Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


Level of unpaid fines and reparations coming down

Level of unpaid fines and reparations coming down

Substantial reductions in the total amounts of unpaid fines and reparations proves the government is working proactively to ensure that victims of crimes are receiving monies owed, Courts Minister Rick Barker said today.

“Initiatives by this Government have led to a reduction in the level of overdue unpaid fines from $334 million at 30 June 2002 to $306 million at 30 June 2003, a drop of $28 million. This is the first year that the total of overdue unpaid fines has gone down and the best year ever in terms of the amount collected.

“During that period, the value of unpaid reparations also reduced from $30.655 million at 30 June 2002 to $21.974 million at 30 June 2003, a drop of $8.681 million or 28.32 percent. This reflects the commitment this Government is making to help the victims of crime.”

Mr Barker said the total unpaid fines overdue, as reported in the Department for Courts 2002 Annual Report ($288 million), differed from the year-end figure because it was in fact a sub-set of total unpaid fines.

“This figure was wrong because of statistical classification errors arising out of the conversion of fines data from the Wanganui computer to the new Courts Department COLLECT system.

“The new system provides much more robust figures and when the error was detected, the figure for total overdue fines for the 2001/2002 year was corrected to $334 million.”

Mr Barker said the Courts Department was enhancing its collections capabilities through the upgrading and expansion of its Wellington Collections Contact Centre and establishment of another centre in Auckland.

“The expansion is expected to enable the Department to collect an additional $90 million over four years, $22 million of which will go to third parties, including reparation payments for victims of crimes. A free phone 0800 number will also be introduced, allowing victims to easily access information about their reparations.”

Mr Barker said the Courts and Criminal Matters Bill, currently before the Law and Order Select Committee, sent a clear message that fines and reparations must be paid.

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines


Breed Laws Don’t Work: Vets On New National Dog Control Plan

It is pleasing therefore to see Louise Upston Associate Minister for Local Government calling for a comprehensive solution... However, relying on breed specific laws to manage dog aggression will not work. More>>


Corrections Corrected: Supreme Court Rules On Release Dates

Corrections has always followed the lawful rulings of the Court in its calculation of sentence release dates. On four previous occasions, the Court of Appeal had upheld Corrections’ practices in calculating pre-sentence detention. More>>


Not Waiting On Select Committee: Green Party Releases Medically-Assisted Dying Policy

“Adults with a terminal illness should have the right to choose a medically assisted death,” Green Party health spokesperson Kevin Hague said. “The Green Party does not support extending assisted dying to people who aren't terminally ill because we can’t be confident that this won't further marginalise the lives of people with disabilities." More>>


General Election Review: Changes To Electoral Act Introduced

More effective systems in polling places and earlier counting of advanced votes are on their way through proposed changes to our electoral laws, Justice Minister Amy Adams says. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On Our Posturing At The UN

In New York, Key basically took an old May 2 Washington Post article written by Barack Obama, recycled it back to the Americans, and still scored headlines here at home… We’ve had a double serving of this kind of comfort food. More>>


Treaty Settlements: Bills Delayed As NZ First Pulls Support

Ngāruahine, Te Atiawa and Taranaki are reeling today as they learnt that the third and final readings of each Iwi’s Historical Treaty Settlement Bills scheduled for this Friday, have been put in jeopardy by the actions of NZ First. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On The Damage De-Regulation Is Doing To Fisheries And Education, Plus Kate Tempest

Our faith in the benign workings of the market – and of the light-handed regulation that goes with it – has had a body count. Back in 1992, the free market friendly Health Safety and Employment Act gutted the labour inspectorate and turned forestry, mining and other workplace sites into death traps, long before the Pike River disaster. More>>

Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news