Bill Text: NY A07463 | 2019-2020 | General Assembly | Amended


Bill Title: Limits the grounds for the suspension of a driver's license; provides for additional notification when a person is required to make an appearance; requires income based payment plans to be available for fines, fees and mandatory surcharges incurred as a result of a violation of the vehicle and traffic law and makes conforming changes.

Spectrum: Partisan Bill (Democrat 24-0)

Status: (Introduced) 2019-06-19 - reported referred to rules [A07463 Detail]

Download: New_York-2019-A07463-Amended.html



                STATE OF NEW YORK
        ________________________________________________________________________

                                         7463--A

                               2019-2020 Regular Sessions

                   IN ASSEMBLY

                                       May 6, 2019
                                       ___________

        Introduced  by  M.  of  A. HUNTER, SAYEGH, RAYNOR, D'URSO, CRUZ, TAYLOR,
          WALCZYK, GOTTFRIED, SIMON, EPSTEIN, NIOU, JEAN-PIERRE, BLAKE,  BARRON,
          JAFFEE,  CROUCH, SEAWRIGHT, GLICK, FRONTUS, WEPRIN, BRONSON, MAGNAREL-
          LI,  ZEBROWSKI,  STECK  --  Multi-Sponsored  by  --  M.  of  A.  COOK,
          DE LA ROSA  --  read once and referred to the Committee on Transporta-
          tion -- committee  discharged,  bill  amended,  ordered  reprinted  as
          amended and recommitted to said committee

        AN  ACT to amend the vehicle and traffic law, in relation to the suspen-
          sion of a license to drive a motor vehicle or motorcycle

          The People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and  Assem-
        bly, do enact as follows:

     1    Section  1.  Subdivision  3  of section 226 of the vehicle and traffic
     2  law, as amended by chapter 607 of the laws of  1993,  paragraph  (a)  as
     3  amended  by  section  6  of part J of chapter 62 of the laws of 2003 and
     4  paragraph (b) as amended by section 2 of part K of  chapter  59  of  the
     5  laws of 2010, is amended to read as follows:
     6    3.  Failure  to  answer  or appear; entry of order.  (a) If the person
     7  charged with the violation shall fail to answer the summons as  provided
     8  herein  involving  a  violation  of section three hundred eighty-five of
     9  this chapter, the commissioner may  suspend  such  person's  license  or
    10  driving  privilege  or,  if  the  charge involves a violation of section
    11  three hundred eighty-five[, section four hundred  one  or  section  five
    12  hundred eleven-a] of this chapter by a registrant who was not the opera-
    13  tor of the vehicle, the registration of such vehicle or the privilege of
    14  operation  of  any  motor  vehicle  owned  by  such  registrant  may  be
    15  suspended, until such person shall answer as provided in subdivision two
    16  of this section. If a person shall fail to appear at a hearing involving
    17  a violation of section three hundred eighty-five of this  chapter,  when
    18  such is provided for pursuant to this section, such person's license, or
    19  registration  or privilege of operating or of operation, as appropriate,
    20  may be suspended pending appearance at  a  subsequent  hearing,  or  the

         EXPLANATION--Matter in italics (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                              [ ] is old law to be omitted.
                                                                   LBD11167-07-9

