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New law by Mulroe streamlines court fines and fees

courtroom 082218CHICAGO – To ensure that fines and court fees paid by those going through the justice system in Illinois remain fair and consistent, a new measure by State Senator John Mulroe (D-Chicago) was signed into law Monday.

“Court-related fines and fees support the justice system’s operations, but we can never lose sight of the fact that they should always be consistent and never seem arbitrary or unfair,” said Mulroe, the legislation’s sponsor in the Illinois Senate. “This broad realignment of the fine and fee structure came about based on the findings of an intensive study by the Statutory Court Fee Task Force, and I’m pleased to see it become law.”

The law will expand the ability of those assessed with fines to receive waivers as well. The legislation also clarifies to which agencies fines and fees are to be given and in some cases how they are to be used: It specifies that in misdemeanor traffic, conservation, and ordinance offenses, the arresting agency keeps the fine, and for other offenses the fine goes to the county to defray costs of prosecution. In addition, fees collected by the Illinois State Police would be marked specifically for the funding of cadet training.

House Bill 4594 takes effect July 1, 2019 and will sunset Jan. 1, 2021, giving the General Assembly the opportunity to reassess how well the new fee structure has worked.

Sen. John G. Mulroe

mulroe-2014-150

10th District
(Retired)

Years served: 2010 - 2019

Committee assignments: Commerce and Economic Development; Criminal Law; Executive; Insurance (Vice-Chairperson); Judiciary (Chairperson); Public Health; Subcommittee on Const. Amendments.

Biography: Born July 21, 1959, in Chicago; BBA, accounting, Loyola University; J.D., Loyola University School of Law; member of Chicago and Illinois State Bar associations; full-time attorney; former assistant state's attorney and arbitrator for Cook County; certified public accountant; married (wife, Margaret), four children.

Associated Representative:
Robert Martwick
Michael P. McAuliffe