Yesterday I posted a note from reader Eddie Atherton who had received three tickets over the past year for not having a front license plate on his car. For some, the general sentiment was not of sympathy, and that he should just put the plate on, while Eddie insisted that parking enforcement was targeting people like him for easy revenue.
Unfortunately, an internet search trying to find the reason for needing a front license plate in the first place turned up fruitless, while I found a long list of reasons to repeal the widely adopted law.
After I found a blog entry by Karl Brauer at the auto sales site Edmunds.com, I think it might be financially sound for all car owners to remove any existing front license plates from their cars.
Brauer explains makes $4.1 million in front license plate tickets alone – 164,000 tickets at $25 a pop, and that “a far more sinister power” is to blame: red light cameras. (read the whole entry here)
Seems the cameras don’t work so well on cars without front plates, so L.A.-based police have been given a new directive: ticket every vehicle you see without a front plate. We even had one officer admit as much while writing up a co-worker, “See, we need those front plates on your vehicle for the red-light cameras to work.”
He then gets into the math:
At over $351 for a red-light camera ticket, I’d have to get quite a few (15) front license plate tickets to justify helping these electronic demons nab me for $351… No thanks, I’ll take my chances with police officers who have nothing better to do than write $25 tickets for not having a front plate.
So, maybe there is something to Eddie’s conspiracy theory… if you’re willing to gamble that the next time you run through a red light, a camera won’t be able to snag your back license plate.
In the meantime, there’s one of those useless internet petitions available to “eradicate” California’s front license plate law, so far it has 17,406 signatures. If you add your name, please sure to leave a comment that blogging.la sent you!