        A. 7463--A                          2

     1  disposition  of  the  charges involved. Any suspension permitted by this
     2  subdivision, if already in effect, may be terminated or if  not  yet  in
     3  effect,  may  be  withdrawn or withheld, prior to the disposition of the
     4  charges  involved  if  such person shall appear and post security in the
     5  amount of forty dollars to  guarantee  his  or  her  appearance  at  any
     6  required hearing. The security posted pursuant to this subdivision shall
     7  be  returned  upon  appearance  at the scheduled hearing or an adjourned
     8  hearing which results in a final disposition of the charge,  and  other-
     9  wise  shall  be  forfeited. If a suspension has been imposed pursuant to
    10  this subdivision and the case is subsequently  transferred  pursuant  to
    11  subdivision two of section two hundred twenty-five of this article, such
    12  suspension  shall  remain in effect until the person answers the charges
    13  in the court to which the case was transferred.  Any  suspension  issued
    14  pursuant  to  this paragraph shall be subject to the provisions of para-
    15  graph (j-1) of subdivision two of section five  hundred  three  of  this
    16  chapter.
    17    (b) Failure to answer or appear in accordance with the requirements of
    18  this  section  and any regulations promulgated hereunder shall be deemed
    19  an admission to the violation as charged, and an appropriate  order  may
    20  be  entered  in the department's records, and a fine consistent with the
    21  provisions of this chapter and regulations of the  commissioner  may  be
    22  imposed  by  the  commissioner or person designated by the commissioner.
    23  Prior to entry of an order and imposition of a  fine,  the  commissioner
    24  shall  notify  such person by mail at the address of such person on file
    25  with the department or at the current address  provided  by  the  United
    26  States postal service in accordance with section two hundred fourteen of
    27  this [chapter] title:  (i) of the violation charged; (ii) of the impend-
    28  ing  entry of such order and fine; (iii) that such order and fine may be
    29  filed as a judgment with the county clerk of the  county  in  which  the
    30  operator or registrant is located; and (iv) that entry of such order and
    31  imposition  of  such fine may be avoided by entering a plea or making an
    32  appearance within thirty days of the sending of such notice. In no  case
    33  shall  such an order and fine be entered and imposed more than two years
    34  after the date of the alleged violation. Upon application in such manner
    35  and form as the commissioner shall prescribe an order and fine shall  be
    36  vacated upon the ground of excusable default.
    37    §  2.  The  vehicle and traffic law is amended by adding a new section
    38  226-a to read as follows:
    39    § 226-a. Return date  notifications.  Subject  to  appropriation,  the
    40  commissioner  shall  notify any person who receives a summons or appear-
    41  ance ticket for a violation described in subdivision one of section  two
    42  hundred  twenty-five of this article of the time and place of the return
    43  date for such summons no later than one week prior to the  return  date.
    44  The  commissioner shall (a) send the notification by first class mail at
    45  the address of such person on file with the department or at the current
    46  address provided by the United States Postal Service in accordance  with
    47  section  two  hundred  fourteen  of this title; and (b) in collaboration
    48  with state and local law enforcement  agencies,  make  best  efforts  to
    49  provide  an  additional notification by text message, electronic mail or
    50  phone call using the best available  phone  number  or  electronic  mail
    51  address for the intended person.
    52    §  3.  The  vehicle and traffic law is amended by adding a new section
    53  229 to read as follows:
    54    § 229. Reasonable payment plans. 1. The court or hearing officer shall
    55  offer the opportunity for a reasonable payment plan at no charge to  the
    56  person.   A reasonable payment plan shall comprehend all fines, fees and

