News Channel 11 looked through more 300 pages of names, citations, and money owed to Kingsport and found about one-million dollars is owed to the model city.
“[These citations] could be a red light citation by an officer, speeding, it could be overtime parking, handicap parking, any number of things” says Tom Patton, the PIO with the Kingsport Police Department. Patton continues to say the number of unpaid citations “results in a little over a million dollars of debt”.
Some of the unpaid citations are from as far back as 1988 and fines range from $40, $50, $100, and even $200.
Patton says the money received from traffic violations do not go back to the police department but rather to the city and is used in the general budget.
Kingsport resident Steve Adams says the one-million dollars owed could be used to improve the same roads he travels everyday “if you look at these roads around here these streets in Kingsport are in real bad condition”.
In order to collect the money issued from a citation, Kingsport follows a process. That process includes sending a first and second notice to the address on the license. If the citation was a “moving” one, for example a speeding ticket or a red light violation, then after the first two notices the citation would go on to the state. The state then can suspend the person’s license. If the violation was a “non-moving” one like a parking ticket, then the citation is sent to a collections agency.
In a similar story in 2014, News Channel 11 discovered there was a glitch in the software system the Kingsport Police Department uses to send notices to those who were ticketed. The system, OmniCourt, had a glitch that would not send out notices. Patton says the glitch only affected about 25% of tickets issued in the last year or two. He says the software is not fully fixed but they are in the process.
To see if you have an unpaid fine in the city of Kingsport or Johnson City, click the links below.
To resolve an unpaid citation in Johnson City you can pay it online here or you can contact the Johnson City Police Department at (423) 434-6125.
To resolve an unpaid citation in Kingsport contact the Kingsport Police Department at (423)-229-9427
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