A bill introduced in the Maryland General Assembly to increase special events zone fines to $1,000 is dead in the water.
Special Event Zones in the State of Maryland aimed to address events where a large number of attendees correlated to an increase in unwanted driving behavior. Senate Bill-682 introduced earlier this year sought to redefine wording and fines around Special Event Zones, mainly pumping up fines to an egregious $1,000 for offenders and in some cases, one year in jail. According to WMDT.com in their report earlier yesterday (Mar. 16, 2019) SB-682 was handed an “Unfavorable Report by Judicial Proceedings” which is pretty much the death of bills as far as the State of Maryland goes.
As it stands, fines doled out in Special Event Zoned areas only carry a $50 fine which presumably balloons a bit, like all fines . While a fine is usually justified, it’s not the end of the world to a recipient. It looks like SB-682 was introduced to significantly get the point across that there’d be a zero tolerance approach to unwanton car activity, most notably during the annual H2Oi Ocean City event where thousands of car enthusiasts flock the small Maryland Beach Locale once a year, unofficially mind you.
With a $1,000 maximum fine for speeding, burnouts, excessive noise from exhausts, and reckless driving, which also carries a possible one year in jail, if someone received such a fine, it would be such a financial burden and quite honestly a punishment that simply doesn’t fit the crime.
Thankfully, Maryland legislators, in their extreme wisdom, found this bill to be “unfavorable.”
A fine for being a Grade A idiot in front of cops, sure. But a $1,000 fine is something else completely.
H2Oi is usually during the last weekend of September with the official event in New Jersey but with the larger unofficial event in Ocean City, Maryland.
Expect for local legislators, residents of Ocean City, and police to cook up even more ways to, for the lack of a better phrase, spoil the fun, justifiably so.
Why do you think this bill got shot down? Let me know in the comments below.