        A. 7463--A                          3

     1  mandatory surcharges and shall consist of monthly payments that  do  not
     2  exceed two percent of the person's monthly net income or ten dollars per
     3  month,  whichever  is  greater.  Monthly net income means total monetary
     4  payments  from  any  source, minus deductions required by law, including
     5  but not limited to  administrative  or  court-ordered  garnishments  and
     6  support  payments.  The  court  or  traffic violations agency may accept
     7  payments higher than the set amount, but may  not  undertake  additional
     8  collection  activity  so long as the person meets his or her obligations
     9  under the payment plan. The court or hearing officer may require  people
    10  with  payment plans to appear periodically, but no more often than annu-
    11  ally, to assess their financial circumstances and may set a new  payment
    12  amount  if  the  person's financial circumstances have changed. A person
    13  who enters into a payment plan and experiences a reduction in income may
    14  petition the court or hearing officer at any time to seek a reduction in
    15  the monthly payment.
    16    2. The court or hearing officer  shall  have  the  discretion  in  the
    17  interests  of  justice to reduce or waive the amount of any fine, fee or
    18  mandatory surcharge assessed for a violation of any of the provisions of
    19  this chapter.
    20    3. A person assessed a fine, fee  and/or  mandatory  surcharge  for  a
    21  violation  of any of the provisions of this chapter shall be notified of
    22  their right to a reasonable payment plan (a) at the time the citation or
    23  ticket is issued; (b) at the time of sentencing; and (c) in any communi-
    24  cation concerning imposition or collection of the fine, fee or mandatory
    25  surcharge. Information about the availability of payment plans shall  be
    26  prominently  posted  at each court and traffic violations agency, on its
    27  website, if any, and on the commissioner's website.
    28    § 4. Paragraph a of subdivision 4 of section 227 of  the  vehicle  and
    29  traffic law, as amended by section 7 of part J of chapter 62 of the laws
    30  of 2003, is amended to read as follows:
    31    a.  An order entered upon the failure to answer or appear or after the
    32  receipt of an answer admitting the charge or where  a  determination  is
    33  made  that the charge has been established shall be civil in nature, but
    34  shall be treated as a conviction for the purposes of this  chapter.  The
    35  commissioner  or his designee may include in such order an imposition of
    36  any penalty authorized by any provision of this chapter for a conviction
    37  of such violation, except that no penalty therefore shall include impri-
    38  sonment, nor, if monetary, exceed the amount of  the  fine  which  could
    39  have  been  imposed  had  the charge been heard by a court. [The] If the
    40  charge involves a violation of section three hundred eighty-five of this
    41  chapter, the driver's license or privileges may be suspended pending the
    42  payment of any  penalty  so  imposed,  or,  if  the  charge  involves  a
    43  violation  of section three hundred eighty-five [or section four hundred
    44  one] of this chapter by a registrant who was not  the  operator  of  the
    45  vehicle,  the  registration of such vehicle or privilege of operation of
    46  any motor vehicle owned by such registrant may be suspended pending  the
    47  payment  of  any  penalty  so imposed. Any suspension issued pursuant to
    48  this paragraph shall be subject to the provisions of paragraph (j-1)  of
    49  subdivision two of section five hundred three of this chapter.
    50    § 5. Subdivision 4-a of section 510 of the vehicle and traffic law, as
    51  added  by  section  10  of  part J of chapter 62 of the laws of 2003 and
    52  paragraph (c) as amended by chapter 157 of the laws of 2017, is  amended
    53  to read as follows:
    54    4-a. Suspension for failure to answer an appearance ticket or to pay a
    55  fine.  (a)  Upon  receipt  of  a  court notification of the failure of a
    56  person to appear within sixty days of the return date or new  subsequent

