Texas legislators in the House have just voted in favor of allowing poorer residents to pay off traffic tickets in methods other than money.
Low-income Texans are often punished for not paying their traffic tickets on time, resulting in more fines and punishments that usually only push them further into debt. Sometimes, these mounting fines and punishment result in jail time.
This bill still needs to be approved by the Senate before being passed to Gov. Greg Abbot. If it passes, however, the legislation would likely prevent thousands of Texans from being imprisoned over simple fines, while also saving taxpayers millions of dollars.
“They’re not getting off scot-free. We’re getting something for something,” said the bill’s House sponsor, Rep. Senfronia Thompson, D-Houston, according to the Texas Tribune. “We are filling our jails up with people who should not be there.”
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