Monday, June 1, 2015

Labor abandons Newman plans for private debt collectors to tackle fine dodgers

Man gives cops 137 origami pigs to pay fine

Man gives cops 137 origami pigs to pay fine

 
 

Labor claims Campbell Newman’s Government was ‘fattening up’ the penalties registry for ‘
Labor claims Campbell Newman’s Government was ‘fattening up’ the penalties registry for ‘privatisation by stealth’.
 
THE debt from Queensland fine-dodgers will top $1 billion for the first time next month as the Palaszczuk Government abandons a plan to hire private debt collectors.

The debt collectors were due to start work midyear under proposed LNP measures aimed at forcing fine cheats to cough up.

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But Treasurer Curtis Pitt said Labor would now look at other measures to tackle the growing debts owed through the State Penalties Enforcement Registry, because it didn’t support outsourcing debt collection.
“Tim Nicholls and the LNP were clearly fattening up SPER for outsourcing, in what was effectively another LNP privatisation by stealth,’’ he said.

“We won’t expose taxpayers to the unnecessary risk the LNP wanted them to bear. Instead, we’ll examine ways to get SPER back on a more sustainable footing.

“This may include an enhanced suite of ICT (information and communication technology) capabilities to tackle the increased debt load, which has risen exponentially under the LNP’s watch.’’

Former Treasurer Mr Nicholls defended his push for debt collectors to look after certain unpaid SPER debts, denying it was a “sneaky plan”.

Mr Nicholls told State Parliament he had mentioned the plan to call in commercial debt collectors to chase down SPER debts multiple times and accused Treasurer Curtis Pitt of not paying attention.

“Such a sneaky plan that I mentioned it in September in answer to a question without notice, such a sneaky plan that it was part of our election commitment in 2012 to trial the use of commercial debt collectors,” he told the House.

Mr Nicholls said the plan was also discussed during a parliamentary estimates hearing and was referenced during the introduction of one of his Bills while in government.

Treasury figures obtained by The Courier-Mail show unpaid court-ordered fines, criminal recovery orders and traffic fines blew out to a record $980 million at the end of April.

If the growth rate continues, the so-called “debt pool” will hit $1 billion within a month — more than a year sooner than predicted by Treasury.

How Queensland’s unpaid fines have grown.
How Queensland’s unpaid fines have grown.
 
Only eight months ago, the Queensland Treasury predicted the debt pool was likely to approach $1 billion by 2016-17. But Treasury has failed to halt the growth.

This is partly due to exponential growth in the number of fines issued.

Mr Pitt said the increase in SPER debt was a result of the Newman government’s decision to automatically refer all toll-road fines to SPER in its last Budget.

Even when Treasury succeeds in forcing Queenslanders to pay fines, thousands of new fines and court orders are issued each month.

Last month, SPER collected, or wrote off, about $24 million, but this was dwarfed by the $37 million in new debts.

The debt has nearly tripled since 2004-05, when it was just $332 million.

SPER has the power to seize and sell houses or cars, clamp cars, put a caveat on houses, garnish wages or bank accounts, and suspend driver’s licences.

SPER can also have fine- dodgers arrested and sent to prison.

brisbanetimes.com.au 19 May 2015

Points of law to be considered:

  • One cannot be incarcerated (lawfully) without a sentence handed down by a jury of one's peers.

  • Once a fine is transferred to a 'debt collection' company the person who owed the fine to the 'authorities' no longer owes it to them as it has been payed by the company, and since no lawful  contract of debt exists between that person and the debt collection company, repayment does not have to be made to that company.

Why does the corporate media not report on these simple points of law?

Is is a 'CONSPIRACY'??? !!! ???

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