        A. 7463--A                          4

     1  adjourned  date,  pursuant  to an appearance ticket charging said person
     2  with a violation of any [of the provisions of this chapter  (except  one
     3  for parking, stopping, or standing), of any] violation of the tax law or
     4  of the transportation law regulating traffic [or of any lawful ordinance
     5  or  regulation  made by a local or public authority, relating to traffic
     6  (except one for parking, stopping, or standing) or the failure to pay  a
     7  fine  imposed  by  a  court]  the  commissioner  or his or her agent may
     8  suspend the driver's  license  or  privileges  of  such  person  pending
     9  receipt  of  notice  from  the  court  that  such person has appeared in
    10  response to such appearance ticket or has paid such fine.  Such  suspen-
    11  sion  shall take effect no less than thirty days from the day upon which
    12  notice thereof is sent by the commissioner to the person whose  driver's
    13  license  or privileges are to be suspended. Any suspension issued pursu-
    14  ant to this paragraph shall be subject to the  provisions  of  paragraph
    15  (j-l) of subdivision two of section five hundred three of this chapter.
    16    (b)  The  provisions  of  paragraph  (a) of this subdivision shall not
    17  apply to a registrant who was not  operating  a  vehicle,  but  who  was
    18  issued  a  summons  or  an  appearance ticket for a violation of section
    19  three hundred eighty-five, section four  hundred  one  or  section  five
    20  hundred  eleven-a of this chapter. Upon the receipt of a court notifica-
    21  tion of the failure of such person to appear within sixty  days  of  the
    22  return  date  or a new subsequent adjourned date, pursuant to an appear-
    23  ance ticket charging said person with such violation, or the failure  of
    24  such person to pay a fine imposed by a court, the commissioner or his or
    25  her  agent  may  suspend  the  registration  of  the vehicle or vehicles
    26  involved in such violation or privilege of operation of any motor  vehi-
    27  cle  owned  by  the  registrant pending receipt of notice from the court
    28  that such person has appeared in response to such appearance  ticket  or
    29  has  paid  such  fine.    Such suspension shall take effect no less than
    30  thirty days from the day upon  which  notice  thereof  is  sent  by  the
    31  commissioner  to  the  person  whose  registration or privilege is to be
    32  suspended. Any suspension issued pursuant to  this  paragraph  shall  be
    33  subject  to  the  provisions  of  paragraph  (j-1) of subdivision two of
    34  section five hundred three of this chapter.
    35    (c) Upon receipt of notification from a traffic and parking violations
    36  agency or a traffic violations agency of the  failure  of  a  person  to
    37  appear  within sixty days of the return date or new subsequent adjourned
    38  date, pursuant to an appearance  ticket  charging  said  person  with  a
    39  violation of:
    40    (i)  [any  of  the  provisions of this chapter except one for parking,
    41  stopping or standing and except those violations described in paragraphs
    42  (a), (b), (d), (e) and (f) of subdivision two  and  in  paragraphs  (a),
    43  (b),  (d),  (e), (f) and (g) of subdivision two-a and in paragraphs (a),
    44  (b), (d), (e), (f) and (g) of subdivision two-b of section three hundred
    45  seventy-one of the general municipal law;
    46    (ii)] section five hundred two or subdivision (a) of section  eighteen
    47  hundred fifteen of the tax law; or
    48    [(iii)]  (ii)  section fourteen-f (except paragraph (b) of subdivision
    49  four of section fourteen-f), two hundred eleven or two hundred twelve of
    50  the transportation law[; or
    51    (iv) any lawful ordinance or regulation made  by  a  local  or  public
    52  authority  relating  to  traffic  (except  one  for parking, stopping or
    53  standing) or the failure to pay a fine imposed for such a violation by a
    54  traffic and parking violations agency or a traffic  violations  agency],
    55  the commissioner or his or her agent may suspend the driver's license or
    56  privileges of such person pending receipt of notice from the agency that

