vehicle Code refers to speed limits being enforced “while children are going to or leaving the school, either during school hours or during the noon recess period.” Don’t see reference to students being inside. Perhaps one of our law enforcement readers will help us out.

    May 9th, 2011 5:21 pm

  6. FYI

    If anyone is going to complain about this it will definetly be one of “those” who are against law enforcement, have not been affected directly by someones negligence or completely careless. I wish that some day you never have to worry for your childs safety because of speeders. And the day you do I hope you continue to support these irresponsible negligent drivers who should not have the priviledge of driving. Until that occurs I suggest you quit being so egotistical, and look at what this is triying to prevent.

    May 9th, 2011 5:43 pm

  7. M.C Rider

    ( Speeding when schoolchildren are present ) This should be a time of day law, How close to the roadway they need to be, if schoolchildren at all or just ped’s on sidewalk???

    May 9th, 2011 8:20 pm

  8. M.C Rider

    People should know better, but I think it’s just another CASH COW!

    May 9th, 2011 8:23 pm

  9. John Hudson

    Traffic fines have become a cash cow. The cops never let anyone off with a warning any more. A traffic ticket is an infraction, which is classified as a criminal offense. It is an abuse to use the criminal law as a revenue source. Local governments budget for a certain level of traffic and land use fines. Then the cops claim the there are no quotas.

    May 10th, 2011 6:37 am

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