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Bill passed to curb ‘abusive’ ticketing

COLUMBUS (AP) — The Ohio House has approved legislation aimed at stopping a tiny village from collecting extraordinarily large fines for traffic-related violations.

The Columbus Dispatch reports the measure approved last week would require municipal or county courts to collect fines and adjudicate tickets for small villages without mayor’s courts.

A one-person police department in Brice, near Columbus, has been using a civil violation system to aggressively ticket motorists after the legislature in 2013 banned mayor’s courts for villages of fewer than 200 people. Brice has a population of around 114.

Republican Rep. Cheryl Grossman says the average ticket for expired tags in Brice is $750. Democratic Rep. Hearcel Craig calls Brice’s ticketing practices “abusive.”

People contesting tickets in Brice currently must seek a hearing with the village law director.