        A. 7463--A                          5

     1  such  person  has  appeared in response to such appearance ticket or has
     2  paid such fine. Such suspension shall take effect no  less  than  thirty
     3  days  from the day upon which notice thereof is sent by the commissioner
     4  to  the person whose driver's license or privileges are to be suspended.
     5  Any suspension issued pursuant to this paragraph shall be subject to the
     6  provisions of paragraph (j-1) of subdivision two of section five hundred
     7  three of this chapter.
     8    § 6. Paragraph (a) of subdivision 2 of section 511 of the vehicle  and
     9  traffic  law, as amended by chapter 607 of the laws of 1993 and subpara-
    10  graph (ii) as amended by chapter 196 of the laws of 1996, is amended  to
    11  read as follows:
    12    (a)  A person is guilty of the offense of aggravated unlicensed opera-
    13  tion of a motor vehicle in the second degree when  such  person  commits
    14  the offense of aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle in the
    15  third degree as defined in subdivision one of this section; and
    16    (i)  has  previously  been convicted of an offense that consists of or
    17  includes the elements comprising the offense committed within the  imme-
    18  diately preceding eighteen months; or
    19    (ii) the suspension or revocation is based upon a refusal to submit to
    20  a  chemical  test pursuant to section eleven hundred ninety-four of this
    21  chapter, a finding of driving after having consumed alcohol in violation
    22  of section eleven  hundred  ninety-two-a  of  this  chapter  or  upon  a
    23  conviction  for  a  violation of any of the provisions of section eleven
    24  hundred ninety-two of this chapter; or
    25    (iii) the suspension was a mandatory suspension pending prosecution of
    26  a charge of a violation of section eleven  hundred  ninety-two  of  this
    27  chapter  ordered pursuant to paragraph (e) of subdivision two of section
    28  eleven hundred ninety-three of this chapter or other  similar  statute[;
    29  or
    30    (iv)  such  person has in effect three or more suspensions, imposed on
    31  at least three separate dates, for failure to answer, appear  or  pay  a
    32  fine, pursuant to subdivision three of section two hundred twenty-six or
    33  subdivision four-a of section five hundred ten of this chapter].
    34    §  7. Paragraph (a) of subdivision 3 of section 511 of the vehicle and
    35  traffic law, as amended by chapter 732 of the laws of 2006 and  subpara-
    36  graph  (iii) as amended and subparagraph (iv) as added by chapter 169 of
    37  the laws of 2013, is amended to read as follows:
    38    (a) A person is guilty of the offense of aggravated unlicensed  opera-
    39  tion  of  a  motor  vehicle  in  the  first degree when such person: (i)
    40  commits the offense of aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor  vehi-
    41  cle in the second degree as provided in subparagraph (ii), (iii) or (iv)
    42  of  paragraph  (a) of subdivision two of this section and is operating a
    43  motor vehicle while  under  the  influence  of  alcohol  or  a  drug  in
    44  violation of subdivision one, two, two-a, three, four, four-a or five of
    45  section eleven hundred ninety-two of this chapter; or
    46    (ii)  [commits  the  offense  of  aggravated unlicensed operation of a
    47  motor vehicle in the third degree as defined in subdivision one of  this
    48  section;  and  is  operating  a  motor  vehicle while such person has in
    49  effect ten or more suspensions, imposed on at least ten  separate  dates
    50  for  failure  to  answer,  appear or pay a fine, pursuant to subdivision
    51  three of section two hundred twenty-six of this chapter  or  subdivision
    52  four-a of section five hundred ten of this article; or
    53    (iii)]  commits  the  offense  of aggravated unlicensed operation of a
    54  motor vehicle in the third degree as defined in subdivision one of  this
    55  section;  and is operating a motor vehicle while under permanent revoca-

        A. 7463--A                          6

     1  tion as set forth in subparagraph twelve of paragraph (b) of subdivision
     2  two of section eleven hundred ninety-three of this chapter; or
     3    [(iv)]  (iii)  operates  a  motor  vehicle upon a public highway while
     4  holding a conditional license issued pursuant to paragraph (a) of subdi-
     5  vision seven of section eleven hundred ninety-six of this chapter  while
     6  under  the  influence  of  alcohol or a drug in violation of subdivision
     7  one, two, two-a, three, four, four-a or five of section  eleven  hundred
     8  ninety-two of this chapter.
     9    §  8.  Subdivision 3 of section 514 of the vehicle and traffic law, as
    10  amended by section 11 of part J of chapter 62 of the laws  of  2003  and
    11  paragraph  (b) as amended by chapter 157 of the laws of 2017, is amended
    12  to read as follows:
    13    3. (a) Upon the failure of a person to appear or answer, within  sixty
    14  days of the return date or any subsequent adjourned date, or the failure
    15  to  pay a fine imposed by a court, pursuant to a summons charging him or
    16  her with a violation of any of the provisions of  this  chapter  (except
    17  one for parking, stopping or standing), section five hundred two or five
    18  hundred twelve of the tax law, section fourteen-f, two hundred eleven or
    19  two  hundred  twelve of the transportation law or of any law, ordinance,
    20  rule or regulation made  by  a  local  authority,  relating  to  traffic
    21  (except for parking, stopping or standing), the trial court or the clerk
    22  thereof  shall within ten days certify that fact to the commissioner, in
    23  the manner and form prescribed by the commissioner, who shall record the
    24  same in his or her office. Thereafter and upon  the  appearance  of  any
    25  such  person  in  response to such summons or the receipt of the fine by
    26  the court, the trial court or the clerk thereof shall forthwith  certify
    27  that  fact to the commissioner, in the manner and form prescribed by the
    28  commissioner[; provided, however, no such certification  shall  be  made
    29  unless  the  court  has  collected  the  termination  of  suspension fee
    30  required to be paid pursuant to paragraph (j-1) of  subdivision  two  of
    31  section five hundred three of this chapter].
    32    (b)  Upon  the  failure  of a person to appear or answer, within sixty
    33  days of the return date or any subsequent adjourned date, or the failure
    34  to pay a fine imposed by a traffic and parking violations  agency  or  a
    35  traffic violations agency pursuant to a summons charging him or her with
    36  a violation of:
    37    (1)  any  of  the  provisions  of this chapter except one for parking,
    38  stopping or standing and except those violations described in paragraphs
    39  (a), (b), (d), (e) and (f) of subdivision two  and  in  paragraphs  (a),
    40  (b),  (d),  (e), (f) and (g) of subdivision two-a and in paragraphs (a),
    41  (b), (d), (e), (f) and (g) of subdivision two-b of section three hundred
    42  seventy-one of the general municipal law;
    43    (2) section five hundred two or subdivision (a)  of  section  eighteen
    44  hundred fifteen of the tax law;
    45    (3)  section  fourteen-f  (except paragraph (b) of subdivision four of
    46  section fourteen-f), two hundred eleven or two  hundred  twelve  of  the
    47  transportation law; or
    48    (4)  any  lawful  ordinance  or  regulation  made by a local or public
    49  authority relating to traffic  (except  one  for  parking,  stopping  or
    50  standing);
    51  the clerk thereof shall within ten days certify that fact to the commis-
    52  sioner, in the manner and form prescribed by the commissioner, who shall
    53  record the same in his or her office. Thereafter and upon the appearance
    54  of  any  such  person  in response to such summons or the receipt of the
    55  fine by the agency, the traffic and parking violations agency, the traf-
    56  fic violations agency or the clerk thereof shall forthwith certify  that

