Illinois Lawmakers Inch Toward Ending Driver’s License Suspensions for Unpaid Tickets

Illinois Lawmakers Inch Toward Ending Driver’s License Suspensions for Unpaid Tickets

SPRINGFIELD (IRN) — The Illinois Secretary of State can suspend your driver’s license over 10 unpaid parking tickets or five unpaid speeding tickets, but lawmakers at the Illinois Capitol are looking to change that.

They want to stop license suspensions over unpaid tickets and fines. State Rep. Carol Ammons, D-Urbana, is driving the plan in the House.

“This legislation is critical legislation that is in line with the national movement to end the practice of suspending driver’s licenses for unpaid fees,” Ammons told reporters at a news conference Tuesday. “In essence, we want to stop the practice of saddling poor people with debt.”

Ammons said it’s easy for a $75 ticket to grow to thousands of dollars.

Manny Perez said that’s what happened to him after he got a couple of parking tickets.

“It’s really been a frustrating situation to not be able to advance because of parking tickets,” he said. “How can you afford a $2,000 ticket on minimum wage? You have bills, you have gas, you have rent to pay.”

The Illinois Senate approved the plan back in March.

Ammons said the city of Chicago has some issues with the current plan, so she’s not sure if lawmakers will vote on it before this week’s deadline.

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