Latest Flash-for-cash Fines Just a Labor Cash Grab: Dametto

29th June 2022

State Member for Hinchinbrook and KAP Deputy Leader, Nick Dametto.

Katter’s Australian Party (KAP) Deputy leader and Hinchinbrook MP Nick Dametto has labeled the Government’s drastic July 1 traffic fine rises as little more than a cash-grab, calling for more driver education and warning signs to be mandatory for roadside speed cameras.

The new speeding fine categories, which will be enacted within days, will see the most minor of speeding infringements cost Queenslanders an additional $104.

As of July 1 the new penalties in Queensland will be as follows:

  • 1-10km/h (formally less than 13 km/h: increase from $183 to $287 (1 demerit point)
  • 11-20 km/h (formally 13-20 km/h : increase from $275 to $431 (3 demerit points)
  • 21-30km/h: increased from $459 to $646 (4 demerit points)
  • 31-40km/h: increased from $643 to $1078 (6 demerit points)
  • Over 40km/h: increased from $1286 to $1653 (8 demerit points, six-month licence suspension)

The Hinchinbrook MP said the latest increase to fines were less about reducing the death toll on our roads and more about increasing revenue for the State’s coffers.

“In no way am I condoning the act of speeding and breaking the law, but the fact these penalties have increased by such a margin is less about deterring motorists and more about finding a way to fund the State Government’s 2022-23 budget,” Mr Dametto said.

“Our State already has a ridiculously high SPER debt, just a few weeks ago the Townsville Bulletin reported almost $55 million is owed in North Queensland alone and these increased fines are only going to add to that number.”

Mr Dametto said the reintroduction of speed camera awareness signage for fixed and roadside cameras would benefit road users more than increasing fines would.

“The majority of motorists fined for speeding haven’t gone out on our roads with the intention to break the rules, but continuing to ratchet up fines on good and hard-working Queenslanders who might have a lapse of concentration resulting in the slip of the throttle is not the way to fix things,” Mr Dametto said.

“Speed camera awareness signage actually enables motorists to think about the consequences of not only the fine that could be coming in the mail from a roadside or fixed flash-for-cash, but the consequences breaking the law could have had on their own and other people’s lives.

“From experience we all know being pulled up by a police officer leaves a longer lasting effect when it comes to correcting motorist’s behaviour, to many people receiving an exuberant fine 28 days after the fact is no different to receiving any other bill.

“I’d argue getting a whopping, great fine in the mail with no prior warning doesn’t change behaviour, it just helps fill the black hole left in our State Budget.

“The Government needs to figure out if this is about changing people’s behaviours on the road, or is it about revenue raising?

“The people of North Queensland would like to think policing is more than just hiding out of plain sight chasing fines, especially when people are losing their cars on the daily at the hands of the Government’s youth crime crisis.

“People in Queensland literally cannot afford these increased fines, this isn’t about saving lives, all this will do is once again tax the people who are trying to generate an income in this State and keep food on the table for their kids.”

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Nick Dametto MP