        A. 7463--A                          7

     1  fact  to  the  commissioner,  in  the  manner and form prescribed by the
     2  commissioner[; provided, however, no such certification  shall  be  made
     3  unless  the  traffic  and  parking  violations  agency  or  the  traffic
     4  violations  agency  has  collected  the  termination  of  suspension fee
     5  required to be paid pursuant to paragraph (j-1) of  subdivision  two  of
     6  section five hundred three of this chapter].
     7    §  9.  The  vehicle and traffic law is amended by adding a new section
     8  519 to read as follows:
     9    § 519. Termination of suspensions for failure to answer or failure  to
    10  pay.  Within  three  months  of  the effective date of this section, the
    11  commissioner shall terminate all suspensions of licenses, privileges  to
    12  operate a motor vehicle and registrations based upon a failure to answer
    13  an  appearance  ticket  or  summons or failure to pay a fine, penalty or
    14  mandatory surcharge pursuant to subdivision three of section two hundred
    15  twenty-six, subdivision four of section  two  hundred  twenty-seven,  or
    16  subdivision  four-a of section five hundred ten of this chapter, then in
    17  effect, exclusive of fines, penalties or surcharges  for  violations  of
    18  provisions  of  this  chapter  that remain in effect after the effective
    19  date of this section. The commissioner shall waive all fees  and  penal-
    20  ties  associated with the termination of a suspension, including but not
    21  limited to those described in subparagraph (i)  of  paragraph  (j-1)  of
    22  subdivision  two  of  section  five  hundred three, subdivision three of
    23  section five hundred fourteen and paragraph a  of  subdivision  four  of
    24  section  two hundred twenty-seven of this chapter, as in existence prior
    25  to the effective date of this section.
    26    § 10. This act shall take effect on the ninetieth day after  it  shall
    27  have  become  a law provided, however, sections two and nine of this act
    28  shall take effect the first of April next succeeding the date upon which
    29  it shall have become a law.  Effective immediately, the addition, amend-
    30  ment and/or repeal of any rule or regulation necessary for the implemen-
    31  tation of this act on its effective date are authorized to be  made  and
    32  completed on or before such effective date.
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