Speed cushions could be deflating - KMOV.com

Speed cushions could be deflating

(KMOV) -- The economy and your driving speed might not seem related, but some cities might be cracking down on your speed to compensate for budget shortfalls.

If you've ever gone over the speed limit, you might be aware that sometimes officers give a little leeway when it comes to speed. But according to the American Motorist Association, that speed cushion is deflating. The AMA fights for drivers' interests and has reported an uptick in speeding tickets over the last couple of months.

They don't track the numbers, but they say there's less leeway in many communities - possibly to make more money.

Several police agencies denied requests for interviews, but the Missouri Highway Patrol didn't shy away. "There's no one on the highway patrol that's going to tell a trooper when to start writing tickets and when not to," said Sergeant Al Nothum of the Missouri Highway Patrol. "It's always been our policy [that] it's up to the individual officer what ticket he's going to write."

The AMA points to a 2006 study by the St. Louis Federal Reserve that showed a definite correlation between tickets and the budget. A down year in revenue for municipalities was most often followed by an increase in tickets.

The executive director of the AMA said they would actually rather see less leeway and higher speed limits. They believe many speed limits are improperly imposed, meaning they are set too low. But until that changes and the economy rebounds, beware that speed cushion could be deflating.


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