Lake drops problematic speeding citations

Police may ticket speeders instead

By Heather Michon


Nearly six months after the Lake Monticello Board of Directors allowed Lake police to issue $50 policy violation citations instead of Fluvanna County speeding tickets, Board President Richard Barringer said: “It turns out we can’t do that.”

Barringer’s comments came at the end of the Board’s June 21 meeting.

The policy allowed Lake police officers the authority to issue three policy violations before handing out a regular Fluvanna County traffic citation for residents – or their visitors – who clocked at speeds between 26-39 miles per hour or rolled through stop signs. The policy had been on the books for a decade but was only voted into force in late January 2018.

Before the vote, Barringer said he had approached the people responsible for crafting the 2008 policy on multiple occasions and asked them if there was anything the current Board needed to know. “Nothing heard,” he said. “It looked okay, so we went forward, and it turns out we can’t do it.”

In a recent email, Barringer explained: “Our state police policy dictates that if our private police force uses the state system to check for wants and warrants for a vehicle stopped, and if a ticket is issued, we are obligated to issue a state, or in our case, a county ticket. Our police, like others, check a vehicle plate number with the system before approaching, to better ensure their safety.”

“So if you’re driving too fast – the speed limit is 25 – you are subject to a speeding ticket, and it will be on your record, on your license, on your insurance. Please, abide by the rules,” he said.

Earlier in the meeting, General Manager Steve Hurwitz told the Board that about 45 percent of the homes in the community had been checked for compliance with Lake Monticello Owners’ Association rules, and the survey of properties should be complete within about a month. He anticipated the Lake would be issuing between 150-170 letters to residents asking them to resolve compliance issues.

He added that the association would also be pursuing long-delinquent unpaid dues totaling well over $100,000.

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