State aiming for record fine revenue

Sander Punamäe
, reporter
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According to the state budget, the interior ministry plans to collect €17 million in fines this year. Planned fines revenue has never grown so abruptly from one year to the next as the state is looking to collect an additional €3 million in fines compared to 2018.

Head of the ministry’s financial department Mairi Tonsiver said that additional revenue is expected from two sources. One is the adoption of eight mobile speed traps by the Police and Border Guard Board (PPA).

«Because the PPA will acquire an additional eight mobile speed cameras, we forecast revenue from speed traps to grow by €1.5 million,» she explained.

Leading law enforcement official Kalmer Tikerpe said the PPA will take delivery of the cameras in February and will hand them out to four prefectures. The location of the cameras can be changed as necessary. «We will prioritize more dangerous stretches of road,» Tikerpe said.

The second source of additional fines revenue was supposed to be an amendment to tie fine amounts to income. The amendment was scheduled to take effect in February of this year but got stuck in the justice ministry, said Chairman of the Riigikogu Legal Affairs Committee Jaanus Karilaid. It will be up to the next Riigikogu to decide whether to pass the bill and when.

«In connection with this, we forecast fines revenue to grow by €1.9 million. If the bill is not passed, we will not see this additional revenue,» Tonsiver said.

He added that an amendment from earlier this year that allows policemen to use expedited proceedings to issue fines for minor violations four times faster than previously is not expected to affect fines revenue as the change comes together with smaller fine amounts.